This course fosters strong creative and technical abilities in graphic and media design, so that you can take on a wide range of communication tasks and solve them in a creative way. You will be encouraged to personalise your journey through the course based on your passions and aptitudes, and to develop your own, unique graphic style. Our smaller group sizes mean you can access help from industry-active tutors and technicians – as and when you need it. And our studios offer a relaxed learning environment with plenty of individual work space.
Alongside these industry-oriented skills, you will be given the opportunity to explore and develop self-directed work as a graphic artist.
We take an immersive, project-based approach to learning. This is supported by regular workshops teaching vital technical and software skills. Throughout the course, you’ll work on a wide range of external projects, developing your professional practice. In the past, students have worked on live projects for Landor, a global branding consultancy based in London, and with renowned designer, Professor Phil Cleaver on a cookbook design project with his design agency ‘Etal.’ Our students have also raised awareness on environmental issues through t-shirt designs for The Marine Conservation Society, and produced exciting Motion Graphic pieces for Hay Festival.
Hear from current student Sylwia Czarnecka
More about this course
Being part of a dedicated creative community at HCA means it is easy to cross boundaries, access an exciting range of workshops, and collaborate with students across other disciplines. Recently, students on this course have collaborated with HCA Textile Design, Photography and Illustration students on a range of innovative creative projects.
All students take Critical Studies, to gain fascinating insights into the subject you love. You will explore your specialism and the work of those you admire. We will help you to see your own practice in context with your peers and predecessors; leading to, not only a greater understanding the rich and varied practice of Graphic and Media Design, but who you are as a designer.
Graduates may also have the opportunity to exhibit at D&AD ‘New Blood’ in London or similar graduate exhibitions.
- Learn from experienced, practising professionals whose work includes a wide variety of contemporary screen and print media.
- Fantastic access to teaching staff, workshops, and equipment.
- Collaborate with: photography, illustration, animation, and film making students.
- Work on diverse ‘real’ industry projects throughout the course.
- Explore your own passions, with the option of a graphic arts pathway.
- Develop your unique graphic voice, free from the constraints of a house style.
SuperDry Clothing | Hay Festival | MASH Cinema
Our well-developed links with media industries in the region, London, and nationally, offer you invaluable professional experience, the chance of fantastic work placements, and a stimulating external speaker programme. In the past, final year students have also exhibited at high profile graduate showcase exhibitions in London.
- Minimum age 18.
- Successful portfolio interview.
- Academic achievement – we would normally expect applicants to have achieved 80 UCAS Tariff Points at entry but, whilst qualifications are important, our offers are not solely based on academic results. We may make offers based on other evidence of talent and suitability for the course.
- 80 UCAS Points on the New UCAS Tariff system for 2017 equates to 200 UCAS points on the previous points system – for more details please see tariff explanation and advice on the UCAS website.
- Applicants whose first language is not English – proof of IELTS overall score of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all sections (reading, writing, listening & speaking) is required.
- Applications from mature students with relevant experience will also be considered.
- Recognition of Prior Learning Opportunities – the college welcomes applications from students with prior learning and/or previous experience. Further details on eligibility can be found on page 15 of our Admissions Policy.
- Alternatively, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can offer further advice on HCA and the UWTSD awarding body requirements.
NB for Top-Up students different entry requirements apply – please see our Top-Ups application page for more information.
Your Creative Career
- Graphic Designer (employed)
- Graphic Designer (Freelance self-employed)
- UI/UX Designer
- Marketing Designer/producer
- Motion Graphics Designer
- Editorial and Print Designer
- Brand creator and Manager
- Packaging Designer
- Art worker/Visualiser
- Graphic Artist
- Learning Designer
- Architectural Drafter
- Art Director/ Creative Director
- Studio Manager
I really enjoyed working with a number of local businesses, giving me the chance to see my work being used and enjoyed by the public.
Our new Graphic Arts Pathway is proving increasingly popular. It allows highly creative students to adopt an individual approach to creating experimental and orginal art within the context of visual communication. Working on the graphic arts develops a broad range of skills that result in versatile, resourceful graduates.
What you will study
Introduction to Year One
During the first year, you’ll begin to develop an understanding of fundamental aspects of graphic and media design. These include exploring the creative design process and applying design principles in order to effectively communicate in both print and screen based formats.
You are also introduced to creative practice including modules such as ‘Type, Text & Meaning’, as well as introductions to ‘Interactive Design’, and explorations of ‘Narrative & Sequence’.
Throughout the year studio activity is complemented by a supporting Cultural Studies lecture programme. This lecture series will explore and challenge the role of the ‘Media Arts’ within the social, cultural and political framework of the Western world during the 20th and 21st centuries.
Introduction to Year Two
The second year aims to provide specialist skills and knowledge, by exploring the increasingly important role that ‘Image and Identity’ plays within society. In addition to a programme of Cultural and Professional Studies, you’ll begin formulating a Business Plan for development in year three and will take part in an ‘Entrepreneurship’ module where you will produce graphic artwork and work as a team to create a pop-up shop or exhibition. In the second part of the year, you’re provided with opportunities to explore and challenge our understanding of ‘designing for screen’, and ‘motion graphics’. You’ll also explore a number of different design challenges throughout the year by responding to commissioned live briefs from businesses and external organisations, and you’ll be encouraged to enter national design competitions.
Introduction to Year Three
In the final year, the course provides close and continued advice and encouragement from the staff team. This gives you a supportive platform on which to develop your ideas and specialism further. You’ll work in an increasingly self-directed manner, with a developing emphasis on adaptability, including taking responsibility for your studies and working at a professional level. There is an increased emphasis on research, and critical thinking. A major body of work is produced, which forms the basis of your graduate portfolio that will be crucial to your onward trajectory after the course.
You’ll also work towards a dissertation and final professional practice business plan, including identifying potential markets and selecting your own professional target. Throughout the course, you’ll explore potential areas for employment by visiting design companies, and meeting professional designers who can give you valuable feedback and advice on your portfolio.