Rethinking conventions

SP Design School » Courses » Full-time Diploma » Visual Communication and Media Design

Diploma in Visual Communication and Media Design (DVMD - S93)

Overview Entry Requirements What You'll Study Your Future

What You'll Study

Common Foundation

Module Code Module Name Total Hours
SD0002 Foundation Design Studio
This module introduces the basic skills in design and creative processes. Ideation will be taught through a series of short projects to explore various design methods. Students will be taught to un-learn the preconceptions that they may have accumulated and learn to question normality and standard practices and to think creatively and critically.
SD0003 Basic Drawing Class
This module introduces sketching as the basic visualisation tool for designers. Students will be exposed to the fundamentals of drawing concepts, observation and sighting techniques. Through still life, perspective and human figure drawing exercises, the module provides a fundamental ground for form, texture, proportion, spatial relationship perspective, tonal values and composition studies. Students will learn both analytical and expressive components of the drawing process.
SD0005 Experience Design Methods
The module aims to instil fundamental user research methods essential for design students and will equip them with basic techniques in observation, analysis and exploration of ideas. The module is delivered through a series of exercises designed to equip students with skills in observational and analytical methods to allow students to understand the users as social being interacting with spaces, objects and time. Students will also be introduced to basic facilitation skills to engage their audience in design activities.
SD0006 Logic Design
This module aims to equip students with foundational knowledge to tackle elementary computational problems. The intention is to train students to design solutions to solve problems using a computer program, thus creating opportunities to experience key elements of computational thinking which encompass: ● decomposition: breaking down data, processes or problems into smaller, manageable parts. ● pattern recognition: observing and generalising patterns, trends, and regularities in data and processes into rules or insights. ● abstraction: identifying the general principles that generate these patterns. ● algorithm design: developing step-by-step instructions for solving problems/tasks.
SD0007 Course Specific Skills
This module aims to introduce students to the fundamentals of the design, hardware, software and technical skills necessary for their respective diplomas. Students will be expected to understand the basics of each area as a foundation for further development in their respective fields.
SD0008 Graphic Visual Communication
This module introduces students to various means of digital media. Students will be introduced to the basic fundamentals of digital photography, vector graphics creation and typography. Photography skills will be taught to equip students with the vocabulary of the medium to convert photographs with basic digital retouching skills to transform images into meaningful storytelling images. Digital Vector Illustration with practical sessions in typography and layout design are also introduced. Students will understand the basics of page hierarchy and effective visual flow through layout & composition design. Students will have a portfolio of typographic, photographic, vector design work and projects demonstrating the application of the module topics.

First Year

Module Code Module Name Total Hours
LC1054 Communicating for Personal and Team Effectiveness
Aims to equip students with the necessary skills to develop self-confidence in their spoken and written interactions with intended audiences for specific purposes, in informal contexts.
LC1055 Communicating for Project (Proposal) Effectiveness
Aims to equip students with the skills to articulate and communicate ideas persuasively, and to work effectively in teams. They will be taught to pitch ideas or concepts and to write proposals to an intended audience.
LC8001 General Education 1
Aims to equip students with critical reasoning skills and provide them with opportunities to practise critical thinking through the exploration of contemporary social issues. It also provides a platform for students to learn the basics of arguments through the formal argumentation structure.
LC8002 General Education 2
Aims to equip students with the skills to critically analyse the elements of persuasion in narratives used in a variety of contexts to appreciate the power of storytelling in our daily life. Students will also explore the history of discrimination in societies and craft their responses through their own narrative.
SD006Z Design Theory and Research 1
This module aims to inculcate basic skills of critical analysis, reading, writing and research for first year design students. Using a set of design lenses as critical and theoretical building blocks, students will learn to apply theoretical ideas to augment their conceptual ideation, to build design arguments and evaluate design propositions through reflections, presentations and writing, and understand the foundations of design conceptualisation and thinking.
SD2102 Visual Design Studio
This module offers a focused study of graphic design concepts and the practice of graphic design communications. Building upon their foundational understanding in graphic design, students will hone their sensitivity and creativity in Typography and Colour, to formulate emotionally resonant visual solutions for effective communication. Students will learn the framework and strategies of infographic design.
SD2104 2D Motion Graphics
This module aims to deliver a practical approach to designing moving images for graphic communication solutions. Students will learn to create 2D motion graphics as a medium for design expression. Through studio sessions students are encouraged to explore key concepts and processes, such as ideation, storyboarding, graphical illustration, animation, audio insertion and special effects for 2D motion graphics projects. These skill sets are intended for use in the creation of music videos, title treatments, and other graphics for broadcast, film, web and advertising.
SD2106 Digital Photography & Image Processing
This module exposes students to the theory and practice of digital photography within the framework of an integrative digital workflow, including the finer points of digital image enhancement. Students will be taught product and portrait photography and learn the essentials of controlling and balancing artificial lights with natural lights to achieve impactful aesthetics for photography. Students will focus on studio and outdoor digital photography, and be equipped with the fundamentals of preparing digital images and advanced techniques of image manipulation. By the end of the module, students would have created a portfolio of photographic fine prints for commercial applications.
SD2107 Digital Arts Studio
This module will introduce students to key techniques, industry standard tools, and process to apply digital imaging into graphic and advertising outcomes. Students will be exposed to in-depth understanding and industry standard software applications for training. Integrating creativity and conceptualisation skills, students will be trained to convert raw images into outcomes used in the thriving digital media industry.
SP101A Education and Career Guidance 1
A compulsory module for all first year students, ECG 1 aims to develop an understanding of personal interests, strengths, values and life goals. With greater knowledge and understanding of self, planning and decision making in choosing a future career can be better developed. Some topics covered in ECG 1 include ‘Defining My SP Life’, ‘Personal Branding’, ‘Discovering My Interests’, ‘Planning for Success – My Personal Action Plan’ and more.

Second Year

Module Code Module Name Total Hours
LC1057 Communicating for Professional Effectiveness
Aims to equip students with the essential communication and interpersonal skills necessary for work and the pursuit of further studies.
LC8003 Social Innovation Project
Aims to equip students with the Design Thinking mindset, methods and tools to conceptualise innovative solutions for real life problems. Students will explore a social cause, go through the practical rigour of the Design Thinking process and apply suitable tools to fulfil the objectives of the project. Students will also be exposed to trends and issues related to themes, such as Healthcare, Active Ageing, Environment, and Social Integration. In the process, they will develop a better understanding of themselves and the world, as well as the positive impact they can make.
LC8004 General Education 3
Aims to enhance students’ knowledge and appreciation of a broad range of social, political and economic issues. Students will learn about the importance and relevance of information literacy skills as well as develop their ability to assess the validity and reliability of information from different sources, consider diverse perspectives, and put forward a convincing point of view.
SD2205 Portfolio Design
This module equips students with the skills to design a portfolio package to aid them in their post-polytechnic placement in the industry, and the required skills to market themselves suitably to the potential employers. Students will have their personal branding differentiated and articulated, and their works archived on a chosen platform creatively. They will also be trained to present themselves professionally at interview sessions, and identifying opportunities through industry networking.
SD2206 Video Fundamentals
This module exposes student in the theory and practice of digital video production. Students will be taught video camera techniques, audio capture techniques, non-linear editing techniques in both video and audio and learn the essentials of controlling and balancing artificial lights with natural lights to a achieve impactful aesthetics for videography. Students will focus on pre-production, production and post-production, and also be equipped with the fundamentals to prepare digital video in various formats for different platforms. By the end of the module, students will be expected to create a show reel of commercially viable work.
SD220Z Brand Design Studio
This module provides a key overview of applied design within real world commercial context, focusing on brand experience in an integrated communications environment. Students will learn key concepts and components of marketing and branding through the formulation of marketing plans and executing creatives in the areas of Corporate Identity, Packaging Design, Advertising Campaigns and Publication Design. Practical sessions on Desktop Publishing tools will equip students with the technical aspects of design visualisation. Pre-press skills and production knowledge will also be taught to ensure that students have a thorough understanding of the visual communications design ecosystem.
SD221Z Web Design
In this module, students will learn the basics of design, as well as front-end development for web. Students will begin with a practical understanding of information hierarchy and interface design, which escalates into the planning and production of multi-page web projects. The module focuses on web content management with the emphasis on user needs analysis.
SD601Z Design Theory and Research 2
This module aims to develop students’ critical and analytical skills with various design lenses in the research and study of technological, social, political, historical, cultural and economical aspects. This inquiry allows students to comprehend the influences and impacts that these factors can catalyse design propositions.
SD7201 Rapid Prototyping (Elective)
This module equips students with a functional understanding of Rhino 3D 5.0 as a design platform. Using Architectural and Product Designers models, students will be introduced to digital modelling techniques, precision modelling and geometry manipulation from design to build.
SD7202 User Experience Design (Elective)
This module equips students with fundamental knowledge of the User Experience (UX) Design Process. Students will immerse in understanding of ecosystem and people, learn methods to uncover the motivations of the user, and design the basis of how users can relate to experiences, through the rethinking of the architecture and flow. The module is taught through a participative studio and will equip students with specific methods in the research and early prototyping of designing an enhanced user experience.
SD7203 Virtual and Augmented Reality (Elective)
This module exposes students to innovative and creative processes that lie behind Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) development. Through introducing the unique affordances and design opportunities inherent to these platforms, students will master techniques for integrating contents and building interactive applications used for visualisation, simulation, communication and collaboration purposes. Potential trends and applications of these technologies used in the enhancement of user experience (UX) will also be explored.
SP201A Education and Career Guidance 2
ECG 2 is taken by all second year students. This module aims to develop professional skills necessary to seek and secure work. It also guides the students on how to discover and develop skills, knowledge and attitudes needed for work effectiveness and changes related to work. Topics covered in this module include ‘Job Search and Market Trends’, ‘Discovering Your Unique Selling Point’, ‘Resilience’, ‘Work Place Values’ and more.
ST0276 Ethics and Law of IT and Media
Provides students with an understanding of the ethical and moral aspects of Information Technology and media management, as well as the basic and general aspects of the law arising from the Information Technology and media industries. Upon the successful completion of this module, students will become aware of the ethical and moral issues faced by professionals in the Information Technology and media industries. They will also learn, understand and be able to apply general aspects of the law in Information Technology and the media to their work in future.

Third Year

Module Code Module Name Total Hours
IA8003 Internship Programme
This module aims to immerse students with the real-world industry experience. This programme comprises a 12-week internship programme integrating a structured learning outcome which facilitates authentic learning.
12 Weeks
SD230Z Communication Design Studio
After Visual Design Studio (Year 1) and Brand Design Studio (Year 2), the students then ladder up to Communication Design Studio in Year 3 to further refine their creative, conceptual and communication skills. Students will learn to address strategy and aesthetics in communications design, while experimenting with the possibilities and constraints of virtual, physical and mixed spaces. With an increasingly mixed-media landscape, the module covers different ways of engaging with the masses in a more interactive and personalised manner. Covering both traditional and digital media, students will also explore creating brand stories in alternative and new media using techniques from basic electronics to experimental photography. The module will culminate in the Final Year Project, where the next generation of visual communicators will be assessed on how they synthesize creativity, strategy and technique to create immersive brand narratives.
SD602Z Design Theory and Research 3
This module aims to explore and challenge design methodologies, forms and practices. This allows the students to employ the theories in their final year project with the intent to expound their design propositions.


Please note: Course structure subjected to change.


Did you know?

We actively engage our students with industry clients, strategising and executing real life briefs, and pitching their creative proposals direct to the clients themselves. We also see our students works commissioned by established brands through project collaborations locally and abroad.