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OCASA Study Event Survey - The Results

It's been five years, a pandemic and an institutional transfer since we last asked questions about Study Events. In case you wondered, Supported by OCA's Joanne Mulvihill-Allen, OCA Student Association (OCASA) is responsible for events such as Virtual Life Drawing, Equality Diversity & Inclusion training opportunities, practical workshops, artist talks, tutor led Regional and Geographic meetups online and in person. Early autumn we sent a survey to students asking about questions about study events. We had 56 respondents.


The results indicate that almost 70% of students haven’t attended an in person study event, with location being the biggest factor. However over half of students have attended an online event. Work commitments are cited as the biggest barrier to access.


80% of respondents would sign up to a Regional Group space to meet other students in their area.


We’ve learned that evenings are the best time mid week for study events and lunchtime at weekends.


With this in mind we’re going to make more of an effort to vary the times of events and include more evening and weekend opportunities. We're also going to try and include fuller joining information and make events as accessible as possible.


Our plan over the coming weeks is to set up cross discipline Regional Spaces on the OCASA site if they’re not there already and create a funded opportunity for tutors in or around the various region to help suggest, facilitate and curate a programme of things happening (events/exhibitions) locally and help facilitate discussion and debate about the work shown etc and bring folk together locally. Over time we will seek student volunteers to help with the coordination - again if this isn’t happening already.


We will also use more polls for students to choose which events we should run in person and online giving you greater autonomy on how OCASA funds are spent.


Students have indicated they are very much interested in practical workshops, lectures and talks and like events to be facilitated by tutors and external experts.



This year we have so far focused on bringing you workshops from a variety of facilitators, these have included zine making with Lea Cooper, virtual life drawing with 2B or Not 2B Collective, a live illustration workshop with Katie Chappell, Paper Portraits with Beth Suzanna and Tactile Drawing with Oly Bliss. We also developed the Big Draw event with OCA tutors Michele Whiting and Diana Ali which will remain open, if you haven't signed up already you can do so here.


We also funded the OCASA Summer of Sustainability curated by OCA tutor Emma Powell and student Ashley McLaughlin, featuring workshops from tutors Barbara Henderson, Liz Cashdan, Andrea Norrington, Catherine Byrne and Jenny Udale.

You can read a review of this and catch up on recordings here. Below is a selection of student work that was featured across the campaign relating to the Arts, Environment and Sustainability.



The Photography Social group have been hosting regular talks with OCA tutors and external artists, the Thames Valley Group, OCA Europe and OCA North have also been hosting regular meet ups online and in person, some student led, others tutor. And there are many other student groups thriving without our input. However, the door is always open to suggestions for events from students and tutors, find out how to request here.


So, let's have a poll! Julian Gray is an illustrator and comic creator based in Manchester, UK. Unapologetically queer, trans, disabled, and mixed race, Julian is passionate about filling the world with stories featuring marginalised characters where their marginalisation is not the centrepiece. He is especially fond of flawed characters and queer romances. His illustrations are often character-driven and take inspiration from his favourites: superhero comics, speculative fiction, the Victorian aristocracy and historical gothic aesthetics.


Would you rather?

  • A Creating Comics workshop

  • How to be a freelance illustrator talk


If you have any questions, concerns or comments please do get in touch studyevents@oca.ac.uk

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