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BA (Hons) Fine Art

All skills and knowledge, necessary to participate in and contribute to the expanding field of contemporary art
Course length
Start date
Tuition fees
Full-time: GBP 6900 / year, Part-time: GBP 4400 / year

About the course 

The Fine Art Programme focuses on contemporary art and practice and theories that inform it. This is a studio-based programme that approaches art practice in an investigative and experimental way. The ethos is pluralistic in approach, enabling students to specialise or work across media in such areas as painting, sculpture / installation, printmaking, video, photography, performance / installation. The emphasis is on establishing a personal direction through both process and critique.

The programme is progressive in outlook, fostering openness to new learning and emergent forms of practice, giving students the perspective to place both themselves and their work in a broader global context.

BA (Hons) Fine Art programme is validated by University of Hertfordshire.


The aim of the course is to direct the student towards independent study by encouraging a studio practice based on debate, collaboration, enquiry and risk taking. The programme is structured to generate a synthesis between practice and theory. Through the shared experience of generating, discussing and testing ideas, students establish an understanding of the creative process and theoretical issues that inform it. This understanding is facilitated by lectures, visiting artists, tutorials and group seminars.

With the help of Internationally trained teaching staff and practising artists whose expertise covers painting, drawing, sculpture, video, photography and printmaking students will be encouraged to explore their contemporary context, respond to shifts in culture and reflect on their own positions as creative forces. There is a lively and diverse lecture programme where visual artists, poets, art critics and curators explain their practice to the whole student group, encouraging debate and exciting discussion.


On successful completion of the programme, students will typically have:

Knowledge and Understanding:

- How ideas, concerns and values are expressed and embodied through making.
- The ways in which cultural, historical and theoretical issues support and inform a broad range of recent and contemporary fine art.
- The ways in which contextual, historical, cultural and theoretical issues can be used as creative resources to develop and gain insight into students’ own practices.
- Where to contextually locate the student’s own practice alongside contemporary practitioners.
- Professional practice and visual arts career opportunities and how to effectively respond to them.

Intellectual Skills: 

- Critically explore how art communicates through its associated languages by engaging fully with art practice.
- Recognise and reflect on cultural, intellectual and emotional relationship to content as embodied in practical work.
- Demonstrate critical reflection, including identifying appropriate questions for enquiry, formulating independent judgements, articulating reasoned arguments and responding to the critical views of others.
- Demonstrate the development of a thoughtful and questioning approach to practice and take on board the critical responses of others.

Practical Skills: 

- Express and embody ideas, concerns and values through making.
- Fully explore the potential of communicating in imaginative and personally ambitious ways and explore new contexts, sites and methods for practice.
- Demonstrate relevant skills in selecting, exhibiting and installing studio practice with understanding of relation to audience/s.
- Demonstrate appropriate and competent use of media within studio practice and realise ideas through to a resolved outcome.

Transferable Skills: 

- Communicate ideas and information effectively in written and spoken English and visual forms, with due consideration for audiences, language use and academic referencing conventions. 
- Work independently by setting goals, managing own learning, coordinating workloads, project planning and meeting deadlines in response to set briefs and self-initiated study.
- Demonstrate good studentship through engagement, collaboration and participation.
- Manage, research using a variety of resources to gather material, evaluate sources and experiences, document findings and develop an independent line of critical reasoning supported by evidence.

Year 1
The learning experience is focused through a series of short ‘themed’ projects that enable the gaining of skills in fundamental techniques and processes. Investigation into ‘colour’ and ‘sculptural techniques’ will help underpin intellectual understanding of materials and their properties through a series of workshops.

A weekly lecture programme and 1-1 tutorials with staff and visiting practitioners will consolidate the understanding of artistic activity and further contextualise the individual position. ‘Series and sequence’ and ‘working in collaboration’ will allow the rolling forward of personal investigation into new realms, culminating in an essay of tutorial reports of 1500 words and an essay of research interests of 1500 words and an end of year show.

Core modules:
  • Fine Art Practice 1A
  • Fine Art Practice 1B
  • Fine Art in Context 1
  • Fine Art: Visions, Contexts, Languages (Critical and Cultural Studies)

Year 2
The second year of the programme will focus more on equipping the student with research skills that help to situate the developing practice within a wider cultural context. Continued workshop programmes will aid the acquisition of skills. Professional practice and career progression will also begin in year 2. The critical studies module will require the submission of 2 research papers of upto 2000 words each.

Core modules:
  • Fine Art Practice 2A
  • Fine Art Practice 2B
  • Fine Art in Context 2
  • Fine Art: Debates and Values (Critical and Cultural Studies)
Year 3
During their final year leading to the degree of Bachelor of Arts students can study either in Moscow or in the UK depending on their choice.

Core Modules:

  • Fine Art Practice 3A
  • Fine Art Practice 3B
  • Fine Art Degree Essay (Critical and Cultural Studies)
To enrol on the course, applicants have to present a portfolio of their work and evidence of their English language competence. A grade 6.0 or higher on the IELTS scale is acceptable and the CAE and FCE qualifications are considered. If the applicant cannot produce a certificate, their English is tested together with prospective students who are applying for the Foundation Art & Design Course. However, the applicant must provide the IELTS certificate later on, by particular deadline. 

Enrollment is based on the results of a portfolio assessment and an interview with one of the tutors. The applicant's knowledge and skills reflected in their work should be comparable to the knowledge and skills students acquire at Foundation level. Interviews and portfolio assessments are usually scheduled in the 3 days followed by the language test.

Transfer to Year 2 will be possible only if a student attended a higher education institution which uses a credit-based system. For these purposes, the number of previously received credits is compared with the number of credits which is necessary for transfer to the relevant stage of a British undergraduate course.

Period of study

Full-time — 3 years
Part-time — 6 years

Tuition fees

Full-time: GBP 6,650 / year *
Part-time: GBP 4,200 / year *

Students as a rule pay their tuition fees once a semester, that is, twice a year, but at their request can choose to pay on a monthly basis.

You will be expected to meet additional costs which may arise as a result of materials, art supplies and consumables you may need for your projects, as well as printing and copying services and other types of services and consumables. Their list and the amount of costs depends upon the requirements of your course and the nature of your projects. Additionally during your time at BHSAD you may be recommended to visit museums, art galleries and other venues as part of your learning and there may be a cost for such visits which you should also budget for.

Below is the list of materials and supplies which BHSAD students use most frequently and which are likely to be among those you may need:

A3 or A4 hardback sketchbook, A2 or A3 portfolio case with ringbound plastic sleeves, HB pencils and rubber, UHU glue, Pritt stick, PVA glue, small lined notepads, spray mount, masking tape, sellotape, double sided tape, invisible scotch tape, scalpel with replaceable blades, basic set of acrylic paints, coloured pencils, basic set of drawing pencils, highlighter, assorted brushes, writing pen, fine line drawing pens, small plastic ruler etc.

Please note that this list is indicative and given for your reference only. Full list will depend upon your project and the range of materials and techniques which you may wish to adopt.

* This proposal does not constitute an offer, the prices are subject to change. Cost of services and conditions of their provision will be specified in the contract. 

Required documents

- Online application form
- Copy of previous education certificates and academic qualifications. The following documents can be submitted: high school diploma, college degree diploma, higher education or BA diploma
- 2 photos 3х4 cm
- Copy of your passport
- Personal statement

Entry examinations
Applicants who apply for Year 1 of British higher education courses, need to sit the following:

- English exam
- Portfolio assessment
- Entry interview

During the admission exams, the admissions staff will arrange a convenient date and time for demonstration of portfolio and interview, after that, the matriculant will be allowed to pass the English test.

English test is not required for students from English-speaking countries or if an IELTS or equivalent certificate is produced. For international students we can organise skype entry interviews. In such cases the portfolio can be sent via email.
Required level of English
IELTS band 6.0 (or equivalent certificate). Along with the IELTS results, the following certificates are also accepted:

- CAE (Certificate in Advanced English) grade C or above;
- FCE (First Certificate in English) grade A.

If a prospective student does not have an IELTS certificate of the required level but successfully passed BHSAD English test as part of BHSAD entrance exams, he/she needs to obtain an IELTS certificate before the start of the first semester on Year 1.
Required portfolio
The range of work in your portfolio should cover a broad spectrum of media, materials and approaches. Projects may be submitted in different disciplines including but not limited to graphics, drawing, painting, textile, photography, decorative art, design, web-design, animation.

First of all, the admission committee would like to see how you can generate and develop your ideas; that is why, besides finished projects, the portfolio should also include notebooks with sketches, sketchbooks, written works (articles, essays, if any). Please try to present examples of the best and most recent projects which reflect your creative abilities.

Your portfolio needs to be printed (А3 format or larger). Animation and CG works should be presented on CDs or memory sticks. It advisable to show photographs of large works which otherwise would be difficult to transport.

interview procedure
Prospective students will be asked questions regarding their education and professional background in order to make a final decision about admission on to the course. Please be ready to tell the interview panel about yourself, your design experience and projects in your portfolio.

You may be asked about the history of creation of a particular work and the context of its creation. The panel may ask you about well-known designers to learn about the influence of creative activities of other designers and artists on you, the reason why you follow them and the main incentive for your development in terms of your occupation.
Application deadline
Application deadlines will be announced in spring 2020.

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