NEW Historic Craft Practices Foundation Degree

West Dean College has announced a new two-year Foundation Degree* for students to develop craft skills in conservation, restoration and heritage making. The new FdA Historic Craft Practices means that students can specialise in Clocks, Furniture or Musical Instruments and combine their interest in heritage with practical hands-on skills development. The course, which offers an alternative to the traditional University route to a career, balances practical and academic skills and includes a period of work placement.

"The arts and crafts underpin the UK's world-leading creative industries sector, which is worth £71.4 billion a year," says Francine Norris, Director of Education. "According to figures the craft sector alone currently employs over 100,000 people while with growth of 10 per cent, the creative sector is outstripping all other industry sectors in terms of recovery."

On successful completion of the course students will be able to work in a range of heritage craft contexts, as designer-makers or within antiques restoration or heritage conservation. The Foundation Degree will offer a recognised qualification. For those wishing to undertake further study, the course prepares students to progress to a specialist Graduate Diploma at West Dean or other Level 6 qualification such as the final year of a BA degree.

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Graduate employment

Past West Dean Graduates have gone on to careers as musical instrument makers, clocks restorers and furniture designer makers. Many work for leading antique dealers and institutions such as the National Trust and major national museums, including the British Museum, the V & A Museum and the National Maritime Museum.

West Dean College has an international reputation for teaching in conservation and the creative arts, including an MA Creative Writing and Publishing*. Other qualifications include Diploma, Postgraduate Diploma, MA and MFA and many are validated by the University of Sussex.

Entry levels

Students will need Level 3 qualification, for example A-Levels, BTEC or Foundation Diploma in Art and Design. Applicants will also be considered if they can provide evidence of prior learning with an appropriate portfolio of work. International applicants should provide digital portfolio, evidence of English language to Level B (IELTS 6.0) as well as equivalent Level 3 qualifications. Visit www.westdean.org.uk.

*subject to validation