Graphic Design - BA (Hons)
Why study this course?
BA Graphic Design at The Cass is about making conceptual thinking visual, audible and experiential. It's creating structure and surprise, through innovation. It's communication. You will be encouraged not only to find solutions, but also to seek out problems. This graphic design course enables you to investigate, question and challenge the contemporary role of graphic design, connecting with wide ranging social issues and new ideas, to find your voice as a graphic designer.
You'll develop specialist skills, and learn how to reach your audience through innovative design. Themes you'll explore include audience, context, tone and effective methods of visual communication.
Learning experiences include everything from type fundamentals, drawing and letterpress printing, to app design, user experiences, human-centered design and connected communication platforms. There are many diverse employment options available to graduates of this degree.
In the most recent (2015-16) Destinations of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) survey, 100% of graduates from this course were in work or further study within six months.
This graphic design course enables you to investigate, question and challenge the contemporary role of graphic design, connecting with wide ranging social issues and new ideas in order to find your voice as a designer.
You're encouraged early on to make your thinking visible, to test your ideas through iteration and to collaborate in practice. You'll have the opportunity to develop specialist and broad based design skills, to think laterally and to innovate through making, testing and defining, and finding and reaching your audience.
This course offers real opportunities to connect with graphic design studios and consultancies, to work across the realms of art direction, digital publishing and editorial design, moving image and sequential narrative, web and innovatory digital practice from app design to social media, brand communications to start-ups and design enterprise.
The School is bustling with creativity and energy, you'll be experimenting with letterpress, screen printing, riso printing and state-of-the-art digital workshops, where you'll develop your practice. The course is taught in the heart of creative London, with future employers and commissioning agencies on your doorstep.
You'll have the opportunity to connect with leading industry professionals across the breadth of the discipline. From digital and physical publishing, to app design, and future uses of technology through partnered research. This course creates agile professionals ready to work in fast-paced, graphic design practices.
Industry partners and guest lecturers include Angharad Lewis (Grafik), Sarah Boris, Kin Design, Be Colourful, Someone, Nous Vous, Paul Jenkins, A Practice For Everyday Life (APFEL), Frazer Muggeridge and Craig Oldham.
A high-profile lecture series – the Hothouse Talks – offers you the chance to engage with visionaries in the field of Graphic Design and visual communication. You’ll also benefit from live project opportunities and a vibrant studio culture.
This course offers real opportunities to connect with graphic design studios and consultancies, to work across the realms of art direction, digital publishing and editorial design.
You’ll also explore the moving image and sequential narrative, brand communications, start-ups and design enterprise, as well as digital practice, including app design and social media.
BA Graphic Design is taught together with BA Illustration & Animation and BA Design for Publishing. This makes for a unique learning environment, full of opportunity for cross-pollination and scope for wider learning yet having full course focus.
You'll be assessed through project work, essays, individual practice and a final portfolio project, including a dissertation. There are no examinations.
In addition to the University's standard entry requirements, you should have:
- a minimum of grades BBC in three A levels, one of which is from a relevant subject in the arts, humanities or social sciences (or a minimum of 112 UCAS points from an equivalent Level 3 qualification)
- a portfolio review
We encourage applications from international/EU students with equivalent qualifications. We also accept mature students with diverse backgrounds and experiences.
All applicants must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. Applicants who require a Tier 4 student visa may need to provide a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.
Suitable applicants living in the UK will be invited to a portfolio interview. Applicants living outside the UK will be required to submit a portfolio of work via email.
If you do not have traditional qualifications or cannot meet the entry requirements for this undergraduate degree, you may still be able to gain entry by completing the Art and Design Extended Degree (with Foundation Year) or the Film, Photography and Media Extended Degree (with Foundation Year).
Portfolios and interviews
Your portfolio should be selective but have enough work to show the range of your interests and talents. We're interested in seeing how you develop a project from beginning to end, not only finished work.
Graphic designers work in a variety of media; please include the whole range of your creative work. If you can't bring some of your work to portfolio interview, please take photographs and include them.
Finally, be ready to talk about your work and how you see your future as a graphic designer.
Each year features 4 year-long 30 credit modules. These are assessed at the end of the year through a portfolio of work. In the second and third years, you'll vote to join a studio led by a practitioner member of staff. These studios mirror the professional modes of practice in the sector and you'll work within them individually or collaboratively to briefs often set by external partners who then return to offer real-world critique on your work.
Through the course, you'll move from graphic experimentation in a range of skills into tailored professional interests, culminating in your final individual body of work exhibited at the graduation show.
Year 1 (Level 4) modules include:
- Visual Research and Communication
- Design Principles
- Graphic Authorship
- Critical and Contextual Studies 1
Year 2 (Level 5) modules include:
- Graphic Design Live Projects
- Graphic Media
- Creative Industry Practice
- Critical and Contextual Studies 2
Year 3 (Level 6) modules include:
- Major Project Realisation: Graphic Design
- Project Design and Development
- Live Project or Placement or Competition
- Critical and Contextual Studies: Dissertation
"Intellectually stimulating. I have learned new techniques and my understanding of the subject has broadened. I have made some really good connections."
"Tutors are the highlight of the University. You can see the passion they have for art and design, as well as having the passion to teach us."
"The new studio idea is really successful and my studio leader is absolutely amazing."
"Excellent tutors and lecturers. A good range of facilities available, all of which are well supervised by helpful technicians and tutors."
"My printmaking teachers were awesome, they helped me gain enough confidence with my work."
"I have definitely learnt a lot over my three years, gained confidence in my work and met some brilliant people."
The teaching team includes professional print, photography, web, animation and graphic design specialists alongside illustrators and artists, who together, create a stimulating teaching and learning environment that allows you to identify and succeed in your chosen career path.
The course has produced a number of award winning students who have excelled in leading design competitions run by organisations such as Royal Society of Arts (RSA) and the Design Museum.
The employment success of our graduates is excellent, with many starting successful careers as graphic designers, taking on leading roles within creative industries or continuing on to postgraduate degrees in the UK and abroad.
BA (Hons) Graphic Design has excellent partnerships with leading design groups that directly contribute to the degree course and provide regular guest lectures, live projects and support, giving students valuable insights into the world of graphic design.
We're investing in an exciting, multimillion pound transformation of the London Metropolitan University campus, between 2016 and 2020. We’re moving all of our activity to one place, our current Holloway campus in Islington, north London. This will mean the teaching locations of some courses will change over time.
Whether you will be affected will depend on the duration of your course, when you start and your mode of study. The earliest moves affecting new students will be in September 2018. This may mean you begin your course at one location, but over the duration of the course you are relocated to one of our other campuses. Our intention is that no full-time student will change campus more than once during a course of typical duration.
All students will benefit from our move to one campus, which will allow us to develop state-of-the-art facilities, flexible teaching areas and stunning social spaces.
Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.
Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.
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How to apply
If you're a UK/EU applicant applying for full-time study you must apply via UCAS unless otherwise specified.
UK/EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University.
Non-EU applicants for full-time study may choose to apply via UCAS or apply direct to the University. Non-EU applicants for part-time study should apply direct to the University, but please note that if you require a Tier 4 visa you are not able to study on a part-time basis.
When to apply
The University and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) accepts applications for full-time courses starting in September from one year before the start of the course. Our UCAS institution code is L68.
If you will be applying direct to the University you are advised to apply as early as possible as we will only be able to consider your application if there are places available on the course.
Fees and key information
Get to know your studios
Studio 1: Future Past, image by Susanna Edwards
Two-tone self portrait of Ulises Carrión with partial shadow, showing paper underneath his glasses
Small silhouette of a man with heading 'design futures' with bat and ball computer game at front
Hands of a white person and the hands of a black one touching each other
Contemporary light installation with multiple meanings
News and success stories
Susanna Edwards has been asked to use her expertise to visualise what Southampton will be like in 2117.
image of shibori banners flapping in wind in the street
School celebrates it's coming together with series of exhibition and events attended by hundreds.
Graphic design studio, Regular Practice, will be collaborating with Cass Visual Communications as research partners.
In celebration of its students, alumni, new home and London Design Festival, The Cass plays host to a series of exhibitions and workshops this September.
The third edition of the annual yearbook celebrating the diverse world of The Cass is now available.
The Cass Hothouse is hosting a series of eight workshops exploring visual communications during The Cass Summer Show 2017.
Art courses ranked second best in London again for student satisfaction, while the School of Computing and Digital Media's Maths course scores 10/10 for ‘Value Added’.
Postcard with 'Affix stamp here'
Friday 11 November, 1.15–2pm
A talk by Russell Weekes, as part of the Hothouse talks.
Find out which awards were won by FlySpy
Cass Visual communications students and alumni work on award winning short film titled FlySpy
Selection of printed publications on a table
Cass Graphic Design alumna's concepts for Summer Show signage feature on leading design website.
Image of someone holding art piece
Free workshops with leading creative practitioners and experts during the Cass Summer Show Part 1.
A step by step guide for anyone who loves magazines or dreams of starting their own.
Visitors enjoying the 2014 Cass Summer Show
10 June - 2 July 2016
Dates have been announced for this year's Cass Summer Show art exhibitions.
Cass Graphic Design and Illustration students takeover Grafik Website.
Image of group of people
Cass hosts IDEA Art and Design Advocacy Lab featuring leading cartoonists and artists
Meet the team
Kieron BaroutchiKieron Baroutchi
Sara CarneholmSara Carneholm
Emma DavenportPhoto of mug with typography on striped design book, Emma Davenport
Susanna EdwardsSusanna Edwards
Emily EvansEmily Evans
Ricardo EversleyA visual mix of design practice projects.
Damian GristDamian Grist
Alistair HallAlistair Hal portrait
Danielle HewittDanielle Hewitt profile image
Angharad LewisPortrait of female lecturer Angharad Lewis
Heather McDonoughHeather McDonough profile image
Clare QualmannClare Qualmann photograph
Kim VousdenKim Vousden portrait
Date 2 May 2018 Time 1:00 PM Venue London Metropolitan University
Old Castle Street
This Mini Open Day is for those who are interested in studying with us on Art, Architecture and Design subjects (see subject area list below). We know that going to university is... more