Norwich University of the Arts


Norwich University of the Arts (NUA) is a public university, based on a single site in the centre of Norwich, in the United Kingdom. It is a higher education specialising in art, design and media. Norwich University of the Arts was founded as Norwich School of Design in 1845 and has a long history of arts education. It celebrated its 170th anniversary in 2015. NUA is the smaller of the two universities in Norwich, the other being the University of East Anglia. The history of Norwich University of the Arts dates back to 1845 when the Norwich School of Design was established to provide designers for local industries. Its founders were the artists and followers of the ‘Norwich School of Painters’, the only provincial British group to establish an international reputation for landscape painting. Degree-level provision has been offered since 1965, when it was approved to offer the Diploma in Art and Design, validated by the National Council for Diplomas in Art and Design (NCDAD). After 1965 the School of Art made its own mark on the national art and design scene when twin strengths in Painting and Graphic Design emerged under a group of exceptional practitioners and teachers. From 1975, after NCDAD’s merger with the Council for National Academic Awards (CNAA), the School offered its first BA Honours degree courses in Fine Art and Graphic Design, validated by CNAA. In 1989 the School merged with Great Yarmouth College of Art to form the Norfolk Institute of Art and Design (NIAD). In 1991 Norfolk Institute of Art and Design become an Associate College of the new Anglia Polytechnic with the polytechnic assuming validation responsibilities from CNAA from September 1992. This agreement extended to postgraduate provision, with the first MA course being introduced in 1993 (MA Fine Art) and the first research degree student being registered in 1995. In 1994 NIAD was incorporated as a Higher Education Institution (HEI), renamed as Norwich School of Art and Design and re-launched with a new corporate identity. In November 2007 the School was granted the power to award its own degrees up to Masters level and was renamed Norwich University College of the Arts. In January 2013 the institution was given permission by the Privy Council to become a University and became Norwich University of the Arts.


Undergraduate courses are offered in a range of art and design fields, including Animation, Architecture, Design for Publishing, Fashion, Fashion Communication and Promotion, Film and Moving Image Publishing, Fine Art, Games Art and Design, Graphic Communication, Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography, Textile Design and VFX. Four year degrees are offered in the fields of Film and Moving Image Production, Fine Art, Games Art and Design, and Graphic Design.

Postgraduate courses include MAs in Communication Design, Curation, Fashion, Fine Art, Games, Moving Image and Sound, Photography, and Textile Design.

MPhil and PhD research degrees are also offered in many arts, design, and media areas.


Applications are judged on an interview, portfolio of work and qualifications. Applicants who aren’t ready to commence a degree may be offered a four-year degree course. All entry requirements can be found on their website. The completion of a Foundation Diploma, Art & Design is not a per-requisite for BA (Hons) course at NUA. When applying for their BA (Hons) courses, the entry requirement for applicants taking A Levels is BBB. For further information or clarification on other Level 3 qualifications, please visit their website. Candidates for undergraduate courses should apply online through the Universities and College Admissions Service (UCAS). Consideration of late submissions will depend on the number of applications and the take up of offers in that given year. Offers are made on the basis of merit. Applications to all postgraduate courses are made directly to the university using an MA Application Form. The form and full details on applying can be found on the postgraduate pages of their website.


Their specialist provision and sole focus on art, design, architecture and media ensures a world-class educational experience. All teaching and technical staff are practicing artists, designers, media makers and academics who bring these perspectives to their teaching and their networks to the studios and lecture theatres. The quality of their academic resources is recognised nationally and internationally. Their award-winning Ideas Factory@NUA supports and develops the successful and fruitful links to the creative industries to provide competitive opportunities and exposure for their students.


96% student retention rate. Students who start at NUA stay here.

92% of graduates were in employment or further study within six months (DLHE 2013–14).

NUA was rated the Top Specialist Arts, Design and Media University for Student Satisfaction in the 2013 and 2014 National Student Surveys. Top rated learning resources – their specialist facilities include the world-class media lab; industry standard digital design, editing and sound facilities; print and etching studios; a foundry; and wood and metal workshops.

Five art, design and media courses at NUA have been endorsed by Creative Skillset, the industry body that supports skills and training for people in the creative industries, in recognition of their links to the creative sectors and track records in securing employment for their graduates. NUA’s BA Film and Moving Image Production, Photography, Games Art and Design and Graphic Design, as well as MA Moving Image and Sound all have the Creative Skillset Tick, an essential signpost which tells potential students the course has gone through thorough assessment, including a review of graduate employment, work experience and links with industry, which contribute to improved employment prospects on completion of the course.


The Careers Service provides support for all registered students as well as graduates for up to three years after graduation, or for life if alumni members. The University wants to ensure that students have the best possible chance of moving forward from the learning environment to a world of work or further study; the Careers Centre is therefore committed to providing advice in the form of personal one-on-one advice sessions and workshops, as well as in-course training throughout your time in the University. The Careers Centre workshops and in-course training cover a range of careers related issues, including presentations from practitioners from across the field of the creative industries, job finding, creative CVs, interview skills and organising work experience. The Careers Centre can help the students to decide on a particular career, prepare them for the transition to the working environment and can advise them on the relevant skills and knowledge required to work in a commercial environment.  The centre has attained the MATRIX standard, a national quality standard and one which will ensure that they receive a high quality overall service.

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