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BADecorative Arts

Nottingham Trent University
United Kingdom, Nottingham
Tuition fee To be confirmed
More information

Expenses, accommodation, working etc.



Key features
Work with a range of media including paper, plastic, ceramics, textiles, metal, wood and glass.
Use the latest industry-standard digital software and machinery.
Gain commercial skills and business knowledge to help you set up your own business
Complete short periods of work experience, helping you to gain professional experience and skills.
Take part in industry competitions like the Society of Dyers and Colourists annual colour competition and Texprint.
Go on international study trips to design capitals like Milan and New York.
Work in our dedicated studios and workshops, support by expert technical staff.
Opt for a Live Trading module in your final year, where you could be part of team setting up a retail operation selling your products to the public.
Exhibit your work in your final year at our Degree Show in Nottingham, and at New Designers in London.
Apply to join a business development programme at The Hive, NTU’s purpose-built centre for entrepreneurship and enterprise.
98% of graduates from this course are in employment or further study within six months. (DLHE survey 2012-13)
Student work gallery
Take a look at some final-year work from this course in our BA (Hons) Decorative Arts student work gallery.

This course in endorsed by the Chartered Society of Designers.

Programme structure

What you study
Year One: both these modules run for the whole year.

Form, Structure and Surface Decoration (100 credit points)
This aim of this module is to provide you with an introduction to Decorative Arts through drawing, initial concepts and developing ideas, research and design skills, prototypes and finished products. You will explore a range of 2D / 3D media in addition to learning about the principles of colour theory.

Workshops will introduce you to aspects of contemporary practice through material processes, techniques and skills relating to drawing, print, ceramics, embroidery, metal, wood, glass and mould-making.

Decorative Arts in Context (20 credit points)
This module will provide you with an introduction to the key movements, themes and issues within 20th and 21st Century design. It will introduce you to, and develop your skills in, research, visual analysis, writing and presentation. This module is designed to enhance your development as a designer-maker. You’ll learn how to develop an independent approach to individual learning and working within a team, and you’ll research, organise and produce written work, presentations and discussions.

Year Two

Innovation: Creative Design (100 credit points)
During this module you’ll complete a variety of projects to help you develop skills that can be applied to the production of contemporary applied arts. This will include drawing, ideas generation, visual research, material exploration, presentation and visualisation. You will also explore the context, cultural and commercial, in which your work exists through visits, marketing research, costing, marketing and sustainability.

Business and Professional Practice (20 credit points)
This module provides you with an overview of business and professional development within the context of Decorative Arts. You will learn about setting up, product development, marketing, publicity, finance, sales and pricing. You will also learn how to develop an independent approach to individual learning and working within a group. You’ll also research, organise and produce written work and presentations / discussions.

Final Year

Creative Practice and Theory (120 credit points)
There are two elements to this module, which are marked separately. The first part is Creative Practice, which will count for 70% of your final mark. You will attend a mixture of lectures and tutorials where you negotiate, through discussion, a personal brief. You will develop, explore and analyse your ideas and go on to create a body of work which will lead to a professional portfolio and product collection.

The second part is the theoretical element of the module and counts for 30% towards your final mark. You can choose to either complete a dissertation or a live trading business plan.

For the dissertation you will negotiate a research topic which you will then refine for a dissertation submission.

For the live trading business plan you will create a business plan to support your practical work and final collection. You will include information about setting up your workshop, studio production and practice, pricing, marketing, business development and the legal implications for a freelancer, sole trader or SME business.

Career opportunities

Employability for this course is excellent, with 98% of students going on to employment or further study within 6 months of graduating. (DLHE survey 2012/13)

Graduate from this course regularly feature in the UK’s most influential style publications, including Elle Decoration , Vogue, Wallpaper* and World of Interiors .

Many of our graduates have gone on to set up their own businesses as designer-makers, with recent success stories including:

Brittany Delaney (Brittany Delany Ceramics)
Esther Patterson (Curiousa & Curiousa)
Anna Collette Hunt (Anna Collette Hunt Contemporary Fine Crafts)
Rosie Norman (Rosie Olivia Millinery).
Other recent graduates have gone on to work as designers, studio practitioners and stylists for companies including:

Paul Smith
Vivienne Westwood
Philip Treacy
Hugo Boss
the BBC
Fired Earth
Some graduates choose to transfer their skills into areas like art direction, marketing, merchandising, purchasing and consultancy, and some move into teaching after completing a PGCE.

Apply now! Fall semester 2021/22
This intake is not applicable

We are currently NOT ACCEPTING applications from NON-EU countries, except Georgia and Serbia.

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States

Apply now! Fall semester 2021/22
This intake is not applicable

We are currently NOT ACCEPTING applications from NON-EU countries, except Georgia and Serbia.

Application deadlines apply to citizens of: United States