Bachelor of Arts (Honours) Visual Communications and Design CW088

  • NFQ Level 8
  • CW088
  • 20
  • 250
  • 4 Years
  • Overview
  • Further Studies
  • Career Prospects
  • Entry Requirements
  • Subjects
  • Enquiries

What is the Course about?

Visual communication and design is a problem-solving practice that uses image, text, print and screen to communicate messages. This discipline originates from graphic design and now incorporates the traditional skills of drawing, printing, photography, typography and other graphic processes with the new digital realms of video, sound and animation. 

The four-year programme is designed to facilitate a transition from novice student to creative practitioner. Students are taught a variety of skills to achieve this including: creative problem solving; design principles and practices; project management; communication and collaboration; technical design skills, marketing and entrepreneurship. This highly practical programme features structured studio practice where students complete projects in design (graphics, illustration, branding, advertising, editorials/magazines and signage; media (websites, mobile devices and games) and the moving image (video and animation).

Year 1 is shared with art students, enabling the integration of ideas and the exploration of design and art, design principles, process and skills in typography and image manipulation. In Year 2 students focus on project briefs in new media design and experiment with design for web, motion graphics, animation, games, video and mobile devices. Year 3 focuses on design projects in brand development, packaging, information design and print production while Year 4 develops design consultancy skills across all media.

Special Features:

  • Studio-based programme with skills training across all media. Students of the programme will graduate with a portfolio of work in graphic design, digital media and video.
  • Annual industry showcase event for final year students to exhibit work to potential employers.
  • Students are encouraged to compete in a variety of national student competitions and have performed well in recent years. Students of this programme have won first place at the Samsung Digital Media Awards in 2014 and 2015 and an Erasmus student also won ‘Best Slogan’ at the National Campus Engage competition for National Student Volunteer Award.
  • Exit awards: Higher Certificate in Visual Communications and Design (NFQ Level 6) after Year 2; Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communications and Design (NFQ Level 7) after Year 3.

What follow-on study opportunities are available?

Graduates may apply for entry to the MA in Interaction Design at IT Carlow and other postgraduate programmes at IT Carlow and other institutions. 

What exemptions will I receive?




What will I be able to do when I finish the course?

Career opportunities for graduates of Visual Communications and Design are varied and in constant demand both in Ireland and internationally. Design careers exist across a wide range of industries including: graphic; web; motion pictures; computer games; interactive and multimedia industries and many more. Graduates also find careers in the broader marketing arena such as advertising, e-business and marketing.

What are the minimum entry requirements?

Leaving Certificate:

  • 6 subjects with at least 2 subjects at Higher Level Grade H5 or better
  • 4 subjects at Ordinary Level Grade O6 or Higher Level Grade H7

Subjects required:

  • English or Irish at Ordinary Level Grade O6 or Higher Level Grade H7 or better

Mature applicants will be assessed on an individual basis and may be interviewed.


For Further Information Contact

Joint Programme Directors

Patrick Morgan, MA, BDes

David O'Callaghan, BDes, MA