Courses

Undergraduate


Photography and Digital Imaging Technologies BSc Honours

Apply via UCAS

UCAS code: WJ65 | Institution code: W50 | Attendance mode: Full-time

Start: 15 September 2014
Duration: 3 years

Campus: Harrow

All prices quoted are for the academic year 2014/15 only.

Home/EU: £9,000.00
Overseas: £11,750.00

View course-specific entry requirements

Typical offer for September 2014

Qualification type Grade/points
A Levels CCC, including Photography or at least one Science subject
International Baccalaureate 26 points (minimum)
Edexcel BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma MMM
Access to HE Diploma Pass with 45 at Level 3. 25 at Merit +.

Grades A to C in a minimum of 5 GCSEs including a Grade B in Maths

View standard entry requirements

This course deals with the technical, scientific and creative aspects of photography and digital imaging, and is one of the only courses in Europe providing education in all aspects of photography alongside the study of science. The course encourages your exploration of image production, with an emphasis on technical excellence, underpinned by an understanding of technologies and science relevant to imaging. You will also be introduced to many of the specialist techniques used by scientific imaging disciplines.

Our graduates go on to a range of imaging careers, including commercial photography, scientific, forensic and medical imaging, digital post-production, digital special effects, TV and cine camera work, processing laboratory management, technical representatives, and industrial research and development.

The teaching team are involved in many key publications in the field and in professional bodies across the industry. The course has an excellent national and international reputation in the photography and imaging science communities. As a graduate you will be eligible to apply for the award of Graduate Imaging Scientist from the Royal Photographic Society.

Course content

As well as a solid foundation in photographic practice and an emphasis on professional practice and workflow, the study of imaging technologies and system performance equips you for a range of employment options in different imaging sectors, from commercial photography to museums and archives, forensic imaging to print production.

Industry-focused modules and work placements help to develop your understanding of employment markets and standard practices in imaging. Practical modules introduce you to the imaging techniques used in commercial photography, digital post-production, and specialist areas such as clinical, forensic and industrial imaging.

Year 1 (Credit Level 4)

This level provides a thorough grounding in imaging practice, underlying science and technology and important study skills. Contextual studies provide insight into the imaging industries.

Subjects of study include:

  • Digital Image Management
  • Photography theory and practice
  • Science for Imaging
  • Skills and Contextual Studies
  • Visual Literacy and Perception

Year 2 (Credit Level 5)

Imaging Practice and Professional Photography modules investigate techniques in still imaging and video. Imaging science, technologies and colour management are studied in depth. Scientific imaging introduces methods used for biomedical and forensic applications, 3D imaging, and time and motion capture.

Subjects of study include:

  • Art/Science Collaboration
  • Career Management and Professional Practice (includes work placement)
  • Colour Theory and Colour Management
  • Imaging Practice and Production (Photography and Video)
  • Imaging Sciences
  • Imaging Technologies
  • Professional Photography
  • Scientific Imaging

Year 3 (Credit Level 6)

In the final year you will focus on the completion of a substantial practical project in a subject of your choice, alongside specialised modules in advanced aspects of photography, science and technologies.

Subjects of study include:

  • Advanced Imaging Systems Performance
  • Applied Digital Imaging: Acquisition and Processing
  • Colour Science
  • Image Quality
  • Major Project
  • Project Planning and Research Methods

Work experience

As part of the Career Management Skills & Professional Practice module in the second year of the course, students undertake a work placement within the imaging industries.

By experiencing a professional imaging environment, students can evaluate their options in terms of future careers, and identify where they need to gain further knowledge or expertise. A number of placements have led to full-time employment on leaving the course.

Examples of recent work placements include:

  • Direct Photographic (Lighting and Equipment)
  • Touch Digital (Image Retouching)
  • The Harley Street Clinic (Medical imaging)
  • Chelsea and Westminster Hospital (Clinical Photography)
  • Conquest hospital, Hastings (Clinical Photography)
  • Curtain Road Studios (Assisting and studio management)
  • Front Magazine (Photography)
  • Brazilian News (Image Editor and Events Photography)
  • Great Ormond Street Hospital, Department of Medical Illustration
  • Kodak, Research and Development
  • Happy Finish (Digital Retouching)
  • Andrew Holt (Architectural, Interiors, Aerial Photography – photographic assisting)
  • Jason Tozer (Editorial, design, advertising photography – photographic assisting)
  • Freelance Sports Photography

Since 2007, three of our students have completed a year-long sandwich placement at the Home Office Scientific Development Branch. Emma Grimshaw returned to the course in 2011:

“Taking a year out of uni to work at the Home Office was a great experience. Not only did I learn how to apply the skills I acquired on the course, I saw a variety of possible occupations available after the degree and I made some great friends.”

Emma GrimshawEmma Grimshaw

Graduate employment

Our students are very successful in gaining employment in a range of different areas within the imaging industries. In a recent survey of graduates over the last five years, 90% of the respondents were employed in the imaging industries with the remainder in postgraduate study. In 2007, 100% of graduates were employed in imaging by graduation.

The unique nature of the course means that our students are able to work in a range of different areas of imaging, including technical roles (e.g. laboratory technician, digital asset management, scanning technician), imaging practice (e.g. freelance photography/film, studio management, clinical photography, assisting and film shoot running), imaging science (e.g. imagery analysis, image research), computing (e.g. programming, software development, web development) and employment in a range of other areas, including imaging education and creative applications.

Some of our recent graduate employment includes:

  • Double Negative – Rotoscoper / prep artist
  • Theprintspace – Digital Printer
  • Medicimage Ltd – Digital Asset Management
  • Curtain Road Studios – Photographic Studio Manager
  • Park Pictures (Commercial and film production) – Freelance shoot running
  • Newscord Limited – Photographic Assistant
  • Home Office Scientific Development Branch – Imaging Researcher
  • Moorfield’s Eye Hospital – Medical Photographer
  • Leeds Teaching Hospitals – Clinical Photographer
  • IXICO (Contact Research Organisation) – Research and clinical trials involving imaging
  • Ministry of Defence – Imagery Analyst
  • Centervue (Opthalmic Diagnostics) – Image Processing Developer

Employability

At Westminster, we have always believed that your University experience should be designed to enhance your professional life.We place as much emphasis on gaining skills relevant to the workplace as on learning the academic discipline that you are studying.

Obtaining a placement, part-time or vacation job while you study will provide you with extra cash and help you demonstrate that you have the skills employers are looking for.

In London, there is a plentiful supply of part-time work - most students at the University of Westminster work part-time (or full-time during vacations) to help support their studies.

Visit the employability section on our site

Career Development Centre

Our Career Development Centre can help and support you throughout your study and after graduation. You can use our comprehensive Online Vacancy Service to find part-time, placement, voluntary and graduate opportunities.

Our website provides comprehensive information covering topics such as events, job searching, CVs and applications. We organise presentations, networking events with employers, professional bodies, alumni and other organisations to help you with your career planning.

Our careers consultants are experienced personal development trainers and offer a range of self-development workshops to improve your job seeking strategies, to enhance self-confidence and provide self-marketing techniques.

We offer support for students and recent graduates to obtain volunteer placements and also for those interested in developing their enterprise skills.

We can help you to:

  • Find part-time / vacation, placement and graduate jobs, including voluntary experience
  • Explore how to develop the skills that employers are looking for
  • Plan your career development
  • Identify your career options
  • Market yourself effectively in CVs, application forms and interviews.

Find out more about the Career Development Centre

Career options in your subject area

We offer targeted careers information for this course. View the range of careers options that are available to you after you graduate:

Visit the Career Development Centre's 'finding work in your subject area'

Visit the Prospects 'options with your subject'

Our team of careers consultants work closely with Faculty departments to deliver tailored employability support including subject specific workshops, employer events and careers information, advice and guidance.

Study in the city

If you study at the University of Westminster, everything that London has to offer is on your doorstep.

Our central London campuses are ideally located for the city's fantastic learning institutions including libraries, archives and museums, as well as opportunities for shopping, eating out, enjoying London's nightlife or just simply relaxing.

Accommodation

After choosing your course, one of your biggest decisions will be where to live, and we aim to make that choice as easy as possible. Whether you want to apply for our Halls of Residence or live in private housing, we can help you to find the right accommodation.

Fees, funding, bursaries and scholarships

In recent years the University of Westminster's scholarship scheme has been the largest university scholarships scheme in the UK, and our Scholarships Department won the Times Higher Education inaugural Award for Outstanding Support for Overseas Students.

Personal tutoring

All students on courses of a year or more and who are registered for more than three modules will be allocated a personal tutor.

Your personal tutor will be there to support you from induction onwards, helping you to integrate into the University, academically and socially, at an early stage. They will be able to give you advice and support on academic and personal matters affecting your study, as well as developmental advice through regular individual and group tutorials.

Language support

Polylang is a University-wide programme through which you can study a language as a free choice module.

Personal advice and counselling

While most students overcome any problems with help from friends, family or a personal tutor, the University's free counselling and advice services are there if you need them.

International Westminster

With one of the UK's largest international student populations, the University of Westminster has plenty of experience in giving you the help and support you need to make the most of your time with us.

Study Abroad and Summer School programmes

Westminster's Study Abroad programme has been running for more than 15 years, and is one of the largest in the UK – each year we welcome hundreds of visiting students from universities all over the world.

If you are already studying outside the UK, the programme offers you the opportunity to study with us for one or two semesters, or for a period in the summer.

Sport and recreation

The University has extensive sport and recreation facilities, with a sports hall and gym at Harrow, a state-of-the-art gym at Regent Campus, and the University sports ground by the River Thames at Chiswick.

Students' Union

University of Westminster Students' Union (UWSU) aims to make sure you have the best university experience possible by providing a range of activities and support, from sports clubs to society groups, educational advice and social events.

“After graduating from the Bsc, I went on to gain an MSc in Information Technology and I am now employed as a rotoscope/ prep artist for a visual effects company.

My current role is as a prep/paint artist, cleaning up and enhancing live action footage in preparation for CG compositing.

Ultimately I am looking for a position as a compositor, which involves combining live action and CG renders through colour grading/filtering/3d re-lighting & texturing as well as replicating real-world camera/lens phenomena”

Jozef Czapski, rotoscope/ prep artist, Double Negative


"…Working independently on my research, applying scientific methods, anticipating upcoming problems and actively looking for solutions to these problems was an important ability needed to continue and progress my career within the company.

The development and introduction of new technology in the motion picture industry has been so swift that it was sometimes very difficult to stay up to date. My personal interest in the subject and an excellent technical understanding as well as the ability for scientific analysis gained during my studies at University of Westminster helped me to overcome these obstacles"

Karsten Hecker,  Digital Cinematography and Production Engineer at Framestore


"The photography work we did has helped to provide me with an understanding in studio work, but I have also been able to use subjects like Applied Photography and Photoscience.

The understanding of the core modules meant I could go into the job having an understanding of more than how to take photographs..." 

Katie Rose, qualified clinical photographer


"I feel studying at the University of Westminster made me aware of additional photographic networks, having a strong foothold in professional developments. Digital Image Management and Colour Management have been the most useful.

Scientific imaging and Image Quality touch on my work and Lab processing maybe the most useful technique. Colour Science was my favourite scientific subject.

My final project on aerial balloon photography has continued informing my artwork”

Susan Martin, professional photographer and sessional teacher for adult learners in digital photography

Jozef Czapski

After graduation in 2008 Jozef Czapski went on to gain an MSc in Information Technology. He is now employed as a rotoscope/ prep artist for a visual effects company. Double Negative is Europe’s largest provider   of visual effects for film. Over the past 12 months Double Negative has completed work on projects including John Carter, Snow White and the Huntsman, Captain America: The First Avenger, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 & 2, Tree of Life and Paul.

“My current role is as a prep/paint artist, cleaning up and enhancing live action footage in preparation for CG compositing. Ultimately I am looking for a position as a compositor, which would involved combining live action and CG renders through colour grading/filtering/3d re-lighting & texturing as well as replicating real-world camera/lens phenomena”

Andy Schonfelder

Andy graduated from the course with first class honours in 2008. Having set up his own photographic company, Light and Time Imaging (www.lightandtime.co.uk/), while still studying in 2006, Andy has since successfully developed the business, working on different projects including documentaries, music videos, multi-camera concert shoots, and video and stills events coverage. His roles have included stills photographer, Director of photography, Cinematographer, and RAW imaging consultant.

As well as his freelance business, Andy now shares his knowledge of professional imaging practice with our students. He has been part of our staff team since 2009, working as a visiting lecturer, teaching digital imaging,   photographic practice and video production.

Andy Schonfelder at work
Andy Schonfelder at work

Open days

Upcoming undergraduate open days

Date Title Location
11 October 2014 Undergraduate open day Cavendish, Harrow, Little Titchfield Street, Marylebone, Regent
5 November 2014 Undergraduate open day Cavendish, Harrow, Little Titchfield Street, Marylebone, Regent

View subject specific open days

About the faculty

Faculty of Media, Arts and Design

We are one of Europe's leading centres for higher education for the creative industries.

Find out more about our faculty

School of Media  Arts and Design

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Final projects

In the final year of the degree, students must complete a project, worth the equivalent of three modules, in an area of interest related to imaging and imaging systems.

Find out more about the final projects

NeedleNeedle, Kirlian Photography by Gwen Woods