Art Sue’s higher moves

Monday 24 October 2016

In an exciting move, young people are now completing full BA Honours degrees in Graphic Design at Bedford College.           

Degree level learning is offered across a wide range of subjects at the College, but the third and final year was undertaken at an associate university.

Now a cohort of 12 students are in the third year of their cap and gown course at the Bedford riverside South Bank Arts Centre.

“This course is franchised through the University of Northampton which means that students can be assured it is of the highest standard,” explained Sue Blackman, Strategic Higher Education Director.

“The Level 6 or BA Hons course is exactly the same as that offered at a university campus - but at less than the standard University tuition fee.

“We are looking forward to the graduation of the first cohort who benefit from continuing to study and work with our award-winning team, in our nationally recognised environment.”

Bedford College Art & Design students regularly compete with university undergraduates in  international competitions such as the D&AD and YCN, winning annual industry awards.

This track record of winning prestigious awards supported the case for Bedford College to move up from offering Further Education (FE) to a full degree Higher Education (HE).

Added Sue: “Effectively the university involved franchises the courses to us at Bedford College - and obviously they will only do that if they are confident that the move will maintain their highest standards. The advantage for the students is they have continuity of study support, work related environment and a reduction in higher level study costs compared to going away to university.”

“We made this decision in response to student demand. Our satisfaction ratings in the Creative Arts courses are so high that student demand led to this move.”

Sue, who was for 10 years Director of Arts at the South Bank Arts Centre in Bedford, is looking forward to widening the degree offer at the College. 

“We already offer a broad range of HNC’s, HND’s and Foundation degrees linked with universities, but our aim is to expand our HE course profile which will make Bedford College known as a great place to gain a degree,” added Sue.

An Engineering BSc (top up from HND) is also available via Bedford College, Access to Higher Education courses and new Higher Apprenticeships are on offer. 

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