Art and Design

Pathway courses

Choose to focus on key fields of study within selected courses and tailor your degree

Specialist facilities

Use our 3D, digital imaging, surface decoration, and ceramics workshops

Varied opportunities

Exhibit and promote yourself and your work to a range of audiences

Prepare for success in the creative industries on our art and design undergraduate and postgraduate courses.

Feed your passion for the arts at Staffordshire University, where you'll learn in a supportive and professional workshop and studio environment. Whatever course you choose, we provide plenty of hands-on project work and the chance to explore your abilities, ready for your future career.

You can choose to specialise in various modern and popular forms of art and design. There’s room for all interests, whether you’re looking to design and publish your own comics, display your photography and fine art creations in a gallery, or design the products and transport of the future. All our courses go the extra mile through combining technical expertise, with professionally experienced guidance, and the latest in software and facilities. What’s more, we don’t just stop at giving you theoretical and practical skills, you’ll have practise in advertising and marketing your products too.

If you want to get hands-on with crafts, our 3D Designer Maker courses offer the opportunity to choose an area of specialist study via pathways.  You're able to work across a broad range of materials, including ceramics, metal, wood and plastics, developing your confidence and an ability to manipulate a combination of materials in order to create exciting and innovative contemporary objects.

If you'd love to see your designs on surfaces such as fabric, ceramics, wallpapers and stationery, our BA (Hons) Surface Pattern Design could be for you. Using state-of-the-art facilities, and with aspects of fashion and and print design, this is one of the most popular courses of its kind in the UK. Plus, as with all our courses, we don't just build your design skillset, we teach design awareness and development to ready you for a career after graduation.

Our diverse range of courses in art and design don't stop there, if you're interested in the technological side of design, we offer both Graphic Design and Illustration degrees, where you'll experiment in visual communication through image-making, branding, animation and much more.

What’s more, you'll learn from visiting lecturers throughout your course that specialise in particular types of art, for example, our comic arts students will be visited by working professionals from Marvel, DC and Dark Horse, and guest storyboarders, designers, cartoonists, and illustrators. We'll also assist you with work placements, which will result in you leaving us with the skills and experience needed to excel in the creative industry.

We're proud of our courses and they'll equip you with the knowledge and skills you'll need to succeed in a future career in the creative industries.

On selected courses, we are offering a new way to complete your degree: using pathways. This is an alternative route that you can choose to take in the second year of your full-time undergraduate degree. It will tailor the modules you take in the rest of your course to focus on an area that you are passionate about, or want to base your future career around.

Photography Showcase 2021 - Vicki

Photography Showcase 2021 - Vicki


Photography student, Vicki takes us through her final-year project which forms part of the 2021 Art and Design Showcase.



3D Designer Maker BA (Hons)

Study options

Architecture BArch (Hons)

Study options

Art and Design BA (Hons)

Study options
Foundation year

Cartoon and Comic Arts BA (Hons)

Study options

Clinical Photography University Graduate Certificate

Study options
Part-time, distance learning

Fine Art BA (Hons)

Study options

Future Mobility: Transport Design BA (Hons)

Study options
Placement year

Graphic Design BA (Hons)

Study options

Graphic Design for Health Care University Graduate Certificate

Study options
Part-time, distance learning

Illustration BA (Hons)

Study options

Industrial Design: Product & Transport BA (Hons)

Optional pathways in Transport, Product.

Study options
Placement year

Photography BA (Hons)

Study options

Product, Furniture and Ceramics BA (Hons)

Study options
Placement year


Taught courses

Ceramics MA

Study options

Clinical Photography PgCert

Study options
Part-time, distance learning

Graphic Design for Health Care PgCert

Study options
Part-time, distance learning


Dedicated studio space

A number of our courses offer dedicated work space, conveniently located in an open-plan studio. You'll also get the chance to be trained to use workshops from photography to Fine Metal.

Studio Environment

You'll learn in a relaxed, supportive and professional workshop and studio environment, with plenty of practical, hands-on project work.

Hands On

Our workshop facilities include 3D (wood, metal and plastics), digital imaging, surface decoration, and ceramics.


Our well-equipped studio is designed to represent a real consultancy. Here, you'll have access to excellent computer facilities, industry-standard software including Autodesk Alias and Maya, Solidworks and the Adobe Creative Suite.

Work experience and careers

Work experience

Whatever you choose to study at Staffordshire University you will have the opportunity of a work-placement, where you’ll gain experience and connections to give you an edge in your future career.

This work experience may link to your course, or it could be a broader experience.  You'll have the opportunity to experience live briefs and offsite activities and trips to exhibitions. Each course has its own set of industry connections, which can aid with securing a placement. These range from Maserati, and John Lewis, right through to Wedgwood and Portmeirion.

We work closely with various industry figures like the Crafts Council, who help make the UK the best place to learn contemporary craft. So, you know you'll learn the latest knowledge and industry practice.

Our courses offer challenging and often diverse projects. These projects can be large in scale. Previous work created includes a 40-metre-long wall drawing, three-metre-high cardboard structures and paper landscapes of London.

There’s more to art and design than project work, we constantly arrange visiting national and international artists, designers, photographers and industry-experts - so you can share in a wealth of creative knowledge, make professional connections, and kick-start your future career. 


Our graduates have secured high-flying careers in the art and design world.

Our art and design undergraduate and postgraduate courses are diverse, and so are the careers that are linked with them. Our graduates have achieved recognition as internationally featured photographers and artists,  and innovative product and transport designers - whatever path you choose, we will provide the stepping stones towards your future career.

Our students

My favourite part of my course has been working with my course mates on group projects. I'm proud of the fact that I'm one of only thirty seven Cartoon & Comic Arts students IN THE WORLD!

Maxie Oliver

Cartoon & Comic Arts Student

The course allows you to explore every avenue as an artist and really work out what it is that you enjoy. It also provides you with skills that will stay with you as you continue your artistic journey: how to document your design processes, how to visualise and present your ideas. It provides you with an essential base to build on as a creative practitioner. I can't recommend it highly enough.

Rachel Clay

BA (Hons) 3D Designer Maker

You really do get a lot of one-to-one contact with both the lecturers and clients. I also enjoyed learning new computer programs such as Maya and Adobe Illustrator, and having designers from industry in every week was excellent.

Linzi Spiers

BA (Hons) Product Design

Photography at Staffordshire University is an intense and challenging course. It constantly pushes you to reach your full potential, whilst giving you the freedom to be creative in a supportive environment.

Charlie Gajda

BA (Hons) Photography

The course provided me with great experiences and opportunities to develop my work and strong craft and typography skills. It also taught me the importance of simplicity and clarity in visual communication.

Joe Hall

BA (Hons) Graphic Design

The Illustration degree helped me mature as a designer, through a passionate teaching of the subject. The course encouraged a broad exploration of design early on, allowing me to then choose the disciplines I wanted to pursue.

Stephen Woowat

BA (Hons) Illustration

The excellent range of facilities and the dedicated support from tutors and technicians creates a rich learning environment where ideas development and creativity can be fully explored.

Emma Westmacott

3D Designer Maker Graduate

Our staff

Timothy Forrester

Senior Lecturer

Tim Forrester is one of Britain's most innovative designers. He achieved great success whilst working in Milan before returning to the UK to design and manufacture his high quality, inspirational and versatile furniture ranges.

Timothy's profile

Anna Francis

Associate Professor

Anna Francis is an artist, educator and researcher whose work aims to create space to discuss and reframe city resources, through participatory art interventions.

Anna's profile

Fiona Wilson

Senior Lecturer

Whichever course you choose, you'll learn from highly experienced lecturers and perfect your craft in our fully equipped workshops and studios, all to ensure that when you graduate, you'll be well prepared for employment.

Fiona's profile

Dan Lewis

Course Director

Dan is the Course Director for Design, and Course Leader for Industrial Design: Product and Transport at Staffordshire University. Dan’s background is in Product Design and his research focuses on Emotional Design.

Dan's profile

Adrian Tooth

Course Director

Creating things and bringing them to life has always been a passion of Adrian's. He's been an animator and freelance illustrator/cartoonist amongst a whole range of other jobs, which include the manager of a pottery decoration department and a t…

Adrian's profile

John Hudson

Course Director

John is Course Leader for Graphic Design (Graphic Communication). He has worked as a Graphic Designer in a number of International studios with clients such as the BBC, Nike, Sony and The Design Council. He has spent the last decade working and …

John's profile

Paul O'Leary

Senior Lecturer

Paul is the Course Leader for Photography at Staffordshire University.

Paul's profile

Our graduates

Yuka Kikumoto

Graduated 2016

Yuka has displayed her work in prestigious exhibitions in the UK, Turkey and Japan, sold items in galleries and shops, and won an international award.

Yuka's story

Alex Allday

Graduated 2015

Since gaining a Masters in ceramic design, Alex has become an award winning surface pattern designer with her own workshop at Middleport Pottery.

Alex's story

Andy Cooke

Graphic Design, 2010

After setting up three stoke-based businesses, graduate Andy now manages them from Switzerland where he works as an Integrated Art Director.

Andy's story

Ray Thorley

Photography, 2010

Ray had been working in the nuclear industry for 27 years before pursuing his passion for photography.

Ray's story

Charis Jones

3D Design Craft, 2008

A change in career allowed blacksmith Charis to find her true talent for creating beautiful sculptures and art through her business Sculpted Steel.

Charis's story

Rob Fenton

Graphic Design, 2007

Rob co-owns a creative retail space and works with business partners across Stoke-on-Trent.

Rob's story

Dean Ward

Product Design, 2003

Co-founder Dean expanded Evoke to a staff of over 100, designing, developing and manufacturing self-service kiosks, digital signage and payment terminals.

Dean's story

Andrew Gregson

Design and Visual Communications, 1995

Since graduating, Andrew has been a serial entrepreneur founding several companies. He founded and now runs an innovation lab helping to tackle global issues.

Andrew's story
University of the Year

Edufuturist Awards 2021

Top 15 for Teaching Quality

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021

Top 15 for Student Satisfaction

Complete University Guide 2022

Top 20 for Job Prospects

Student Crowd Universities Awards 2021

6th for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022


QS Star Ratings 2021