VCO1303 - The language of graphic design - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Art, Design and Architecture

Organisational Unit

Department of Design

Chief examiner(s)

Mr Ned Culic


Ms Alex Margetic

Unit guides



  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


Must be enrolled in a Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture course


In this subject students will study the work of innovative visual designers from Modernism until the present. They will analyse how designers use pictorial images and words to convey meanings; and how they achieve this by employing a form of visual language equivalent to written language. Through studying design solutions created in contexts ranging from mainstream graphic design and advertising through to socio-political messages and imagery made by non-designers, the students will develop a referential understanding of the potential of visual language for designers. They will then be required to apply this knowledge to the making of designs employing similar problem-solving strategies.


Upon successful completion of this unit students should be able to:

  1. Understand the breadth of communication elements used within graphic design including metaphor, juxtaposition, parody, wit and humour;
  2. Understand the development of modern graphic design and its associated conceptual and intellectual development;
  3. Clearly understand the language and grammar of visual communication;
  4. Utilise a thorough comprehension of this language in the execution of their own projects;
  5. Observe and employ occupational health and safety appropriate to studio practice.


100% in-semester assessment

Workload requirements

12 hours per week including 3 contact hours plus 9 hours of independent study.

See also Unit timetable information