Creative Lighting Control at Rose Bruford College

What you'll study

This course was created in response to industry demand for specialists. It will develop you as a creative, technically adept person who can make imaginative use of technology and bring a designers vision into reality.

You will learn about lighting and video programming/design, show control and interactive technologies, networked systems and stage electrics, projection systems and digital visual content, 3D visualisation, computer-aided design and technical management. And by working closely with industry partners who teach specialist skills and provide placements, you learn the current professional practice.

Creative Lighting Control at Rose Bruford College

Why choose this course?


Gain experience of software and collaborating just as you will in the real world. All while gaining a breadth of knowledge and insight into techniques you can put to use across live music, theatre festivals, architectural installations and corporate events

Learn from working industry professionals

All visiting tutors are industry professionals and have recently included people from Avolites, Whitelife, TSL, ETC and Hippotisers. Previous tutors included Andy Voller (Lighting Programmer 2016 Olympic Opening Ceremony), Willie Williams (Visual Designer– U2, David Bowie, Complicite)

Professional Experience

Build your professional knowledge and network through placements and a 2-4 week work experience in year 3. Our industry links introduce you to an invaluable professional network and students in year 2 and 3 often work as freelancers alongside studying

Build your portfolio and practical experience

Deliver your own live projects, producing work that will be made and you can see in a real scenario. On our popular Live Event project you will run every aspect from coming up with a design, dealing with the hiring companies and then deploying it

Industry real facilities

You will train on lots of different consoles, either that we have or that are hired in. This includes: Lighting consoles - ETC Eos, GrandMA 2 and GrandMA 3, Avolites, Chamsys; Visualisation - Vision, WYSIWYG; Video - D3 Hippotiser, Notch, AutoCad and Vector Works

Creative Lighting Control at Rose Bruford College

Course breakdown

Course content is regularly reviewed to keep it relevant and current. Course modules are therefore subject to change.

Year 1

You will begin to learn the practical and technical skills of the creative lighting control specialist and contextualise these in a developing understanding of the creative and performing industries.

These skills will be developed through laboratory work, projects and experience in simulated professional contexts. On completion of level 4, you will be able to:

  • Identify key principles and concepts informing the discipline of Creative Lighting Control
  • Demonstrate knowledge of a range of lighting and visual media technologies and systems used in live performance
  • Employ basic techniques, practices and processes of Creative Lighting Control
  • Form arguments and make judgements in accordance with basic theories and concepts
  • Develop personal and transferable skills suitable for employment

Year 2

Your skills will be further developed towards a level appropriate to professional work as you are given experiences that simulate professional contexts. Year 2 module study options include, but are not limited to:

Programming Styles and Practice

This module aims to bring your programming skills to a level appropriate to the industry and develops your understanding of the profession of the Programmer through practical performance projects and/or industry placements. The module will introduce you to professional production processes, and to a range of professional issues that will frame your future work. You will learn about live lighting and/or video design, operation and implementation, and apply it to a variety of production contexts and roles.

Live Event Production

This module examines fundamental theories and practices of live event production. You will examine a range of conventions and practices, as well as the key practitioners, who have adopted visual media as a central element of performance. You will apply skills acquired during level 4 to new performance spaces, thus presenting you with a new set of technical challenges.

Through a realised project, you will learn to work to a client brief. You will assess and evaluate the needs of the performance event and the space in which you will operate, and design the visual system accordingly.

You will work with a group of your peers, and depending on the event, you may work with students from other programmes and/or external organisations. As a group, you will take responsibility for delivering all aspects of the brief, adapting your approach and processes to meet changing circumstances, and logistical and resource constraints.

Systems, Operation and Management

This module will introduce you to a range of control systems, operation and management practices and technologies. As well as giving you an opportunity to test and further develop your practical abilities in setting up and operating performance lighting/video systems, you will be able to observe how lighting/video is integrated into a performance during the creative process, and its role in the audience’s experience of the performance event.

In this module, you will typically:

  • Undertake managerial and/or operational roles on college based performance projects
  • Examine examples of the uses of network technologies and show control systems in a variety of environments
  • Manage a budget, following College financial procedures, and in consultation with others
  • Manage resources of equipment, schedule and crew, within the overall framework set by
  • Manage all health and safety issues relating to your area of responsibility, within College and relevant professional and regulatory protocols and requirements
  • Take responsibility for the implementation of the lighting/video design in a performance/project
  • Support a lighting/video designer in the development of the design
  • Work with team members from a variety disciplines using appropriate vocabulary
  • Work to deadlines in an effective and efficient manner, responding to changing briefs and circumstances in a dynamic manner
  • Study production processes as part of a creative, artistic enterprise.

Year 3

You are expected to be a self-directed learner at year 3. Module study options include, but are not limited to:

Specialist Practice

This module asks you to consider how – as a professional technologist – you can adapt to the changing requirements of different modes and scales of performance, and the variety of interdisciplinary roles within them. The module gives you the opportunity to analyse the skillset, techniques, processes and creative potential of a Specialist Practitioner.

You will typically undertake two project roles and/or an extended industry placement, to examine their professional requirements in more detail.

The production roles may include, but are not limited to:
1. Technical Manager
2. Lighting or Media Programmer
3. Head of Visualisation
4. Head of Lighting
5. Media Designer
6. Media Content Creator

Professional Preparation and Practice

This module focuses on the professional environment you are likely to encounter as a practitioner, and on your professional development. You will select a specific sector of the industry to examine in more detail, interrogating the work methods, processes and employment ecology of the sector. Depending on your own chosen career path, you may look at businesses, individuals (generally self-employed professionals) or a mixture of both as a comparative analysis. You will then choose to focus your research on either an employment or self employment pathway.

The module will also prepare you to transition from study to professional practice, whether you are an employee or self-employed.

Independent Research Project

Teaching and assessment methods

In your first year, you will complete around 320 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 880 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios

In your second year, you will complete around 180 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 1020 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios

In your third year, you will complete around 60 hours of indicative scheduled learning and teaching activities and 1140 hours of independent learning on projects, productions, placements or self-directed study. Assessment will be through: Coursework, presentations, assessed tutorials and portfolios

Get a flavour

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Your future career

Creative Lighting Control at Rose Bruford College
Rose Bruford College: Drama School students

We aim to put you in front of and amongst the profession. This includes the opportunity to network and undertake a placement, as well as introducing your work to the industry at our graduate exhibition in London.

Alumni success

Tom Young

Lighting, Strictly Come Dancing; Lighting programmer 2014 Common Wealth Games ceremonies

Luke J Collins

Video Content Programmer and Operator, Eurovision

Matthew Kemp, Andrew Bruce and Joe Lott

Established the company Quantum Creatives, Touring artists (incl The Vamps, Jorja Smith, Good Charlotte, Reading Festival), Theatre (regional tours and shows at venues like Dominion and The Albion)

Careers options

Studying an Arts related subject gives you a wide range of skills that can be put to use in many careers. Recent graduates have gone on to become:

  • Lighting/video programmers for live events, theatre, tv & film
  • Lighting and video designers
  • Programmers and software developers
  • Technical managers
  • Information technology and telecommunications professionals
  • Planning, process and production technicians
  • Freelance and Creative start-ups

Student testimonials

My work is about creativity and showing individuality in lighting. Being able to portray passion and emotion through one technical element is important and it's what I aim to achieve. I've made some friends for life and studying in a way of putting on shows has been incredible. Getting to see all the elements come together to create a show is something I will always appreciate!
Ella Welch
Creative Lighting Control BA (Hons) 2023
During my course at RBC I have learnt many new skills and built on existing ones. My eyes have been opened to another side to lighting control, particularly system control for live events and theatre. I have had the opportunity to work on some great projects during the last three years and cannot wait to work on more in the future.
Sam Blackmore
Creative Lighting Control BA (Hons) 2022

Meet the staff

Enrique Munoz Jimenez Rose Bruford College Lecturer in Visual Productions and Creative Technologies
Enrique Munoz Jimenez

Subject Leader in Visual Production

Read their profile

How to join

UK/Republic of Ireland and international applicants

Applications are still open for undergraduate courses, submit your application via UCAS.

Institution code: R51

Course code: WG46

64 UCAS points*

This is equivalent to two Cs at ‘A’ level or one Merit and two Passes at BTEC (QCF) National Diploma or equivalent.

*We offer places based upon your future potential. We may offer you a place based on lower UCAS points than shown here, or an offer that is not linked to UCAS points if we have evidence of your potential from your application, portfolio and interview.


Our Portfolio page gives an overview of what we will ask you to provide once we receive your application.


Course Summary


3 years

Mode of study

Full time

Start date

September 2024

Course Type

Undergraduate Course

Course Fees (2024 Entry)

UK/Republic of Ireland students (Fee per year)


International students (Fee per year)


Funding and Support

So, ready?