Students hold up spray painted artwork

About us

Discover more about Arts Award

Arts Award is a suite of arts-based qualifications for all young people aged 25 and under. Trinity College London manages Arts Award in association with Arts Council England.

The organisations behind Arts Award
Trinity is a leading international exam board for the performing arts and English language, established in 1877. Arts Council England is a government-funded body that supports and promotes artistic and cultural experiences to enrich people's lives. Both organisations are passionate about helping children and young people engage with the arts, and Arts Council England uses its influence across the arts world to promote Arts Award in England. Trinity also works to offer Arts Award in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Our history 
Trinity College London and Arts Council England launched Arts Award in 2005 to help under-26s realise their creative potential and gain 21st century skills along with recognised qualifications. Young people can get involved at five levels – Discover, Explore, BronzeSilver and Gold – four of which are included on the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF). Those completing Gold Arts Award gain a Level 3 qualification worth 16 UCAS points.

Our principles 
Arts Award:

  • offers unique qualifications and learning opportunities to support young people's creative development
  • helps under-26s experience and understand the arts
  • reaches young people of all backgrounds, interests and abilities
  • can be offered in any setting
  • embraces all types of art and craft, including emerging art forms and technologies
  • puts young people at the heart of the Arts Award process

Transferable skills
Arts Award fosters sought-after 21st century skills including creativity, critical thinking, collaboration, communication, leadership and entrepreneurialism. It also embraces new media and emerging technologies. Young people who achieve the higher levels of Arts Award gain transferable skills that prepare them for education and employment – in the creative industries or elsewhere.

Lifelong impact
In independent research, 90% of professionals running Arts Award said taking part had a positive impact on young people’s creativity and 95% said it boosted their confidence. Eight in 10 young people felt the award improved their communication and people skills, and 90% continued to feel the impact on their artistic several skills years later.

The experiences I gained through Gold have led to my second graduate job as a Marketing Officer. They were really impressed by my experience working with young people and in social media.’ 
Ellen, Gold Award achiever

For all young people
Arts Award nurtures and celebrates hidden creative talents and skills, legitimising young people’s achievements in non-mainstream art forms or artistic practice, often providing first time accreditation for young people who have not yet achieved success in educational settings. 

‘It was obvious from the outset that Arts Award was determined to make the qualification accessible to all young people, no matter what their ability or individual circumstances.'
Professor Martin Stephenson, Director of Social Inclusion, Nottingham Trent University

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