Photography Pathway HND Level 5

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This Photography qualification is a specialist pathway within the Art and Design HND. The qualification you will receive at the end of the course will be the Art and Design (Photography) HND.

The Pearson BTEC Level 5 Art and Design (Photography Pathway) HND is a specialist programme of study that covers the technical knowledge, understanding and practical skills relevant to careers in the photography sector.

The purpose of BTEC Art and Design (Photography Pathway) HND is to develop you as a professional, self-reflecting individual able to meet the demands of employers in the creative industries and adapt to a constantly changing world.

The course has been designed to meet the needs of the contemporary creative industries. This dynamic and rapidly changing sector of the global economy covers a wide range of subjects, including those of photography.

If you are looking to apply for a Higher Education course starting in September 2020, you can apply from Friday 11th October 2019.

What will I do?

The Level 5 HND is a two year course. During your first year you will study a Level 4 HNC. This can be a standalone one year qualification. Upon successful completion of the first year, you will then progress on to the second year to study the Level 5 HND.

During your first year, HNC, the core units you will study are:

  • Professional Development
  • Contextual Studies
  • Individual Project (Pearson set unit)
  • Techniques and Processes

Specialist units for Level 4 include:

  • Lighting in Photography
  • Photographic Practices
  • Darkroom Techniques
  • Communication in Art and Design

During your second year, HND, the core units you will study are:

  • Professional Development
  • Contextual Studies
  • Individual Project (Pearson-set)
  • Techniques & Processes

Two mandatory units from a ‘specialist pathway’:

  • Lighting for Photography
  • Photographic Practices

Plus, two chosen optional units that can be discussed with your tutor to suit your preferred pathway.

You will have access to Boston College's photography facilities including; photography classroom, two photographic studios equipped with Bowens lighting, Apple Mac computers with industry standard software, digital SLR cameras, alternative processes suite, medium format camera, large format cameras, iPads, film making facilities, darkroom, library, art shop, studio space and computer suites.

A Merit or Distinction at Level 3 in a related subject, or Access to Higher Education qualification, or an A Level equivalent (minimum 80 new UCAS points) in related subjects.

You will also need to have GCSEs in English and Maths at grade 4 (C) or above, or Functional Skills Level 2 and/or minimum IELTS score of 6.

Individual cases will be considered, as well as relevant work experience will also be taken in to consideration if you fall outside of any of the above entry qualifications. If you are concerned about the above entry requirements alternative courses available are the Level 3 Diploma in Photography or Art and Design.

The HND can also be studied as a one year top-up if you already hold a relevant HNC.

The Level 5 Art and Design (Photography Pathway) HND will take you two years to complete. You will attend College for two days a week.

You will also need to undertake around 60 independent study hours per unit within the HND. This will include reading, and completing the assessment tasks.

The Level 5 Art and Design (Photography Pathway) HND course fees will be:
HNC, Year 1 (2019) - £5500
HND, Year 2 (2020) - £5500

Fees may vary depending on personal circumstances, please enquire for further information.

You can apply for a student loan to cover the costs of course fees. You may also be able to apply for various grants and loans to support your learning. Specific advice regarding student loans and other benefits can be obtained from

The careers team based in College can also assist your application. Please contact them via the Information Line on 01205 313218.

International and EU Students, please contact the International Office on +44 (0)1205 313212 or for details on fees.

Please note that all fees are subject to change.

Throughout the two year qualification you will be assessed through written assignments, practical work, group work, case studies, course work, presentations and work based evidence.

The assessment of Pearson’s Higher National qualifications are criterion-referenced and you will provide evidence in the form of assignments, which are assessed against the unit learning outcomes and assessment criteria.

Upon completion of the Pearson Art and Design (Photography Pathway) HND you can develop your career in the creative industries sector through entering employment, continuing existing employment or progressing on to a full BA (Hons) in Photography or Art and Design.

Additional costs may include:
Books - £100 approx.
Trips - £400 approx.
Equipment - £200 approx.
Kit - £50 approx.

You may need to buy a start kit of basic art materials. Most equipment will be supplied by Boston College, but some materials may need to be purchased. This will depend on your chosen specialist pathway.

Appropriate trips will be organised, there may be some funding available but this is still to be confirmed.

How to Apply.

To apply for a course, you will need to have an account with us!

Creating an account is easy, just click ‘Apply for this course’ below.

If you live outside of the UK and would like to apply for this course, please complete the International Enquiry Form.

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What you could earn

  • £35,373


  • £22,191


  • £13,397

    entry level

You can download our course guide