Palace Court’s outdoor courtyard basks in the summer sun. A golden-brown staircase to the left leads to a second-floor entranceway, whilst ground-level a large white mulberry tree is surrounded by pale grey gravel and white walls with black framing.
Pre-Degree

Ready to apply to one of our Extended Diplomas or the Foundation Diploma in Art & Design? Our post-16 pre-degree courses will help you build a dynamic portfolio of art, design, craft or digital media, readying you for success in Higher Education or in industry.

Our range of pre-degree study options offer something for everyone looking to further their artistic practice after leaving school.

Applications for our pre-degree courses are made directly to us online. If you’re exploring your post-16 options in Further Education and would like to specialise in a creative subject area within a nurturing studio environment, surrounded by likeminded people and knowledgable staff, check out our Level 2 and 3 qualifications, taught in a dedicated pre-degree Campus, just 2 minutes from Plymouth's scenic seafront and harbour.

To make an application to one of our post-GCSE study options, you can apply online through the Plymouth College of Art website by selecting your chosen Extended Diploma course within the Pre-Degree course listings. You'll be able to tell us on your application form if you're interested in studying on the IBCP route, and will have the opportunity during your discussion to let us know what subjects you're interested in.

When you're ready to make an application, click the ‘Apply Now’ button near the top left of your chosen course page.

As part of the pre-degree application process, we also invite students to an Applicant Event, which we hold approximately once a month throughout the year at Palace Court. This is a chance for you to experience our unique learning environment, as well as discussing your options with our tutors.

Applications can be made at any time during the year. We normally offer places to students who have a minimum of four GCSEs (minimum grade 4), including English, preferably with one in a creative subject. If you choose to study the IBCP, you will also require a GCSE in Maths (grade A*-C or minimum 4). Other variations on this entry profile may be considered, for example students with non-traditional backgrounds, particular learning needs or exceptional circumstances that have affected their ability to achieve a grade C or minimum grade 4 in English.

Once we receive your application, we will invite you to book an appointment at the next available Applicant Day. Applicant Days are an opportunity for us to learn about you, your creative potential and why you are interested in studying with us. If you’re interested in studying on our International Baccalaureate Careers Programme (IBCP), an Applicant Day is the best way to learn more about how the IBCP works alongside our Extended Diplomas.

You can tell us about any learning difficulties or disabilities you may have so we can offer you the appropriate support. It is also a good moment for you to find out what we offer and gain an understanding of the studio experience.

Foundation Diploma in Art & Design, Palace Studios.

You can apply at any time during the year. However, we receive a high number of applications and have a limited number of places for this course, so we recommend that you make your application as early as possible. Our application form asks for details of your previous qualifications and any relevant work experience, as well as a short personal statement where you can tell us about yourself and your interests. At this point, we will invite you for an interview.

As part of our admissions process, you’ll have the opportunity to tell us about any learning difficulties or disabilities you may have so we can offer you appropriate support. The Foundation Diploma in Art & Design requires a full Level 3 qualification and GCSEs, including English and Maths.

All offers are subject to interview and a portfolio or showreel of creative work that reflects your commitment, enthusiasm and passion for art, design and media. Download our handy guide for help in preparing your portfolio. We also welcome applications from students who may not have the required application profile but have alternative experience and knowledge.

Students are welcomed on campus for their first day of term.

For more information on your application please read our Admissions Policy linked below as a PDF or available as a Google Document here.

For a personal discussion or to request an alternative format please email admissions@pca.ac.uk, call +44 (0)1752 203402 or WhatsApp us on 07722744184.

  • For a place on our UAL Level 3 Extended Diploma you need to achieve 4 x GCSEs at grade 4 or above (including English Language or Literature)
  • For a place on our UAL Level 3 Extended Diploma and International Baccalaureate Careers Programme you need to achieve 4 x GCSEs at grade 4 or above (including Maths and English Language or Literature)
  • For a place on our UAL Level 2 Diploma you need to achieve 3 x GCSEs at grade 4 or above.

We are also registered with the Office for Students. That means we meet their requirements for course quality, academic standards, student support, student protection and more. For more information see www.officeforstudents.org.uk/the-register.

For more information and to gain personalised advice on your application, please contact our Admissions Team.