The future graphic designer is curious, empathetic, responsible, knowledgeable, and technically adaptable. Our Graphic Design BA (Hons) course challenges and guides you to become just that. This course shows you the skills and knowledge you need to become an independent designer with a conscience and boundless imagination. You can explore your own passions, adapt to changing briefs and understand the needs of diverse audiences.
With an ethos of experimentation, critical thinking, community and vocation, this course aims to encourage you to explore creative freedom and mediums, techniques and technologies. We have a supportive network to help you visualise research-informed concepts and innovative design strategies. Your aims will be to develop a strong portfolio of work, and proactively define and pursue your own interests and long-term goals.
The course exposes you to a wide range of design contexts and outputs, giving you a holistic approach to graphic design whether you are a generalist or specialist. The purpose of the course is to teach you fundamental design skills and experience a range of design contexts. In turn, you will have the knowledge to develop your specialist skills in line with your personal creative identity.
Main Study Themes
Utilize a research-based, human-centric approach to create & direct visual content – be it type, image, color, moving elements or copy – to best communicate messages to different audiences in order to effectively drive interest and action.
Investigate professional applications of graphic design in areas such as branding, advertising and information design, and look at the subject’s theory and history across international contexts.
Explore digital and analogue image-making, including drawing and printmaking, alongside contemporary approaches utilizing photo-manipulation and vector graphics, amongst others.
Integrate graphic communications across multiple formats and channels – including print, moving image, digital and interactive – to create coherent campaigns and brand identities.
On this course, we teach within a framework that considers the multi-faceted roles a graphic designer might perform. Be it a storyteller, a problem solver or a persuasive strategist, the course allows you to explore these roles through a wide variety of projects along four main threads of inquiry: Narrative & Time, Systems & Information, Strategy & Direction and Personal Development Planning.
Cumulatively, these four branches of learning and their respective modules make up the full course curriculum and celebrate the course’s key pillars: experimentation, community, vocation, and critical thinking. Therefore, we’ll help you discover your individual style as you engage in creative play and begin defining your personal design identity; you’ll explore technologies and materials and get the chance to use a variety of digital and traditional making workshops to visualise your ideas; you’ll engage with industry through live client-led projects and through simulated projects, including competition briefs; and you will underpin your entire design journey in critical investigation of theories and research. In all modules, you are encouraged to explore lateral thinking, develop the capacity to advocate for your work and take risks in a safe environment.
In your first year, you will explore key aspects of graphic design thinking, theory and practice that will challenge your views on graphic design. We prompt you to develop visual research and ideation skills by exploring diverse themes with curiosity.
You will encounter the power of design to solve problems and make the world a more intelligible, effective place. We will guide you on how to communicate complex brand values and create a comprehensive promotional campaign.
You are taught to think more professionally about graphic design by exploring it in relation to its potential audience’s needs and expectations. You will position your designs firmly within professional contexts and gain experience of collaborative working, defining your potential community of practice and picking up skills through the module briefs that match your career goals. You will enhance your awareness of design theory, concepts, and contexts.
- Narrative and Time 3: Design Experiment
- Systems and Information 3: Design Identity
- Strategy and Direction 3: Design Persuasion
- Personal Development Planning 3: Design Critique
- One Add+Vantage Module
In the final year, the course focuses on your professional and personal interests, using a combination of hypothetical, competition, and live projects. You are given free rein to identify dynamic solutions that meet and challenge existing standards and design possibilities. You will build a bespoke personal brand identity which will help give you the confidence to join the industry.
Projects might include: exhibition design, competition briefs, design writing, portfolio development, experimental practice.