How to Apply
Ready to apply to one of our creative courses? Find out how to make your application and prepare for a future career in the competitive creative industries. From UCAS codes to portfolio guidance, accommodation to funding - you’ll find quick links to everything you need as an International applicant on this page.
From our Undergraduate BA (Hons) Degree programmes and Extended Degrees to our Postgraduate Masters Degrees and our range of Pre-Degree study options, we offer something for everyone looking to further their artistic practice.
How to apply for our creative courses depends on the level of study for you. Applications for Undergraduate Degree programmes (unless part-time) are made via The Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS), a UK-based organisation whose main role is to operate the application process for British universities. Whilst for our Postgraduate programmes and Pre-Degree courses are made directly to Arts University Plymouth on our website.
If you’re over 18 years old and looking to study a BA (Hons) degree, you can apply to one of our undergraduate courses. We offer 18 highly-specialised degrees in art, design and media, providing students with access to state-of-the-art facilities and industry expertise.
Follow our step-by-step guide below to begin making your application.
1) Note our UCAS Codes
To apply through UCAS you’ll need our institution code P65 and the relevant course code - which is available on each course page.
2) Login to UCAS Apply
You can apply to all of our undergraduate courses through UCAS. Click here to login and if you need any support you can call our friendly Admissions team on +44 (0)1752 203400. Remember, the deadline for the majority of courses is 18:00 GMT on the last Wednesday of January.
You can view entry requirements for each degree on our course pages and consult the UCAS Tariff Table. We recognise the value of a variety of qualifications and relevant experience and welcome applications from students who have followed less traditional routes.
2) Arrange an informal discussion
If your application meets our entry requirements, we’ll invite you to an informal discussion about your work with one of our academics. This might take place before or after you receive an offer from us. We know there's more to applicants than the information noted on a personal statement, so we’re keen to meet you online or in person and see your creative potential for real.
If you are unable to travel or have already attended an Open Day, this meet can take place online via Google Meet, Whatsapp, or a phone call. We will ask you to email a digital portfolio or showreel to us in advance, and arrange an interview slot with our Admissions team in advance. For more information on preparing for an interview at Arts University Plymouth, check out our academic staff's top tips.
As an MA student at Arts University Plymouth you will join our Postgraduate Centre, an active, cross-disciplinary community of makers and thinkers. You can apply for the postgraduate course you are interested in studying by clicking on the 'Apply Now' link situated top left on each course page.
See our full-range of MA and MFA programmes on our course pages.
Applying for an MA
MA applicants are normally expected to have an undergraduate degree at 2:1 or above. However, the strength of your creative practice and other forms of experience will be taken into account at the interview stage and we encourage you to start a conversation with us.
As part of the application, you will be asked to give the usual application details, to provide some digital images of your work, and to submit a short personal statement (300 words approximately). This personal statement is a chance to tell us what you want to do on your chosen MA. It might include details of the techniques or themes that you want to investigate, the creative practitioners that inspire you, the reading that fires your imagination, and your longer-term professional goals.
If you meet the entrance requirements, we will get back to you within three weeks of receiving your application to invite you for an interview. You will have the opportunity to tell us more about your work at this stage and to ask more questions about your course.
Applying for an MFA
To enrol on our MFA, a recent MA or 180 level 7 credits in an art, design, crafts or media discipline is normally required. The personal statement can be used to outline the work you intend to develop on the MFA. Please contact email@example.com if you have any questions about your application.
Alumni Progression Award
Arts University Plymouth graduates are offered a discount of 15% on Masters programme fees, regardless of when they studied with us previously. The discount applies if you studied on one of our pre-degree, foundation or undergraduate programmes.
Applications to our Extended Diploma and International Baccalaureate Career-related Programme (IBCP) are made online. To start your application please click the ‘Apply Now’ button on the top-left of the relevant course page.
As part of the pre-degree application process, we usually invite students to an in-person Applicant Event or overseas online discussion. This is a chance for you to experience our unique learning environment, find out about the course and ask us any questions you have about student support, funding and the local area. You can also tell us about any learning difficulties or disabilities you may have so we can offer you the appropriate support.
Applications can be made at any time during the year. We normally offer places to students who have a minimum of four GCSEs (minimum grade 4), including English, preferably with one in a creative subject. If you choose to study the IBCP, you will also require a GCSE in Maths (grade A*-C or minimum 4). Other variations on this entry profile may be considered, for example students with non-traditional backgrounds, particular learning needs or exceptional circumstances that have affected their ability to achieve a grade C or minimum grade 4 in English.
You can apply at any time during the year. However, we receive a high number of applications and have a limited number of places for this course, so we recommend that you make your application as early as possible. Our application form asks for details of your previous qualifications and any relevant work experience, as well as a short personal statement where you can tell us about yourself and your interests. At this point, we will invite you for an interview.
As part of our admissions process, you’ll also have the opportunity to tell us about any learning difficulties or disabilities you may have so we can offer you appropriate support. The Foundation Diploma in Art & Design requires a full Level 3 qualification and GCSEs, including English and Maths.
All offers are subject to interview and a portfolio or showreel of creative work that reflects your commitment, enthusiasm and passion for art, design and media.
We also welcome applications from students who may not have the required application profile but have alternative experience and knowledge.
From 5 October 2020, a new Student visa will replace the Tier 4 route. As an international student, you will need a Student visa which you can apply for online.
Student Route and Child Student Route replace Tier 4 route
- The Student route, which falls under the UK's new points-based immigration system, improves on the previous Tier 4 route making for a more streamlined experience for both sponsoring institutions and students.
- Visas that have been issued through the Tier 4 route are still valid and those eligible will still be able to apply for the Graduate Route when it opens in summer 2021.
- The Graduate Route will be available to international students who have completed a degree at undergraduate level or above at a Higher Education Provider with a track record of compliance and who have a valid Student (or Tier 4) visa at the time of application.
- More information about the UK’s new points-based immigration system can be found here. Further guidance for EU, EEA and Swiss students, who from 1 January will need to comply with the new system can be found here.
- EU, EEA and Swiss citizens resident in the UK before 31 December should apply to the EU settlement scheme.
EU, EEA and Swiss students resident in the UK by 31 December
EU, EEA and Swiss students resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 should not apply for a Student visa through the new points-based immigration system. They, and their family members, are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme. Those residents here by 31 December 2020 have until 30 June 2021 to do so. More information on the EU Settlement Scheme can be found here.
For more information, please visit the UK Council for International Student Affairs website or you can contact our Admissions team for step-by-step guidance.
Working Whilst Studying
Working part time during your studies or in vacation periods can be a great way to get to know other people and boost your skills as well as earning extra money. However, before you take any employment in the UK, you should always check if you have permission to work in the UK. Studying on a student visa may mean that you’re eligible to work for up to 20 hours a week, however each visa is different and some may have less hours or offer no right to work. You should check your visa for any restrictions.
The following information is relevant for Arts University Plymouth students who hold a Student Visa. The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) regularly posts guidance and advice regarding working in the UK, and we recommend that students check out their website.
Does your visa allow you to work in the UK?
You can check if you are permitted to work in the UK by firstly looking at what is written on your Student Visa. If you are studying at degree level and your CAS was issued by Arts University Plymouth, you should find that the visa states that you are permitted to work a maximum of 20 hours per week during term time.
If you are studying below degree level (for example if you are studying a foundation programme), you may in some instances find that you are restricted to working a maximum of 10 hours per week during term time.
If your visa states any of the following phrases this means that you are not permitted to work in the UK:
If your visa does permit you to work in the UK, you must not work more than the number of hours per week you are allowed, as this would be a breach of your immigration conditions and a criminal offence.
If you have doubts about your right to work in the UK, the permitted hours, or if the visa says something unusual or something that you don't understand, you should contact the international office to discuss. It is very important that you check your permission to work and the permitted hours before you do any work in the UK. If you breach the working conditions of your visa, even by accident, both you and your employer could be subject to a substantial fine and prosecution.
Work that is not eligible under a Student Visa
Unfortunately, not all work is eligible under the Student Visa route. This work broadly fits into the following categories:
Permanent Full-Time job
UKCISA has written a very helpful blog regarding working during studies, what is defined as 'self-employed' or an entertainer. It clarifies rules regarding being 'on call', private selling, income from digital and 'influencers', ad-hoc work such as couriering, amongst many other forms of income generation.
Definition of a week
UKVI define a week as a period of 7 days starting with a Monday. During this period, you must not work more than the maximum hours per week allowed by your visa. This weekly limit includes paid work and unpaid work.
Definition of term time
Term time means any period of time when you are expected to do any academic work. For example;
Attending classes and lectures
Writing essays, dissertations or a thesis
Preparing for and taking exams
Once we’ve received your application, we will set up your interview: if you are living overseas this will be an online or telephone interview, but if you are currently in education in the UK we will ask that you attend an interview in person. Either way, you can meet an experienced member of academic staff who will talk you through the course. All of our courses require a portfolio of work before any decision can be made on an offer of a place; this should be a range of work demonstrating your artistic ability and potential. If you’re successful, we’ll send you a letter offering you a place.
We often use Google Chat, Zoom and Whatsapp to hold a conversation with international applicants, please let us know if you have a preferred means of contact.