BA (Hons)

2018 entry

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Taught by experienced practitioners with connections at senior levels of the industry, BA (Hons) Advertising offers you a unique opportunity to blend academic knowledge with professional experience.

Supported by some of the world’s best-known advertising agencies, including BBH, Ogilvy, Saatchi & Saatchi and Mother, our BA Advertising course continues to develop a mentoring scheme, giving you the chance to enter the industry more prepared and with a stronger advantage than most.

By the end of the course, you’ll have built your own unique book of well-rounded ad campaigns, showcasing your strategic planning and creativity in art direction and copywriting.

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Length of study:

Three years full-time


September 2018


UCA Farnham

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Course overview:

With our comprehensive Advertising course, you’ll learn to tackle challenging briefs both creatively and strategically, using the latest tools and processes. You’ll develop a deep understanding of how theory and practice are linked together in real-world scenarios.

Our aim is to teach you ways in which to become a creative problem causer and thinker; we want you to understand and deploy strategies that are focused and creative, becoming an independent, intelligent professional with the ability to grow and reflect.

We’ll encourage you to explore outwardly, collaborating with fellow students to create fresh, attention-grabbing creative projects across a range of platforms. Within the wider UCA community you’ll find insight and knowledge from fellow artists in other disciplines such as fine artists, photographers, illustrators, filmmakers, poets, playwrights, novelists, fashion designers and architects.

Throughout the course you’ll work to build specific skills in critical analysis, research, production and communication appropriate to the advertising industry, whilst also developing your creative and strategic thinking abilities.

Equipped with a fantastic library and excellent support services, our Farnham campus provides the ideal environment for this course – close enough to London’s leading ad agencies and mentors to gain valuable industry knowledge and experience but set in an inspiring and creative environment surrounded by like-minded people.

Open Days

Register for an Open Day to find out more about this course in person

Course content - 2018 entry

In the first year, you’ll learn how to become a researcher and be exposed to creative thinking techniques and conceptual skills - and how to apply them to advertising.

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change.

Course modules

  • Personal Development

    The unit will be delivered through three briefs that will specify the problem/s to be explored through researching creative thinking models, as well as research into art direction, copywriting, digital media and creative direction you will explore and promote a product, service or event of your choosing. Through this unit you will be introduced to appropriate practical and technical skills through workshops related to your briefs, art direction, copywriting supported by mac skills.

  • Visual Communications: Context and Theory

    This unit is based on a series of illustrated lectures that introduce a number of key historical and contemporary contextual frameworks for visual culture and communication practices, encouraging you to begin to identify changing relationships between visual culture, communication and wider social and cultural concerns.

  • Art Direction

    This unit will introduce you to Art Direction, whilst exploring the creative and practical processes involved in creating a successful advertising campaign. The unit will provide you with a variety of creative thinking tools that will enable you to learn techniques of ‘interrogation’ and how to ask ‘creative questions’.

  • Copywriting

    In this unit you will explore copywriting, the vernacular of your audience, long and short copy and its relationship with media. You will also explore the ‘endline’ through creating a proposition/promise within the context of advertising.

  • Digital Media

    This unit will introduce the role of digital media in advertising. Digital channels and platforms have created a seismic shift in the way that brands advertise, but that is not without its challenges. The proliferation of online media has changed customer interaction with brands. In this unit you will understand the role of digital media in advertising, explore the different channels and platforms available to brands.

As a researcher, the second year focus is on creative strategy and the role of the mentee. You'll capitalize on the creative skills you attained in your first year, blending them with more pragmatic strategic tools. And you may have the opportunity to study abroad.

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change.

Course modules

  • Advertising Strategy

    You’ll explore a variety of strategies deployed by the world’s leading advertising agencies.

  • Advertising Communication

    This unit will explore verbal, written and visual language in conjunction with genre in order to better understand creative and strategic communication exploiting ‘storytelling’. You will also be expected to consider the impact of technology within advertising practice, and the use of ‘direct targeted’ advertising.

  • Contextual and Theoretical Perspectives

    We'll encourage you to position your own practice by recourse to a variety of theories, contextual frameworks and critical evaluations. You'll be introduced to a variety of research methods to facilitate independent study towards coherent, self-reflective argument in written form.

  • Personal Practice

    This unit will consider how you as an Art director, Copywriter or Digital Creative create ad campaigns that clearly connect with the viewer, and will capitalise on your prior learning. Through a D&AD brief (or other student competition including IPA, Creative Circle, etc) you will consider your audience/s and how they may respond to ad campaigns that you will create using verbal, written, visual and behavioural language.

  • Study Abroad (optional)

    This optional unit will allow you to spend a period of time in an overseas educational institution.

In the third year you'll realise your research skills through the development of a series of holistic campaigns, a dissertation and a folio of work that blends your theory with practice in the form of a case study, pastiche and a piece of promotion.

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change.

Course modules

  • Personal and Professional Practice

    This unit is primarily about you and your future. Three briefs will be delivered in this unit. You will, through negotiation, select your favourite award winning ad campaign produced by the ad agency you wish to work with. Subsequently, you will produce a case study applying a variety of theories. Thereafter you will produce a pastiche/parody of the ad you selected, followed by a promotional material for the agency and a piece of self-promotion directed at the agency

  • Research and Professional Practice

    The briefs for this unit have been designed for you to apply and celebrate your learning as well as your career aspirations affording you the opportunity to synthesize your learning in Art Direction, Copywriting or Digital Media. For the most part, you will determine the content through negotiation. However, it is expected that aspects will reflect an international content, and test your creative directorial skills.

  • Dissertation

    You'll undertake a substantial period of sustained, individually negotiated research on a subject related to the contextual and/or theoretical concerns of your discipline or chosen area of practice, towards the provision of structured written argument.

Please note, syllabus content indicated is provided as a guide. The content of the course may be subject to change.

Course modules

Business School

The first of its kind in the UK, our new Business School for the Creative Industries builds on our long tradition of collaborating with employers to cultivate leadership, entrepreneurial and problem-solving skills.

Course leader

International study

Find out more about studying in the UK, or studying part of your course abroad at one of our partner institutions (study abroad option not available on all courses).

Course connections

On this course, you'll be exposed to a world of opportunities

Our BA (Hons) Advertising course has links with some of the biggest names in the advertising industry, including:

  • Ogilvy & Mather
  • Bartle Bogle Hegarty
  • JWT
  • Y&R
  • Wieden+Kennedy
  • Publicis
  • CHI & Partners
  • Beattie McGuinness Bungay
  • Mother
  • TBWA.

Our graduates are equipped to work in a multitude of advertising roles, and have secured rewarding positions across the sector, including as:


  • Art directors
  • Copywriters
  • Account managers
  • Account planners
  • Media buyers and planners
  • Producers and creative service managers.

You may also like to consider further study at postgraduate level.

How to apply - 2018 entry

I am a UK or EU citizen ...

I am not a UK or EU citizen ...

Entry requirements - 2018 entry:

Entry requirements

The standard entry requirements* for this course are:

One of the following:

  • 112 new UCAS tariff points (equivalent to 280 old UCAS tariff points), see accepted qualifications
  • Pass at Foundation Diploma in Art & Design (Level 3 or 4)
  • Distinction, Merit, Merit at BTEC Extended Diploma
  • Merit at UAL Extended Diploma
  • 112 new UCAS tariff points from an accredited Access to Higher Education Diploma in appropriate subject
  • 27-30 total points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma with at least 15 IB points at Higher level.

And four GCSE passes at grade A*-C and/or grade 4-9 including English (or Functional Skills English/Key Skills Communication Level 2)

Other relevant and equivalent Level 3 UK and international qualifications are considered on an individual basis, and we encourage students from diverse educational backgrounds to apply.

*We occasionally make offers which are lower than the standard entry criteria to students who have faced difficulties that have affected their performance, and who were expected to achieve higher results.

Your portfolio

This course doesn’t require a portfolio. We may invite you for an Applicant Day and interview so you can visit us, meet the course team and other applicants, and take a tour of all our facilities. Students from diverse educational backgrounds are encouraged to apply. We welcome students with a broad range of A-level subjects, as well as students with appropriate Art & Design Foundations or BTEC/UALAB diplomas which allow you to demonstrate your ability to research, evaluate and produce creative solutions.

Fees & finance

Uncover all the costs involved, as well as the grants, loans and other financial support you may be entitled to.

Student regulations

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