• Arts and Fashion

    HNC Visual Communication (Graphic Design, Illustration and Animation)

  • SCQF Level

    Level 7

  • Attendance/Duration

    Full-time, one year

  • Start Date

    From 26 Aug 2019

Start Here

If you’re interested in a career as a graphic designer or illustrator, this is the course for you.

For entry to this course you’ll need:

  • A real interest in art and design
  • One Higher, preferably Art and Design with English at National 5 or above OR a relevant NC course at SCQF Level 6 or equivalent, such as Art and Design
  • An interview with us
  • A portfolio of your work

If you don’t have formal qualifications, but have appropriate experience or training, then we’ll also consider you for a place, so please call us for a chat.

What's Involved

Look about you. Everything you see is a form of visual communication - from branding and book covers, to digital media, photography and web design. You’ll need skills in all these areas to become a graphic designer or illustrator, and this course will help you develop them.

Here’s just some of what you’ll be doing:

  • Graphic design - learning how to interpret a brief, create concepts and produce finished design solutions.
  • Illustration - developing your existing drawing, design and media skills in projects such as children’s book and stylised illustration
  • Animation – Designing and animating characters and visuals using stop motion and motion graphics
  • Photography - learning How to take a good photo through the use of composition, lighting and Photoshop
  • Web design - learning how to plan, design and build your own website.
  • Magazine Design - learning to create designs, layouts and finished publications using industry software such as Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop.
  • Printmaking - producing professional quality print, through using plates, stencils or screens.
  • Art and design context - going on a journey from the Renaissance Period to Pop Art.

You’ll also have the chance to:

  • Work on live briefs for local businesses, community projects or events.
  • Take part in national competitions.
  • Work with local artists, such as a digital art project with Billy McCall.
  • Exhibit your work, including external venues like Mclaurin Art Gallery or local design studios.
  • Be involved in the Creative Department’s Annual End of Year Show.
  • Possibly go on work experience placements.

Go Anywhere

When you successfully complete this course, you’ll have the choice of:

  • Moving onto HND Visual Communication
  • Exploring your future career options including: Graphic Designer, Illustrator, Animator, Printmaker, Photographer, Production Designer, Web Designer, Social Media Designer.

With additional qualifications, you may be able to progress to a degree programme, such as BA Digital Art at UWS, or a degree course at e.g. Glasgow School of Art, Edinburgh School of Art, Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee, Gray’s School of Art in Aberdeen, Edinburgh Napier University or Perth College.


  • Create your future - 10 reasons why graphics is a great career choice. Click here to read the blog.
  • First steps in the real world - Visual Comms students enjoy a week in the college design team. Click here to read the blog.
  • Skills on show - creative students put on dazzling display of talent at End of Year Show. Click here to read the blog.
  • From NC to HND – students’ fond reflections at final public show before progressing to pastures new. Click here to read the blog.

Start Date

26 Aug 2019



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