Monthly Archives: January 2009

The Application Process: Interviews

As part of the application process, applicants may be required to attend an interview for their chosen course or courses. The following points are intended as general guidelines for interviews. Each university may offer a specific interview format, with some requiring practical assessments and tests or a review of portfolio work where appropriate. You should check with the individual university to clarify their interview or assessment methods for a particular course.

Before the interview:

Research the course

What is it about the course you’ve chosen that made you select it over other subjects? What’s involved in the course you’re applying for? What sort of skills does it involve – practical, analytical, research? What can you draw on from your previous studies or work experience which help to demonstrate your suitability for the course? If the course leads to a professional qualification, what qualities do you have which lend well to that professional area?

Research the university  

Why are you applying to the university? What made you choose it over other universities? Ill-considered responses, such as ‘because my friends are coming here’ or ‘because I don’t have to get out of bed too early to get here’, will not be looked upon well by Admissions Tutors.  Continue reading The Application Process: Interviews

Creative Self Development Courses in Art & Design – Semester 2 Enrolment

At Birmingham City University’s Bournville Centre for Visual Arts, a range of shorter creative courses are on offer commencing in Semester 2. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to try watercolour painting or to take a course in photography. Maybe you’re a keen artist who would like to further develop your practice with input and guidance from a tutor or simply wish to explore a new medium. Our suite of Creative Self Development courses provide a means to study further without the pressure of working for a formal academic award and are available to students of all abilities and levels.

Courses on offer are:

* please note that students on this course are required to have completed an art foundation course before being able to access this course

Courses are offered on a part-time basis during either the daytime or evening, depending upon the actual course being studied.

If you’re interested in reserving a place on one of these courses, please contact Bournville Centre for Visual Arts on 0121 331 5775 or email us.

New Year, New Opportunities?

With the advent of a New Year, people often take time to reflect and start thinking about future aspirations. Maybe:

  • There’s something you’ve always been interested in – like learning a new skill or hobby, for example.
  • You’re considering a change of direction in terms of your career or professional development.
  • You want to do something to because you’re motivated by improving your knowledge in a particular area.

There are a whole host of ways you could go about making these changes – there may be local workshops, adult education classes or short courses provided by education providers in the area. For more significant changes, you could be looking at retraining through a degree or professional qualification.

Careers advice:

If you’d like to explore avenues for developing yourself or doing something different but you’re unsure about what you’d like to do, perhaps talking to a careers advisor could help. Visit  for more information about contacting a qualified careers advisor.

Study options:

If you do decide to take up study; it doesn’t have to mean studying on a full-time course; there are a multitude of part-time or short course options that might be appropriate, depending on the subject you’re interested in. But, if you do want to consider more substantive study options, it’s important to be fully clued up on what’s available and what you’ll need to do. You’ll need to research courses, study commitment and costs for starters.

Finding a course to suit you:

Tools such as can help you to find everything from short courses to postgraduate study in your area or further afield. Postgraduate study options can be researched at The UCAS website has a great course search function, allowing you to explore available full-time undergraduate courses. And, of course, university and college websites will tell you more about what’s on offer at particular institutions.

Money matters:

How much will the course you’re looking at cost? Is there any financial support available? Here are a few starting points you can use to find out more about possible sources of funding:

  • Information about financial help for adult learners can be found here
  • Want information about student financial support for University and Higher Education courses? Look here for more details.
  • Postgraduate funding is different to undergraduate funding and there is, generally, no financial support available through the government. However, there are exceptions to this, such as certain NHS-funded courses, Social Work courses and PGCE qualifications. Prospective postgraduate students often need to be resourceful in seeking out funding opportunities. If your proposed study is related to your current job role, is it feasible to talk to your employer about support for the course – either as study leave or in terms of paying for the course? Are there any relevant scholarships or bursaries available? The Prospects website has links to resources which can help you find any such schemes.

First steps:

Whatever spurs you on, you can start taking steps towards your goals and exploring options open to you. If you’d like to chat to a course adviser about any courses offered at Birmingham City University, please contact Choices on 0121 331 5595 or email us.