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Foundation Degree in Scenic Arts

  • Award:

    Foundation Degree in Scenic Arts

  • Awarding body:

    University of South Wales 

  • Location of study:

    Cardiff (RWCMD and Llanishen Studios)

  • Start date:

    03 August 2025

  • Duration:

    Two years full time

  • Course code:

    RW03 - UCAS


In this work placement centred course, you’ll learn how to create stage sets, backdrops and props for public performances, television and film.

Course overview

Our industry-led course will give you all the skills you need to create stage sets, backdrops and props for public performances and work on major television and film projects.

Guided by a team of staff who are experienced professionals, you’ll learn all the main workshop practices of the stage and screen industries.

These practices include fundamental painting and texturing techniques, prop making, metalwork and how to use tools and other relevant equipment – such as core computer skill training (specialising in fusion360 and Auto Cad), which will allow you to operate laser cutters, 3D printers and computer numerical control (CNC) equipment.

You’ll then put your newfound knowledge into practice, where you’ll have several work placements – both in College productions and with our industry partners, who create sets and props for some of the country’s biggest productions.

The only course of its kind outside London, it provides a welcoming, safe environment where you can experiment and really push your creative boundaries. You’ll emerge as a specialist in your discipline, ready to flourish in this ever-changing, demanding industry.

Why study this course?

  • You’ll gain a deep understanding of the techniques, crafts, structures and working methods used in today’s industry. This includes both metal fabrication and carpentry (historically, many specialists only have expertise in one area).
  • You’ll train with a team of staff who are highly skilled industry professionals. They offer you not only first-rate teaching, but mentorship and networking opportunities as well.
  • Most of this two-year course focuses on using your skills in a variety of different settings – both in College productions and in placements with our industry partners.
  • These industry partners are companies who work with some of the largest and most prestigious theatres in the UK and abroad. Our partners and supporters include Theatr Clwyd, The Bakehouse Factory, Welsh National Opera, Cardiff Theatrical Services, Bay Productions, Wild Creations, Four Wood and Bad Wolf.
  • You’ll work alongside other students from our design and stage management departments and interact with those from across our performing arts courses.
  • In at least one of your work placements, you’ll take on the role of scenic arts leader for a production performed here at the College. This role will see you following the design process, working with the designer to produce the necessary costings and paint samples, as well as overseeing and guiding BA and MA Design students on their production placements.
  • Our strong ties with industry also means that your training reflects the latest best practice in TV, film and stage. These partnerships also allow you to easily build a network of contacts, which is crucial to laying the groundwork for a successful career in the arts sector.
  • Our workshop facilities are the largest and best equipped of any competitive conservatoire – and you’ll be working on the same equipment as those specialists in the industry.
  • We keep the cohort numbers small – fewer than 10 students per year – so you’ll get lots of individual support throughout your course.
  • You’ll also develop your leadership and management abilities, giving you the confidence to thrive in a professional environment after you graduate.
  • For up to three years after you complete your course, you’ll have the option ‘top up’ your qualification. You can do this by completing an additional year of study to gain a level 6 qualification as part of our BA (Hons) Design for Performance degree.

Other course information

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