International study

Pick Your Country

Our international community

As one of the largest specialist creative arts universities in Europe, we offer a truly global perspective in creative education, with 17 per cent of our students coming to study with us from overseas. We have a diverse international community that welcomes students from 91 nations from all over the world.

Studying as an international student

We have a global reputation for being amongst the largest specialist creative arts educators in Europe. Discover why international students get ahead in the creative industries with a qualification from UCA.

Why study in the UK?

If you aspire to launch a successful career in the creative industries, there is no better foundation than a creative arts education in the UK. That’s because:

  • The UK is internationally recognised as the place to study art and design and leads the world in creativity and innovation.

  • The UK is a diverse and exciting place to live. The art, architecture and history of the UK and nearby European cities are inspirational.

  • The creative industries in the UK are expanding at twice the rate of the rest of the economy which means you will have a wealth of opportunities during your studies and after you graduate.

  • You will take an experimental and analytical approach to your work and will develop a critical and open-minded view. This way of thinking produces some of the most unique and highly employable graduates in the world.

Why choose UCA?

We have been at the forefront of specialist art and design education for over 160 years.

At UCA, you will have the time, space and support to immerse yourself in your chosen subject, find your own style and create the extraordinary. Each of our courses offers a cutting-edge creative environment, packed with the latest equipment and resources. You will flourish under the guidance and support of our passionate and driven teaching staff. They are closely connected to their industries and each is an active practitioner in their field. This means that every discipline stays relevant and up-to-date with current trends and technologies.

Each of our campuses reflects the subject areas studied there, creating unique communities of artists, designers, makers, writers and researchers. So, you will be surrounded by people with the same passions as you. You can take advantage of a vibrant on- and off-campus social scene to relax and unwind or let off steam with your friends. There is lots of choice: from music and arts venues to restaurants, pubs, clubs, cinemas, sports facilities and festivals.

Two students discuss graphic design

International student support

Studying in a new country can be a little challenging, so we have created a support network that will help you settle in to student life in the UK, and make your time at UCA as rewarding and enjoyable as possible. 

Before you arrive here, we will send you our Pre-departure Guide, which will give you all the important information you need. We offer an airport pick-up service, and we host dedicated international welcome events to help you settle in and make new friends.

We also have Specialist Advisers working on all four campuses who offer International Student Support. They are trained to help and advise you on visa issues, finances, healthcare registration and working during your studies, and are based at our campus libraries.


For courses that start in September we will guarantee you a place in our student halls of residence, as long as you apply before the main allocation of rooms which is carried out in May. For students on the Pre-sessional English courses, we also provide an enhanced accommodation package including a bedding pack and kitchen pack.

If you do not get a place in halls, or choose not to apply for university accommodation, we will help you find alternative private accommodation near to the campus you are studying at. We can help and advise you to make the right decision about where you live while you are studying with us.

Students congregate in the Quad at Farnham

Study options

As an international student, you can only apply for one of our full-time courses.

Our International Pathway courses are designed to give you a fast-tracked and guaranteed route onto one of our other courses. Whether you are looking to start a pre-degree, undergraduate or postgraduate level course, you should consider a Pathway course if you need to improve your:

  • English language skills
  • Creative or management-based portfolio
  • Practical art and design skills
  • Knowledge of a subject area.


Pre-sessional English courses are specifically designed to enable you to meet the language requirement for your main course of study. Courses run for either five or ten weeks during the summer or autumn term.

If you want to develop your knowledge and explore your artistic potential over a 3 week period, we offer places on our International Summer School. You will have the chance to study with some of the UK’s leading academics and will leave with a well-developed piece of original art in one of four areas; Jeweller, Fashion & Textiles, Digital Media and Gaming, or broader Creative Art & Design.

International student receiving tuition

Our pre-degree or foundation courses offer you the opportunity to explore a wide range of art, design and media subject areas before you choose the specialism for your undergraduate course.

We offer undergraduate degree courses in over 60 specialist subjects within the fields of art, design, architecture, media and communications. All our courses allow you essential time to explore your subject area and find your own style.

When you study for a taught postgraduate course you embark on a project that allows you to deepen your understanding of your chosen subject area, develop as a practitioner and enhance your career prospects.

We also offer a number of Postgraduate research courses.

Information for international applicants

We've pulled together a wealth of information to make it easier for students from across the world to apply to us and study in the creative arts in the UK. To ensure you have all the information you need, explore the sections below and discover how applying to UCA will give you great opportunities to grow your creativity.

International Summer School

The International Summer School 2018 will help you to develop your skills, personal portfolio and understanding of the UK’s creative industries and educational opportunities.

UCA Publications

Download our publications, including our 2018 Pre-degree, Undergraduate, Postgraduate and Business Prospectus.

International e-newsletter

Stay up to date with UCA. Sign up today to receive our international e-newsletter.

UCA in your country

Find an event in your country where UCA is exhibiting.

Find an overseas representative

UCA has connections with international representative agents across the globe.

More information

International support

Before you arrive, we will send you all the important information you need in our Pre-departure guide. We offer an airport pick-up service and host welcome events on each campus to help you settle in at the university and make new friends. We have a specialist International Student Support Team working in our campus libraries who are trained to help and advise you on visa issues, finances, healthcare registration and working during your studies.

Meet & Greet service

The Meet & Greet service is an airport pickup service offered to new International students, where you can be met at either Heathrow or Gatwick airports after your flight, and taken directly to your accommodation.

The International Pre-departure Guide

We have created our International Pre-departure Guide for all new International and EU applicants. This is free to download and is designed to help support you through the application process, planning for your arrival in the UK and your first weeks here. It also contains many useful links to websites you will need and people to contact if you need further advice.

International & EU Welcome Event

Every year we host our International & EU Welcome Event on each of our campuses, it is free to attend but you do need to book a place.

Any questions?

Our Enquiries Team are here to help and answer any question you have.