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Diploma of Communication Design

Billy Blue College of Design

If you have a flair for creativity but can’t decide between graphic design, digital design, video production, interior design, or fashion, this higher- education diploma gives you the ability to choose your design career options and sample between 2-4 of the specialist areas listed below:

  • Branded Fashion
  • Communication Design
  • Digital Media Design
  • Interior Design

It also provides full credit as a pathway into the more advanced courses so you can use the diploma to finish your degree quickly.

  • Designer
  • Finished artist
  • Graphic designer
  • Interactive designer
  • Web designer
  • 2D / 3D Animator
  • Interior Designer

Course at a glance

Study Options Campus FEE-HELP? Entry requirements
Full time: 1 year (accelerated 7 months)
Part-time: 1-2 years (depending on study load)
Brisbane
Melbourne
Sydney
Yes Visit our Entry Requirements page for detailed information.
CRICOS Course Code 090303F    

Key Dates

COURSE SUBJECTS - Diploma of Communication Design

Students take 5 core subjects for the Diploma.

This subject introduces students to the fundamental concepts within visual language and the relevant software tools for the digital production of graphic and visual communication. It explores methods for the digital production of visual messages and requires students to practically apply and theoretically understand the fundamental grammar that underpins any graphic language. Students will develop skills in expressing the grammar of visual language, working with design software and creating digital visual outcomes through a combination of theoretical studies, practical workshops, guided demonstrations and exercises. The language of design will be analysed through an examination of historical influences and technological developments. Students will create outcomes that are informed by the language of visual grammar and contextualised within contemporary digital design technology.

This subject encourages students to observe, analyse and document the world around them in order to expand their visual design vocabulary. The playful exploration of a variety of fundamental research methods will expand students’ practical and critical skill sets, enabling them to transform their observations into potential design outcomes and evaluate their engagement with the design process. Students will undertake a series of observational research experiments; recording and analysing each case through a range of media and materials including: drawing, photography, sound, static and time-based media as well as two and three dimensional forms. Students will also be challenged to critically reflect upon their interaction with and response to the cultural context of design.

This subject serves as an introduction to communicating with imagery, from initial concepts and quick sketches through to more sophisticated visual responses, utilising a variety of media. With an emphasis on exploration within historical, practical, and technical parameters, 'Thinking Visually' aims to enable the student to effectively articulate ideas through both drawing and photography. Students will develop skills in observation, idea generation, and effective visual communication through a combination of theoretical studies, observational drawing and material experimentation.

This subject introduces students to the building blocks of typography. It develops students' experience and understanding of the issues involved with communicating through a typographic framework. The subject will look at the fundamental elements of typeface design and analysis, categorisation and usage, in conjunction with introductory design concepts such as balance, composition and hierarchy. This subject requires students to design and construct a publishing outcome that displays their ability to structure visual content through consistent typographic settings and composition, working with short and long body text settings, grid structures and page architecture.

This subject explores the ways that we view the world, our collective understanding and acceptance of visual iconography and how this perception influences our response to brands, advertising and visual communication. It examines the processes and behaviours that drive our interaction with others and how we interact with our world. Students are challenged to re-examine their preconceptions and design thinking methods: to address what makes us communicators and what gives us the right to assume that role? Themes include essential perceptual theory; signs, symbols and meaning; lateral thinking and problem solving; advertising theory; tactics of manipulation, research and focus testing.

Students choose 3 electives for the Diploma. Popular lectives are listed below but others may be available. Ask a Course and Careers Advisor.

This subject advances students’ understanding of publishing design in both traditional and contemporary applications. Students will use their understanding of basic typographic settings, page composition and layout to explore advanced typographic setting, workflow and content editing. Students will be challenged to consider the 'voice of type' and develop a greater appreciation and understanding of how content is read and viewed through a variety of mediums. They will embrace traditional bookbinding and construction methods alongside screen based, digital applications to realise design outcomes.

Students will work both individually and in small teams, reflecting the experiences and structure of a publishing team. Through lectures, workshops and tutorials, students will investigate methods and techniques central to publishing design, considering content generation, document sequencing, publishing terminology and advanced typographic settings crucial to a comprehensive understanding of contemporary publishing design.

This subject seeks to develop conceptual and practical frameworks for the generation of visual images, enabling students to create innovative visual responses in their work. It will encourage students to expand their frame of visual understanding and explore idea generation as well as historical approaches to visual representation, resulting in developing skills in the practical interpretation of ideas. This is achieved through sketching, photography, and experimenting with analogue and digital materials.

This subject focuses on developing the students’ understanding of the fundamental theories of brand management, and the critical relationship of the branded environment to this strategy. Students will explore the application of brand management strategies through a range of case studies, applying this knowledge to the development of an environment that meets the objectives of a brand management strategy.

This subject introduces students to the theory and practice of Information Design. Students will visualise both quantitative and qualitative data from a variety of sources via linear and non-linear typography, signs, icons, pictograms and mapping techniques. They will explore theories and practical approaches that examine instructional systems, methods to convey instructions and complex information systems.

This subject provides an introduction to the fundamental theory and practice of interaction design. Key concepts including experience, interface and interaction are explored, along with fundamental technologies, services and platforms pertinent to the design and production of interactive digital media. Students will also investigate the social, cultural and technological frameworks that inform interaction design and identify the relationships between each.

This subject provides an introduction to the fundamental theory and practice of moving image and 3D design and production. Students will be familiarised with a basic set of tools and techniques for creating moving image sequences and 3D visualisations. Fundamental moving image, screen language and spatial design concepts are introduced, and students will use these concepts in conjunction with basic production techniques to communicate and convey narrative. The subject also introduces concept development techniques and materials specific to the development of motion and 3D design outcomes.

STUDY PATHWAYS

Billy Blue design courses are designed to give you flexibility. So if you wish to switch courses, exit early or study faster, we can help you out through our study pathway options. In the design world, change is our friend. Contact your Course and Career Adviser for more info.

Find out more about Course Upgrades and Pathways

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Frequently asked questions - Diploma of communication design

Graphic design is now seen as just one element in a broad and evolving field of visual communication disciplines. The nature of the visual communication industry is such that designers are often required to work across a range of disciplines and media including the digital environment. The communication design stream aims to produce imaginative designers who work creatively in areas where information and ideas are primarily conveyed by visual means.

If you have previously studied or worked in the design industry, you may be eligible to receive a subject exemption that can potentially shorten the length of your Billy Blue degree or diploma. Read more about recognition of prior learning.

We use the latest industry-standard software in all our courses. This changes all the time as industry standards and software programs evolve. Contact us for more information.

Yes, you must bring your own laptop to class. This is part of our commitment to preparing students for the mobile work practice of the 21st Century. There are also some workstations and design software on campus.

Yes, if you are an eligible Australian student you can defer your future fees. Learn more about fees here.