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Access to HE Diploma (Art and Design)

Access to HE

The aim of the Access to HE in Art and Design course is to produce fully rounded, enthusiastic, confident and creative students who are able to engage with the complex boundaries in Art and Design. We strongly encourage students to work towards finding a subject specialism and a place at a Higher Education institution.


This one year course is aimed at mature students (19+). The course is broad based and will cover a wide range of art and design related topics. There are 9 units which will cover:

  • Drawing for Art and Design.
  • Life Drawing.
  • Figure Drawing and Painting.
  • Visual Studies.
  • Art and Design in 2D or 3D.
  • Digital Imaging.
  • Study Skills.
  • History of Art and Design.
  • A Personal Project.

The course tutors have many years of teaching experience and of writing and developing courses from Access to Degree level. We have all worked in the sector for a number of years and our knowledge is constantly updated by training. As a team, we regularly attend guidance sessions with the awarding body to keep abreast of all changes in national standards. In addition to this, we all have industry experience, working freelance and within companies.

All students are supported by a system of individual and group tutorials. Attendance is two days per week (over one year). As the course is at Level 3, commitment is essential. In addition to your work at College you will be required to undertake independent study and research.


The course is delivered in a variety of formats which include the use of presentations, workshops, independent research, practical project work and group critiques. We place a lot of emphasis on developing independent learning. The course will culminate in an end of year art and design exhibition.

Course Leader profiles

Patrick Dolan

I have worked at Calderdale College for a number of years and have experience of developing and teaching on several Higher Education courses including HNC/HND and BA (Hons) Top Up Level 6. I am interested in Art and Design in all its diversity, and I am keen to incorporate social media such as Twitter and Instagram into aspects of teaching and disseminating information and ideas. I am a graphic designer with experience in marketing and community design work. I currently work as a member of a creative team. I am particularly interested in creating digital illustration, letterpress printing and I am a keen user of Instagram.

Jane Crumack

Prior to working in education, I enjoyed a fifteen year career working as a graphic designer for advertising and design consultancies, educational and community publishing and the museum service. I am currently one half of a design duo; and recent design projects have included greetings cards and corporate identity. My teaching experience includes course leader responsibilities on the HND Graphic Design and Photography programmes and the development of the Colleges Access and Foundation Degree Design courses and BA (Hons) Top Up. My main teaching interests are graphic design and typography. Outside of my teaching I am interested in photography, film, literature and creative writing.

Yve Houghton

I have an M.A. in Fashion and Textiles and gained my PGCE in 2004. I have worked extensively in the design industry as a Design Manager and Head of Design, and have been running my own textile design consultancy for many years, working with numerous blue chip companies including: Hilton Group, BT, Barclays Bank, Sheraton Hotels, Akzo Nobel, Renault, Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank, Dorchester Hotel, Skoda, International Wool Secretariat, Japanese Embassy (London), United Distillers, Peel Holdings (Trafford Centre) and Tate and Lyle to name a few. I have also collaborated with prominent designers and artists including Jeff Banks, Peter Howson, Michael Sodeau and Paolo Gucci. I have spent 15 years as a senior lecturer at the University of Wolverhampton.

Entry Requirements

Applicants with no formal qualifications will be considered following the outcome of a guidance interview and on their portfolio of work. Candidates will be required to show a portfolio of work, enthusiasm and a commitment to the course.

Interview Process

Interview with a specialist tutor.

Questions & Answers

How is the course assessed?

Each unit will be assessed by a portfolio of visual evidence, a personal sketchbook, a presentation, essay/reports, a file of evidence/research and written evaluations and presentations.

Are there any opportunities for progression?

You may progress on to a BA Honours Degree, Foundation Degree or HND, self-employment or a freelance artist or designer. There are many job opportunities within the creative industries.


Before Enrolment

The Advice & Guidance team provide impartial Student Advisors to give information about College Courses and provide initial guidance to help you decide which course is best for you . Financial advice and assistance if you need help with childcare, equipment, fees, or travel. Careers and Student Advisors to give you the necessary help and guidance you need when you are progressing on to further and higher education or employment.

During Your Study

To help you to succeed in your course of study we offer a range of services. For instance, you may have a learning difficulty and/or disability or other condition which significantly affects your daily life. If you would like to discuss your support needs, or for further information about the support available, please contact the study support team on 01422 357357 Ext 9347.

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Course details

  • Attendance: Part-time (day)
  • Start Date: September 2018
  • Hours per week: 15 hours per week
  • Days: Wednesday and Thursday
  • Start Time: 9.30 am
  • End Time: 3.30 pm
  • Duration: 1 year
  • Course Fees: Please contact Advice & Guidance on 01422 399367 Loan available on this course. Contact Advice & Guidance for more information
  • Venue: Calderdale College
  • Faculty: HE & Professonal Studies
  • Department Manager: Katie Walker


  • Level: Access to HE, Level 3
  • Qualification Name: Access to HE Diploma Art and Design
  • Awarding Body: One Awards

Contact Information


Apply for this course

You can also download a printable application form (PDF 209KB).

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Contact Us

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Calderdale College,
Francis Street,
Halifax, HX1 3UZ

+44 (0) 1422 357 357

Course Information:

+44 (0) 1422 399 399

Admissions Team:

+44 (0) 1422 399 316