Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

  • Effective from: 2022
  • Approved Abbreviation: BDes(VisComm)
  • Western Sydney University Program Code: 1571
  • AQF Level: 7

CRICOS Code: 044773B

This program applies to students who commenced in 2022 or later. 

Students should follow the program structure for the session start date relevant to the year they commenced.

For Commencement Year 2017 to 2021 - please refer to 1571.9 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2015 to 2016 - please refer to 1571.8 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2013 to 2014 - please refer to 1571.7 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2012 - please refer to 1571.6 Bachelor of Design (Visual Commencement)

For Commencement Year 2009 to 2011 - please refer to 1571.5 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2008 - please refer to 1571.4 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2005 to 2007 - please refer to 1571.3 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2004 - please refer to 1571.2 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

For Commencement Year 2002 and 2003 - please refer to 1571.1 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication)

The Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication) degree will provide you with fundamental skills and knowledge to communicate ideas and information across a wide range of visual media. With an emphasis on studio-based practice, you will study areas such as image design, typography, layout design, branding, design history, research methods, and web-based design. From year two, there are opportunities to engage with live community or industry projects, and you will choose two practical specialisations from the following pairs: motion design and data visualisation; game and app design; illustration; and photography. You may also choose electives from outside of design such as advertising and media production. Throughout the program, you will engage with individual and team-based projects, develop your conceptual thinking skills, use a variety of traditional and emerging technologies, and expand your creative practice. In year four you will take a position in our award-winning teaching design studio where you will gain experience in a professional learning environment, preparing you for work in an exciting and evolving industry.

Students may exit with 1624 Bachelor of Design Studies after successful completion of the first three years of the program.

  • Director of Academic Program - Dr Alison Gill 

Study Mode

Four years full-time or part-time equivalent.

Program Advice

Dan Johnston

Prospective students should visit the following websites for general enquiries about this program.

Enquire about this program| Local Admission | International Admission |

Location

Campus Attendance Mode Advice
Parramatta Campus - Victoria Road Full Time Internal See above
Parramatta Campus - Victoria Road Part Time Internal See above

Accreditation

Graduates are eligible for membership of the Design Institute of Australia (DIA) and the Australian Graphic Design Association (AGDA).

Inherent Requirements

There are inherent requirements for this program that you must meet in order to complete your program and graduate. Make sure you read and understand the requirements for this program online.

Inherent Requirements

Admission

Students are admitted on the basis of their ATAR score or equivalent.

Alternate Entry

Where academic requirements are not met, entry by interview is also possible to show your personal aptitude, design skills and creativity. The interview will allow applicants an opportunity to talk with academic staff about their creative work and motivation for studying the program, supported by a portfolio of work. After applicants have applied they are required to book an interview at the University's online booking system.

https://admissions.westernsydney.edu.au

Applications from Australian and New Zealand citizens and holders of permanent resident visas may be made via the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) or directly through the Western Portal. Use the links below to apply via UAC or Western Sydney University. Applications made directly to Western Sydney do not have an application fee.

http://www.uac.edu.au/
https://westernsydney.uac.edu.au/ws/

Applicants who have undertaken studies overseas may have to provide proof of proficiency in English. Local applicants who are applying through the Universities Admissions Centre (UAC) will find details of minimum English proficiency requirements and acceptable proof on the UAC website. Local applicants applying directly to the University should also use the information provided on the UAC website.

International students currently completing an Australian Year 12 in or outside Australia, an International Baccalaureate in Australia or a New Zealand National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) level 3 must apply via UAC International.

http://www.uac.edu.au/

All other International applicants must apply directly to the University via the International Office.  

International students applying to the University through the International Office can find details of minimum English proficiency requirements and acceptable proof on their website.

International Office

Overseas qualifications must be deemed by the Australian Education International - National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition (AEI-NOOSR) to be equivalent to Australian qualifications in order to be considered by UAC and Western Sydney University.

Program Structure

Qualification for this award requires the successful completion of 320 credit points including the subjects listed in the recommended sequence.

As part of the program requirements, students are required to complete two pairs of Design specialist subject pairings. If they choose to, they can complete further practice-based subjects as elective choices.

Subject Title Credit Points
Illustration20
DESN 2007Illustrating Narrative10
DESN 3007Illustrating Popular Culture10
Interactive20
COMM 2019Interactive Design: Games10
DESN 3008Interactive Design: Apps10
Photomedia20
VISU 3002Photomedia: Fashion and Identity10
DESN 2013Photomedia: Photographic Practice10
Digital Design20
DESN 3002Data Visualisation10
DESN 2011Motion Design10

Recommended Sequence 

Full-time intake

Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
Autumn sessionCredit Points
DESN 1009 Graphic Design: Understanding the Principles 20
DESN 1003 Design Histories and Futures 10
DESN 1011 Image Design 10
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 1007 Graphic Design: Process and Practice 20
DESN 1018 Visual Storytelling 10
DESN 1021 Web and Time-based Design 10
 Credit Points40
Year 2
Autumn session
DESN 2005 Graphic Design: Interactive Digital Media 20
DESN 2014 Researching the Visual 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 2006 Graphic Design: The Professional Context 20
DESN 2001 Australian Design 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Data Visualisation  
Illustrating Popular Culture  
Interactive Design: Apps  
Photomedia: Fashion and Identity  
 Credit Points40
Year 3
Autumn session
DESN 3013 Social Design: Research and Practice 10
DESN 3001 Contextual Design Studies 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 3006 Graphic Design: Developing a Personal Portfolio 10
DESN 3003 Design Research Project 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Data Visualisation  
Illustrating Popular Culture  
Interactive Design: Apps  
Photomedia: Fashion and Identity  
Select one elective (may include the elective subject below) 10
Communicating for Sustainability  
Students may exit with 1624 Bachelor of Design Studies after successful completion of 240 credit points in the first three years of the program sequence  
 Credit Points40
Year 4
1H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Autumn session
DESN 4007 Professional Design Experience: The Studio 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
2H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Spring session
DESN 4006 Professional Design Experience: The Individual Practitioner 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
 Total Credit Points320

Students Admitted Through WSU - The College Programs, start-year intake.
Programs:
- 7152 Diploma in Design Extended Visual Communication
- 7044 Diploma in Design.

As part of the program requirements, students are required to complete two pairs of Design specialist subject pairings. If they choose to, they can complete further practice-based subjects as elective choices.

Plan of Study Grid
Year 2
Autumn sessionCredit Points
DESN 2005 Graphic Design: Interactive Digital Media 20
DESN 2014 Researching the Visual 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 2006 Graphic Design: The Professional Context 20
DESN 2001 Australian Design 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Data Visualisation  
Illustrating Popular Culture  
Interactive Design: Apps  
Photomedia: Fashion and Identity  
 Credit Points40
Year 3
Autumn session
DESN 3013 Social Design: Research and Practice 10
DESN 3001 Contextual Design Studies 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 3006 Graphic Design: Developing a Personal Portfolio 10
DESN 3003 Design Research Project 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Data Visualisation  
Illustrating Popular Culture  
Interactive Design: Apps  
Photomedia: Fashion and Identity  
Select one elective (may include the elective subject below) 10
Communicating for Sustainability  
Students may exit with 1624 Bachelor of Design Studies after successful completion of 240 credit points in the first three years of the program sequence.  
 Credit Points40
Year 4
1H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Autumn session
DESN 4007 Professional Design Experience: The Studio 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
2H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Spring session
DESN 4006 Professional Design Experience: The Individual Practitioner 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
 Total Credit Points240

Students Admitted Through WSU- The College Programs, mid-year intake.
Programs:
- 7152 Diploma in Design Extended Visual Communication
- 7044 Diploma in Design.

As part of the program requirements, students are required to complete two pairs of Design specialist subject pairings. If they choose to, they can complete further practice-based subjects as elective choices.

Plan of Study Grid
Year 2
Autumn sessionCredit Points
DESN 2005 Graphic Design: Interactive Digital Media 20
DESN 2014 Researching the Visual 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 2006 Graphic Design: The Professional Context 20
DESN 2001 Australian Design 10
Select one elective (may include the elective subject below) 10
Communicating for Sustainability  
 Credit Points40
Year 3
Autumn session
DESN 3013 Social Design: Research and Practice 10
DESN 3001 Contextual Design Studies 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 10
Illustrating Narrative  
Interactive Design: Games  
Motion Design  
Photomedia: Photographic Practice  
Select one elective 10
Students may exit with 1624 Bachelor of Design Studies after successful completion of 240 credit points in the first three years of the program sequence.  
Students continuing into the fourth year of study are advised that the Spring session following Autumn Year 3 is a transition session with Year 4 commencing in 1H/Autumn sessions.  
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 3006 Graphic Design: Developing a Personal Portfolio 10
DESN 3003 Design Research Project 10
Select one Design specialist subject from the selected subject pairing 20
Data Visualisation  
Illustrating Popular Culture  
Interactive Design: Apps  
Photomedia: Fashion and Identity  
 Credit Points40
Year 4
1H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Autumn session
DESN 4007 Professional Design Experience: The Studio 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
2H session
DESN 4005 Major Design Project 10
 Credit Points10
Spring session
DESN 4006 Professional Design Experience: The Individual Practitioner 20
Select one elective 10
 Credit Points30
 Total Credit Points240

Guangdong Baiyun University Articulation Pathway, start-year intake.

Students admitted through the Guangdong Baiyun University Articulation Pathway will be admitted to program 1571 Bachelor of Design (Visual Communication) initially and, once they have their advanced standing applied and successfully complete the remaining 160 credit points as set out in the residual program (Recommended Sequence), they will exit with the program/award 1624 Bachelor of Design Studies, with two Design specialist subject pairings in Interactive and Digital Design.

Full-time intake
Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
Autumn sessionCredit Points
DESN 2014 Researching the Visual 10
DESN 2005 Graphic Design: Interactive Digital Media 20
DESN 1011 Image Design 10
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 2006 Graphic Design: The Professional Context 20
DESN 2001 Australian Design 10
DESN 1018 Visual Storytelling 10
 Credit Points40
Year 2
Autumn session
DESN 3001 Contextual Design Studies 10
DESN 3013 Social Design: Research and Practice 10
DESN 2011 Motion Design 10
COMM 2019 Interactive Design: Games 10
 Credit Points40
Spring session
DESN 3006 Graphic Design: Developing a Personal Portfolio 10
DESN 3003 Design Research Project 10
DESN 3002 Data Visualisation 10
DESN 3008 Interactive Design: Apps 10
 Credit Points40
 Total Credit Points160

Guangdong Baiyun University Articulation Pathway, mid-year intake.

Full-time intake
Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
Spring sessionCredit Points
DESN 2006 Graphic Design: The Professional Context 20
DESN 2001 Australian Design 10
DESN 1018 Visual Storytelling 10
 Credit Points40
Autumn session
DESN 2005 Graphic Design: Interactive Digital Media 20
DESN 2014 Researching the Visual 10
DESN 1011 Image Design 10
 Credit Points40
Year 2
Spring session
DESN 3006 Graphic Design: Developing a Personal Portfolio 10
DESN 3003 Design Research Project 10
DESN 3002 Data Visualisation 10
DESN 3008 Interactive Design: Apps 10
 Credit Points40
Autumn session
DESN 3013 Social Design: Research and Practice 10
DESN 3001 Contextual Design Studies 10
DESN 2011 Motion Design 10
COMM 2019 Interactive Design: Games 10
 Credit Points40
 Total Credit Points160

Minor elective spaces

Elective subjects may be used toward obtaining an additional approved minor (40 credit points).  Western Sydney University offers minors in a range of areas including Sustainability and Indigenous Studies.

Global Sustainability Minor

Indigenous Australian Studies Minor

Search for minors

Students can apply for an elective minor via MySR.

MyStudentRecords (MySR) [hyperlink needed]


Elective minor which may be available: