BA (Hons) / FdA

Accredited by the University of Birmingham


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4 years full-time




1-year placement


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College of Food and Hospitality Management
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3 years full-time




1-year placement


September, January


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College of Food and Hospitality Management
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Opportunities to compete in a wide range of culinary competitions

Work experience opportunities at Michelin-starred restaurants

If you want a qualification that will really open doors in the food industry, our Culinary Arts Management degree course is the perfect choice for you. From Michelin-starred restaurant owner Brad Carter to Raymond Blanc Cookery School senior tutor Rebecca Boast and a string of stars on TV’s MasterChef, University College Birmingham students have enjoyed stellar careers after graduating from this course – and you can follow in their footsteps.

Whether you want to be executive head chef at a 5-star hotel, manage a high-profile restaurant kitchen or create new products as a development chef, our flagship culinary course will give you the skills, knowledge and experience you need. From our incredible professional training kitchens and award-winning restaurants to our cutting-edge Food Science and Innovation Suite and our expert chef lecturers, there is nowhere better than our acclaimed College of Food and Hospitality Management for you to perfect your culinary skills.

As a key part of the course, you will complete a one-year work placement with extensive opportunities available in the UK and overseas. You will also have the chance to gain additional awards such as food hygiene certification, while we have a vast quantity of industry contacts to provide you with opportunities for further work experience, expert masterclasses and culinary competitions.

Why should I choose this course?

  • WORK PLACEMENT – Boost your employment prospects through a paid one-year placement in the culinary arts industry, with opportunities around the world
  • PRACTICAL APPLICATIONPut your training into practice with opportunities such as working at Michelin-starred restaurants (e.g. Simpsons, Carters of Moseley), supporting product development with major firms like Mars or working in our outstanding restaurants on campus
  • COMPETITIONS – Prove your abilities in a range of industry competitions – you could follow in the footsteps of our past winners at Nestle Professional Toque d’Or (five-time winners), Zest Quest Asia (two-time champions), BCF Young Chef of the Year and many more
  • ENRICHMENT – Enjoy a variety of visits and masterclasses by celebrated chefs and food industry experts

Our facilities

University College Birmingham is renowned for its outstanding food industry training facilities. Studying our Culinary Arts Management course means you will have access to our professional standard kitchens, award-winning training restaurants and state-of-the-art food development facilities.

Course breakdown

Students on the FdA have the option of progressing onto the final year upon completion of the foundation degree.

  • Year 1
  • Year 2
  • Year 3
  • Year 4

Core Modules

Commodities and Nutrition

Running a profitable and healthy food business is essential for long term success, so you will look at food commodities and the nutrients within them. You will examine the problems associated with meeting the ever-increasing number of dietary needs as well as developing a broad knowledge and understanding of a wide range of ingredients and commodities.

Culinary Skills Development

This module is designed to develop the student's technical ability and culinary expertise. This module will incorporate a strong focus on time management, practical workflow and standardised procedures to aid professional food production.

Food Safety and Hygiene

This module provides students with an introduction to the main food hygiene theories and practices, In particular, current food hygiene legislation requires food businesses to develop and implement a food safety management system based around HACCP, students will learn how to devise and implement such a system. There will be a series of practical sessions to demonstrate the theory.

Food, Beverage and Hospitality Operations

What is 'sous vide'? For how long can food be held hot in a service area? Why does the speed of music played in a restaurant matter? There are a whole host of very important questions to be answered when organising the production and service of food and beverages to customers. The Food, Beverage and Hospitality Operations module introduces this vast topic in the first year of study. The module is taught through a series of presentations, case studies and discussions to provide a general introduction to the large scale food production systems used in the catering industry; the different types of food service appropriate to various hospitality situations and develop an appreciation of the wealth of legislation that exists in this business sector. Purchasing, staff training, quality and customer care, restaurant and kitchen planning are other areas that are introduced in this module.

Kitchen and Restaurant Operations

You will be provided with practical experience in order to apply your organisational skills within a realistic, professional environment. You will be providing food and service to the highest standard, utilising appropriate resources such as food ordering, menus and standard recipes.

Managing for Profit

You will be provided with a basic understanding of the factors that can affect profit in the food and bakery industries. This module integrates three core areas: finance, organisational behaviour and marketing, highlighting the key theories and models as well as giving you the opportunity to work on current industry scenarios.

Work Placement

Work Placement

You will gain valuable work experience on a 48-week work placement. This is an exciting opportunity to put what you have learned into practice, broaden your experience and demonstrate your abilities to potential employers.

Core Modules

Creative Kitchen Management

This module is designed to develop the student's competency in effective kitchen management within a professional culinary environment, through the use of both theoretical and practical application. The comprehensive approach to the module allows students to utilise and practice the many aspects of creative control procedures including menu planning, dish development, due diligence and financial control, designed to prepare students for the rigour and competencies required within the role of kitchen manager, head Chef or financial controller.

Culinary Research and Development

You will develop your competency in the research and production of creative dishes for innovative menus. You will examine the cultural, social, religious and geographical influences of a cuisine of your choice and select a number of dishes for technical development to aid effective food production.

Human Resources for Hospitality Managers

This module is designed to provide an introductory understanding of Human Resource related activities to help hospitality managers maximise their effectiveness when managing their department. It is intended to provide an insight into the importance of both best practice and the legal implications relating to day to day HR related activities. Emphasis will be placed upon the practical application of key Human Resource activities and the role of the department head/line manager in delivering these.

Management of Food and Beverage Operations

You will have the opportunity to apply management principles in a 'live' realistic working environment. You will demonstrate your management skills in order to ensure the execution of a successful function and demonstrate the need for effective control and revenue-generating procedures.

Marketing Communications for Hospitality

The hospitality industry faces a huge challenge in terms of adapting and promoting services in an interconnected world. As a result, you will examine the tactics, strategies and ways that marketing managers use media communications to secure business.

Research Principles

This is your introduction to the management and practical application of research. You will be encouraged to study multiple research perspectives and use data with analysis to form some findings with possible recommended solutions to issues raised. You will establish your own research questions and employ appropriate tools to plan, identify, collect and evaluate data that forms the basis of an extended research proposal.

Plus one option from:


Gastronomy is the study of the relationship between culture and food. As a module developed for food lovers, it will provide you with an appreciation of past, present and anticipated future gastronomic trends. You will develop a sound knowledge of contemporary food issues such as the development of food tourism, food events and festivals and discuss how restaurants are incorporating current trends.

Events Planning

Based upon well-established events planning models, you will gain a sound understanding of the implementation and evaluation of festivals and special events. You will look at growth and development trends, related policy issues and the overall role of events in tourism and leisure. Event typologies and the scope of events will be reviewed and the impacts on residents and visitors will be considered.

Managing Pub and Bar Operations

You will develop your knowledge of the skills that are used within the pub and bar sector - one of the most diverse sectors of the hospitality industry. This will lead to an understanding of the sector structure, trends in legislation, current issues and management operations involved in the efficient running of a pub.

Contemporary Patisserie

This module is designed to provide the students with an introduction to all the essential elements of professional pastry production, including working with tempered chocolate and boiled sugar. Students will be challenged to produce a contemporary plated dessert utilising standardised recipes and considering current market developments.

Core Modules

Culinary Product Development

This module will provide you with an in-depth understanding of the commercial processes in food product development - from the initial idea through to the technical development involved when launching a product. You will be challenged to design and produce a range of innovative products and packaging solutions to industry standards.

Hospitality Operations Management

You will evaluate and apply operations management concepts and techniques to hospitality operations in an international context. You will look at quality and performance management within the industry and how effective management leads to strategic objectives.

Research Project

You will have the opportunity to engage in an independent research project of your choice. You will have support with preparing your proposal and understanding the competent characteristics of good research. An appointed tutor will help guide you through this important and rewarding process.

Strategic Hospitality Management

You will learn the full range of strategic management issues encountered when determining the direction of the organisation. You will use analytical tools in the context of service sector-based case studies and learn procedures and techniques for a range of elements taught on this course. You will be able to identify long-term threats and opportunities for organisations in order for it to develop successfully.

Plus one option from:

Financial Strategy

An opportunity to consolidate your financial planning knowledge, you will learn how to synthesise and evaluate business performance and strategy. You will develop an in-depth knowledge of financial concepts and how companies portray themselves through their annual reports.

Small Restaurant Management

Have you ever imagined what it would be like to own your own restaurant? We will prepare you for the experience by asking you to find a suitable property on the market for your restaurant operations. In a 'Dragons' Den' session, you will present a business plan to a 'financer' who will decide whether or not to support your proposal.

Cross-cultural and Global Management in Hospitality

You will explore the ways in which a culturally diverse organisation can make use of a diverse range of perspectives offered by international team members and their varied expertise. You will focus on employees who have a global perspective in achieving success for their organisation by implementing international strategy with an awareness of cross-cultural differences.

Innovation and Creativity Management in Hospitality and Tourism

The theme for this module is the 'future environment', which gives you the opportunity to explore and analyse the innovation process in the service sector. You will understand that change is an essential component of the managerial process as you develop new products and services for use in the industry.

Personal Effectiveness and Behavioural Skills

You will identify ways to improve your professional and personal potential by making positive changes and managing yourself. You will benefit from developing your soft skills and self-awareness, which will help you achieve success when managing people.

The modules listed above for this course are regularly reviewed to ensure they are up to date and informed by industry as well as the latest teaching methods. On occasion, we may need to make unexpected changes to modules – if this occurs, we will contact all offer holders as soon as possible.

Entry requirements

Culinary Arts Management BA (Hons)

A-levels: An A-level grade profile of CCC-CDD.

BTEC: A BTEC grade profile of MMM-MMP. This can be achieved from either an Extended Diploma or a combination of smaller BTEC qualifications.

Tariff: Other Level 3 qualifications are accepted for entry. A minimum of 96-80 UCAS Tariff points will be required.

Access to Higher Education Diploma96-80 UCAS Tariff points, including a minimum of 15 Level 3 credits at Distinction.

Culinary Arts Management FdA

A-levels: An A-level grade profile of CD-DD.

BTEC: A BTEC grade profile of PPP-PP. This can be achieved from either an Extended Diploma or a combination of smaller BTEC qualifications.

Tariff: Other Level 3 qualifications are accepted for entry. A minimum of 56-32 UCAS Tariff points will be required.

Access to Higher Education Diploma56-32 UCAS Tariff points.

Non-tariff: Non-UCAS Tariff-based Level 3 qualifications are also considered for entry. Please contact to check your eligibility.

Work-based: We also give equal consideration to applicants who are currently in work and wish to apply to University College Birmingham. To apply, you must have a minimum of 3 years’ relevant work experience, demonstrating management or supervisory duties. Your application must also include a reference from your line manager supporting your entry to higher education. For further details, please contact Admissions.

EU/international students

For entry requirements for EU and international students, please visit the Country Specific Information page.

Bridging courses

Students joining the course with no culinary arts qualifications or experience can attend a short bridging course in practical skills development before Year 1 starts. Additionally, all students will undertake a brief induction period prior to the first semester, focusing on academic development and orientation.

Key information

Teaching and assessment

Note: Indicative information only – actual timetables and assessment regimes will be issued at your induction.


Example of a typical teaching week (up to 19 contact hours):

  • Large group teaching – 4 hours per week (in lecture rooms)
  • Smaller group teaching – 2 hours per week
  • Practical kitchen session – 10 hours per week
  • Tutorials – 1-2 hours per week
  • Subject advice sessions – 2 hours per week

You will also need to commit around 20 hours per week for individual study time.


Estimated breakdown of assessment for this degree course (weighting will vary in Year 3 and 4 depending on optional modules):

  • Coursework – 52%
  • Practical assessment – 32%
  • Written examinations – 16%

Our teaching and assessment is underpinned by our Teaching, Learning and Assessment Strategy 2015-2020.

Uniform and kit costs

This course requires a uniform and kit costing approximately £250-300, depending on the items you purchase. (Prices are subject to change each year – exact costs and information on how to order required items will be provided to you prior to enrolment.)


As a new student studying this degree full-time, you will receive £300 per year via our Kick-Start Scheme (eligibility criteria applies). This scheme will support your studies and future career by contributing to course-related materials, uniform or selected items on campus. You might even qualify for an additional £500 per year.

Tuition fees

UK/EU students

If you are a UK/EU student enrolling on a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £9,250 per each full year. A half year tuition fee is £4,625. UK/EU students do not pay tuition fees for any placement periods.

International students

If you are an international student enrolling on a a full-time foundation degree or a BA/BSc in 2020/21, your fee for this academic year will be £11,500 per year.

If you complete a placement year, there will be an administration fee of £500 for a full year, or £250 for a half-year placement.


of graduate employers say relevant experience is essential to getting a job with them

Work placements

Work placements are vital for gaining real-life experience and for building your confidence and skills before you finish your course – and they may even lead to a job when you graduate. Our hired@UCB team can help find the ideal placement for you. 

Our FdA and BA Culinary Arts Management courses both feature a one-year paid placement during your second year, during which you will not incur any tuition fees. Opportunities are available in the UK or overseas.

Work alongside experts in your sector

A snapshot of some of the employers we have worked with:

  • White Barn Inn and Spa (Maine, USA)
  • The Savoy (London)
  • Gleneagles (Scotland)
  • Celtic Manor (Wales)
  • The Landmark (London)
  • Ashford Castle (County Mayo, Ireland)

I always recommend this course to anyone with a passion for food or hospitality as it gives you such a wide range of tools and skills. I completed a year’s placement in New Hampshire, USA, during my degree course and am now senior tutor at the Raymond Blanc Cookery School.

Rebecca Boast Culinary Arts Management BA (Hons)

Our graduate stories

From Michelin-starred Brad Carter to MasterChef finalist Leo Kattou, our students and alumni from the College of Food and Hospitality Management are doing incredible things. Hear some of their fascinating stories below. 

Career opportunities

The example roles and salaries below are intended as a guide only.

Head chef

Average Salary: £40,000

Sous chef

Average Salary: £25,000

Food business owner/restaurateur


Catering manager

Average Salary: £33,500

Culinary arts lecturer

Average Salary: £39,239

Product development chef

Average Salary: £32,500

Want to take your studies to the next level? Completing the BA (Hons) degree will enable you to move onto our Culinary Arts Management MA/PGDip course.


We are here to support your career goals every step of the way. 


Find out more

Claire’s Story

As one of the youngest finalists on MasterChef: The Professionals, Claire honed and sharpened her skills at University College Birmingham.

Read Story

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