Access Art and Design

The Conservation and Education Centre at the former Bristol Zoo Gardens site remains open to students.

You will have private access to the zoo grounds during lectures, to carry out your observations and data collection, but as more animals are moved, this will gradually be carried out at the Bristol Zoo Project. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity.

This course provides an exciting, well-established and challenging programme that helps adults of any age to engage and build confidence in their interest in art and design, and often helps them to make aspirational and life-changing decisions about their futures. The coursework is broad and varied to help students develop ideas and skills that pinpoint this progression and to assist them to build a new and focused portfolio suited to their interests. The programme runs over two years at Stroud, one year at Bristol.

Attendance is two days a week at college, between 9:30 am and 3:30 pm, plus some work at home is required. The course usually has the same half terms and holidays as Gloucestershire schools. The course content gives you the opportunity to explore a range of different disciplines; this enables you to explore the scope of creative art and design education and to build practical and creative skills to develop your own creative toolkit.

The core of the course is based on drawing in the widest sense of the word and includes life drawing. Diagnostic periods of study are allocated to painting, 3D sculpture, textile design, print making, 3D design, 2D design including graphics, and photography. Running parallel to these subjects is the opportunity to develop your own original work, which is so important in the creative industry today.

Group tutorials will help you to look at other artwork and this will also be explored through looking at artists and designers through the different art and design disciplines. You will be helped to apply to university during year two and this will include help with portfolio development: assembling a portfolio of your work, including sketchbooks, notebooks and other evidence of study or creative activity, all of which could be submitted as part of an application for a higher education art and design course, for employment or to support an application to an exhibition.

A full-time course is available subject to numbers at Stroud. The course is full-time at Bristol School of Art.

This course is at based at three of our campuses including our dynamic and exciting WISE and Queens Road campuses located within easy reach of the city of Bristol which is accessible by train and by bus. As well as our Stroud campus in the centre of Gloucestershire, surrounded by the Cotswold Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The campus is a short walk away from Stroud train station and easily accessible by bus.

How will I know how I am doing?

The course is validated and moderated by Acentis Awards on behalf of the nationally recognised Access course scheme. Your final assessment is based on an ongoing assessment of all coursework units, 20 units in all, and a final exhibition of your work.

Maths & English

We offer core modules in Maths and English. Students take these in the evening and can take GCSE or Level 2.

Work Experience

You will be encouraged to exhibit your work in year one and year two (Stroud only), curating and exhibiting your own and others' work. There is help in college to develop your CV. In the past, students have taken part in exhibitions in the Museum in the Park and other local opportunities.

What can I do next?

Typically, this course leads to further study on academic or vocational courses at university level and, ultimately, to a career within the creative industries.

What are my career options?

There are a variety of career opportunities in the creative industries, such as in 2D or 3D fine art, design, graphics, media, illustration, product design, fashion and textiles, print making, teaching, curation, etc.

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Study Modules
Course Video
Caroline Allen
*This programme is subject to validation and delivery approval by the University of Gloucestershire.
Queens Road Campus
Pre Degree (Access to Higher Education)
Full-time Duration:
1 Year
Full-time Fee (Per Year):
Part-time Duration:
Part-time Fee (Per Year):
UCAS Application Code:
UCAS Entry Tariff:
Entry Requirements

Course info last updated:
June 9, 2024
Delivery Format

The delivery format for your degree-level programs is primarily face-to-face and in-person sessions. However, there may be some hybrid sessions offered occasionally, mainly for flexibility purposes, such as tutorials or for larger events like visiting lecturers. Additionally, it's mentioned that all degree programs are well-supported by Virtual Learning Environments, which include Teams or Google Classroom.

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