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About the course

This top-up course is designed for students who are already confident practitioners of their chosen creative discipline, but would like to develop a portfolio and build skills to work in the creative industries. Suitable creative disciplines include film, photography, journalism, advertising, graphic design, animation, illustration, CGI, fashion and design.

This top-up degree in creative enterprise is delivered within Solent Creatives, an in-house agency where you'll develop your creative portfolio and enterprise skills. The agency will support you as you work with businesses on creative projects, teaching you essential business and freelance skills.

Students studying on the creative enterprise top-up programme will spend much of their time working alongside Solent Creatives, the University’s in-house creative agency. The agency matches creative students with clients who are seeking creative services.

This experience of genuine client work is the perfect preparation for employment or freelance work in the creative industries. Students will have gained real experience of working in their chosen field, and will have developed a clear understanding of how the creative industries function both in the UK and abroad.

The course also includes classroom based units, where students will learn essential marketing, finance and management skills, as well the popular Canvas Business Model technique. This ensures that students are able to manage the logistical and administrative aspects of their creative enterprise.

Think you’ve got what it takes to be your own boss? Looking to secure regular employment as a professional creative? Southampton Solent University’s creative enterprise top-up is the perfect way to gain experience of professional creative practice and learn the essential business skills required to thrive in either freelance or traditional employment.

Built in work experience placement Specialist facilities Further studies Top-up degree

Students learn in Solent Creatives, the first creative agency to be set up by a UK university.

What does this course lead to?

During their studies, students from the BA (Hons) Creative Enterprise degree develop relevant business skills and a portfolio of commercial work related to their individual skillset. Many students will choose to work as a business owner or freelancer, using these assets to further their own business.

Other graduates may seek full-time employment in a creative industry. Having already acquired real agency experience throughout their degree, these students will be well positioned to take on this kind of work.

Who is this course for?

This course is for students who want to apply their creative specialism within an agency environment. Graduates will have a full year of agency experience, putting them in a good position to apply for agency roles.

Suitable creative disciplines include film, photography, journalism, advertising, graphic design, animation, illustration, CGI, fashion and design.

Facts and figures

UCAS codes icon

UCAS codes

Full Time

  • 1 Year Standard Entry PP31
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Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2018/19 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £12,500 per year 

Bursaries and scholarships

Southampton Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

Relevant HND/foundation degree pass with Merit Overall or 240 CATS points from two years of a three year relevant degree programme.

We welcome applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds. Applicants who are not in possession of the minimum entry requirements but are able to demonstrate aptitude, enthusiasm and motivation will be considered on an individual basis and may be admitted subject to satisfactory interview and/or portfolio. Please contact us for further details.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 19 in each individual component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Study location

East Park Terrace

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Ask Solent team: 023 8201 3039

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until June. The UCAS code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Click the link below to apply through UCAS:

BA (Hons) Creative Enterprise (Top-up)

How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

The Creative Portfolio
On this unit, students learn how to create a varied and innovative portfolio – perfect for selling skills to clients or employers. The unit prepares students for freelance work by giving them the opportunity to manage a range of projects and briefs.

Freelancing @ Solent Creatives 
Students will be able to apply for a range of projects (suitable to their skillset) and will be matched to at least one. Solent Creatives will then teach the fundamentals of freelance employment.

Enterprise – Model your Business
This unit equips students with the skills required to launch their own business using the globally renowned ‘Business Model Canvas’ technique.

Creative Thinking
Students learn a range of creative problem solving techniques that can be applied to any situation. Businesses often speak to the course team, telling them that they want graduates who can think creatively. This unit will help students to develop these creative and strategic thinking skills.

Creative Cultures
This unit will contextualise the creative industries and consider theories related to creativity, the creative class, policy, politics and funding. 


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Caroline Barfoot academic profile Caroline Barfoot Head of Subject View profile
Dr Matthew Cheeseman academic profile Matthew Cheeseman Senior Lecturer View profile
Dr Jessie Qun Ren academic profile Jessie Qun Ren Senior Lecturer View profile
Irma Gineikiene academic profile Irma Gineikiene Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


We provide a stimulating learning environment to help you make the most of your time with us. Flexible spaces, wi-fi facilities and learning zones all contribute to our lively and contemporary study environment at Solent.

Students are also encouraged to make use of the library which features a fully-networked resource centre equipped with high-end computers (from Apple and Microsoft) and an extensive selection of both open plan and private group working spaces.

Students are given access to a range of professional video and photography equipment, as well as the latest creative software.

Students are given access to a range of professional equipment including video and photography equipment, as well as creative software.

Your future

Suitable roles for graduates include:

  • Freelance creative work
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Account management 
  • Creative agency positions
  • Creative director
  • Consultant

Industry links

We have strong links with the local and national businesses who provide us with live briefs. In the last four years we have matched over 1000 students with freelance projects and have registered over 800 businesses onto Solent Creatives’ client list. These businesses include Marks & Spencer, Southampton Airport, Sodexo, Oxfam, the NHS and B&Q.

On average, Solent productions receive 33 new project requests each month.


The course is based in Solent Creatives, Southampton Solent University’s unique creative agency. The agency specialises in matching talented students with local and national freelancing opportunities, so all students enrolled on the course will be matched to at least one opportunity that is appropriate to their skillset. 

For example, a student with experience in filmmaking might make a series of promotional videos for a local maritime business, and a journalism student might work on the production of an online magazine for a regional shopping centre.

Film is our most popular area and we can offer students the chance to work on various projects. Previously, Solent Creatives has given students the chance to work on projects including music videos, educational films, product launches and online livestreams.

Further study

Enhance your career prospects by continuing your study at Solent.

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