|Degree:||Bachelor of Arts (Honours) (BA (Hons))|
|University website:||Graphic Design (top-up)|
This one-year programme will help you develop a portfolio of work tailored to your intended direction within graphic design and/or illustration. It will also enable you to convert a HND or Foundation Degree (level 5) qualification (in a relevant subject area) into a Batchelor's degree (level 6). This qualification is taught at West Kent College's University Centre in Tonbridge and is awarded and quality assured by the University of Kent
Although this programme offers a natural progression route from the HND in Graphic Design at West Kent College, we also welcome and encourage applications from students who have achieved a HND or Foundation Degree in graphic design or a related subject at another college or university.
The programme has been designed to enable you to develop a portfolio of work which is tailored to your intended direction within graphic design and/or illustration. The design briefs are deliberately left quite open so that they might be interpreted to suit your design pathway. The overarching pathways are Illustration, Photography and Typography. However, you do not have to choose one at the expense of the other.
The programme is staffed by highly qualified, experienced tutors and those with industry-level design experience. It also features visits and workshops from other practitioners; in previous years these have included illustrators, lettering artists, art directors and typographers.
Additionally, we encourage design industry representatives to engage with students and we have frequently organised ‘live’ commercial briefs which have led to prizes and work placements. We enter recognised competitions such as the Design Museum’s ‘Design Factory’ annual competition, for which the programme has had winners every year.
Being just a 40-minute train journey from London, we organise regular trips to the capital and throughout south-east England to enrich your learning experience. You benefit from an excellent ratio of staff to students, meaning that personal support is regularly available.
The resources for students are excellent, with a large pool of computers available and many subject-specific library resources. A significant proportion of graduates gain employment in the design industry and some progress to postgraduate study and teaching.
"I feel like I learn so much day by day, and I have never been happier in my adult work and social life. "
Ed Clark - BA (Hons) in Graphic Design
Graphic Design is a broad umbrella term that has come to largely cover a wide range of careers. Typically our students will go on to work in adverting and/or marketing agencies but others have gone on to pursue careers in typeface design, printing industries, illustration, editorial design, book design and teaching.
The programme goes beyond the use of computers and is as much about helping you develop a range of thinking skills and the ability to work at speed in an ever-changing and exciting profession.
Being a designer requires the ability to analyse your work as pieces of visual communication and you need a good eye for detail. Graphic design differs from Fine Art in that the work produced is to fulfil the needs of a client brief as opposed to self-expression. However, there is still great scope for creative freedom and the pushing of boundaries.