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BA (Hons) Photography

Course overview

Start date

September 2021

Subject area

Art and Design

Attendance

Full-time

Part-time

Learning

On campus, dual delivery

Course summary

Can you imagine a world without photographs? 

We are looking for a new generation of photographers who understand how photography shapes the world and want to know how to push the boundaries, explore new processes and use their knowledge to work for change.

We will support you to gain advanced skills in photographic production, while developing a sophisticated understanding of the historical and contemporary uses of photography.

As part of the unique Art and Design Cluster, you will have opportunities to collaborate on inter-disciplinary projects, preparing you to engage in a competitive job market equipped with skills for the fourth industrial age (4iR). 

You will develop a professional photography portfolio reflecting both your specific interests and your career aspirations whilst gaining confidence in a wide range of creative practices from medium/large format cameras, self-publishing, audio and moving image production to e.g. 3D fabrication. You will also have access to one of the largest darkrooms in London to explore analogue photography. 

Image credit: Danae Ennever-Roach (detail)

UCAS points

96

Course options

Degree

UCAS code

W641

Return to campus: dual delivery

In a Covid-secure environment, enjoy learning on our state-of-the-art campuses and flex between online delivery

Find out more

100%

100% overall satisfaction in the 2020 National Student Survey.

Annual newspaper publication

Producing interdisciplinary student led publications such as Anthropocene, developed by the class of 2019-20.

Global photography optional module

This is a theory-into-practice module in the final year focusing on cultural debates and diverse practices assessed in the form of a new media project.

EnquireVisit

Fees and funding

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £25,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will be automatically cancelled.

To apply visit gov.uk/student-finance

Maintenance Loan

You can apply for a loan to help with living costs such as food, travel and accommodation. How much you can borrow depends on where you live and study, and whether you are currently on welfare benefits. The maximum loan you can apply for is £12,382.

To apply visit gov.uk/student-finance

Supplementary Grants

The government also offer the following additional support:

-          Parent’s Learning Allowance

-          Adult Dependants' Grant

-          Childcare Grant

-          Disabled Students’ Allowance

For further information visit gov.uk/student-finance

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you are applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We have invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2019. If you are awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:

Ebooks

Bursaries Schemes for which you can apply

Scholarships Schemes for which you can apply

 


There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2018/19 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,060.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
UK
£TBC
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

Tuition Fee Loan

You can apply for a loan to cover the cost of your tuition fees, which will be paid directly to UEL. There are no up-front fees required. Repayment only starts after you finish your course and are earning over £25,000. If you haven’t finished repaying your loan after 30 years it will automatically be cancelled.

For information visit gov.uk/student-finance

Please note EU students can only apply for their funding using a paper application form.
To download a form visit www.gov.uk/student-finance-forms

We appreciate that finance is one of the key considerations when you are applying to university. That's why alongside your Government loan, you can apply for scholarships to help towards your finances. We have invested over £2 million worth of scholarships to financially assist new students, starting in September 2019. If you are awarded a scholarship you don't need to pay it back.

All students will receive:

Ebooks

Bursaries Schemes for which you can apply

Scholarships Schemes for which you can apply

 


There are a number of external organisations that offer financial help to
students. Please see the below list to view additional support options.
Alternatively, you can visit the Scholarship Search website.

Please note that the University of East London is not responsible for
the content of these external sites and is not associated in any way
with the funding schemes and their application processes.

Bank Of England Scholarship Programme

European Funding Guide

The Student Disability Association Fund

Sir John Cass’s Foundation

The Leverhulme Trade Charities Trust

The Newby Trust

Walcot Foundation

Scholarships Search

Some courses offer the option of a placement year, giving you the chance to gain valuable work experience in a relevant industry between your second and third years. If you are an international student on a Tier 4 visa, you are able to undertake a placement if it is an integral and assessed part of your course.

In 2018/19 placement year tuition fees are set at £1,060.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.

Email: study@uel.ac.uk

Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
EU
£TBC
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

At UEL, we understand that studying in another country is a big financial commitment. If you apply early for an undergraduate, you may be entitled to a scholarship of up to £3,000.You can find out more about the international scholarships here.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) also run an Emergency International Fund to assist international students in hardship.

You can contact our SMART team on 02082233333 or study@uel.ac.uk

As part of the Tier 4 student visa requirements, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) estimate that you will need £1,265* per month to cover your living costs. It includes expenses for accommodation, food and drink, travel within London, text books, entertainment, clothing, toiletries and laundry. Most Tier 4 students are required to show they have sufficient funds to cover the first nine months of the course before they start- a total of £11,385- in addition to the tuition fees. You can find more information about the specific requirements of the Tier 4 student visa here. The amount that you will spend can vary depending on your lifestyle. The UKCISA International Student Calculator can help you plan and manage your money.

* Please note the Immigration Rules are subject to change and this figure is likely to be increased by UKVI year on year. Please therefore check our ISA pages (www.uel.ac.uk/isa) for more information at the time of preparing your visa application.

Deposits and paying by instalments

International students are required to pay a deposit prior to being issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).

Your remaining balance will be paid in five monthly instalments over your first term. The first of these instalments must be paid when completing your enrolment on arrival at UEL. Please follow the payment instructions here

After the required payment has been made, you will be asked to complete the online International Student Reply Form to confirm your acceptance of our offer and of our terms of admittance and fees policy.

Our International team at UEL are available for advice and guidance on studying in London, fees, scholarships and visa requirements.

Email: international@uel.ac.uk

Tuition fees
International
£TBC
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

Entry requirements

96

New UCAS Points

From
A Level
Must include passes at A2 in at least two subjects.
From
Btec
Extended Diploma or Diploma
From
International Baccalaureate
Diploma with 24 points including a minimum of 15 points at Higher Level
We would normally expect you to have Grade C in GCSE English and Maths. All applicants are required to attend an interview and submit a portfolio of their work (Please see below for details).

INTERNATIONAL

(Including European Union)

SEE YOUR COUNTRY
Foundation in Art and Design grade Pass and 1 subject at A2 Level

We would like you to submit a digital portfolio of 15-20 photographs. Ideally you should submit a .pdf file or a link to a digital platform containing the requested work.

We would like your portfolio to include:

1)    Your current coursework and /or personal photographic work. We are looking for potential, passion, how you communicate through your images.  

2)    Your portfolio can consist of just digitally shot images. However, if you have shot analogue/ film, please include some of these in your portfolio, including darkroom prints.

3)    We welcome you to include drawings, multi-media work and moving image as part of your portfolio (by e.g. including a link to your work on a YouTube site).

4)    Present work that shows your passion & interest in photography.

5)    Include a sample page/s of your sketchbook/ visual experimentation/ note book.

Access to HE Diploma (QAA approved) with 60 credits overall and 45 credits at Level 3

We will also consider the UEL New Beginnings pre-entry course

Overall IELTS score of 5.5 with a minimum of 5.5 in Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking (or recognised equivalent).

If you do not meet the academic English language requirements for your course, you may be eligible to enrol onto a pre-sessional English programme. The length of the course will depend on your current level of English and the requirements for your degree programme. We offer a 5-week and an 11-week pre-sessional course. Find out more here.

Level 2 equivalences such as Level 2 Functional Skills in English / Maths, Level 2 Key Skills in Communication / Application of Number and Level 2 Adult Literacy / Adult Numeracy

As an inclusive university, we recognise that applicants who have been out of education for some time may not have the formal qualifications usually required for entry to a course. We welcome applications from those who can demonstrate their enthusiasm and commitment to study and have the relevant life/work experience that equips them to succeed on the course. We will assess this from the information provided in your application – in particular your personal statement - to help us decide on your eligibility for the course.

Please note that some courses require applicants to meet the entry requirements outlined on the course page. Our pre-entry Information Advice and Guidance Team are able to provide further advice on entry requirements and suitability for study.
You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre.

What you'll learn

Practice-as-research and the development of contemporary photographic practices are at the core of the course. The teaching programme is based on practical assessment and employability, with established practice in editorial, documentary and fine art photography, focused on photography as a catalyst for social change. 

Some sessions run in the Visual Arts Subject Cluster alongside other disciplines, equipping you with expanded skills to produce professional outcomes with confidence. Professional Practice: Mental Wealth and Cultural Manoeuvres sessions will allow you to further develop your creative understanding and engagement with the creative industries. 

The course offers you a range of activities for personal and professional development where you will gain a wealth of transferable skills. You can promote your practice to a range of audiences in the form of external publications, collaborations, film screenings, community practice and exhibitions. 

You will learn from a team of international practitioners who are leaders in their field, and will be able to take advantage of our extensive links to professional organisations and networks in London such as the Photographers’ Gallery and Autograph. You will also get opportunities to meet our highly successful alumni who will join your pin ups, exhibitions and portfolio reviews. Each year we also host an innovative week of guest talks called Detour Ahead, where you will have an opportunity to learn from inspirational photographers, designers, film makers, curators, picture editors, artists and experts in professional practice essentials such as copyright, tax and self-employment. 

The common level 4 cluster structure allows you to switch between BA (Hons) Photography and BA (Hons) Commercial Photography depending on your personal development.

What you'll study and when

We consistently review our courses to ensure we are up-to-date with industry changes and requirements from our graduates. As a result, our modules are subject to change.

  • Professional Life (Mental Wealth)
  • Art & Design Workshops, Processes & Skills
  • Art & Design Studio Practice Practise & Portfolio
  • Art & Design Specialist Workshops, Processes & Skills
  • Art & Design Specialist Studio Practice & Portfolio
  • Art & Design Contextual Studies
  • Professional Life 1 (Mental Wealth)
  • Practice 1
  • Contextual Studies 1
  • Research into Practice 1
  • Experimentation and Application 1A
  • Experimentation and Application 1B
  • Professional Life 2 (Mental Wealth)
  • Practice 2
  • Contextual Studies 2
  • Research into Practice 2
  • Advanced Experimentation and Applications
  • Advanced Practice
  • Professional Life 3 (Mental Wealth)
  • Practice 3
  • Independent Major Project Part A
  • Independent Major Project Part B
  • Research into Practice 3 – Global Photography
  • Research into Practice 3 –Extended Research Project

How you'll be assessed

You'll be required to present work for assessment in the form of exhibition, portfolio presentation, oral presentation or in the form of an evaluative learning journal, report or essay.

The course includes 20-credit and 40-credit modules which are assessed at the end of each term. The marks from the second and third years are used to formulate your final degree award.

Course specification Foundation Year Specification

‘Studying at UEL has been the best decision I ever made. Initially I was unsure if I would fit in as a mature student, but I soon found out that my age provided me with experience that would prove to be an advantage to my understanding of the course. I worked well with my fellow students and was supported by my lecturers. Over the past three years I have learned so much about not just photography, but also about subjects relating to photography such as putting together books and curating exhibitions, which has and continues to benefit my career.

Studying at UEL has not just improved my knowledge and technical skills but also improved my confidence, given me contacts in the industry and a bunch of new, creative friends.’ 


Karin Bultje , BA (Hons) Photography graduate 2020
Karin Bultje

How you'll learn

In your first year you will gain an understanding of the role of research in professional practice and in supporting the development of creative projects. You will experiment with ideas and explore a range of responses through projects designed to help you to identify your personal strengths and begin to explore skills appropriate to working in the creative industries. Workshops and projects will include analogue and digital photographic techniques and processes, as well as studio and location lighting. The cross-disciplinary Professional Practice: Mental Wealth and Cultural Manoeuvres sessions will allow you to further develop your analytical skills and engagement with the creative industries. 

At each level, you will take a contextual studies module, gaining an appreciation of the role of photography in cultural development and the contribution of technological innovations to visual culture.  

In the second year a more experimental approach is taken, where you expand on the skills and knowledge gained in the first year but with an emphasis on exploring areas beyond your usual practice. You will have opportunities for advanced image production and experimentation, refining your approach to photography and developing your personal style. Contextual studies and research-into-practice modules allow for cross cluster fertilisation of ideas and will support your understanding of your practice. Working on cross-collaborative projects will help to develop your professional skills, especially in our flagship Mental Wealth module where you will take on the role of a ‘producer’.

Elective workshops and projects in both your first and second year of study include eg., print making, 16mm film, art therapy, digital fabrication, InDesign, AR/VR and more,  allowing you to develop extended skills for the 4iR (fourth Industrial Revolution).

In your final year of study, you will produce of an independent major project, proposed and owned by you, presented as a professional outcome at the degree showcase. The final Mental Wealth module will prepare you for gaining employment, self-employment, entrepreneurship or postgraduate study. Level 6 allows you to focus on your career ambition and develop a professional outcome to fulfil your aspirations.

The modules in level 6 are designed to be inclusive to each students’ discipline and respond to differentiated assessments needs. You will have the option of working towards an Extended Research Project. This is a written project, allowing you to contextualise your practice through research into a subject of your choice. The Global Photography option module examines the emergence of globalisation as a fundamental force in reshaping the production, dissemination and reception of contemporary photography, focusing on cultural debates and diverse – and often non-western – practices in the expanded field. The photography research into practice route is assessed as a new media project, responding to the expanded practices of photography and the development of new media as part of photography discourse. 

Many well-known external creatives regularly visit the photography department delivering talks and workshops. Recently these have included Eileen Perrier (Photographer), Alixandra Fazzina (Photo journalist), Jenny Matthews (documentary photographer), Emma Bowkett (Director of Photography FT Weekend Magazine), Mike Trow (previously a picture editor at British Vogue), Aron Mörel (Morel Books), Steve McLeod (Photographer and Director of Metro Imaging), Laura Pannack (portraiture and social documentary photographer), Rhiannon Adams (portraiture and social documentary photographer), Mimi Mollica (documentary photographer), Luke Archer (Loupe Magazine), Nick Dunmur (Association of Photographers), Hannah Watson (Director of TJ Boulting Gallery), Vivienne Gamble (Director of Seen Fifteen), Marisa Bellani (Director of Roman Road), Sabina Jaskot-Gill (Curator, Photographs, National Portraiture Gallery) Azeema Magazine, Fransesca Maffeo (Director, Fransesca Maffeo Gallery), Cheryl Newman (Picture editor), and Bindi Vora (Curator, Autograph). 

Follow us on Instagram: @ba_photography_uel

 

Who will teach on this course:

You will learn from an international team of practicing professionals with specialisms in fine art photography, documentary, editorial and portrait photography, landscape, performance and publishing. Our team includes experts in visual studies related to the contemporary city, art and social movements, writing and curating. 

Minna Kantonen - Programme Leader

Dr. Carmen Aleman

Rob Pyecroft

Dr. Antigoni Memou

Dr. Debra Shaw

Facilities:

  • Large professional advanced shoot studio with rigged lights
  • Large immersive studio with continuous lights and green screen
  • Black and white darkroom and film processing area
  • Digital darkroom
  • High quality digital printer for portfolio and exhibition printing
  • Large format printer for poster printing
  • 3D Fabrication facility including 3D printers and laser cutters
  • Photography store containing a wide range of equipment for loan including high end DSLR cameras, medium and large format analogue cameras, Bowens and Pro-Foto portable lighting kits, Tascams and microphones (for audio), fig rigs, tripods and much more.

Your future career

Our course shapes and nurtures top-quality photographers. Don’t just take our word for it, though. When photography icon and East End boy David Bailey collected his honorary doctorate from UEL in 2014, he and former National Portrait Gallery Director, Sandy Nairne praised the exceptional standard of our students’ work.

It is little wonder then that so many of our graduates have gone on to carve out successful careers in various areas of the business and have found careers with, for instance, a collective of freelance photographers, with an award winning feature and documentary director, as studio and production managers and as freelance re-touchers and image makers, collaborating with well-established photographers. Some of our alumni have found success with their own studios. White Rabbit in Shoreditch and Espero Studios off Brick Lane were both set up by UEL Photography entrepreneurs.

The changes in digital technology and distribution in photography have provided opportunities for a new generation of photographers and graduates more able to adapt to the opportunities in multi-disciplinary and expanded practice aided by high quality moving image capabilities of the current DSLR cameras. This has allowed our graduates to become videographers, freelance camera operators, production assistants, producers, social media managers, stylists, freelance designers, and even curve ambassador and activist such as our photography alumna Felicity Hayward. Others have set up innovative publications such as Tirade and Bricoleur. 

Explore the different career options you can pursue with this degree and see the median salaries of the sector on our Career Coach portal.

You may also be interested in

  • Why study at UEL?

  • Student finance

  • Accommodation

  • Information Advice Guidance

Meet us in your country

Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London. 

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