Photography teacher showing students a professional camera


This course is ideal for school leavers who wish to further develop their practical and editing skills in photography and wish to progress on to a Level 3 course.


Location: Central Campus

Start Date: 06/09/21


You will need a Level 1 qualification or GCSEs at grade 3/D. You should bring a portfolio of your work to your interview or submit it to the tutor by email at


You will cover four units across the year.

Module A: Exploring and Developing Art and Design Skills
Part 1: Skills Development
You will learn about sketchbook presentation skills, develop a range of basic level photographic skills, including digital DSLR camera skills, Photoshop and editing skills, darkroom application and studio lighting. You will complete a more in-depth analysis of manual settings, looking at Aperture, Depth of Field, and Shutter Speeds, including fast, slow and panning.
Part 2: Art and Design Project
You will experiment with a wide variety of photographic equipment including use of the darkroom facilities, studio lighting equipment, digital DSLR cameras using a wide range of settings, photographing both in class and on location. You will examine the work of a number of photographers and artists, to help broaden your understanding of the photographic world. Your brief involves creating your collection of photographic images that have been through post production using manual setting and Photoshop, to create a portfolio of work that fits a brief.
Module B: Personal Development
You will investigate your own professional practice and interests in the creative industry. You will develop a portfolio of photographic images related to this area of interest and explore a range of photographers and artists.
Module C: Responding to a Creative Brief
You will put together all the skills you have cumulated across the year into your own exciting Final Major Project (FMP). Within this, you will learn how to generate your own contexts, exploring and developing skills in an area of your choice. Such areas may include: landscape photography, fashion, editorial, graphic design, sport, wildlife etc. You will be taught skills linking to Film Noir, more in-depth studio lighting, including various types of lights, and directional lighting skills.
You will exhibit your final piece for this work in the end of year exhibition which will be open to friends and the public to view.


We run visits to museums and galleries, locally and nationally. We also have strong links with the creative industries in the West Midlands and put on talks by practising artists and give you the chance to take part in art projects for big-name organisations such as Fat Face and London Midland.


Assessment is 100% coursework based. This includes a combination of practical work and written annotations presented in A3 sketchbooks throughout the year. At least one online theory session will take place each week, which will be conducted through Edmodo and Zoom. Training on this software will be provided at the start of the course.


Successful completion of this course can lead to a BTEC Level 3 National in Art and Design Practice in one of our specialist areas: Interactive Media or Photography. You will leave with a professional portfolio of photographic work suitable for future careers in: photography, graphic design, and interactive media.

Success Rates on courses for 16-18 year-olds nearly 7% better than national average*

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