Photography and Graphic Communication

BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma

Type of study
Examination board


Do you love looking at and creating images?  If you are keen to develop your understanding of photography and graphic-based communication, then this course is ideal for you, you will spend two years immersed in it.

Gain a thorough understanding of traditional darkroom techniques, as well as cutting edge digital photographic processes. You will learn how to master Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and other software used in industry. You will research a wide array of artists to discover how they go about producing their work, and allow their work to inform your ideas.

Taught by a team of professional and experienced photographers and graphics professionals, you will also get the opportunity to visit galleries and attend exhibitions throughout your course. All of this will help you to build a portfolio of work to enable you to progress to university or work.


Availability & Details

Photography and Graphic Communication, BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma HSDC-SD-CNDPG

HSDC South Downs Campus
Academic Year 2017-18 (1 year)
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A minimum of five GCSEs at grades A*-C, including a creative art-based subject and English Language at grade 4 or above.

You will learn studio lighting, location photography, food photography, portrait photography, black and white traditional dark room printing, traditional cut and paste, digital graphics, info-graphics, Photoshop, Illustrator, Illustration, industry practice, contextual researching and much more.

You also have opportunities to pursue your own particular area of interest within either discipline during self directed projects.


Visits to London-based and local museums/galleries will provide you with additional insight into the work of other artists and designers.

The course may also offer an art study tour within the UK and/or European countries. The course will culminate in an exhibition of your own work.



This course consists of a 90-credit Diploma in Year 1 followed by the Extended Diploma in Year 2. Each project brief covers units that build up through the two years of the course, to provide an 18 unit award.

All units are assessed at either Pass, Merit or Distinction grade, with a final grade awarded at the end of the course.

Cost of trips - approximately £100/year (unless residential), Cost of specialist printing - approximately £50 per year, Although not strictly necessary it is beneficial to have access to your own Digital SLR (course manage happy to advise prior to purchase). We use Nikon at college to teach with.

Contact us

I am now studying graphic design at Bournemouth Arts Uni having previously studied P&G at South Downs College. I feel this fantastic course taught me what I needed to know to move onto uni doing graphics.

Lucy Lane (Graphic Design BA Hons)

Having studied P&G at South Downs College I have now progressed onto a Pre-Degree foundation course in art and design. I really enjoyed the course - particularly the photography - for which I got a strong and broad understanding of all aspects.

Mollie Dyer (Foundation in Art 7 Design)


Students progress from this course onto Pre-Degree Foundation course, HND, Degrees, self-employment, Apprenticeships and full employment.


Photographer, Graphic Designer, Creative, Advertising, Marketing, Web, Designer, Cameraman, Film.

What to do next

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