Study a Drawing degree with OCA


Bring a willingness to learn and an ambitious curiosity and we will support and challenge you to discover the many worlds contemporary drawing inhabits, and to develop a personally rewarding creative response.

The course covers a wide range of drawing contexts, including drawing as sculpture, narrative drawing, drawing as performance, drawing from observation and drawing from invention.

Discover your creative potential with a BA (Hons) Drawing Degree today.

What is an online drawing degree?


This online degree in contemporary fine art drawing practice will support you to graduate with a deeply held understanding of drawing as an artistic practice. At OCA, we provide a full BA (Hons) degree in a distance learning environment, allowing you to start when best suits you, spread your studies over a longer term, and learn from home, all while receiving support from your OCA tutors and the wider student community.

During the degree pathway, you’ll be encouraged to question and experiment with your ideas of what drawing can be, using research, peer collaboration and creation, deepening your understanding to develop an ambitious personal practice.

The drawing department at OCA is very open to wherever each student journey may lead. We are proud that the diversity of our student body correlates to a diversity of approaches to drawing.

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Course Structure

The Drawing degree is split into nine units; three units at each Stage of study.

As a flexible degree, students complete the programme in up to nine years, so this can fit in with everything else life has going on.

Course Overview

Stage One

Stage 1 Units/modules at this stage introduce students to distance learning and undergraduate study. Special consideration is taken to support students who have not participated in formal education for many years and learners with a range of abilities, guiding them through the fundamentals of academic study. Students are encouraged to develop core skills and experience a wide variety of processes and approaches with a view to mapping the territory of drawing. Projects are varied and cover an ambitious range of aspects of practice including material properties, gesture and performance, space and temporality. Integral to the practical projects, students are supported in developing contextual research skills and critical engagement with the work of others. Students are aided in building relationships with peers and tutors, and to be part of the OCA learning community.

Stage Two

Students at this level are supported in the transition from novice undergraduate to skilled, knowledgeable and independent learners, putting into practice skills acquired at stage 1 and developing a personal approach to their drawing practice. The unit/modules at this stage expose students to a range of current themes and practices, the aim being to encourage the development of a practice that is personal yet located within contemporary or emerging discourse. The projects have been designed for distance learners studying within their own communities and actively celebrate this aspect of OCA study, valuing the opportunity to embed practice in daily life. Themes include material and formal experimentation, personal and social concerns and environment and place.).

Stage Three

This stage of study equips students with knowledge, understanding and skills for a sustainable ongoing practice. Students develop and carry out personal research projects in their chosen field of drawing and associated research. An individual drawing practice is achieved through rigorous and challenging intellectual enquiry, resulting in a distinctive body of work. Projects focus on developing a sustainable research practice to support studio enquiry, developing professional relationships, audiences and networks, and establishing a healthy and meaningful drawing practice. Students are supported in the articulation and dissemination of knowledge through formal academic means; academic essays and presentations, and less formal means; blogs, workshops and artists talks.

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We regularly review our curriculum; therefore, the qualification described on this page – including its availability, its structure, and available units – may change over time. If we make changes to this qualification, we’ll update this page as soon as possible. Once you’ve registered or are studying this qualification, where practicable, we’ll inform you in good time of any upcoming changes. If you’d like to know more about the circumstances in which OCA might make changes to the curriculum, see our Academic Regulations or contact us. This description was last updated on 14 December 2022.

Programme Specification 2023/24 New Curriculum

This Programme Specification is for all units on the new curriculum.

Review Programme Specification here

Programme Specification 2023/24 Running Out Curriculum

This Programme Specification details the units and learning outcomes that are being taught out.

Review Programme Specification here

Drawing Accessibility Statements

Accessibility statements give an indication of the type and format of content, teaching, and learning activities on the course, and how these are ordinarily delivered.

Review Accessibility Statements here

Foundations

£1025

Per course

Level 1 (HE4)

£4,950

For the level

Level 2 (HE5)

£4,950

For the level

Level 3 (HE6)

£4,950

For the level

Total approximate undergraduate fees

Breakdown of costs...

Foundations

£1,175

Per course

Level 1 (HE4)

£5,670

For the level

Level 2 (HE5)

£5,670

For the level

Level 3 (HE6)

£5,670

For the level

Total approximate undergraduate fees

Breakdown of costs...

More Information
  • With the OCA, you can study a BA (Hons) degree in our flexible online learning model at approximately one third the cost of a degree at a traditional physical university.

    Students study and pay for the course on a unit-by-unit basis, so you only pay for the course as you enrol to each unit.

    This course is eligible for a part-time tuition fee loan from Student Finance England, Wales and Northern Ireland, or you can self-fund the course and break down costs even further through the deposit and instalment option.  Find out more about your funding options here

  • You will require regular use of a computer or laptop and internet access. Most essential reading materials can be accessed through the digital library services and eBooks.

    Students are responsible for sourcing and, where necessary, purchasing any additional software and resources specified. These can be around £400 at Level 1, £500 at Level 2, and £550 at Level 3. Where possible, open or freeware equivalents will be discussed alongside industry standard options.

    You may be eligible for any student discounts on computer equipment and software by using your student email, and you can find out more information about student discounts here.

  • Drawing is an open access degree; this means that there are no formal qualifications or experience required to join the course. All you need is a passion for the arts, and willingness to learn.

    You can review the study requirements here so you’re prepared for online study at higher education. All OCA courses require students to be IT literate, have a good internet connection, and have a good standard of English.

  • We accept enrolments for our BA (HONS) courses in monthly intakes throughout the year.

    Review the key enrolment deadlines on the link below.



  • We accept enrolments for our BA (HONS) courses in monthly intakes throughout the year.

    Review the key enrolment deadlines on the link below.

    Our part-time degree courses are completed on average between 6 and 9 years. The degree is structured into three levels (instead of three years) so you’re able to manage study around other commitments.

    Once enrolled, you’ll have a maximum of 12 years to complete your degree course. There are unit timeframes within the overall degree time frame, and you’ll need a minimum of 10 study per week to keep on track. To find out more about course duration and managing your time, click here.

  • Your course materials are accessible online through the virtual learning environment, OCA Learn, where you’ll also have access to student forums, a subject space, the student handbook and the online library. You’ll work primarily from a set text of course materials and resources, but can also sign up to webinars, workshops and study groups in addition to your core learning.

    Once you’ve completed the required assignments within a course unit and received tutor feedback, you’ll submit a portfolio of work to an assessment event. This gives you the opportunity to develop your work before you have it formally assessed to achieve credits towards your degree.

  • Upon completing the BA (Hons) Drawing degree, you’ll be set with skills to help you navigate the workplace. You could use your practice as a professional artist, illustrator, fine artist, the choice is yours. Prospects can help you with a variety of options of where you degree could take you.

    While you are pursuing your dream of being a professional artist, you can find a range of options to support your art. You could use your creative and research skills to work in visual communications, marketing, and many more roles.

    In May 2022 the Department for Culture, Media, & Sport estimated there were some 2.3 million jobs in the UK creative industries, and post pandemic the Creative Industries are growing faster than the UK economy as a whole.

    Creativity is a sought after skills in today’s job market. Learning this as part of this degree could set you apart from the rest of the pack.

  • The Academic Regulations for Subsidiary Institutions of The Open University are applicable to all taught courses offered by the Open College of the Arts (OCA).

    You can review the Academic Regulations on our policy page.

To Join

Join our BA (Hons) Drawing learners today and enhance your profession!