• Study mode: Full Time
  • Location: High Wycombe Campus
  • Duration: Three Years
  • Start Date: September 2018

Course Overview

Being a graphic designer opens many doors. If you know that your future lies within Graphic Design, this course is perfect. With modules tailored to honing your skills as a professional designer, you’ll learn to manage your own projects, work on live briefs, and adapt well to a creative environment.

We start you off in the broad spectrum of Graphic Arts. In your first year, you can sample all areas of graphics, using your own studio space as your creative base. You can also choose to change course, opting for Graphic Arts, Graphic Design or Illustration. The choice is yours.

More to design than using computer software
Our design studio has a stunning range of equipment for you to realise your ideas. We don’t restrict you to using computer software, even though we have everything from the Adobe Creative Suite programs to plotter cutters and photo studios. You can craft beautiful design solutions using our silkscreen, letterpress, and litho equipment, as well as our laser cutting and 3D printing technology. We make sure you get as hands-on with our equipment as possible. And our staff are always around to help you get set up.

Work in a professional environment on campus
Our course gives you many opportunities to explore the diverse world of graphic design. Which ever graphic specialism interests you, be it magazine design, music identity or campaigns, we give you the freedom to write your own brief and start realising your ideas. Every week, you’ll work with a professional graphic designer who will critique your work and help you improve your designs. Workshops with other students help prepare you for life in an agency where you will need presentation and ideas generation skills as you meet clients.

Our live briefs come from a range of companies, such as Faber Publishers and Saatchi advertising agency. To build your experience, we support work placement with companies that we have long relationships with. Recent students have worked for publishers, packagers, agencies and magazines as varied as Wallpaper, Rankin, Quarto Books and Macmillan Books.

Graphics Student Gallery

Course Details


Our Graphic Design students benefit from an amazing design studio and team of enthusiastic design tutors. And with London only a short train ride away, you’re never too far from inspiration. We have many visiting designers from the capital running blocks of workshop-based sessions in fields as diverse as editorial design, infographics, typography and ethical design.

Enjoy graphics abroad as well as on our campus
Our second year students have the opportunity to study on Erasmus, a European exchange programme. You may be able to study design in creative institutes in countries including Belgium, Denmark, France, and Germany.

We also have a New York trip in the spring with visits to agencies, design, film and multi-media companies, and a study tour to a European design capital such as Paris or Barcelona.

Start building your creative network on campus
You’ll work in a design studio alongside a diverse community of designers, each working on their own projects, just as a professional graphic design studio would function. You’ll study in a close-knit Graphic Design tutor group where everyone’s input is recognised and valued. Not only will you make friends for life, you’ll also make important connections that will last through your career, and you’ll form a network, just like you’d find in any design group.

Teaching and Learning

Your course consists of a combination of structured learning and teaching activities and independent learning.

Structured learning activities include lectures, seminars, tutorials and other time-tabled sessions. The amount of time set aside for each activity (‘contact hours’) is set out in individual module descriptors and so will vary depending on the modules you take. When you are not attending structured learning and teaching activities you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, using the library, preparing for seminars, and completing coursework assignments.

The programme specification will provide more information on the specific learning and teaching activities on this course.

Overall workload

Your overall workload will include your learning and teaching activities and independent learning with total study time of around 10 hours being worth 1 credit. While your actual contact hours will depend on any option modules you choose.

Year 1: 49 percent of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

Teaching, learning and assessment: 586 hours
Independent learning: 614 hours

Year 2: 38 percent of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

Teaching, learning and assessment: 454 hours
Independent learning: 746 hours

Year 3: 31 percent of your time is spent in timetabled teaching and learning activity

Teaching, learning and assessment: 371 hours
Independent learning: 829 hours


You will be given opportunities to test your understanding of the subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. This may take the form of practice or ‘formative’ assessments for which you will receive feedback from your tutor. Formative assessments are developmental and any marks you receive do not count towards your overall module mark. There is at least one formal or ‘summative’ assessment towards the end of each module. The marks from summative assessments do count towards your overall module mark.

Assessment methods vary, but your programme specification will provide more information on the specific methods used on this course. You can find out more about the assessment methods used across the University in the assessment guide on the Academic Advice pages.

Balance of assessment

The balance of assessment will vary depending on any option modules you choose.

Year 1

95 percent coursework 0 percent written exams 5 percent practical

Year 2

90 percent coursework 0 percent written exams 10 percent practical

Year 3

100 percent coursework 0 percent written exams 0 percent practical


You will receive feedback on all assessed coursework and practical assignments and we aim to provide this within three weeks. Feedback on examinations is also available on request.

Assessment feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module leader.

What are the course entry requirements?

A typical offer will include GCSE Maths and English at grade C or above and a UCAS Tariff score of 80-96. A minimum of two full A-levels (or equivalent) is required. Every application is considered on an individual basis.

This course is included in our unconditional offer policy.

You will normally be invited for an interview and portfolio review.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

Course Modules

Module Map

This module map provides a list of the modules that make up your course.

Each module is worth a specified number of credits (typically either 15 or 30 credits for undergraduate courses). Compulsory (or ‘core’) modules cover key subject knowledge, while ‘option’ modules enable you to develop your own interests. For a full-time course you must take modules worth a total of 120 credits at each level of the course. The number of option modules you can take depends on the number of compulsory modules at each level. You can find more information about how your course is structured via the Academic Advice pages.

Our teaching is informed by research and employer requirements, and modules change periodically to reflect developments in the subject area. In addition, where we have insufficient numbers of students interested in an option module, this may not be offered. If an option module does not run, we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative module.

The modules available on this course are as follows:

Year 1 Modules

  • Getting Connected
  • Ideas
  • Skills
  • Specialism

Year 2 Modules

  • Making Choices
  • Autonomous Graphic Project
  • Graphic Design Competitions
  • Graphic Studies

Year 3 Modules

  • New Model Dissertation
  • Competition Briefs
  • Final Major Projects


How much does it cost

Fees for September 2017 to August 2018 entry

Full Time Home and EU: £9,250 per year

Full Time International: £10,500 per year

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.

Fees quoted are for the next intake and are subject to change. Fee costs for subsequent years may rise in line with inflation, course delivery costs or subject to government regulations.

For information on financial assistance to support your learning, visit our Undergraduate Fees and Funding section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Student Centre on:
01494 603 020

How do I apply?

For application details please visit bucks.ac.uk/applynow

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Student Testimonials

Our students are our best ambassadors and their voices here will provide you with a clear sense of their Bucks experience.

Image of Nyki Shine

Nyki Shine

When my tutor took the leap of faith to accept me onto the course, I think he had his fingers crossed that I had the potential to do well. As a mature student, I lacked the graphic skills of my peers, but I had life experience.

The course taught me the graphic design skills I needed but over the three years I ended up learning as much about myself as I did about graphic design. I came to university to complete my education and to strive to do the best I could.

I started with the goal of getting a first, but as the course went on, building my portfolio became my primary focus. I managed to achieve my goal and build a good portfolio of work too.

Image of James Washington

James Washington

I felt that the course offered a lot of creative flexibility for me to define my own unique path as a creative, and build a skill set that's now completely unique to me. Employers think this is great! As I can always offer an interesting insight or angle into any project we work on.

A main part of this diverse learning experience comes from the wonderful tutors. Each and every single one of them has a whole load of industry experience behind them and they offer many lessons about real life working. 

Last, but certainly not least, the free societies & sports teams at Bucks New Uni really make it such a great experience. You make new friends, discover new skills and get some great nights out through joining a society.


What are my career prospects

We have a high employment rate with many of our graduates going into work or further education after the course. As we teach you a wide range of skills and abilities ready for your career, you’ll be able to specialise in a multitude of different areas. We have graduates in typography, illustration, web design, advertising, publishing and some have started their own companies in the industry.

We’re really proud of our graduates, whose profiles tell their own story:

  • Jennie Brodie works on the design team at the Natural History Museum.
  • Craig Ward is a typographer and design writer based in New York
  • Callum Green is a digital designer at ItsNiceThatWorks.

How will you help me prepare for my future career?
Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on the route to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders.

We run work placements for our students, giving you the opportunity to develop your skills in a work background. Our modules and teaching expertise will help you become more independent as a learner and more certain of your discipline expertise.

We also help you find employment after graduation. Have a look at our Careers and Employability pages to find out more.


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