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  • Start date:   August 2024
  • Level of Qualification:   SCQF Level 7
  • Course Type:   Full-time


Please note: this course is now full and only reserve places are available.


The course is for ambitious students wishing to produce an extensive and relevant portfolio for application to advanced studies in any discipline within art, design, or the creative industries.


On this course, you will develop an attractive, unique, and diverse portfolio to support an application to an art school or university.


For the past eleven years, 100% of our HNC Art Portfolio Production students who applied to advanced level studies have been successful in securing places; these include some of the most prestigious Art Schools and Universities in Scotland and the UK: the majority of our students are offered a choice of degree places as well as direct entry to year two of degree level studies.


As a West Lothian College HNC Art Portfolio Production student, you will benefit from an articulation agreement that allows you direct entry to Gray’s School of Art at Robert Gordon University. With an ‘A’ grade pass, our HNC art students are guaranteed entry to second-year studies in Fine Art.

  • HNC Art

    What the course includes

    The course lays the foundations for degree-level study in any art or design discipline, developing your research skills and professional studio practices. You will be continuously broadening and deepening your understanding of contemporary practices within art, design, and the creative industries.

    The course covers exploration, experimentation, and creativity within different art disciplines, including drawing, painting, two-dimensional practices, video, digital practices, photography, printmaking, visual and contextual research, life drawing, three-dimensional practices, public art, installation, live art, and sound art.

    It provides a studio environment and opportunities that mirror industry standards.

Why choose this course

We focus on you, the qualities you bring, and your individuality. Your creativity will have the opportunity to flourish through a rigorous programme of research, investigation, experimentation, and the creative freedom to develop and produce a unique and highly relevant portfolio.

You will have the understanding and skills and, most importantly, be totally prepared to make the most of moving on. The HNC Art Portfolio Production course will prepare you for entry into degree-level studies in UK art schools and universities.

The course enables you to continuously expand your understanding of contemporary art and design practices while discovering, exploring, and developing your own approaches for the production of a standout portfolio.

You will be supported by individual tutoring, advice, and guidance, and you will take part in group and peer reviews.

The course includes museum and gallery visits, on-site visits by the Travelling Gallery, a European cultural capital trip, opportunities to exhibit your work, work experience, and links with Jupiter Artland, as well as visits to art schools and talks by art practitioners, art school lecturers, students, and graduates from a variety of arts backgrounds.

As a West Lothian College art student, you will also benefit from the support of an extensive network of former students around Scotland’s Art Schools and Universities.

Over the past eleven years, 100% of our students applying to advanced-level studies have been successful.

The majority of our students receive multiple offers for degree-level studies, with the majority gaining direct entry into their second year.

Artist in Residence Programme

Our art department offers an Artist in Residence Programme for the duration of the academic year; the post is offered to recent degree graduates who are former students of West Lothian College.

The presence of an art practitioner in the studios allows you to gain valuable insights from a qualified art school graduate, enriching the overall studio environment. The Artist in Residence will offer informal mentoring, take part in studio discussions as well as giving you the opportunity to view their working practices.

Entry requirements

  • Two Highers, including Art and Design and English, or NC Art and Design or similar.
  • Mature students should have extensive supporting evidence of recent creative work.
  • A portfolio with varied and recent examples such as drawing, painting, sculpture/ 3D work, printmaking, photography, jewellery, textiles, digitally created work, moving images, and design. It is essential that you include work created from observation, show the development of your concepts, and have sketchbook evidence to support your work.

We do not wish to see work copied from photographs, cartoons, anime, manga, fan art, or tattoo designs.

If English is not your first language, ESOL Level 5 is an entry requirement for this course.

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    Where it leads

    Education: progression to degree-level studies at Art School and University.

    West Lothian College art students from this course have gone on to study animation, computer arts, video game design, teacher training, art therapy, digital media, film and T.V., visual effects, graphic design, illustration, product design, costume design, fashion, jewellery design, painting and printmaking, sculpture, environmental art, contemporary art practice, fine art, moving image, concept design, fashion, footwear and accessory design, international fashion branding, fine art photography, intermedia design, interior and spatial design, comic book art, stained glass conservation, applied arts, virtual reality, immersive systems design, simulation, and human anatomy.

    In short, this course will prepare you for advancement in any area within the art, design, or creative industries.

    West Lothian College HNC Art students benefit from an articulation agreement with Gray’s School of Art at Robert Gordon University. Students with an A pass can progress directly to their second year in Fine Art.

    Employment: any area within art, design, or the creative industries, as well as having transferrable skills to work across other disciplines. Creativity is one of the most sought-after employability skills.

    Our former students work in a range of areas, including community arts, teaching, art residencies, animation, graphic design, fashion, illustration, publishing, visual effects and TV, curatorial, gallery and museum work, conservation, museum and gallery archiving, marketing, and web design, as well as a number of self-employment roles and commissioned work.


    Articulation Agreement

    West Lothian College’s art department has excellent links with art schools and university degree programmes.

    Our HNC Art Portfolio Production course benefits from an exciting articulation agreement with Gray’s School of Art at Robert Gordon University. Students with an A pass have a guaranteed offer to progress directly to second-year studies in Fine Art.

Interview arrangements

Our invitation to attend a portfolio review is informal and involves a discussion about the course and its content, a practical drawing exercise and an individual chat with course tutors during which we will look through your portfolio. This is an opportunity for us all to get to know each other a little.

If invited you should bring a portfolio of your work and evidence of your qualifications (please refer to entry requirements above)

Fees, Finance & Funding

There may be help available to assist with your study related costs. Impartial, confidential help and advice on financial matters is available from the Student Funding Team - including Bursaries, Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA), Student Awards Agency for Scotland, Student Loans Company and student support funds. Click here to find out more

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Take that next step in your career and apply for this course today. If the course is not yet open for applications, feel free to ask any questions by clicking make an enquiry.