Creative Arts and Digital Media

Photography and Social Practice

BA (Hons)
Leaflet Code: HA0063


Discover your own creative practice in photography through UCEN Manchester and Open Eye Gallery.
Photography is now the most important visual media, everyday billions share their lives using it on social media. The speed at which it moves keeps pace with changes in all parts of our lives and society and its able to reflect those developments in a way that is unique to photography. This useful and innovative course nurtures the skills, creativity, knowledge and ideas necessary to prepare you for a broad range of photography careers. You will be encouraged to think critically, take risks and explore your creative potential. You will receive creative opportunities fronted by one of the leading photographic institutes in the country. Open Eye Gallery’s cutting-edge approach will engage you artistically to explore opportunities within community, education and public gallery sectors. Curators, educators and programmers at Open Eye Gallery will input throughout the course with a strong focus on your personal and professional development. These interactions will connect you to the sector during your degree, giving you a head start in networking, working in a professional context and capacity, and gaining first-hand experience of the art sector.
The aims of this course:
● To provide curricula, informed by external reference points, which develop a range of technical, professional, vocational, employability transferable and key skills.
● To facilitate a quality learning experience, that fosters engagement with their programme of study and promotes independent study and life–long learning.
● To maintain a high quality, comprehensive and coherent Photography focused curriculum, informed by theory, practice and research, which enhances each student’s career opportunities.
● To instill within its graduates a knowledge and understanding of historical and contemporary photography which will fuel a curiosity and ambition within them.

  • City Campus Manchester
  • Full Time
  • 3 years
  • September 2023

Awarding Partner:

Sheffield Hallam University

The staff teaching on the programme have extensive experience in art-world and industry photographic practices. Curators, educators and programmers from Open Eye Gallery will engage students artistically and explore opportunities within community, education and public gallery sectors. UCEN’s photography tutors have exhibited and curated shows worldwide to much acclaim and published award-winning photobooks.

• English at grade C/level 4 or above

• Students that have passed a recognised Access programme will also be considered

Applicants who do not meet the standard entry criteria but have previous learning towards a degree-level qualification or relevant industry or life experience will be considered on an individual basis and may be invited to interview.
Mature applicants (aged 21 or over) who are able to demonstrate relevant skills or knowledge gained in employment or vocational activity will be considered and may be invited to interview.

Introduction to Photographic Practices (20 credits)

Narrative and the Archive (20 credits)

Photography and Social Responsibility (01) with Open Eye Gallery (20 credits)

Photography for the Wall, Screen and Page (20 credits)

Seeing Photographs (Contextual Studies 01) (20 credits)

Writing, Pitching, Presenting (01) with Open Eye Gallery (20 credits)

Due to the vocational objectives of the programme the assessment strategies primarily evolve around exhibitions, publishing and portfolios which are used to evaluate the levels of the skills and knowledge learned in class and through independent study. This practical approach is supported by written evaluations, presentations and research papers to build and develop reflective practice and critical skills.

Students will also benefit from traditional/academic assessment strategies which are employed for the contextualising and critical theory modules that include an essay and presentation.

Students should anticipate additional resource costs associated with their developing specialism, which could include (for example) exhibition and publication costs, festivals, trips or specialist equipment. Ordinarily, this would not exceed £500 per year.

All students are subject to UCEN Manchester’s Terms and Conditions from the date they accept an offer to study here, full details of which can be found here. The UCEN Manchester Admissions Policy and Procedure can be found here.