DMED H2029 - Visual Design Fundamentals

Short Title:Visual Design Fundamentals
Full Title:Visual Design Fundamentals
Module Code:DMED H2029
ECTS credits: 5
NFQ Level:6
Module Delivered in 5 programme(s)
Module Contributor:Niamh OHora
Module Description:This module seeks to introduce students to a fundamental understanding of the elements and principles of graphic design. Students will develop their experimentation with, and application of form, space, image, type and colour to communicate ideas and message with clarity.
Learning Outcomes:
On successful completion of this module the learner will be able to
  1. Explore the graphic expression of an idea through the use of visual design principles and elements;
  2. Develop ideas visually that communicate with clarity;
  3. Develop an awareness of Modernist design history and understand it's relevance in relation to contemporary design practice;
  4. Critically evaluate and reflect on design process and project outcomes.

Module Content & Assessment

Indicative Content
Elements of Design
Point, Line, Surface, Volume, Shape, Form & Space - The Shape of Space, Whitespace, Active, Passive, Positive & Negative space.
Principles of Design
Balance, Emphasis, Rhythm, Unity, Contrast, Gestalt (Proximity, Similarity, Closure, Continuity, Figure & Ground).
Colour Physics, The Theory of Colour, Colour Schemes, Hue, Saturation, Shades, Tint, Value, Colour & Perception, Spacial Effects of Colours.
Font Technology, Typeface Anatomy, Typeface classifications, Selecting The Right Type for the Right Job, Legibility & Readability, Formatting Type and Typographic Illustration.
Digital Design Techniques
B├ęzier Paths, Controlling Text, Typographic Illustration, Typeface Design, Colors, Swatches and Gradients, Managing Transparency, Preparing Files for Print, Grid Layouts, Working With Graphics & Text, Multi-page Documents,
Modernist Design History
Paul Rand, Saul Bass, Milton Glaser, Bradbury Thompson, Herb Lubalin, Massimo Vignelli.
Indicative Assessment Breakdown%
Course Work Assessment %100.00%
Course Work Assessment %
Assessment Type Assessment Description Outcome addressed % of total Assessment Date
Other A major project or series of assignments that communicate messages or ideas while exploring the application, presentation and discussion of elements and principles of design, typographic elements, composition, layout and colour. 1,2,4 80.00 n/a
Other Reflective essay, presentation or practical visual application of typography and visual styles of a Modernist design movement discussed in the module. 3 20.00 n/a
No Final Exam Assessment %
Indicative Reassessment Requirement
Coursework Only
This module is reassessed solely on the basis of re-submitted coursework. There is no repeat written examination.
Reassessment Description
Project based reassessment.

ITB reserves the right to alter the nature and timings of assessment


Indicative Module Workload & Resources

Indicative Workload: Full Time
Frequency Indicative Average Weekly Learner Workload
Every Week 15.00
Every Week 45.00
Every Week 40.00
Recommended Book Resources
  • Christian Leborg 2006, Visual Grammar: A Design Brief, Princeton Architectural Press [ISBN: 1568985819]
  • Ilene Strizver 2013, Type Rules: The Designer's Guide to Professional Typography, 4 Ed., Wiley [ISBN: 1118454057]
  • Johannes Itten; translated by Ernst van Haagen 1993, The Art of Color: The Subjective Experience and Objective Rationale of Color, Van Nostrand Reinhold New York [ISBN: 0471289280]
Supplementary Book Resources
  • David Dabner, Sandra Stewart 2013, Graphic Design School: The Principles and Practice of Graphic Design, 5 Ed., Wiley [ISBN: 1118134419]
  • Alex W. White 2011, The Elements of Graphic Design, Allworth Press [ISBN: 1581157622]
  • David Sherwin 2010, Creative Workshop, How [ISBN: 1600617972]
  • Linda Holtzschue 2011, Understanding Color: An Introduction for Designers, 4 Ed., Wiley [ISBN: 0470381353]
  • Connie Malamed 2009, Visual Language for Designers, Rockport Publishers [ISBN: 1592537413]
  • Alston W. Purvis 2013, Type: A Visual History of Typefaces & Graphic Styles, Taschen; [ISBN: 3836544806]
  • Paul Harris, Gavin Ambrose 2011, Basics Design: Layout, Ava Publishing [ISBN: 2940411492]
  • Gavin Ambrose, Paul Harris 2008, Basics Design: Grids, AVA Publishing [ISBN: 9782940373772]
  • Steven Heller, Veronique Vienne 2012, 100 Ideas that Changed Graphic Design, Laurence King Publishers [ISBN: 1856697940]
  • Philip B. Meggs 1998, A history of graphic design, John Wiley & Sons New York [ISBN: 0471291986]
  • Stephen Heller 2014, Infographics Designers' Sketchbooks, Princeton Architectural Press [ISBN: 1616892862]
This module does not have any article/paper resources
Other Resources

Module Delivered in

Programme Code Programme Semester Delivery
BN_DDMED_8 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Creative Digital Media [240 ECTS credits] 3 Mandatory
BN_BDMKT_8 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Digital Marketing 3 Elective
BN_DDMED_7 Bachelor of Arts in Creative Digital Media [180 ECTS credits] 3 Mandatory
BN_BDMKT_7 Bachelor of Arts in Digital Marketing 3 Elective
BN_DDMED_XWC Certificate in Creative Web Communication [Level 6 30 ECTS credits] 1 Mandatory