• CollegeLCC
  • Start dateSeptember 2018
  • Course length30 weeks

Graduate Diploma Photography

Graduate Diploma Photography will help you enter the field of photography and work at the cutting edge of contemporary practice. You will build a foundation of technical skills, from analogue to the latest digital technologies and develop professional skills through set course projects. Finish the course with a high-quality portfolio, a strong conceptual approach and personal identity to your practice.

Reasons to Apply

  • Our strong relationships with industry provide opportunities and collaborations for students outside of the course structure. Previous external professional projects include collaborating with London Fashion Week and working closely with Canon Cameras, Genesis Imaging, Capture One - Phase One and The Flash Centre.
  • An introduction to key industry contacts including camera and lighting manufacturers, bespoke printers, post-production companies, photographic organisations, photographic professionals, gallery owners and seasoned art buyers.
  • An opportunity to gain awareness of the varying demands of the differing markets, which comprise the international professional photographic industry.
  • A structured timetable that focuses on the technical and professional skills needed in contemporary photography practice including optional choices, combining taught and independent study.
  • An opportunity to study professional photography in the rich international cultural and professional context of London College of Communication, with its long-established courses, guest speaker programmes, research culture and industry networks.

Student Films and Profiles

Photography by Chiara Bellamoli, showing to men sitting within a kitchen/living-room space. One man sits on a sofa, another sits on steps into a kitchen, he is bathed in sunlight.
Image © Chiara Bellamoli

Chiara Bellamoli's work featured in Aesthetica Magazine, Next Generation 2017: Human Introspection. Watch an interview with Chiara here.

LCC Student Voices // Sofya Bredikhina

Graduate Diploma Photography, Image Nation final year exhibition, 2017

LCC Student Voices // Manuel Perez de Guzman

Interview with Course Leader Adrian Mott about the Graduate Diploma in Photography
Anna Peftieva

Course Leader Interview

Interview with Course Leader Adrian Mott - LCC Blog.

Course Catalogues

  • Photographic image by Claire Barthelemy in a red house and mountain by a river in Norway.
    Image © Claire Bathelemy

    Image Nation, 2017

    Graduate Diploma Photography, course catalogue 2017

  • Black and white photographic image by Jiayi Chen, showing a naked figure standing on top of a car, firing a bow and arrow towards the viewer.
    Image © Jiayi Chen

    14. catalogue, 2016

    Graduate Diploma Photography course catalogue, 2016

  • Exhibition catalogue, 2015 for Graduate Diploma Photography. Showing two pieces of photographic work: on the left a concrete bridge surrounded on the top and bottom by blue sky, on the right a black and white portrait of a man.
    Image © Yugo Ito (left) and Xing Huang (right)

    Camera Work 2015

    Camera Work 2015 is the course catalogue for Graduate Diploma Photography, 2015.

Course Instagram



Graduate Diploma Photography will give you the practical skills you'll need to define yourself as a leading photographer. You will be encouraged to develop a strong conceptual approach to your personal practice – to achieve a more defined identity within your work.

Building on the rich heritage of photography teaching at London College of Communication, Graduate Diploma Photography will open a variety of career opportunities in professional photography.

You will gain an invaluable understanding of the photography industry and the business aspect of professional photography. The course will introduce you to key contacts and help you to build relationships.

During your studies, you'll work towards developing a high-quality portfolio suitable for presentation when approaching clients for future commissions or industry roles. In addition, you'll work on set and self-initiated projects which promote learning through discovery, interaction and response to change.

For those wishing to continue their study, the theory and research elements of the course will also prepare you for continued learning at Masters level.

The Graduate Diploma in Photography is taught within the Media School at LCC.

Course units

During the first two weeks there will be an induction programme in which you will:

  • Get an overview of the structure of the course and each unit and discover the ethos of the course.
  • Get to know the facilities on offer to you at course, College and University level, including those provided by the Learning Resources department, Student Services and Students' Union.
  • Get to know your tutors and colleagues.
  • Learn about the difference between working at postgraduate and undergraduate levels.

Autumn, Term One (11 weeks)

Unit summary:

  • Professional Photography in Practice (Photographic Technology and Applied Production Skills) (40 credits)

Through a series of workshops and project briefs, this unit will enable you to develop and utilise specialist photographic skills and knowledge to solve photographic problems. Through planning, implementation and review, and engagement with industry, you'll be able to apply your photographic skills in a realistic professional context and identify areas in which you may wish to develop your practice.

  • Critical Approaches (Photographic Culture, History and Theory) (20 credits)

This unit will give you the opportunity to study major developments and critical approaches in photography. This will enable you to gain an understanding of the contemporary significance of photography and to place your own work in a historical-cultural context. This unit is particularly useful to those students wishing to bridge to Master level study.

Spring, Term Two (10 weeks)

Unit summary:

  • Professional Photography in Practice (continued)
  • Critical Approaches (continued)
  • Personal Project (Research and development) (20 credits)
  • Professional Identity and Portfolio Development (Professional Context and Progression) (40 credits)

Through the research and development of a comprehensive project, you will be able to recognise creative influences in your own work and develop an understanding of your own creative ambitions.

The Professional Identity and Portfolio Development unit is a culmination of the previous units, offering you the hands-on opportunity to develop a professional body of work that showcases your personal identity.

This is the most significant unit in that you are expected to produce a professional portfolio of work in which you'll be required to demonstrate a rigorous and critical analysis of your interests in professional photography, strongly influenced by your area of specialism.

Summer, Term Three (10 weeks)

Unit summary:

  • Personal Project (continued)
  • Professional Identity and Portfolio Development (continued)

You will explore and gain working knowledge of contemporary business practice, with an emphasis on operating as a freelance practitioner. The process for all units will involve you in original applications of knowledge, together with a practical ability to use and critically assess existing photographic techniques and formats.

You will also, in the process of the critical evaluation of your own and others work, develop innovative solutions to creative challenges.


  • Photograph showing a red recording light, indicating the lens and audio visual facilities at London College of Communication.
    Image © Vladimir Molico

    Lens-Based and Audio-Visual

    Find out about the workspaces and studios that support Lens-Based and Audio-Visual practice.

  • Photograph of computers and work-space within the Digital Space at London College of Communication.
    Image © Ana Escobar

    The Digital Space

    The Digital Space is an open-plan, creative hub with computers set up with specialist software.

  • Photograph of students kneeling on the floor in a photography studio, with two specialist lights.
    Image © Lewis Bush

    Media Photography

    Photography students benefit from access to resources held in the Media Photography areas.


Course Leader

Adrian Mott

Associate Lecturer

VJ Choolun

Senior Lecturers

Victoria Ahrens, Quentin Tyler

Critical Approaches Senior Lecturer

Dr Selina Chen

Technical Senior Lecturer

Ian Macaulay

Visiting Tutors

Ryan Hopkinson, David Graham, Simon Tomkinson, Lyndsey Goddard

How to apply

We ask all applicants to complete an online application and upload additional digital items, via the Apply now link, below. Before you apply, we recommend you take some time to read the course Entry Requirements section to learn about the application process and additional items you would need to supply.

All applications will be considered by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:

  • First, they will look at your qualifications and transcript (or projected results)
  • Secondly, they will review your personal statement and portfolio

There is no requirement for an academic or professional reference.


You will need to enter the following information in the online application:

  • Personal details (including full name; date of birth; nationality; permanent address and English language level)
  • Current and/or previous education and qualification details
  • Employment history 
  • CV
  • Personal statement

Before submitting your application, you will need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the application form. Once you have submitted the online application, we will send you a confirmation email.

Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will ask you for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).


You will be asked to supply:

  • Portfolio

After you have submitted your application, the course leader will then review your work and may invite you to interview or interview you via Skype, and will then make a decision on your application.

The admissions team will be in touch soon after that to let you know the outcome and to guide you through the next steps.


Applications are accepted and offers are made throughout the year. Early application is advised.

Apply now

The online application can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you press submit.

As you progress through the application process we will send you emails with important information, so do check your inbox regularly (and junk folder, just in case).

Entry requirements

Applicants should have an honours degree or equivalent experience to be considered for this course. We are looking for applicants who may be progressing from an undergraduate course (or equivalent) and who already have a portfolio that demonstrates a good level of practice.

Alternatively, you could be considering a career change and already have a portfolio of good quality photographic images, and now interested in expanding your subject knowledge and understanding, and developing a career in photography.

Language requirements (International/EU)

All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you let us know your English language test score in your application. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please indicate this in your application. When asked to upload a CV as part of your application, please include any information about your English test score.

  • IELTS 6.0 (or equivalent) is required, with a minimum of 5.5 in each of the four skills.
  • If your first language is not English, you can check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English on the Language Requirements page

For further details regarding international admissions and advice please visit the International Applications page.

Selection Criteria

Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:

  • Evidence of a commitment to the medium of photography and a desire to acquire the skills needed to develop a commercial career in the medium
  • An evident commitment to developing creative practice whilst academically engaging with the subject
  • A demonstrable capacity for intellectual enquiry and openness to new ideas
  • Evidence of an ability/wish to work both autonomously and collaboratively
  • An interest in acquiring the technical skills required to embark on a professional career


Please provide a CV detailing your education, qualifications and any relevant work or voluntary experience. If English is not your first language it is important that you also include in your CV details of your most recent English language test score.

Personal statement advice

You will be asked to complete a personal statement describing why you want to study on Graduate Diploma Photography. Candidates will be expected to demonstrate critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject, and a well-articulated rationale for joining the course.

Portfolio and interview advice

All applications submitted must be supported by a digital portfolio of work to be considered at interview. Your online portfolio should be in the form of up to 20 images of your work. Please label your work carefully with your name, plus titles if appropriate.

Interviews help us determine whether your personal and professional aspirations are compatible with the aims and philosophy of the course. Not all applicants will be called for an interview.

If you are called for an interview, we advise you to bring strong examples of current work. The interview also gives you an opportunity to demonstrate an objective, critical and reflective relationship to your work.


Deferring an offer

If you are offered a place for 2018/19 but wish to defer to 2019/20, information on how to do this and who to contact can be found in your offer letter. Additionally, International applicants should pay the deposit in order to defer. In all cases, deferred places will be held for one year.

Making a deferred application (during 2018/19 for entry in 2019/20)

Home/EU applicants are permitted to make a deferred application. International applicants are not permitted to make a deferred application.

What happens next?

Successful applicants will be guided through the rest of our admissions stages and towards enrolment on the course.

Fees and funding

Home / EU fee

£9,500 (2018/19). 

ELQ (Equivalent or Lower Qualification)

This course has an undergraduate-level qualification as an entry requirement, and the quoted Home/EU fee rate reflects the fact that most students enrolling on this course will already possess an undergraduate-level qualification. Home/EU applicants for this course who do not already have an undergraduate-level qualification, or students in receipt of Disabled Students' Allowance (DSA), may pay a reduced fee. For enquiries relating to ELQ fees, please complete the course enquiry form.

International fee

£19,350 (2018/19).

Additional costs

In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. We strongly suggest you read the information on our Additional Costs page


Find out about the accommodation options available and how much they will cost.

Career paths

The Graduate Diploma in Photography provides you with the skills you will need for a career as a professional photographer. You'll be encouraged to research, evaluate and develop projects which directly relate to your future aspirations and be given the chance to develop a portfolio suitable for presentation to clients to help you gain commissions or employment on completing the course.

The creative, research and professional skills gained on the course enable a broad range of careers possibilities, including:

  • Photographer (advertising, fashion, editorial, blogging, documentary, picture researcher)
  • Art buyer
  • Picture editor
  • Publisher
  • Stills production 
  • Digital operator 
  • Art director
  • Entrepreneur