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HNC Visual Communication: Illustration & Graphic Design HNC

(SCQF level 7)

Design Crafts & Graphic Arts, Creative Industries

Applications closed

Mode of Study


Start Date

30th Aug 2021, 1 year


City Campus

  • Applications from International Students Welcome
  • Overview

    This course provides for both illustration and graphic design candidates who will undertake creative projects covering all aspects of visual communication. You will develop your creative and technical skills to become an illustrator or graphic designer but the course is mainly intended to lead to year 2 of a relevant HND programme.

    You'll build projects from initial ideas and sketchbook development, through to finished artwork. On completion of the course, you'll have produced a broad and exciting portfolio of illustration/design work.

    In addition to giving you the skills to work as an illustrator, or graphic designer we will provide you with the knowledge and skills to move onto University and/or Art School. This will include an understanding of the ‘creative process’ and how that relates to your own creative practice.

    Entry requirements

    Minimum entry requirements

    • Higher Art and Design at Grade C or above AND National 5 English at Grade C or above; OR
    • National Certificate in Art and Design or related subject; OR
    • Other equivalent qualifications or experience.

    Additional selection requirements

    • You'll be invited for a group and/or individual interview where you can find out more about the course and tell us why you're interested in this subject area.  Where COVID restrictions are in place we will invite you to either a video meeting, telephone conference call or make an offer based on your application form.
    • You'll be asked to provide examples of your art and design work.

    ESOL entry requirements

    Applicants whose first language is not English should have minimum ESOL Intermediate level 2 or equivalent for NC/NQ courses and ESOL Higher for HNC/D courses.

    What you study

    You'll study:

    • Introduction to Visual Communication.
    • Creative Process.
    • Mixed Media.
    • Illustration and Graphic Design Projects.
    • Drawing or Design where relevant.
    • Art & Design Context.
    • Digital Imaging.
    • Typography.
    • Printmaking.
    • Graded Unit.

    After the course


    The HNC course can lead to self-employment as a junior or freelance Illustrator/graphic designer working with advertising agencies, design consultants, digital media studios, book, magazine and newspaper publishers, or in your own private practice.

    Continuing Study

    On completion of the course, you can apply to the second year of either HND Illustration or HND Graphic Design at the college. Alternatively, you may wish to apply to year one of art school.


    How the course is taught

    The course is taught through a series of practical studio-based projects, workshops, theoretical study and lectures. There are opportunities to work on live projects and take part in national student competitions. Throughout the year there are visits to exhibitions and other trips as Covid-19 restrictions allow.

    In addition, we have a robust programme of visiting professionals and guest speakers, providing insight into the real-world aspects of working in the creative industries. We plan to adopt a blended approach of on-campus activities and online tutorials via Zoom.

    Assessment methods

    Coursework is continually assessed throughout the academic year. The year is divided into 3 teaching blocks and so the assessment is spread evenly throughout the course. There are opportunities for re-assessment throughout the year.  There are no end of term exams.

    Additional Information


    You'll be expected to provide your own basic materials such as a USB pen drive or another storage device, steel ruler; craft knife & blades, glue stick, scissors, pencils & eraser, masking tape, paints, inks and brushes.

    Throughout the course, you'll need a number of notebooks/sketchbooks for research and development work.

    • Mode of Study:
    • Start Date:
      30th Aug 2021, 1 year
    • Location:
      City Campus
    • Applications from International Students Welcome