Portfolio guidance for Architecture applicants

  • Guidance Notes for Architecture (K100), Interior Architecture (W250) and BA in Design Applications

    Assessment by Interview and/or Portfolio Assessment Day

    The portfolio is an opportunity to demonstrate a sense of yourself as a visually creative person. We are eager to see a wide range in your creative ability. At Oxford Brookes University we value this and only consider students who have provided a portfolio. Therefore it is important that your portfolio is as diverse as possible. Do not underestimate this competitive process and we ask for a portfolio that contains work illustrating your creativity rather than your technical ability.

    What are we looking for in a portfolio
    Suggestions are as follows:

    A mix of media, e.g.

    • Free-hand drawing
    • Observational drawing (sketches and drawings from reality not photographs)
    • Sketch books (sketches from trips abroad and project ideas etc)
    • Life drawing (pencil, charcoal etc)
    • Collages / Montages / Mixed Media
    • Work experience drawings
    • Finished artworks


    • Scale models
    • Material experimentation / Sculpture
    • Spatial installations
    • Work experience models


    • Films
    • Music
    • Photography
    • Website design
    • Creative hobbies – textiles, metalwork, etc.
    • Precedent Studies (research on artists and architects you find interesting)

    We would expect to see at least 15-20 pieces of work as a minimum. Feel free to include any kind of work you have done and we suggest a mix of both A-level and other personal work (non-A-level). The portfolio should be legible and in order.

    We do not expect everyone to have everything – this is NOT a tick box exercise. However we are keen to see your point of view, and what kind of architectures you find exciting. Show us your passions, ambition and commitment to creative endeavour. Architecture is a challenging subject, so show initiative. Surprise us.

    We understand that some of your work may have been submitted for A-level examinations or may be too large for you to bring, in which case we ask for clear and focused photographs.

    Response times for portfolio submissions
    We expect that you should receive a response to portfolio submissions within three weeks of the submission date. If you have not received a response by that point please contact admissions@brookes.ac.uk.