MORE than twice the national average number of students on an arts course are graduating with distinction.

A total of 43 per cent of students on Blackburn College University Centre’s Foundation Diploma in art, design and media are graduating with the highest marks.

Nationally, only 19 per cent of arts students pass similar courses with a distinction.

Teachers at the college said the course is popular and packed with students from around the world.

Students are also said to be benefiting from a visiting lecture programme with famous artists and lecturers from London universities.

Course leader Jamie Holman said high marks were seeing graduates go on to the finest institutions.

He said: “We had great success last year and this year is set to be equally impressive. Our learners have already achieved university places at Central Saint Martins, Glasgow School Of Art, Edinburgh University, London College of Fashion, Leeds College of Art, Manchester Metropolitan University, London College Of Communication and Goldsmiths University London.

“Three of our students have places at Chelsea School of Art and Design and an unprecedented 16 places have been offered across all courses at Camberwell College of Art and Design.

“Places range from film making to architecture, fashion design to photography, illustration to painting and sculpture.

“There isn’t much in the creative industries that we don’t cover.

“This course is designed to support three types of learner – students who have already studied an arts subject, those who are returning to these subjects, or even to education after a long period away and students from Hong Kong, Russia and Africa.

“We meet everyone at interview and we give everyone a chance.

“We are looking for passion, dedication and a flash of talent.”