UCAS code: W130
Duration: 4 years
School: Edinburgh College of Art
College: Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences
Introducing BA Sculpture
Sculpture supports the development of both material and critical awareness through a range of approaches pertinent to the expanded field of sculpture. Our purpose-built studios serve as both working studios and exhibition spaces.
The technical staff and equipment in the Edinburgh College of Art (ECA) workshops and foundry provide excellent support for working in wood, metal, mould-making, casting and carving. Our students also have access to facilities for working with sound, digital imaging and video editing.
In sculpture we believe there is real value in working as part of a community that has a dynamic and creative shared energy and our programme thrives on generating this atmosphere. Sculpture staff members are engaged in a wide range of research interests that feed into the teaching spectrum and this enhances and informs the discussions around the making and exhibiting of work produced by students.
We believe in a very open approach to what is considered sculpture within the field of contemporary art and encourage you to work at the margins of the discipline as well as at the core.
Visual culture provides a multidisciplinary context for your study across all art programmes at ECA, involving the imaginative research, analysis and communication of issues raised by the visual aspects of culture. Our students engage in a critical and creative dialogue with the work of their peers and gain an understanding of the nature of today's diverse visual cultures.
You will study the artistic, intellectual, social and professional contexts that shape creative practice in visual arts and learn how to best communicate this knowledge in a range of written, oral, visual and practical forms.
Each of our four-year BA (Hons) programmes in Art shares common elements of study during the early part of Year 1. All Year 1 Art students work together in the first semester.
During Year 1 you will experience a wide range of art practices including painting, photography, sculpture and intermedia art and we introduce you to studio practice, workshops and the types of teaching you will experience. For example: what a project brief is for, what a crit is, how a seminar works, what to expect from a tutorial, what feedback is for and how you use it.
We introduce you to key visual culture texts, methods and methodologies of art theory and practice. As the year progresses you have project choices to enable you to specialise in the subject most appropriate to your work. In semester two students make decisions about which programme they wish to study supported by feedback and advice from staff.
In Years 1 and 2 your choice of option courses allows you to construct a suite of courses that reflect your interests and enhance your main study. The choice of option courses in Year 1 comprises a total of 40 credits, nominally made up of two 20-credit courses, which can be taken from within ECA, or across the wider College of Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences – subject to availability.
Subsequently you will develop visual ideas through appropriate materials and technical processes studying sculpture in relation to the wider field of contemporary art practice. You will also enhance your learning by being exposed to a wider range of methods and knowledge beyond the confines of the studio through a choice of optional courses.
You will be taught through a number of projects which will introduce you to techniques for working with metal and wood, casting, found objects and other materials which will be conducted in the workshops and studio spaces.
Research and site-specific methods will also be explored. Supporting studies in drawing, research and professional practice will link to the projects.
Exhibitions and group crits: You will establish tactics for presenting, evaluating and discussing work with your peers and other audiences. Visual culture lectures and seminars will broaden your understanding of methods and methodologies of theory and practice.
In Year 2 there are a total of 40 credits of option courses available. We offer more than 20 option courses but there are many more option courses from across the wider university to choose from - subject to availability.
You will establish strategies for presenting, evaluating and discussing your work with confidence. One-day events, visits, workshops, exhibitions and tutorials will punctuate periods of personal investigation and making.
Experimentation is encouraged and group crits analyse the context for siting work. You will compile thorough documentation of your work and ideas to evidence your professional practice skills.
You will have visual culture options to choose from which will develop the contextualisation of your studio work.
Towards the end of your study you will develop a self-initiated, highly motivated attitude to your practice and research. You will professionally install work with the added opportunity to participate in external exhibitions, which will be supported by tutorials, seminars, gallery visits and discussions.
Your work in the Degree Show exhibition will be a distillation of what you have learned and developed during your time at ECA. Visual Culture written work and working towards your degree exhibition form the basis of Year 4.
Find out more about the compulsory and optional courses in this degree programme.
To give you an idea of what you will study on this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Design students benefit from studio-based learning at our Lauriston Place campus, along with the exhibitions and events associated with a vibrant art college.
Some Design and Screen Cultures teaching takes place off the Lauriston campus, across the Central Area of the University, depending on room availability.
Option courses are usually taught outside the School across the wider university campus. You will also have access to the University's extensive libraries, computing and technical facilities.
The University is investing in the Edinburgh College of Art (ECA) estate and facilities to further develop our flexible, stimulating, supportive and sustainable learning and research environment for students and staff.
Further information is available on the ECA website.
The School of Art offers exchange opportunities with partner institutions across the world.
Adding an international dimension to your programme allows you to become immersed in a new culture, make new friends, expand your working knowledge of another language and realise a degree of self-reliance, which future employers will regard as an asset. Exchanges usually take place in Year 3.
How will I learn?
The majority of design teaching and learning is through involvement in a range of experiential courses situated in a studio environment. Conceptual, material and technical issues are explored through seminars, workshops, lectures, tutorials and critiques.
Research, critical thinking and study of the visual, intellectual, social and professional contexts that shape creative design practice are regarded as essential to your development, elements of which are taught through Design & Screen Cultures courses. This also involves participation in exhibitions, competitions, collaborations and live industry projects.
How will I be assessed?
Formative assessment is continuous throughout the year, aiming to give you meaningful feedback against learning outcomes, and to encourage experimentation in the studio and beyond.
Formative assessment for compulsory courses is through a mix of verbal and written modes such as portfolio, presentations and essays against course learning outcomes. There is a mid-session review, usually at the mid-point of any given course you study.
Summative assessment at the end of all the courses you take is informed by your academic and creative progress and performance throughout. Your course grades are arrived at through this summative assessment plus a moderation process.
Find out more about this programme's aims, what you will learn, how you will be assessed and what skills and knowledge you will develop.
To give you an idea of what to expect from this programme, we publish the latest available information. However, please note this may not be for your year of entry, but for a different academic year.
Our programmes have strong industrial pathways to ensure the most successful and meaningful careers for graduates. We boast a vibrant alumni network and strong links with the cultural and creative sector across Scotland and beyond. The University Careers Service offers exceptional support throughout your time with us.
Standard entry requirement
The standard entry requirement is:
- SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S5 or AABB/ABBBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
- A Levels: ABB.
- IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.
Minimum entry requirement
The minimum entry requirement for widening access applicants is:
- SQA Highers: ABBB by end of S6. BBB must be achieved in one year of S4-S6.
- A Levels: ABB.
- IB: 34 points with 655 at HL.
The grades used to meet our entry requirements must include:
- SQA: Highers: no specific Higher subjects required. National 5s: English at C.
- A Levels: no specific A Level subjects required. GCSEs: English at C or 4.
- IB: HL: no specific subjects required. SL: English at 5.
Applicants will be asked to submit a digital mini-portfolio to provide evidence of artistic aptitude and potential, this will form an important part of the selection process.
- 1 December 2020: mini-portfolio submission site opens
- 29 January 2021: UCAS has extended their application deadline to 6pm UK time on Friday 29 January. We have therefore moved our deadline for all UK applicants to the 29 January as well.
- 9 February 2021 at 12 pm (midday) GMT: mini-portfolio submission deadline. This deadline has been extended in line with the UCAS date.
- 30 June 2021: final deadline for UCAS applications from applicants from outside the UK and Ireland.
Applicants studying Pearson BTEC Level 3 Nationals in Art and Design will be considered for entry with the following:
- Pearson BTEC Extended Diploma with DMM.
- Pearson BTEC Diploma with MM plus one A Level at A (or DM plus B at A Level).
- Pearson BTEC Extended Certificate / Subsidiary Diploma with D plus two A Levels at B (or M plus AB at A Level).
Applicants studying the University of the Arts London Level 3 Extended Diploma in Art and Design will be considered with Merit.
*(Revised 25 September 2020 to add mini-portfolio deadlines. Revised 12 January 2021 to extend application and mini-portfolio deadlines.)
We welcome applications from students studying a wide range of international qualifications.
International Foundation Programme
If you are an international student and your school qualifications are not accepted for direct entry to the University you may be eligible for admission to this degree programme through our International Foundation Programme.
We welcome applications from mature students and accept a range of qualifications.
Entry to the second year is available. Successful completion of a Foundation Diploma (at Merit grade), a relevant HND or equivalent is required. Applicants will normally be expected to have undertaken these qualifications in addition to having met the entry requirements (Highers, A Levels, IB etc). In some of our less competitive degrees it may be possible to consider applicants presenting ABC (or equivalent) or above at A Level. These must have been achieved in one set of exams, at first attempt.
You must demonstrate a level of English language competency at a level that will enable you to succeed in your studies, regardless of your nationality or country of residence.
SQA, GCSE and IB
For SQA, GCSE and IB students, unless a higher level is specified in the stated entry requirements, a pass is required in English at the following grades or higher:
- SQA National 5 at C
- SQA Standard Grade at 3
- SQA Intermediate 1 at A
- SQA Intermediate 2 at C
- GCSE/IGSCE at C or 4
- Level 2 Certificate Grade C
- IB Standard Level at 5 (English ab initio is not accepted for entry)
English language tests
We accept the following English language qualifications at the grades specified*:
- IELTS Academic module overall 6.5 with 5.5 in each component.
- TOEFL-iBT (including Special Home Edition) 92 or above with 20 in each section. We do not accept TOEFL MyBest Score to meet our English language requirements.
- Cambridge English: Advanced or Proficiency overall 176 with 162 in each component.
- Trinity ISE: ISE II with a distinction in all four components.
We also accept a wider range of international qualifications and tests.
English language qualifications must be no more than three and a half years old from the start date of the degree you are applying to study, unless you are using IELTS, TOEFL, or Trinity ISE, in which case it must be no more than two years old.
*(Revised 27 April 2020 to include TOEFL-iBT Special Home Edition.)
This information is part of a government initiative to enhance the material that higher education institutions provide about their degree programmes.
It is one of many sources of information which will enable you to make an informed decision on what and where to study.
Please note that some programmes do not have Discover Uni data available.
Your materials costs will vary, depending on your programme of study and the materials used to make your work.
Some programmes will offer fieldwork. There is no additional contribution required for the teaching costs involved, but for the residential fieldwork and individual field-based projects, you are usually required to cover accommodation, subsistence and the costs of travel to the fieldwork location.
Your actual student contribution depends on the programme involved and the courses selected.
For more information on how much it will cost to study with us and the financial support available see our fees and funding information.
Search the degree finder
6 degrees in Art
- Art (BA) W100
- Fine Art (5-year programme) (MA) W150
- Intermedia Art (BA) W900
- Painting (BA) W120
- Photography (BA) W640
- Sculpture (BA) W130