Why do so many students elect to study graphic design?

  • Author
  • Sallyanne Theodosiou, Senior Lecturer Graphic Design
  • University
  • University for the Creative Arts at Epsom (UCA)

  • Website
  • www.ucreative.ac.uk

  • education

    According to the latest stats from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA), 182,085 students were studying creative arts and design in 2011/12 (www.hesa.ac.uk/content/view/1897/239). Although graphic design students make up some of this number, it still leads to the question – why do so many students want to be educated in this subject – there can not possibly be an equal number of creative jobs to fill each year. Right?

    But first, what is graphic design?

    Essentially it is an interdisciplinary, problem-solving activity for visual communication by combining images, words, and ideas to convey information to an audience. By its nature it is a subject that is in a state of constant change because of the fluidity found in commerce, culture and technology. It demands knowledge of skills such as layout, typography, image making and presentation all in addition to the ubiquitous computer based design approach. It is intrinsic in design to exercise attention to detail and develop an ability to really look at the world in a creative way. It requires a practitioner’s continued willingness to learn, and not just to keep up with the many developments in technology. ‘It’s about new ideas, new ways of working and using new media to make new messages for new audiences’ (www.gdnm.org/course/graphic-design). Each of the many courses that teach graphic design have their own interpretation and focus within the discipline.

    The University for the Creative Arts (UCA) was granted university title in 2008 following the merger of the Surrey Institute of Art and Design (SIAD) with Kent Institute of Art and Design (KIAD) in 2005, Institutions which had amalgamated the original art schools started in the 1800s in each county. UCA currently works across five campuses based in Canterbury, Epsom, Farnham, Maidstone and Rochester. ...

    From top:
    Tori Brunt (1st year) Independent Practice work.
    Visiting Lecturer – Martin O’Neal’s ‘Collage workshop’ discussing balance and layout.
    Teams of two present to the client and receive feedback on how they presented as well as on the work produced.
    Students curating the 2012 Type Directors Club (TDC) Exhibition, for the Typographic Circle at JWT Advertising Agency.

    student work