Year-on-year fall in applications to art and design courses

The number of applications for university creative arts and design courses has dropped by 16.3 per cent from last year.


Source: Simon Quinton

This is more than double the year-on-year decline for all courses, which stands at 7.4 per cent, according to the University and Colleges Admissions Service.

The new figures show that the decline noted in UCAS’s January statistics – which also noted a 16.3 per cent drop – has remained the same.

A total of 252 893 people have applied to creative arts and design courses starting in September, compared to 302 020 who had applied by this time last year.

The decline in application numbers follows changes to the higher-education funding system, which could see university fees for undergraduate courses rise to £9000 a year.

Ucas says there has been no ‘substantial move’ towards or away from higher-fee courses compared to previous years. It also says applicants from advantaged and disadvantaged backgrounds are making ‘much the same choices’ as previous years.

Ucas chief executive Mary Curnock Cook says, ‘This in-depth analysis of the 2012 applications data shows that, although there has been a reduction in application rates where tuition fees have increased, there has not been a disproportionate effect on more disadvantaged groups.’

Hide Comments (7)Show Comments (7)
  • James Low November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    It needs to be a 60% drop

  • Lauren Kemp November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    Yeah. Good, too many graphic designers not enough art

  • berto November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    The sad fact of the matter is that the new higher prices to study in design or the arts makes the industry less attractive because of the often below average salaries paid by the industries.

  • Max Fraser November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    You know the saying, it’s quality not quantity… Let’s hope this is the case.

  • dbartholomew November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    Colleges have been churning out far too many designers chasing a decreasing number of jobs. Some rebalancing is a good thing.

  • stewart smith November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    I studied illustration to HND level. Although I am a very talented artist and illustrator I cannot find work. The college I went to handed out qualifications to anybody. Most students on the same course couldn’t draw or paint to save their life and some hardly ever turned up or did any work. I was disgusted that the course tutors still pushd their work through and awarded them the qualification. It really should be about quality and not quantity. Having said that, if talentless time wasters want to run up a student loan debt then more fool them. Its just a pity that they devalue many qualifications that others rightly deserve through hard work, time,dedication and talent.

  • Tim Fellows November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

    I have a BA (hons) in design from Edinburgh Art school, I passed it about 10 years ago, it only ever led to offers of working for nothing from company’s offering experience, an impossibility when you have amounted so much dept. Out of everyone I went to collage with it was only the architects that ever went on to any sort of professional design work. In my view furniture, ceramics, costume, fashion etc. Is a total waste of time, you will learn very little and company’s know this. I studied furniture design and would have been much better off going down the city and guilds route. I think many people wanting to work creatively, or just with their hands would be much happier and wealthier going this route too. Unfortunately most people are pushed the uni-route by nieve parents that do not understand that collages are businesses that are more interested in taking your money than providing well rounded courses designed to help you become a professional. I left well before course fees. The type of dept. kids are now looking at when leaving collage is life ruining to the ordinary man if it leads to nothing at the end.
    I re-trained and now work a manager on a construction site, the sad thing is that the only other degrees held on my site is a BA in fine art, by the girl who cleans the site toilets and a BA in philosophy a one of the temporary labourers.

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