BA (Hons) Creative Expressive Therapies
Why choose this course?
Learn how to use the arts in a positive and therapeutic way on this innovative course.
- Choose to specialise in art, dance, drama or music so that you build a degree tailored to your personal interests and ambitions
- Develop professional and personal skills for fulfilling careers in a wide range of arts, health, social care and educational settings
- Gain exciting practical experience through ten-week work placements with our partner organisations
- Advance to one of our acclaimed masters degrees if you would like to register and go into practice as an arts therapist.
UCAS code: W191 Art, W590 Dance, W490 Drama, W391 Music
Start date: September
Course length: Full-time: three years. Part-time: up to six years
Campus: Markeaton Street, Britannia Mill, Kedleston Road site, Derby Campus and Déda
College: College of Health and Social Care
This course is available to international students
About this course
If the arts have played a vital role in your own personal development, why not harness your creativity to make a difference in other people’s lives? Our pioneering BA (Hons) Creative Expressive Therapies shows you how.
Select your pathway to success
This is the only course of its kind in the UK to offer four distinct pathways in art, dance, drama and music. It gives you the chance to develop your skills and express yourself in the art form of your choice through specialist studio sessions, performances and exhibition work.
At the same time, you’ll learn about the huge potential of the arts to promote physical and emotional wellbeing. We explore how creativity can be applied therapeutically in community, voluntary, health, education and corporate settings. We also look at different therapeutic principles and the meanings of health and illness in the context of historical and cultural values.
Real world learning in action
We offer exciting opportunities for you to put your skills into practice – and make more informed decisions about your future career path – through work placements and community projects.
In stage three of the course, you’ll undertake a ten-week placement. Thanks to our thriving partnerships, you could gain experience with arts groups, hospitals, hospices, schools, charities or organisations supporting adults and children with disabilities. Some students broaden their experience by focussing on a different art form on placement – so dancers might work in art organisations and vice versa.
Many of our students take part in collaborative projects in the wider community. They have, for instance, devised and led drama sessions for prison inmates; run creative arts workshops for people with brain injuries; and toured schools with programmes aimed at tackling bullying and peer pressure.
Gain ‘career-ready’ skills
You’ll undertake a substantial amount of group work where you can reflect on your own personal development, awareness and communication skills. You’ll also gain experience of leadership, coaching and group processes which will be invaluable in your future career.
There are opportunities for you to learn with, and from, students from other disciplines. This will prepare you to work in a multi-professional team after graduation and ensure the best possible outcomes for your clients and service users.
An inspiring study experience
You will hone your skills in our superb facilities, including dedicated art, dance, drama and music studios for therapeutic arts on the top floor of our Britannia Mill site. Our dance students can also extend their repertoire at Déda, the only dedicated dance house in the region.
We offer guest lectures by leading professionals in the field and you’ll also take part in environmental sculpture workshops, visiting Big Wood on the outskirts of Derby to help you think beyond the studio space.
Pursue your personal interests
Your course will culminate in an independent study which allows you to explore themes of your own choosing and gives you a platform to showcase your talent to potential employers.
It could take the form of a dissertation or a research project with a literature review. Alternatively you could deliver a body of work featuring a drama, dance or music performance or an art exhibition, together with supportive written work.
Our students cover a vast array of subjects for this project. Recent examples have explored whether graffiti is vandalism or art, how parents affect a child’s creativity, and whether hang-sound sculptures can be used as a therapeutic tool.
What you will cover
You'll study modules such as:
- Human Development and Creativity
- Effective Interaction
- Expression and the Arts
- Working Creatively with People 1
- Perspectives of Healing
And you'll choose one specialist pathway module from the following:
- Visual Art (Art Pathway)
- Dance Making: Physicality, Choreography and Technique (Dance Pathway)
- Expressive Drama (Drama Pathway)
- Music and Musicianship 1 (Music Pathway)
- Experience of Illness
- Personal and Professional Development
- Inter-personal Development
- Working Creatively with People 2
And you'll take two modules from your chosen specialist pathway:
- Visual Art 2 (Art Pathway)
- Image of Self (Art Pathway)
- Dance Making: Choreography as Creative Story (Dance Pathway)
- Performance (Dance Pathway)
- Stories and Characters (Drama Pathway)
- Performance (Drama Pathway)
- Music and Musicianship 2 (Music Pathway)
- Performance (Music Pathway)
- Working Creatively in Context
- Working Creatively on Placement
And you'll take one module from your chosen specialist pathway:
- Statement as Image (Art Pathway)
- Dance Production (Dance Pathway)
- Applied Drama 3 and Applied Drama 4 (Drama Pathway)
- Music and Musicianship 3 (Music Pathway).
The way UCAS Tariffs are calculated is changing in 2017. The entry requirement below reflects this change. Read more about these changes.
September 2017 typical entry requirements UCAS points 96 (up to 16 from AS-levels) Specific requirements at A-level N/A Specific requirements at GCSE Five GCSEs at Grade C or above, including Maths and English Interview / Audition
Yes - please see below
Yes - please see below
A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) is required at the point of accepting a place at the University. The Disclosure and Barring Service was established when the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) merged in 2012 and will now provide the criminal records checking service for this programme.
We don't accept points from Key Skills Level 3. If you have any questions about what is or isn't accepted, please contact our Admissions team.
The UCAS tariff points are a guide - we'll also consider all the information that you've included in your application. We'll also want to see that you're enthusiastic and motivated to take this course and that you have the potential to benefit from coming to university.
Use our UniPoints app as a guide to calculate your UCAS Tariff points, search for courses and check entry requirements for 2017 and beyond.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
How to apply
- Full-time students applying in September should apply for this course through UCAS
- Part-time students should apply directly to the University
- Students applying in September should apply for this course through UCAS.
Information for international applicants
Fees and finance
Full-time Part-time UK/EU
£9,250 per year
£1,155 per module
£11,750 per year
Fees for 2018/19 entry are still being decided, so please check back later in the year for more information.
How you will learn
The course balances classroom-based theory with practical sessions involving studio, performance and exhibition work. The focus is on developing your transferable skills so that you can adapt to varied and changing circumstances. Placements are a key part of your learning experience too.
Throughout the course, you have access to guidance and advice from a personal tutor and will also benefit from academic skills sessions.
How you are assessed
You’ll be assessed in many ways to help you develop a compelling variety of skills. These include essays, exhibitions, performances, reflective journals and diaries, videos and production projects.
Who you will meet
You'll learn from highly experienced teachers who are committed to your success. All specialists in their field, they include active researchers, authors and industry practitioners with outstanding professional networks. We pride ourselves on offering a supportive and engaging learning environment.
The team includes:
Jean Bennett - Our Programme Leader is a qualified art therapist and practising artist who exhibits on a regular basis. Jean’s professional interests centre on how producing a body of artwork can act as the basis for research using visual research methodologies.
Dr Clive Holmwood - Our Admissions Tutor is a registered dramatherapist who has worked in a broad range of clinical and non-clinical settings. Clive is an active researcher who publishes widely, most recently as co-editor of The International Handbook of Dramatherapy and as author of Drama Education and Dramatherapy: the space between disciplines based on his doctoral research.
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will be communicated after enrolment on your course.
Careers and employability
You’ll develop transferable skills which enable you to work creatively with people in a range of different settings, drawing on your knowledge of art, dance, drama or music.
Our graduates have gone on to work in community arts, voluntary organisations, health, education and the corporate sector. Some have set up their own businesses.
You could also continue to postgraduate studies if you have ambitions to become an arts therapist, social worker or teacher.
Opportunities for further study
If you would like to register and practice as an arts therapist, we offer exciting masters-level courses to help you achieve your ambitions. With Music Therapy joining our portfolio in 2017, we believe we are the only university in the country to offer such a comprehensive range of postgraduate courses in this field. You can consider the:
Ongoing careers support
Our Careers and Employment Service will provide you with help, guidance and support from day one of your course – and for up to three years after you’ve completed your studies.
What our students say
"The course has shifted my aspirations. Before I might have been looking at jobs as a support worker but now I'm thinking more about how I can influence policy. I can't believe I'm saying that, but with the experience and knowledge I've gained I’m in a position where I could and should be applying for those higher level opportunities." Grace Goodbean, graduate Read Grace's full story
"The key to a good education is to remember that you are in charge of your future and how you will develop as an individual; I can fully recommend Derby as an encouraging, challenging and nurturing place to educate and develop yourself." Jennifer Stafford-Curtis, graduate Read Jennifer's full story
"I graduated with a 1st class honours degree which I would never thought I could achieve. I believe I did this because of the lecturers I had. They were all amazing." Abigail Kirchmann, graduate Read Abigail's full story
Key Information Sets