Undergraduate BA (Hons)

Digital Media With Foundation Year

Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology




Four year

Next enrolment

September 2022


In a nutshell

This course will equip you with the creative, technical and entrepreneurial skills and attributes to be digital strategists, designers and developers. Principles of narrative through the user journey, either on devices or through campaign strategies, will be a fundamental part of the course. The technical underpinning will be combined with key design and production skills, and exposure to current practices and issues in the creative industries sector.

Throughout the course you will develop skills in specialist technology for digital design, together with intellectually stimulating content related to human-computer interaction, usability design, and the psychology of interaction design.

The foundation year of this four-year programme aims to provide you with an understanding of the subject to allow you to progress on to the BA (Hons) Digital Media course.

You will: 
  • Develop the design and technical skills to be effective in a wide range of existing and emerging digital employment opportunities 

  • Learn to build relationships with the digital creative industries, through our industry partnerships 

  • Investigate current practices and issues within the digital media sector. 

Find out more by signing up to our upcoming Open Day, or if you have any generic questions please contact course enquiries.                                                                                                

You can also find helpful FAQs, learn more about student life at Salford or explore all our Film, TV and Media courses. Continue reading to understand more about this BA (Hons) Digital Media with Foundation Year course.

This is for you if...


You have a passion for creative and interactive media


You are interested in the technical and creative elements of digital design and production


You want to challenge the status quo of digital design

Course details

All about the course

The Foundation Year of this course is the perfect opportunity for people who want more time to explore all of the key principles of art and design before deciding exactly what course they choose to progress onto here at the University of Salford.

It gives you a chance to build a larger portfolio dedicated to your chosen area of Art and Design and provides a good transition period to familiarise yourself with the School of Art and Media and life as a student at Salford.

The Foundation year will provide you with a dynamic, exciting and collaborative environment in which you will become confident self-learners, with the underpinning skills and knowledge to apply in your studies. You will be introduced to the key concepts which underpin the programme, and the ethos that drives all of the teaching and learning you will experience on your course.  

You will be taught alongside students from other Art, Design and Media disciplines and study modules that will help you increase your knowledge and understanding of basic art and design as well as other aspects of creative thinking.

Modules will help you to develop your study skills such as note-taking and structuring reports. In the second semester, you will further develop your creative practice and be introduced to the creative industries.

You will be supported and guided through the extensive range of practice-based, theoretical and skills-based modules that the first year of this course offers. The assignments are flexible enough to allow you to interpret and tailor their submissions to your chosen discipline area. Tutors will support you to build a dedicated portfolio to progress onto the BA course you choose here at the University of Salford.

This programme prepares you to study on one of the following three-year University undergraduate programmes, meaning the duration of your degree is four years in total. The foundation year is not a standalone qualification.

This Digital Media course has been developed to bridge the demand from industry in developing creative, technical savvy and forward thinking individuals to develop and create engaging digital products and strategies.

This course encourages the development and appreciation of the aesthetic, strategic and business confidences by developing and defining your emerging specialism over the four years of study.

You will determine your own journey to becoming a digital designer. The course meets the balance between ‘visualisation’ and ‘technical’ appreciation offering opportunities in wide area of digital media design.


Foundation year

Digital Media Applications

This module helps you to become more familiar and confident with technology. As well as learning the creative software and photography skills, it will allow you to explore a creative subject of your choice and give you essential time management and research skills.

Creative Methods

This module will enable you to examine the creative and professional practice of others as a way of reflecting on your own practice. You’ll create a range of outcomes to help you build a dedicated portfolio as well as learning about major influences in art and design.

Creative Practice Major Project

This module is designed to allow you to bring together all your prior learning from the previous modules. It gives you the opportunity to propose and create your own brief based on a theme, topic, or issue that you are passionate about. Within this module you’ll be supported by tutors who will guide you in creating in a meaningful body of work that demonstrates confidence in your chosen area. Your work will be exhibited in school of Arts and Media end of year show.

Introduction to the Creative Industries

This module enables you explore the creative industries and its career opportunities, You’ll learn about a range of subjects including responsible design and future trends within your chosen area of art and design. It will allow you to build on the technical skills that you have gained in the first semester to produce a creative publication.

You can choose between the following modules:

Introduction to Creative Coding - you are strongly advised to take this option

This module will provide you with a foundation in computer coding within the context of digital art creation. 

Creative Risk Taking

This module is all about challenging your creative thought and highlighting the importance of creative risk taking. The briefs allow you to produce a range of outcomes that underpin all of the main art and design disciplines as well as giving you the flexibility to interpret the brief to your area of interest.

Year one

Digital Innovation and Technologies

This module will give you an introduction to core digital technologies which will form the foundation of your work across the course.

Design Fundamentals

On this module you will learn about the fundamentals of the design process and the associated skills and terminology you will need to employ.

Design Prototyping

Working to a given brief, you will learn how to apply rapid prototyping techniques in both 2D and 3D. This is a vital part of the design process.

Digital Contexts

This module will give you a contextual/practical journey through the past, present and future of digital technologies and applications.

Introduction to Creative Play

This module encourages you to develop an understanding of playfulness and creative risk taking in broad contexts of digital design.  It will aim to show links between risk-taking and innovation and present case studies outlining the value of ‘failure’ in optimising success.

Year two

Designing User Experiences

In this module, you will build on the skills learnt in year one to work on a live digital brief, involving the design of an effective digital user experience. 

Enhanced Digital Innovation and Technologies

In this module you will have the opportunity to further develop the skills learnt in year one and build on your technical expertise in digital media prototyping and production.

Dissertation Preparation

This modules helps you prepare for working on your year three module.

Digital Design Specialism

On this module, you will produce an online and offline portfolio of work aiming to increase your exposure and opportunity to  secure industry work experience.

Creative Collaboration

The module will develop your awareness of the benefits of collaborative practice between different specialisms and the relationship between design and business. Where possible, the module will allow you to work alongside a live client and/or collaborate with other programmes within the School or wider University.

Year three

Negotiated Brief

Using live briefs, particularly those connected with industry, you will further develop your area of specialism to create work for your final portfolio.


This piece of critical work allows you to explore a specific issue, either in a written form or partly practical based.

Major Project

This is a practical project that allows you to utilise the experience you have developed on the course to develop a major project.



This module gives you the opportunity to experiment with developing technologies and industry practices.

Professional Development

In semester one, you will form teams with other students to come together and answer a live client brief with regular review points. In semester two, you will enhance your portfolio by creating more team-based and individual work.

Please note that it may not be possible to deliver the full list of options every year as this will depend on factors such as how many students choose a particular option. Exact modules may also vary in order to keep content current. When accepting your offer of a place to study on this programme, you should be aware that not all optional modules will be running each year. Your tutor will be able to advise you as to the available options on or before the start of the programme. Whilst the University tries to ensure that you are able to undertake your preferred options, it cannot guarantee this.

What Will I be Doing?






Production-based modules are delivered primarily through workshops which integrate new material with practical support in the class.

Underpinning theory modules are delivered through combined lecture/seminar sessions. You will be provided with directed reading and be expected to use the contact sessions to clarify and discuss areas of particular interest or difficulty.

Project work plays a key role in you achieving the intended learning outcomes.


You will be assessed via different methods, including:

  • Projects
  • Coursework
  • Presentations
  • Dissertation


All our Film, TV, Media and Art and Design courses are delivered by the Salford School of Arts, Media and Creative Technology.    

Our School and University have strong and long-lasting relationships with local and national industry.    

Once you graduate with us, you’ll join a thriving alumni community in Greater Manchester and beyond.


This course benefits from our fantastic facilities at MediaCityUK. These include a five-camera HD TV studio, a three-camera HD TV studio and a digital performance studio with full green screen capability. There are two radio/audio recording studios, and 5.1 surround sound audio post production theatre, with Foley Booth. Audition v3 audio editing and Final Cut Pro and Avid software-enabled suites are throughout the building.

Employment and stats

What about after uni?

Upon graduating from this course you will have the skills you need to build a career in the digital design sector. 

In particular, User Experience design as a discipline is expanding rapidly as the demand for engaging and interactive content across platforms becomes a standard for the creative industries. The skills you learn on this course will leave you well placed to excel in this field across mobile apps and web-based products.

A taste of what you could become

A Web Designer

An App Designer

A User Experience Designer

A Graphic Designer

And more...

Career Links

The course employs a variety of staff from different sections of the industry including design, programming and project and business management.

During the proposal and writing of the course considerable work has been undertaken in direct consultation with industry and aligned alumni from other course currently working in the digital creative sectors. It was essential to underpin the course curriculum with the key mix of what industry wants to be seeing in graduates that can be employed and hit the ground running post graduation.


What you need to know

This course isn’t suitable for international students. If you are an international student and interested in studying a foundation year, please visit our International Foundation Year course page.


This course is ideal if you want to change to an arts and design area but have a non-arts background, or if you don't meet the entry requirements for direct entry to an Honours degree. The course is also attractive if you are a mature person returning to education or if you wish to change career direction.

Applicants normally must have the equivalent of grade C or above, GCSE Mathematics and GCSE English. However Applicants who do not have the equivalent of grade C or above, GCSE Mathematics and GCSE English will be considered on a case by case basis.  Applicants who do not have the qualification are required to state in their application how they intend to obtain the required GCSEs by the end of their Foundation Year.

As part of the application process for this course, we will need to see some examples of your work. This would normally require the submission of a full portfolio – however, we recognise that during the current situation you may not have full access to your entire collection of work, e.g. projects you might have completed as part of your current studies. If you don’t have access to your full portfolio, please provide us with any pieces of work you do have, and they’ll be taken into consideration as part of your application. 

Standard entry requirements


English Language and Maths at grade C/level 4 or above (or equivalent).

You must fulfil our GCSE entry requirements as well as one of the requirements listed below.

A levels

64 points including Art & Design

UCAS tariff points

64 tariff points from A-levels (or equivalent) to include an Art and Design qualification

BTEC National Diploma

MPP including Art & Design

Access to HE

Pass Level 3 Access to HE Diploma with 64 points (relevant subject)

Scottish Highers

64 points including Art & Design

Irish Leaving Certificate

64 points including Art & Design

International Baccalaureate

24 points including Art & Design 

European Baccalaureate

Pass Diploma with 60% overall (relevant subject)

Alternative entry requirements

Salford Alternative Entry Scheme (SAES)

We welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to pursue the course successfully. Once we have received your application we will assess it and recommend it for SAES if you are an eligible candidate.

There are two different routes through the Salford Alternative Entry Scheme and applicants will be directed to the one appropriate for their course. Assessment will either be through a review of prior learning or through a formal test.

How much?

Type of study Year Fees
Full-time home 2021/22 £8,250 for Foundation Year and £9,250 for subsequent years.
Full-time home 2022/23 £8,250 for Foundation Year and £9,250 for subsequent years.
Additional costs

You should also consider further costs which may include books, stationery, printing, binding and general subsistence on trips and visits.

Apply now

All set? Let's Apply

Enrolment dates

September 2022

UCAS information

Course ID A8J8

Institution S03