Skip to content Exit mobile menu


UCAS requirement


UCAS requirement



3 Years



UCAS code

Lee Brooks

Senior Lecturer - Media Arts
020 8240 4021

Enquire now Apply now

Our Design and Visual Communication degree offers a highly focused, practice-based programme of study, that both challenges and develops aspiring graphic designers in a range of inter-related disciplines. 

Why study Design and Visual Communication?

A commitment to the fundamental skills of creative problem solving sits at the heart of this programme. Designers within a modern, global information economy need to not just create beautiful and effective visuals, but also communicate story and meaning in ways that can be widely understood.

While the primary focus of the degree is graphic design, we recognise that the need to visually communicate information must flow seamlessly from page to screen, the screen must transition elegantly from fixed to mobile, and content must be effective whilst stationary or in motion.

Why St Mary's?

We embrace the idea that designers can, and should, search beyond their own specialist fields for influence and inspiration. Our innovative approach to an artefact-driven Design History module at level four of the programme - and our insistence that every design student work across multiple, specialist disciplines - offers evidence of this.

While it is imperative that creativity is at the core of your student experience, all successful designers must learn the art of compromise and negotiation, and as such we will focus on working with, and for, clients (from pitch through to delivery) throughout the programme  

Every St Mary’s design student will undertake a comprehensive programme of professional development sessions, with a strong focus on employability within the creative industries. We believe that this core structure offers a perfect blend of simplicity and clarity that will enable you to establish yourself as a key player in the creative future.

Key facts

  • A holistic design education that informs excellence in graphic design through engagement with a range of disciplines
  • A location that places students at the gateway to London’s thriving creative industries
  • An embedded professional practice strand that ensures every student maximises their employability potential
  • Live briefs and links to industry embedded throughout the programme
  • Taught on our historic Strawberry Hill campus in South West London
Please note: this programme is subject to revalidation.

Course content

Year one

  • Design and Creative Thinking 
  • Design and Visual Narratives 
  • Design History 
  • Digital Imaging 
  • Personal Branding 
  • Typography 

Year two

  • Magazine Design 
  • Motion Graphics One 
  • Packaging and Logos 
  • Photography 
  • Portfolio Development 
  • Web Design 

Year three

  • Digital Illustration 
  • Entrepreneurship 
  • Major Design Project  
  • Motion Graphics Two 
  • Responsive Design 
Please note: all information is correct at the time of publication. However, course content is regularly updated and this may result in some changes, which will be communicated to students before their programme begins. Modules listed may either be core or optional; you may not be able to study all your first choice modules.

Career opportunities

We believe that a creative, design education offers you access of a wide range of careers, both directly in the creative industries, in areas such as:

  • Print
  • Magazine and interactive digital design
  • Motion graphics for TV, film and the web,
  • Creative departments of a wide range of mainstream companies.

In addition, the emphasis that BA Design & Visual Communication places upon issues of employability and professional practice will allow you to be equally comfortable within large and small organisations, or in a freelance environment.

The Careers Service has more information on careers and postgraduate study options available to Design and Visual Communication students who have started their studies at St Mary’s.

There is also the opportunity to undertake a work placement as part of your degree. The Centre for Workplace Learning offers work-related modules that can be embedded within your studies.

How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

Our Design and Visual Communication degree course approaches teaching and learning in an innovative, integrated and holistic manner.

Modules are (wherever possible) centred around live briefs and involve you pitching to, and taking critique from your peers, tutors and clients.

By taking an active role in the development and maintenance of an internal design agency, we envisage that you will have the opportunity to develop your design and entrepreneurial skills and enhance your employability. The internal design agency will address many of the design needs of the academic school, the wider university and, where appropriate, external clients.

You will work alongside other students across modules and programmes to complete design challenges under commercial conditions and develop extensive portfolios that will put you at the forefront of the highly competitive creative industries.

Assessment methods

You will be assessed on this course through a variety of formative and summative assessments. Group and individual ‘crits’ (a traditional feature of a design education) are common and provide valuable formative feedback throughout the process of every practical module.

You are always encouraged to complete work within our studio spaces, as this creates a culture of peer feedback and support that plays a crucial role in your development as a designer. 


View all facilities

Fees and funding

2018/19 fees

  • Home/EU: £9,250
  • International: £11,220

2019/20 fees

  • Home/EU: coming soon
  • International: £11,750

Information about tuition fees, student loans and funding your studies can be found within our fees and funding section.

The UK Government has confirmed that EU applicants for 2018 and 2019 remain eligible for 'home fee status' and can access financial support.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken For further information about additional costs please contact

Further information

UCAS Application Timeline