Colchester Institute
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Colchester Institute

Colchester Institute is a leading public vocational College in east England with strong industry links and a passion for guiding and developing creative minds in the 21st century. The combination of academic rigour, creative workshops and the opportunity to connect with industry players prepares students for an ambitious career that turns upon their own creativity.

Colchester is a popular choice for international students. Several factors attract fine art students from Asia to Colchester, including the relatively low cost of living in this part of England, proximity to capital city, London, the UK’s stalwart reputation for fine art education and the chance to enjoy downtime exploring the countryside of eastern England.

Pic: Colchester Institute creative industries.


Colchester Institute’s School of Art, has several arts-related courses on offer:

Fashion and Textiles

This comprehensive programme sets ambitious individuals on the road to a career in fashion and textile design. Students can choose to focus on a single specialist niche or combine two areas of study into a single programme. This allows for a high degree of personalisation within the degree. The faculty encourage students to apply their budding expertise to live projects and to enter in national competitions.


Photography as a profession can lead practitioners to virtually any field and industry. With this in mind, aspiring photographers need to be as flexible and ambitious as they are gifted in their art form. Students are mentored by the faculty to develop their own imaginative approach to capturing evocative images.

Graphic Design

Graphic Design in the 21st century is an increasingly diverse field. Not only are students required to hone their raw artistic skills, they must also develop technical competencies along the way. This course stresses the importance that research plays in the design process, and it builds technical knowhow in typography, printmaking, illustration and digital design.


Pic: 3D Design and Craft at Colchester Institute.

3D Design and Craft

Students of 3D Design and Craft develop a broad base of skills that prepare them for a range of careers in ceramics, furniture design, glasswork and much more. They receive hands-on instruction through workshops, with exhibitions, field trips and self-directed study included in the programme.

Fine Art

This is a traditional Fine Art degree, but it is grounded in the realities of the 21st century. Students develop their own personal voice and establish a creative identity through independent study, focused workshops and attendance at lectures, seminars and tutorials.

Student life

In all, roughly 7 per cent of Colchester’s student body hail from outside of the UK. With this in mind, the school is fully equipped to help international students integrate into life in class and on campus at large.


Pic: Fashion Design at Colchester Institute.

Assistance for international students begins with English language instruction. Colchester Institute has been teaching English as a Foreign Language for more than four decades now, and 90% of students enrolled over the past ten years have achieved passing test scores. The College’s English language instruction is so well regarded, that many international students enrol through word-of-mouth referral.

Art students have plenty more to enjoy on top of this. The city of Colchester’s gleaming contemporary arts centre, firstsite, opened in 2011 and maintains a striking collection of temporary exhibits. Students can browse art books here and compare contemporary exhibits with their historical counterparts for context. Firstsite is a wonderful resource for students of the arts, but its base extends far beyond the academic scene.

Colchester Institute will also help international students set up accommodation in the Colchester area. Life in the city is rich and rewarding. Colchester was the first English city to be mentioned in ancient manuscripts, with records going back to the 5th century. In fact, the city is a popular weekend escape from London, complete with Georgian architecture and the half-timbered houses of the Dutch quarter.


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