BA (Hons) Architecture – applicant portfolio advice

Make the most of the opportunity to excel in your portfolio – you could be eligible for an unconditional offer.

We want to acknowledge your potential (as evidenced by your performance), as well as your commitment to us as an applicant. An unconditional offer allows you to focus on your upcoming examinations and begin planning for your university career.

For more information please contact


What is it?

A portfolio is a record of your creative potential. Be selective and include only the things that will make an impression: 

  • Think creatively (this should be shown with examples of the ideas and interests underlying your work).
  • Use relevant graphic and written communication techniques and skills (this should be demonstrated in the techniques you use in your work).
  • Think critically (this should be shown in the work you select and how you have put it together as a coherent package).

Some suggestions

For general guidance, we have prepared some notes and suggestions for you.

Demonstrate your abilities above by including as wide a range of work as possible. This might include (note – you are not required to show all of the following):

Graphic work:

  • drawings; for example, freehand sketches, life drawing, orthographic drawings (plans, sections and elevations, such as typically used in architectural drawings), and /or 3D architectural drawings (perspectives or axonometrics)
  • collages / montages
  • flyers
  • graphic design
  • photographs of models / 3D work
  • pages from sketchbooks
  • paintings
  • poster designs
  • sketch studies of designs
  • photography; this may include both art-based work and photographs taken whilst visiting buildings or places
  • precedent studies (i.e. studies using annotated sketches, diagrams or photographs to analyse buildings or artefacts, such as artwork).

Written work:

  • creative writing; for example, poetry and stories
  • research studies.

It’s very important that the portfolio contains work illustrating your creativity and not just your technical ability.

In your graphic work show evidence of your ability to use a wide range of materials and media, this might include: acrylics, charcoal, collage, ink, oil, pencil, and photography.

You should include a minimum of ten pieces of work (ten images as digital files), up to a maximum of 15 pieces of work (15 images as digital files).

There should be a balance of both graphic and written work, although we would expect to see a minimum of at least five pieces of graphic work. These can be anything you wish to include from the above list.

Example portfolios

You may find these useful - here are some examples of the type of work that may be placed in a portfolio.


  • Submit your work as digital images only, taken from either original digitally-based work, scans of flat work, or photographs of three-dimensional work. Note that other formats such as large portfolio cases will not be accepted (this restriction also recognises that some of your work might be either submitted for A level examinations or may be three-dimensional work).
  • Your portfolio should be a collection of JPEG images saved as either a single compressed file, if JPEG format, OR as a single compressed file or single combined file, if PDF format.
  • Acceptable digital formats are limited to only JPEG or PDF files; we cannot guarantee that we will be able to view work sent in other formats, so please adhere to the guidelines.
  • Total email size should be no more than 5MB.
  • Please email your portfolio to us at The email should include your NAME (and UCAS number if you are a UK home student). Please note, portfolios will not be returned, so please keep a copy.

If you have any more questions regarding your portfolio or application please don’t hesitate to contact us.

We look forward to receiving your portfolio, and good luck!