Our BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Photography will introduce you to the fascinating world of photography. It is a two year full-time course equivalent to three A-Levels. As it is predominantly a technical course, it will give you the opportunity to experiment with a number of photographic techniques, different genres, and will prepare you for the next stage of your photography journey. Mature students may choose to only complete the first year and achieve the 90 Credit Diploma qualification.
During the course you will cover practical and theoretical aspects of photography, such as camera techniques, studio lighting, digital manipulation, b/w darkroom printing, contextual studies, ideas and concepts and visual communication.
You will explore ideas and complete a number of photographic projects that will be presented in a blog. In our well-equipped photographic studio, you will be introduced to studio lighting and will develop a number of studio lighting techniques. You will learn Adobe Lightroom, which will enable you to optimize the quality of your digital photos. You will become proficient in manipulating images and creating digital composites using Adobe Photoshop. In our b/w darkroom you will have the opportunity to learn how to process film and print high quality b/w photographs.
Throughout the length of the course there will be a great emphasis on developing your ideas and exploring different photographic genres, while challenging preconceptions. You will be supported in every step of your journey and will get ready to progress to our HNC Photography course, to University, or to break into the photography industry.
What background and qualifications do you need to join? (Entry Requirements)
You will need a small portfolio of your own photographic work for the interview. These photographs should have been taken with an SLR camera.
A good basic knowledge of photography will be an advantage.
If you are under 19 and do not have GCSE English or maths at grade 4 and above, you will be required to enrol on a “Study Programme” that includes these subjects.
What does the course lead to?
The Extended Diploma is a two year full-time course, however mature students may choose to only complete the first year and achieve the 90 Credit Diploma qualification.
Students from this course have progressed into employment or higher-level courses, such as HNC or University courses. If you are not planning to make a career in photography, this course enables you to reach a professional standard in your work.
Where will I study?
The course is based at our Chelsea Centre, however there are location trips and gallery visits.
What are the facilities and equipment like?
Studio: Flash equipped studio with Elinchrom equipment, Hi-Glide support, transmitters/receivers and light meters.
Digital Suite: Mac equipment using the latest version of Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom.
Black & White Darkroom: A wet darkroom with 35mm to medium format enlargers, film processing up to 5″ x 4″ and scanners. Resin and Fibre based processing and drying systems and support for alternative processes.
How much should I study outside class?
As it is a full time two-year course, students will be required to undertake research, complete photographic projects and prepare workbooks outside the course hours independently. This course is suitable for those ready and willing to make a commitment in a demanding environment.
How is the course assessed?
Course work is assessed throughout the year and you will be given submission deadlines for project work on regular dates.
Are any course materials online?
All course materials are online and accessible via our Virtual Learning Environment (Moodle). During the first session of the course, you will be shown how to use the system.
This will allow you to access project briefs, background notes, handouts, links to galleries etc. at all times. It also provides students the opportunity to book studio slots, arrange tutorials and submit their course work.
What books and equipment do I need?
You will need to own a DSLR, or a mirrorless camera. Ideally, you will also own more than one lens, a flashgun and a tripod, although these are not essential. You should not buy additional equipment just ahead of the course; it is better to wait and see what you may need to support your photography. Access to a computer is essential.
What else do I need to buy? / What extra costs are there?
There is a studio fee of £50 towards course materials, which needs to be paid in the first week of the course. You will also need to purchase film, darkroom paper, memory card, memory sticks and other items that you may need. For the end of course exhibition you will have to have a number of your photos printed, mounted and framed.
All students are admitted to the College on the basis that they:
- Agree to comply with the KCC student code of conduct
- Provide original documentation that confirms entry qualifications
- Meet the course entry requirements
- Provide information so that a school or college reference can be obtained if you are between 16-18 years old
How to apply
Please fill in the application form (available online) and we will contact you to arrange an interview.
If offered a place on the course, you will need to come into college and enrol.
What do I need to bring to the interview?
You will need to bring a small portfolio of your photographic work (16-20 images). Before the interview you will be asked to photograph a short project and write a review about an exhibition you have recently visited. You will be given short notice to complete these tasks.