BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-up) (2022)

BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-up) (1)

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  • Overview
  • Course Details
  • Entry Requirements
  • Modules
  • Fees
  • Employability
  • Teaching Team
  • Study Mode: Full time
  • Location: High Wycombe
  • Duration: One Year
  • Start Date: September 2022

You can also study this course:

  • Full-time
  • with Foundation Year

Our course reflects the realities of working as a professional in industry. Everything you do on the course is working towards you getting your first job in the sector. If you have completed a foundation-level degree, HND, or equivalent qualifications in a relevant Art and Design subject, you can choose to top-up your studies to gain a full bachelor’s degree.
Discover the world of BA (Hons) Graphic Design at Buckinghamshire New University. If you are a visually creative person looking to build a rewarding career in graphic design this course is perfect for you.

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Open Days

We understand that when it comes to deciding where you’d like to study, there are a lot of things to consider. Come along to our Open Day and discover why BNU could be the place for you. You can find out more about your course, meet the course team, and get all your questions answered.

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Application Guide

For everything you need to know about applying, check out our Application Guide. You can find useful information for each stage of your application journey – from before you even apply to what to do if you receive an offer, and everything in between.

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Students' Union

At BNU, we believe in putting our students first. That’s why we’re the only university in the UK to offerfreeaccess tosuch a diverse and exciting range of activities through ourSU– all to enrich your university experience.

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Why study this subject?

Graphic Design is a dynamic subject area, one that is continually evolving. Its wide reaching impact is linked to its communicative impetus which extends into many areas of society, including economically, politically, socially and culturally.

Studying on the course will help prepare you for this continually expanding field. Not only will we support you as an individual in the development of your visual and creative problem-solving skills, but we also equipped you with the knowledge and confidence to enter and negotiate your career in this challenging, but exciting field.

At BNU, we will help develop vital business and working processes; including interpretation of a brief; research methods; analysis and ideas development. As well as the skills needed to successfully produce outcomes that evoke emotion, tell stories and communicate messages, so as to meet client and audience expectations.

Stay updated with all our latest BA (Hons) Graphic Design and BA (Hons) Illustration news by following us on Instagram @bucks_graphics

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Why study at Buckinghamshire New University?

If you have completed a foundation-level degree, HND, or equivalent qualifications in a relevant Art and Design subject, you can choose to top-up your studies to gain a full bachelor’s degree.

A top-up degree is the equivalent of the final year of an undergraduate degree, and offers a chance to deepen your knowledge, skills and understanding of your subject, while also getting an internationally-recognised qualification.

With a history of delivery expert craft, art and design education for more than 130 years, Buckinghamshire New University is the perfect place to start your creative career.

As a well-established course which has been running for over 30 years we have built up an excellent network of Alumni. Many are now in senior positions in the design world, both, nationally and internationally whom we can call upon and invite in to give guest lectures to share their experiences, knowledge and real-world insights with the current students.

Led by our enthusiastic and dedicated team of design practitioners and experienced academics, you will have the freedom to explore all areas of graphic design, from typography and illustration to branding and editorial design, whilst being supported in your development of design skills and strategies.

Our Small group sizes enable staff and students to work together as a friendly and collaborative community of learners and designers. you’ll have access to a range of our facilities to help you bring your visions to life. This includes Adobe Creative Suite programmes and a range of hands-on methods, from silkscreen and letterpress to laser cutting and 3D printing technology.

During your time with us you’ll get direct access to guest lectures and can benefit from live project briefs, master classes, and plenty of networking chances. As well as this you’ll have the opportunity to enter a range of industry-established competitions, helping you get ahead in your career.

With London only a short journey away, you can take the opportunity to visit some of the world’s best exhibitions, galleries and museums for inspiration.

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What facilities can I use?

We have 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.

What will I study?

This course gives you many opportunities to explore the diverse world of graphic design. Whichever graphic specialism interests you, be it editorial anddesign, or branding and identity, we give you many opportunities to write your own brief and start realising your ideas.

You'll study modules that arecentred around your own career aspirations and,through guest lectures from industry specialists, seminars and live and industry projects, you'llbuild yourown distinctive portfolio that demonstrates your unique strengths and interests forprospective work opportunities aftergraduation.

You’ll also work with professional graphic designers and illustrators who will critique your work and help you improve your designs. Workshops, lectures and seminars with other students in the art and design department help you prepare you for life in a studio or freelance environment, where you will need good presentation and ideas generation skills as you meet and impress clients. We have visiting tutors also running workshop-based sessions in fields as diverse as editorial and design.

How will I be taught and assessed?

You’ll work alongside a diverse community of designers and illustrators, 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.

To achieve the full BA (Hons) in Graphic Design you will need to complete a major project, a dissertation as well as undertake a Professional Practice module.

The major project and dissertation will allow you to investigate a topic important to you within graphic design. You will cover the whole research process, undertaking empirical investigation and analysis. You will be allocated a dissertation supervisor, who will offer support and advice.

The Professional Practice module gives you the opportunity to undertake work-based learning or answer live industry briefs, gaining the practical and transferable skills you need for your career in the creative industries.

Placement Plus

BNUis a Placements Plus university. So, whatever degree you do, you can be sure there’ll be plenty of industry-relevant opportunities on offer, to help you get into your chosen field.

We’ll also prepare you for work beforehand, with special skills for work training, further boosting your CV, and building skills employers will value. In recognition of the value we place on these skills we have incorporated this experience into your study time.

Placements Plus is all about helping you get some valuable experience under your belt while you’re a student. To increase your choices later, and help you get the graduate-level job you want.

Related Documents

BA (Hons) Graphic Design Programme Specification

What are the course entry requirements?

This programme is offered as a top-up qualification for students who have completed a HND, FDA, or other equivalent qualification in a relevant Art and Design subject, and wish to progress further to achieve an Honours degree.


This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on ourAcademic Advice section.

Year 1 Modules

Professional Practice

Integrated Final Major Project

Critical and Historical Studies – Dissertation

What are the tuition fees


Home, Academic Year 2023 - 2024

£9,250 per year


Overseas/International, Academic Year 2023 - 2024

£14,250 per year

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

You could benefit from financial support through a bursary or scholarship during your time as a student. For more details visit ourfinancial support, bursaries and scholarships section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:

0330 123 2023

What are my career prospects?

We have a good employment rate with many of our graduates going into work or further education after the course. As you develop a wide range of skills and abilities ready for your career, you’ll be able to specialise in a multitude of different areas.

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 also help you find employment after graduation. Have a look at ourCareers and Employabilitypages tofind out more.

Our BA (Hons) Graphic Design course will help prepare you for a range of career possibilities, such as:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Branding and Identity Design
  • Editorial Design
  • Illustrator
  • Web Design
  • Art Director
  • Advertising
  • Freelance Designer

You may also wish to stay on at Buckinghamshire New University and study our full-time or part-time postgraduate courses.

BA (Hons) Graphic Design (Top-up) (23)

Dr Elisavet Kalpaxi

  • Senior Lecturer

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Sarah Kirby-Ginns

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Philip Long

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Nick Wiltshire

  • Technician Demonstrator

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