University of the Arts London (UAL)

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1 Programme Specification Every taught course of study leading to a UAL award is required to have a Programme Specification. This summarises the course aims, learning outcomes, teaching, learning and assessment methods, and course structure. Programme Specifications are developed through course validation and are formally approved by UAL Validation Sub Committee (VSC). They are available to prospective students through the course web page, and must be reviewed on an annual basis to ensure currency of information (for example, following any minor modification or local developments). Awarding Body University of the Arts London (UAL) Teaching Institution London College of Communication Final Award Postgraduate Certificate Design for Visual Communication Relevant QAA Benchmark Statement Art and Design Date of production/revision July 2015 This section is available to provide any introductory information on the course. It might include explanation of the position of courses which form a named pathway within an umbrella programme. Design for Visual Communication builds upon the rich history and tradition of design teaching at LCC. The course aims to prepare you for further postgraduate research practice and study and/or career opportunities within the visual communication design industries. Design for Visual Communication informs and reinforces the importance and relationship between traditional design values, skills and the development of new and personal hybrid methodologies. This approach prepares you to engage in the development of your study to Masters Level, as well as being appropriate to sustainability in your future employment. You will be given challenges on this course through set and self-initiated projects promoting learning through discovery, interaction and response to change. This course is unique in the opportunities it offers those who wish to convert career or undertake intensive preparation for further Masters level study. Visual communication is a process by which ideas are made visible and conveyed through media to enhance meaning, experience and understanding. It places emphasis on the consideration of client and audience or user. Within a one year period of study, you will be introduced to and build upon the fundamental principles underlying the design process. The course includes: visual language and grammar; typographic hierarchy; narrative and sequential design; symbol design; graphic representation; identity; information visualisation; as well as opportunities to pursue projects of individual interest. Examples of personal projects 1

2 could include: visual journals that explore a sense of place or space; visual comparisons; a visual exploration of layers; mapping directional devices in the city; an exploration of patterns; a typographic interpretation of transcripts; visual notation system; the promotion of a typeface; visual analysis of people flow; typologies; and visual surveys of lettering. The students choice of projects underpins their personal aims and objectives. Some projects will have a direct application to professional practice, while others have a leaning towards pure academic research. The hypothesis behind either type of project could lead to a proposal for an MA major project. The course is ideal for those from diverse academic, social and cultural backgrounds who wish to extend and develop their prior experiences through visual communication. Students within the postgraduate community have come from all over the world. They have experienced London as a unique resource that has influenced their personal approaches to visual communication. Projects have reflected this diversity and potential for cultural exchange. Students are offered multi-dimensional views on the world and communication beyond the limits of national borders. Students from the postgraduate courses have found employment within high profile international agencies, design management, teaching and professional practice. Others have established their own design studios. Graduates have progressed to work as art directors in advertising agencies; interactive/digital designers; identity designers; typo/graphic designers and museum/exhibition designers. The strategy of preparing for Masters study on pre-courses such as this has also paid dividends in the past with many students moving on to achieve high performances at Masters level, including distinctions. You will be part of a unique learning community made up of staff, fellow students and guest speakers from a diverse range of creative disciplines and cultures. All the tutors on your course are actively involved in scholarly investigation and graphic design related, professional practice; this has helped the faculty to develop and sustain strong relationships with industry. These academic and professional links provide a valuable context to reflect the range of further study and vocational opportunities, which are available to you on completion of this course. Examples include postgraduate studies in both the graphic design and design authorship, working within the media on magazine design, illustration, advertising campaigns, exhibition design, publicity, typographic design and layout. The course recognises that graphic design is one of the most important and influential of what has become known as the creative industries and that it contributes significantly, directly and indirectly, to our economic and cultural wellbeing. 2

3 Course Aims The aims of the course identify the rationale underlying the student s educational experience and own personal achievement from studying on the course and its affect upon the student s long term achievement and career. This course aims to: Offer an intensive, challenging programme that will enable you to develop a range of intellectual, vocational and transferable skills in visual communication design. Provide a structured programme of practice-based units in visual communication that will improve your ability to articulate ideas visually. Support progression to further study in design for visual communication at postgraduate level. Present an opportunity for students from diverse academic, social and cultural backgrounds to gain a recognised academic qualification at postgraduate level. Course Outcomes The course enables the student to demonstrate the following subject knowledge and understanding, intellectual and academic skills, practical subject skills, key attributes and transferable skills. Each outcome should be detailed below. The outcomes that you will have demonstrated upon completion of the course, are: (the applicable university marking criteria are in brackets at the end of each course outcome): Outcome: Demonstrate a systematic understanding of the importance of visual communication to society, and your role as a designer, as well as a critical awareness of current ideas at the forefront of design practice. (Subject Knowledge) Outcome: Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of techniques applicable to your own research and design practice. (Research /Technical competence) Outcome: Analyse and evaluate complex design issues both systematically and creatively. (Analysis.) Outcome: Develop strategies for solving problems visually and risk-taking, applying these through experimentation and visual testing in the realisation of design concepts. (Experimentation) Outcome: Visually communicate your conclusions clearly with consideration of clients, audiences and users. (Communication and presentation) Outcome: Exhibit the qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment and progression to further study including: self-direction, collaboration with others, taking 3

4 initiatives, and complex decision-making. (Personal and professional development / Collaborative and /or Independent professional working) Learning and Teaching Methods: Provide a summary of the relevant learning and teaching methods for the course. Workshops Demonstrations Group Discussions Tutorials Online (Blackboard) Discussion and Image Forums Student/Tutor Presentations Set and Self-Initiated Project Work Research and Development Techniques. Assessment Methods: Provide a summary of the relevant assessment methods for the course. The above programme outcomes are assessed using the following assessment methods: Written evaluation Portfolios Reference Points List any policies, descriptors, initiatives or benchmark statements used in the development of the course. The following reference points were used in designing the course: The following reference points were used in designing the programme: The learning and Teaching policies of the University of the Arts London The College policies and initiatives Level descriptors Benchmark statements Programme Summary Programme structures, features, units, credit and award requirements: List the course details that constitute the agreed student entitlement for this course. This should include unit titles and credit, types of learning, learning hours per week and details of tutorial support. Unit 1: Research and Development (20 Credits) 4

5 Unit 2: Design Resolution (20 Credits) Unit 3: Professional and Academic Contexts (20 Credits) 10 Credits = 100 Hours Teaching and learning includes: lectures, tutorials, workshops, access to facilities and self-directed study). Distinctive features of the course: Identify and list those characteristics that distinguish your course from other, similar courses. Refer to both the student experience on the course and future possible career opportunities. An intensive year-long study that supports the learner in their ambition to convert career or continue with higher level study. Projects provide a postgraduate-level foundation in the principles of visual communication whilst engaging with postgraduate level research methods and conceptual development Use of Virtual Learning Environments such as Moodle and online forums (image boards) / technology (blogs) to support project development Diverse student cohort from other subject disciplines promotes the notion of hybrid approaches to design research. This is a part-time course which allows a flexible mode of study Recruitment and Admissions Admission Policy/Selection Criteria Summarise relevant details contained in the validation papers i.e. list the methods used in selection such as interviewing. Selection criteria should be fully listed. Selection Criteria Admission is by Interview and Portfolio Review. Selection Criteria Candidates must demonstrate the following: 1.0 Practical creative ability and the potential to develop that ability 1.1 Visual vocabulary (composition, line, shape, form, scale, space, light, colour and texture) 1.2 Quality of ideas (conceptual evidence) 1.3 Use of materials and media 2.0 Critical knowledge of and enthusiasm for the subject area and capacity for research-led design, intellectual inquiry and reflective thought 2.1 Contextual awareness (professional, cultural, social, historical) 2.2 Evidence of research, analysis, development and evaluation (from previous academic study and employment) 5

6 3.0 An openness to new ideas and ability to take initiatives 3.1 Ability to evaluate an idea and make decisions based on that evaluation 4.0 A developed and mature attitude to independent study 4.1 Ability to take responsibility for a project and manage this independently 4.2 Demonstration of mature approach through academic and/or professional work The Portfolio Your portfolio should demonstrate visual acuity, conceptual ability, technical competence and personal interest. Acknowledging that applicants come from diverse academic backgrounds portfolio is taken as having a broad definition. It may include: sketch/notebooks; developmental work; photographs; PowerPoint presentations; web/interactive work; diagrams; printmaking; illustrated reports; commercial work; freelance commissions; personal work; conceptual work; 3d work (photographed); or textiles. Entry Requirements List the entry requirements relevant to the course. An applicant will be considered for admission who has already achieved an educational level equivalent to an Honours Degree. This educational level may be demonstrated by: possession of the qualifications named above; possession of equivalent qualifications; prior experiential learning, the outcome of which can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required (as indicated by at least three years of experience which has led to a demonstrable level of expertise in the understanding and use of design for innovation), or; a combination of formal qualifications and experiential learning which, taken together, can be demonstrated to be equivalent to formal qualifications otherwise required. Applicants whose first language is not English must hold IELTS 6.5, and a minimum of 5.5 in each of the four skills. To see the University s Regulations on Admissions, please go to the following link: If your first language is not English you should check you have achieved the correct IELTS level in English. Further information is available on the Language Requirements page: International Applicants visit the Support for International Students page for contact details for International Admissions

7 admissions/ Admission Procedures The selection procedures for the course must adhere to the Equal Opportunities Policy of UAL. The selection procedures for the course adhere to the Equal Opportunities policy of the University of the Arts London. Application forms are available on request with supporting information about the course. Completed applications to be accompanied by appropriate certificates and evidence of all professional activity paid or unpaid. All potential candidates are interviewed (see Selection Criteria above). Candidates are expected to present a portfolio of work or relevant visual, written or published work. The LCC AP(E)L Policy is applied. 7

8 Course Diagram Insert a course diagram which includes; units and their credit values, plus credit values per year/level, category of units (i.e. core or specialist), progression routes, years/levels of the course, any other relevant characteristics that distinguishes the course 8

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