Short Courses

Study Art and Design Online

Wondering what it's like to take an Art and Design Short Course remotely? From the course structure to the teaching format, COL's Head of Arts Oliver Reed highlights the additions that have been made with the switch to online learning.

Since we've moved our in-person Short Courses online in response to the pandemic, one question we're often asked is how our art courses are taught remotely - especially with the arts typically being thought of as a relatively hands-on and practical area of study. 

With one year of successfully teaching the subject remotely under our belt, ahead of our 21/22 Term 1 courses starting, we've caught up with COL's Head of Arts Oliver Reed to get the full answers to your questions (See below).  

But before you read the full Q and A, we thought we'd share this video introducing the Short Courses Art and Design tutors who will be teaching you online this term while giving you some quick snippets of what the live online set up will look like...

Video: Meet our Short Courses Art and Design Tutors
Meet our talented Short Courses Art and Design team - This autumn they're back to support you every step of the way through your creative endeavours. Join them in Term 1!

Q.1 Will I have enough space to take an online arts course from home?

We have planned all of our online courses under the assumption that students have limited resources. If you have a table top or desk space, you will have enough space to participate.

Rather than space being a hindrance, we've discovered the exciting opportunities that working within restricted parameters has created.

This includes increasing the student's and teacher's capacity to convey an idea or concept within a limited amount of space and resources, which in turn has really expanded both our staff and students' creative abilities - allowing them to think even further outside of the box.


Q.2 Will I receive the same amount of one-to-one tutor support online as I would have expected in a studio setting? 

Yes! With our shift to online, we have introduced one-to-one sessions where students have a dedicated time slot with the tutor to brainstorm and refine their ideas, work and projects and gives students a chance to receive regular feedback.

Students will also be able to raise any concerns and receive further guidance in these additional support sessions.

The one-to-one sessions has been an important element for us to include as they mimick the type of situation that would naturally take place in the studio setting.


Q.3 What about technology? How do I log on? What platforms will be used?

All Art and Design courses will be taught on Collaborate, which was a very successful way of hosting our 20/21 courses and both students and tutors were able to quickly adapt to the switch to our Virtual Learning Platforms.

Not only has the new online format worked well from a teaching perspective, but for the first time ever, it's also enabled students from all over the world to join our classes.

This has broadened the perspectives in the group discussions and allowed students to meet and interact with new people with shared interests from a variety of different countries, creating a dynamic online learning community.

For more information about studying remotely, we have dedicated an entire section of our website to explaining the platform including step-by-step guidance on how to log onto your class with a Remote Study FAQ page to help you on your way.

Learn more about 'Studying Remotely'


Q.4 What Art and Design courses are available in Term 1?

There are a number of varied Art and Design courses to choose from starting this autumn from Drawing and Painting courses to Digital Media and Photography - depending on where your interests lie...

Those thinking of applying to university or college can explore our Portfolio preparation courses, 'Portfolio Preparation: (Preparing an Application)'.  

We have a range of design courses from a 10-week 'Introduction to Graphic Design' course to a longer 20-week one, 'Graphic Design: Studio Practice'.

'Introduction to Digital Animation' is also popular course, introducing you to the basics of animating and for those manga and graphic art fans we also have, 'Introduction to the Graphic Novel and Comic Book Art'.

Explore our full selection of Art and Design courses