The Design & Crafts Council Ireland’s BA in Ceramics Skills and Design Course is an intensive three-year skills-based programme. The renowned two-year course has been redesigned and developed into a level 8 degree course. Initially established in 1990, this extremely successful course has achieved an excellent reputation in the industry both nationally and internationally. The BA programme will be accredited through a partnership with Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology.

The programme is delivered at the Design & Crafts Council Ireland's Ceramics Centre of Excellence at the beautiful Island Mill in Thomastown, Co. Kilkenny. The ceramics course specialises in production skills, clay and glaze technology, kiln theory and operation, surface treatments, drawing and design, the history of ceramics and contemporary practice. The superb facilities, with electric, gas and wood fired kilns, allow students to build up an extensive knowledge of techniques, materials and processes. Throughout the three-year programme, visiting tutors with specialist expertise give demonstrations and lectures.

The course aims to develop individual creativity through dynamic work practice and the knowledge and skills required to support quality and innovation in design and production. Pricing, marketing and photography using the latest digital technology and computers are covered in . External projects are undertaken to give students hands-on experience of working with clients and on innovative community-based projects to develop the skills required to work in a team.

Building on the experience and success of this skills-based course in ceramics at Island Mill and in the Jewellery and Goldsmithing Skills & Design course in Castle Yard, Kilkenny, DCCI’s vision is to work with partner organisations in developing centres of excellence to ensure industry needs are met through specialised training and access to facilities, leading to an emerging workforce with the experience and expertise necessary for the ongoing development of craft and design in Ireland.

Course Facilities

Each student has their own work area with an electric wheel, work benches and drying racks. Tools, equipment and raw materials are provided by the course which has three pug mills for clay preparation. As well as the main production studios on the first and second floor, the course has electric and gas kiln rooms, three outside wood-fired kilns, a glaze research room, a glazing room and student kitchen all housed within a courtyard area. A student study computer and small library are also located on the first floor of the main studio. The course has recently evolved to include a residency programme and continues to strengthen its links with industry.

Course Mode

Full time September – July.
3 years at 40 weeks per year.
Student enrolment takes place every three years. For inquiries on the next commencement date please contact

Course Costs

The fees will be €3,000 per annum for Irish/EU citizens. Fees of €9,500 per annum will apply for non-EU students. For further information, please email Students enrolled on the course have materials supplied by DCCI.