Become part of the Design School
Gain practical skills and expand your knowledge of design principles, research methodologies and theory with this postgraduate certificate. Explore visual language, typography, colour and information design through set and self-initiated projects. This part-time course offers an intensive vocational route into the graphic design profession and can provide a portfolio for further study at postgraduate level.
London College of Communication
|Study Mode||Part time|
|Course Length||30 weeks - Part Time|
|Start Date||25 September 2017|
Direct to College
|Application Deadline||Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.|
London College of Communication’s vocationally-focussed Postgraduate Certificate will help you to build practice-based and professional skills in the highly diverse field of design for visual communication.
Visual communication is a process by which ideas are made visible and conveyed through media to enhance meaning, experience and understanding. This one-year intensive course re-examines the relationship between design principles, research methodologies and the related theoretical contexts.
The programme is ideal for those from diverse academic backgrounds who wish to extend and develop their prior experience through visual communication. Students on the course have previously studied subjects from molecular genetics to English. The course is a confidence-building bridge to Masters study as well as providing the foundations for professional career development.
You can expect to become part of a unique learning community made up of staff, guest speakers and fellow students from a diverse range of creative disciplines and cultures. Through tutorials, set and self-initiated projects, workshops and group discussions, you will gain a deeper understanding of the design process that will enhance your practice. Visual language and grammar, typographic hierarchy, symbol design, graphic representation, identity and information visualisation are just some of the areas you will explore.
Personal projects will provide you with a foundation in the principles of visual communication whilst engaging with postgraduate level research methods and conceptual development. Examples of personal projects include: mapping directional devices in the city; the promotion of a typeface; visual analysis of people flow and visual surveys of lettering. Graduates from this course have found employment within high profile international creative agencies, design management, teaching and professional practice. Some have established their own design studios, while others have gone on to achieve highly at Masters level.
“As an Architect I was quite familiar with the idea of design but I felt the need to build good foundations to progress in the graphic design field. The course at LCC has been fundamental for my career development. Thanks to the portfolio of infographics projects built at LCC, a few months after the end of the course I started freelancing for Sidan Media, a sport publishing company visualising football statistics.” Former student, Grazia Trisciuoglio, now Information Graphic Designer at Live Nation
"This was such a valuable course that gave me so much – I'm forever grateful."
Former student, Geoffrey Dahl, now a freelance Graphic Designer
“Thank you for everything. The course has changed my life.” Former student, Valentina Verč , Intern at the award-winning OPX studio.
The Postgraduate Certificate Design for Visual Communication has three components:
These units aim to achieve an integrated approach to your learning and to avoid the notion that research and application are aspects of design that are experienced in isolation.
Research and Development introduces you to the key methods of investigating subject matter employed at postgraduate level.
Design Resolution will investigate and re-examine the main themes of graphic design such as visual language and grammar; hierarchy; structure; navigation; identity; etc. This unit will enable you to experience research and development methods in practice.
Professional and Academic Contexts offers you an opportunity to undertake a choice of projects that places emphasis on your future professional or academic direction. The following are indicative subject areas: information design, typo/graphic design and image-based design.
The course is currently running in part-time mode only and fits within the University credit framework. It is comprised of tutored study and self-directed study with access to facilities. You will embark on both course-set and self-initiated projects.
You will also engage in debate exploring a multitude of subjects, from design fundamentals to notions of cross-disciplinary thinking.
In addition to tuition fees you are very likely to incur additional costs such as travel expenses and the cost of materials. We strongly suggest you read the information on our Additional Costs page.
The information outlined is an indicative structure of the course. Whilst we will aim to deliver the course as described on this page, there may be situations where it is desirable or necessary for the University to make changes in course provision, for example because of regulatory requirements or operational efficiencies, before or after enrolment. If this occurs, we will communicate all major changes to all applicants and students who have either applied or enrolled on the course.
Please note that due to staff research agreements or availability, not all of the optional modules listed may be available every year.
In addition, the provision of course options which depend upon the availability of specialist teaching, or on a placement at another institution, cannot be guaranteed. Please check this element of the course with the course team before making a decision to apply.
Course Leader: Tony Pritchard
Lecturer: Henrietta Ross
Students have gone on to find employment within high profile agencies such as Frost Design in Australia; Kenya Hara in Japan; Nick Knight Photography; Studio Myerscough; and Fallon Design. They have progressed to work as art directors in advertising agencies; interactive/digital designers; identity designers; typo/graphic designers and museum/exhibition designers.
Alumni of the School of Design include: Neville Brody (Research Studios), John Brown (John Brown Publishing), Angus Hyland (Pentagram), John Hegarty (BBH) and John Kedgley (Tomato). As well as progression onto Masters level courses, graduates of the Design for Visual Communication course find employment both as freelance designers and with high profile international agencies.
The following illustrate some of the successes of our alumni: Aidan Brown (Studio Myerscough), Matthew Hancock and Dominc Busby (David McCandles / Information is Beautiful), Rebecca May (Senior Designer – Design Council / Fallon / published author), Alison Guile (owner LMNOP shop), Annalisa Premoli (John Brown Media / MTV Nickelodeon), Emily Fox (Lewis Moberly), Caroline Nitsch (Lead Online Designer Harrods), Joanna Hopkins (Frost / CERN), Jun Tsuzuki (Nippon Design Center), Sthuthi Ramesh (Brand Union India), Laura Heeks (Pentagram, The Guardian, GQ), Nick Hearne (U-Dox / Wunderman), Ian Carr (owner Labour+Play). Recent graduates have taken up internships at: Browns, Spin and Studio8.
We know what it takes to be successful in your chosen field. Your tutors are professionals in their own right and understand what you need to help you establish your career.
Careers and Employability is dedicated to helping students build up work-relevant skills, knowledge, experience and networks throughout your time here.
Creative Opportunities is the UAL job and work placement website for students and graduates, advertising hundreds of creative opportunities each month. This includes ArtsTemps in-house recruitment agency, placing students and graduates in paid temping roles within the University.
UAL houses a number of organisations which promote aspects of career development in the arts and media, and which hold regular workshops and careers fairs. These include:
Applicants will normally have a first degree or its equivalent. We welcome applications from non-traditional backgrounds and in particular mature students. We can assess prior experience as part of our selection criteria. If you do not have the required qualifications, but do have professional experience, you may be eligible to gain credit for previous learning and experience through the Accreditation of Prior and Experiential Learning (APEL) i.e. professional experience or a combination of courses and work experience.
Your experience is assessed as a learning process and tutors will evaluate that experience for currency, validity, quality and sufficiency.
All classes are conducted in English. If English is not your first language, we strongly recommend you let us know your English language test score in your application. If you have booked a test or are awaiting your results, please clearly indicate this in your application. When asked to upload a CV as part of your application, please include any information about your English test score.
International Applicants, please visit our International Applications page for further details regarding International Admissions.
All applications will be considered by the course team who will consider key elements when making a decision on your suitability to join the course:
Academic or professional references are not required for this course.
Offers will be made based on the following selection criteria, which applicants are expected to demonstrate:
As part of your application we would like to hear about your academic and professional background; your interest in the course; what you hope to achieve with it; and the areas of design you hope to pursue such as editorial design, typography or information design.
Please provide a CV detailing your education and qualifications and any relevant work or voluntary experience. If English is not your first language it is important that you also include in your CV details of your most recent English language test score.
All applicants will be asked to upload an electronic portfolio as part of their application. This should include a maximum of six projects and supporting material. These should be clearly annotated and organised.
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); textiles; and written work.
Applicants are usually interviewed by the course team before a place can be offered. Interviews will take place at LCC, or via Skype/telephone.
Where it is possible to offer a face-to-face interview it would be advisable to bring a hard copy version of the portfolio with you.
You can begin your application for this course using our online application form – the link to this is below. Before you apply, we recommend you take some time to read the course Entry Requirements section to learn about the application process, including detailed guidance on the extra information we will ask you to provide later in the process.
You will need to enter the following information in the online application form:
Before you can submit the form, you’ll also need to agree to the terms and conditions for how we process your data – these are explained in the form.
Please note, if you’re an international applicant we will need to contact you separately to ask for copies of certain documents (for example, English language qualification/certificate and copies of any previous UK study visas).
Once you have submitted the online application form, we will send you a confirmation email.
From January 2017 you will be emailed a link to our online application tool, where you should submit the extra information we require for the selection process:
The course leader will then review your work, may invite you to interview, and will then make a decision on your application, from January 2017.
The admissions team will be in touch after that to let you know the outcome and to guide you through the next steps.
Applications are accepted, and offers made, throughout the year. Early application is advised.
The application form can be saved as you fill it out, so you don’t need to complete it all at once. You will also have the chance to review all the information and make any necessary amendments before you submit the application form.
We will send you emails as you progress through the application process, so do check your inbox (and junk folder, just in case). These emails will contain important information about your application, and links to the online forms you should use to submit the extra information required.
If you haven’t found the information you’re looking for or want to ask us a question about this course, please fill out our enquiry form.