Photography Training Courses
Blackford Centre for Professional Photography
Frequently Asked Questions
About the tutors
Are the tutors professional freelance photographers?
Yes, all tutors are freelance professional photographers. Some other organisations use college lecturers, which means you don't get the information from the real 'coal face'.
Does the cost for the course include everything I need? Or are there any extra fees?
There are no other costs or fees.
Can I spread the cost of the courses over a period of time?
Yes. You can make five monthly payments. It costs 20% more. You can find the cost of paying by instalments by clicking here.
How could I get my money back if I don't like the course?
Just return the course in good condition within 60 days of receiving it, and we'll send you a full refund.
How long does it usually take to complete the course?
Many students complete the course in five months. But you can do it as quickly or slowly as you want. That's one advantage of distance learning.
Do I need to finish the course within a certain time?
You can take as long as you want. Unlike other organisations, we don't set any time limits.
What does the course cost?
You can find the cost of the course by clicking here.
I live in the USA, UK, Ireland, Australia, Canada, Borneo etc. Is the course suitable for me?
Yes. We have students in 28 countries.
How can I contact my tutor or the Blackford Centre?
There have two types of people you can contact - your tutor and a course advisor.
The tutor marks your work, and helps you with any problems. You can fax, e-mail or post assignments to your tutor, whenever you want.
We don't give out the tutor's phone number, because a few people would spend all day talking to their tutors, who would never get any work done.
But sometimes students get stuck, or have an urgent query. If so, you can phone a course advisor at the Blackford Centre at any time during work hours. If you leave a message out of work hours we'll ring you back the next day. You can contact course advisors as often as you want, and about anything to do with photography.
What equipment do I need for the course?
You'll need a DSLR camera. The choice of brand is up to you, because it often comes down to personal preferences; and all the main ones produce excellent results, including Nikon, Canon, Sony, Olympus, Panasonic, Samsung and Pentax. You don't need a top-of-the-range model either: the best photographers have often worked with quite ordinary cameras.
In addition to your standard lens, a zoom lens will be useful, for example a 75-300mm.
And you'll need a firm tripod to produce crisp photos.
We suggest you don't buy additional flash guns or lights until you are into the course. This will give you time to consider what you need, and it may save you money.
How do I make contact?
Can I contact other students?
Yes, we have a student database. You can add your contact details and get in touch with other students. You can swap ideas, or solve problems together.
Is the course accredited or endorsed?
Our course has been endorsed under the ABC Awards' Quality Licence Scheme. This means that we have undergone an external quality check to ensure that our organisation and the courses it offers, meet certain quality criteria. ABC Awards' endorsement involves a robust and rigorous quality audit by external inspectors to ensure quality is consistently met. A regular review of courses is carried out as part of the endorsement process. To this end the learning outcomes of the course have been benchmarked at Level 4 Award against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of difficulty involved in successful completion by the learner.
ABC Awards is a leading national Awarding Organisation, regulated by Ofqual and the Welsh Government. They have a comprehensive portfolio of over 650 Ofqual regulated qualifications on the national Qualifications and Credit framework (QCF). It has a long-established reputation for developing and awarding high quality vocational qualifications across a wide range of industries.
At the end of this course successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement by ABC Awards and a Learner Unit Summary (which lists the details of all the units you have completed as part of your course).
Read more about our course accreditation
Will the course give me credits towards a degree or some other study?
No. But it will help you set up and run your own business. And we encourage all students to continue their studies after completing the course.
When can I do the course?
Can I start the course at any time?Yes.
Where can I study the course?
Is the course all from home, or do I have to go to a test centre?
It's all from home.
How can I be sure that you're legitimate, and that you won't disappear with my money?
Here are some answers we hope will reassure you.
We've been in operation since 1995; so we're very established.
We publish our physical address at the bottom of each page - and you are welcome to visit us.
You can read the Reviews of our students on the web site.
You can ask us for the contact details of former students who will talk to you about their experiences.
We publish an Ethical statement here.
We're registered at Companies House: registration number 352 4886
Our VAT number is 729 1528 23
- Our Licence number granted by the Office of Fair Trading under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 is 606843.
Our bank is NatWest, 7 High Street, Wells, Somerset (we have money in the bank and no loans or overdraft).
We're registered with the UK government's Register of Learning Providers (www.ukrlp.co.uk); Number 10009490.
And finally, we love what we do; and we wouldn't do anything to jeopardise it.
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