Foundation Degree in Circus Arts

Course overview

Award: Foundation Degree in Circus Arts

UCAS Code: We do not go through UCAS.

Applications are through us directly.

Location: National Centre for Circus Arts – London

Awarding body: University of Kent

Duration: 2 years (full-time), 35 hours a week, 35 weeks in the year.

Academic year: September – July

Timetables: Timetables are weekly and normally available one week before, emailed directly to the students.

The Foundation Degree in Circus Arts aims to develop a broad range of the skills required as a professional circus artist. The specialisation process enables each student to find one circus discipline which will be suited to them, developing their technical and creative vocabulary in that arena. Juggling students will follow the same specialisation process but look at different areas of the Juggling and Manipulation discipline.

The training is 35 hours a week, 35 weeks in the year. The Foundation Degree is intense in order to sustain technical and creative progression, with an equal focus on artistic creativity and collaboration. See the module specifications for further information on contact hours. 

The focus is on the continuous assessment of each student’s individual progress, as well as performance related assessment both as an individual and as part of an ensemble. Students’ analytical and critical skills are also assessed through research presentations, essays and other assignment projects.

The degree is delivered at the National Centre for Circus Arts and is awarded by the University of Kent. Students must complete and pass all modules in both years of the course in order to obtain the qualification, and progress on the BA (Hons) Degree. Entry on to the BA (Hons) is at the discretion of the Higher Education delivery team. 

Module Map

This module map provides a list of the modules that make up the course.

Each module is worth a specified number of credits: enabling you to cover key subject knowledge while developing your own interests. You must take modules worth a total of 120 credits at each level of the course.

Our teaching is informed by research, and active performers and directors who are already working in the professional industry. Modules change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline.

You can always find the most up-to-date information about your modules and who is teaching them on Moodle, Our virtual Learning Environment (VLE) when you have registered onto the course.

The modules available on the course are as follows.

Foundation Degree Year 1 (Level 4)
Compulsory modules

CA102 Preparing for Circus 60 credits All year
CA105 Introduction to Ensemble 15 credits Spring
CA107 Movement 10 credits Spring & Summer
CA108 Play & Performance 10 credits Spring & Summer
CA109 Performance in Theory & Practice 15 credits  Spring & Summer
CA110 Specialisation Assessment 10 credits Autumn & Spring

Foundation Degree Year 2 (Level 5)
Compulsory modules

CA207 Performance Review and Analysis 10 credits Autumn
CA210 Action, Reaction & Creation 15 credits Autumn & Spring
CA211 Circus Discipline Level 1 35 credits Autumn, Spring & Summer
CA212 Movement & Composition 1 15 credits Autumn & Spring
CA204 Business of Being a Performer 10 credits Spring & Summer
CA209 The Student Devised Piece 20 credits Spring & Summer
CA201 The Ensemble 15 credits Summer

Entry requirements 2018-19

  • Applicants must be 18 or over on entry.
  • Applicants will be able to demonstrate their intent to pursue professional employment in circus arts. 
  • Applicants will be required to demonstrate a proficiency in both written and verbal English language. For the Foundation Degree in Circus Arts this would normally be GCSE English or equivalent International English Language Testing System (IELTS) at 6.5 pass level or higher. 
  • Applicants must attend an audition day if from the UK as the point of entry. If the applicant is from the EU or overseas they may submit a video audition, however we recommend attending the live audition.


Applicants must participate in an audition day. Auditions are by invitation only.

We advise you not to make travel arrangements until you have been formally invited to audition.

Further information about auditions will be available after the application process. Please note that you must be able to attend the auditions on the specified date should an offer be made.

Auditions for the next academic year will be held end of March/beginning of April 2018.

Find out more about the audition process

How to apply

Applications for September 2018 are now open and will close on Thursday 22 February 2018.

If you are interested in applying for the Foundation Degree in Circus Arts please complete the application form below and send it to

The form is best completed as a word document and must be sent back in this format or as a PDF file. We will not be able to accept ‘Pages’ documents.

If you'd like any more information, please get in touch by email or call us on +44 (0)20 7613 8244. 

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