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Graphic Communication encourages free expression and is about communicating and expressing information in a visual, creative and exciting way. The course focuses on the relationship between typography and image, leading to a broad range of Graphic Design outcomes. 

The specification studied is the OCR Art & Design (Graphic Communication). It may be taken alongside Photography, and Design: Art, Craft and Design and Textile Design.


Course content

This is a two year course. Students are assessed on the following two units at the end of the second year.

Unit One

Personal Investigation

60% of A-level

Unit Two

Externally Set Task

40% of A-level

In the first year students following the course explore graphic design in its widest sense, through coursework projects and theoretical knowledge. Subjects covered include typography, advertising, packaging, illustration and photography. The use of computer software is included in the course, alongside more traditional skills, such as observational drawing and printmaking to produce effective graphic design solutions.

In the second year students will choose their own areas of study and will set their own design briefs building upon the knowledge and skills that they have learnt in the first year. The work is much more independent with advice and guidance from the staff. Students are also required to produce a written study about an artist or designer as part of their Personal Investigation.

Methods of Teaching and Learning

The course is taught by specialist practitioners. All practical sessions are supported by demonstrations, a theoretical background and critical studies. In their first year students are given a thorough grounding in core skills through experimentation in a wide variety of media. In the second year students work and develop their own projects, ideas and specialisms. A minimum of 4.5 hours private study per week is required. It is essential that students are encouraged to do first hand research and a number of trips are organised. 

Methods of Assessment

All units will be marked internally by the Creative Arts team and will be moderated by the exam board.


The Graphics studio is well equipped with a suite of computers with Adobe Creative Suite software and graphic drawing tablets, a mini studio, A1 and A3 and sublimation colour printers as well as plenty of space for practical work such as mark making and printmaking. Students are also given a subscription to Adobe Creative Cloud which they can run on their home computer.


The A-level in Graphic Communication provides a sound basis for students who wish to proceed to higher education as well as being a useful background to a career within the creative industries.


Trips and visiting speakers are organised throughout the year in order to inspire students and give them a broader understanding of Graphic Communication. These will come at a variable cost but we will always keep costs down wherever we can.


The cost of all trips will be the responsibility of the student. Students are expected to have funds to cover additional equipment and printing costs as directed by their individual project requirements. Financial assistance with printing costs is available if required.

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Graphic Communication has been added to My Courses