University of East London

Degree level: Undergraduate

Graphic Design and Illustration (Visual Communication) (with Foundation Year)

Course options

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Course summary

Studying on BA (Hons) Graphic Design and Illustration (Visual Communication) with Foundation Year is a great way to introduce yourself to the university experience should you not have either an Art and Design background or enough UCAS points. Studying on BA (Hons) Graphic Design and Illustration (Visual Communication) you will have freedom to explore both graphic design and illustration without the stigma of working between or within subjects, allowing you to bridge between the two and go on to develop a practice that blurs the line between the two - a key characteristic that has become more common in industry. You will learn a great deal in a fun environment. You get to learn alongside fine art, photography, design and illustration students. So if you're not 100 per cent about your direction or can't choose between subjects (maybe you enjoy more than one) you can use it as a diagnostic year to help you choose. One of the major benefits of all our foundation courses is you are free to switch direction should you change your mind. As you progress you will join students who will be at the forefront of future-focused design. You will experiment and develop emerging technology such as AR/VR (XR), AI, game engines, electronics, sensors, Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data and robotics. You will play a role in shaping the world around us with free thinking ideas and opportunities. You will be supported by yearly employability initiative Detour Ahead: Roadmaps for the Art and Design Industry, week-long inter-disciplinary guest talks offering you industry insights as well as guidance on subjects such as freelancing, copyright and tax. You will be able to develop an original, individual approach to creating graphic design and illustration, coupled with a thorough understanding of the social, cultural and professional context occupied by these two disciplines. Having skills in both areas (feet in both camps) allows a more adaptable approach to taking on work and being successful, chiming with the requirements of the Creative Industries 4.0, where discipline distinctions become increasingly irrelevant to professional life. Students gain fresh perspective and approaches (divergent thinking) giving you edge in the competitive creative job market, skills for the fourth industrial age (4iR). You will have freedom to explore both graphic design and illustration without the stigma of working between or within subjects, allowing you to bridge between the two and go on to develop a practice that blurs the line between the two - a key characteristic that has become more common in industry. Towards the end of the course, in the final year, you will be able to gravitate towards one or other on the named subjects as your creative voice emerges. It's that flexibility which is the underlying selling point of this course. At any point should you feel more an illustrator or more a designer you can seamlessly switch between the degree courses.


Foundation Year: Professional Life 1 (Mental Wealth) (Core), Art & Design Workshops, Processes & Skills (Core), Art & Design Studio Practice & Portfolio (Core), Art & Design Specialist Workshops, Processes & Skills (Core), Art & Design Specialist Studio Practice & Portfolio (Core), Art & Design Contextual Studies (Core) Year 1: Contextual Studies 1 (Core), Practice 1 (Core), Experimentation and Application 1A (Core), Experimentation and Application 1B (Core), Research into Practice 1 (Core), Professional Life 1 (Mental Wealth) (Core) Year 2: Contextual Studies 2 (Core), Practice 2 (Core), Advanced Experimentation and Applications (Core), Advanced Practice (Core), Research into Practice 2 (Core), Professional Life 2 (Mental Wealth) (Core), Optional placement (Optional) Year 3: Practice 3 (Core), Research into Practice 3 – Extended Research Project (Core), Research into Practice 3 – Graphic Design, Illustration and Animation (Core), Independent Major Project Part A (Core), Independent Major Project Part B (Core), Professional Life 3 (Mental Wealth) (Core) For more information about individual modules, please visit our course pages via the link below.

Assessment method

Each module has a duration of 12 weeks (one term) and always concludes with an assessment point. We provide feedback throughout these 12-week periods with a specific 'Tracking Week' dedicated to this process midway through each term. For Practical modules, your submission will consist of a Learning Journal (the presentation of your development and experience) and a Portfolio (the presentation of your practical output). For Theoretical modules, you may be asked to produce a piece of academic writing of a given length and a live presentation. Feedback is provided within 15 working days in line with UEL's assessment and feedback policy.

How to apply

Application codes

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Docklands Campus
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Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Foundation

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

For detailed information on entry requirements for our courses, please see the individual course pages. We consider a range of UK and worldwide qualifications at the appropriate level and also take relevant work experience into account when considering an application. Many courses have a Foundation Year option for those students whose qualifications do not meet the BA or BSc entry requirements. Applicants should have, or be working towards, grade C in GCSE English and Mathematics (or equivalent Level 2 qualification such as Functional Skills Level 2 in English and Mathematics or Key Skills Level 2 in Application of Number and Communication) Entry requirements are intended only as a guide for applicants. They are not a guarantee of an offer, nor of the conditions that may apply. When making a decision on your academic suitability, we will make an assessment of you as an individual and will use information other than qualifications; which may include predicted grades, performance at Level 2, relevant work experience, previous study at degree level, personal statement, references and any portfolio, written test or interview, to make our decision. If you have any questions, please contact a member of our Applicant Relations Team from Monday to Friday (9am–5pm) on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or

Additional entry requirements



Unistats information

Operated by the Office for Students

There is no data available for this course. For further information visit the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
Channel Islands £9250 Year 1
EU £13920 Year 1
International £13920 Year 1

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.
Graphic Design and Illustration (Visual Communication) (with Foundation Year) at University of East London - UCAS