Course Title: Engage in the business of graphic design

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2017

Course Code: GRAP5373C

Course Title: Engage in the business of graphic design

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C6152 - Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact: Alistair Briggs

Course Contact Phone: +61 9925 9446

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Ruth Wellington

Nominal Hours: 65

Regardless of the mode of delivery, represent a guide to the relative teaching time and student effort required to successfully achieve a particular competency/module. This may include not only scheduled classes or workplace visits but also the amount of effort required to undertake, evaluate and complete all assessment requirements, including any non-classroom activities.

Pre-requisites and Co-requisites

None required.

Course Description

In this course you will develop the skills and knowledge required to adopt a professional, commercial approach to the business of graphic design. You will gain an understanding of the different professional associations, working with clients, how to cost graphic design work as well as approaches to marketing your design services. You will also engage in a period of work placement.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUAGRD601 Engage in the business of graphic design


1 Adopt professional work practices

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Develop and maintain a professional work ethic to support graphic design practice

1.2 Collaborate, communicate and share ideas with other professionals about creative and commercial aspects of graphic design

1.3 Evaluate the skills and knowledge needed to operate as a professional graphic designer

1.4 Evaluate own current skills and abilities and the need for further professional development

1.5 Evaluate all aspects of own practice on an ongoing basis


2 Develop commercial skills for graphic design

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Assess the key commercial relationships that operate in the graphic design sector, and how they are affected by changing trends

2.2 Investigate costing practices and charges for graphic design work in different industry contexts

2.3 Assess the opportunities used by graphic designers to promote their services

2.4 Analyse the client perspective of graphic design and its impact on professional practice

2.5 Evaluate relevant information to build own approach to the commercial position of own practice


3 Analyse the rights and obligations of graphic designers

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Evaluate the legal and moral rights and obligations of graphic designers

3.2 Practise work and business in ways that meet legal and moral obligations

3.3 Pursue own rights as a graphic designer consistent with own professional and ethical standards


4 Pursue professional graphic design opportunities

Performance Criteria:

4.1 Evaluate new work opportunities for graphic designers at a local and global level

4.2 Identify and evaluate opportunities that exist in current and developing graphic design trends

Learning Outcomes

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities will take place in a studio, workshop or classroom using industry standard tools and resources. You will complete exercises and industry-related projects. You will also be required to undertake independent study.

In class activities may include:

  • class exercises
  • tutorials
  • guest lectures or site visits
  • practical demonstrations
  • workshops
  • group discussion and activities
  • review and revision
  • peer learning
  • peer teaching and class presentations
  • teacher directed group activities/projects
  • workshopping of student projects including peer/lecturer feedback

Out of class activities may include:

  • independent research
  • independent project based work
  • studio practice
  • online tutorials and activities
  • review and revision


Teaching Schedule

 WeekLearning activityGRAP5373C ENVI5096C
 1 Course Overview, Timeline and WIL info.
 Begin Task 1 - What Kind of Designer Do I Want To Be? .
 2 Intro to Project 1: Self Promotion Suite: DEVELOP BRANDING. 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4
 Continue with Project 1: Self Promotion Suite.
 Continue with Project 1: Self Promotion Suite.
 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4
 5 NO CLASS - Curriculum day  
 LINKED IN. Continue with Project 1: Self Promotion Suite.
 Submit Project 1: Self Promotion Suite AT END OF CLASS
 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4
 8 Time Management task and activities.
 Task 2: Collaborative project: Graduate’s Guide - produce an info booklet
 9 Task 2: Collaborative project: Graduate’s Guide - produce an info booklet 1,2,3,4  1,2,3,4
 10 Task 2: Collaborative project: Graduate’s Guide - DUE 1,2,3,4 
 11 Clients, Contracts and Agencies. Project 2 - WIL presentation brief 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4
 Mid semester break: Sept 16 - Oct 1 (inclusive)  
 12 Record Keeping Basics, How To Charge Design Fees 1,2,3,4 
 13 Project 2: Presentation tips and preparation 1,2,3,4 
 14 Project 2 DUE: Student WIL presentations 1,2,3,4 
 15 Student WIL presentations continued (if needed). Exhibition prep. 1,2,3,4 1,2,3,4
 16 Exhibition 1,2,3,4 

This course (GRAP5373C - Engage in the business of graphic design - CUAGRD601) will be delivered in the same weekly session as ENVI5096C - Establish and maintain envronmentally sustainable creative practice. - CUAPPR504. The timeline above contains activities for both courses.

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

References/ recommended texts

Title: Inside the business of graphic design : 60 leaders share their secrets of success
Author: Fishel, Catharine M.
Publisher: New York : Allworth Press 2003 

Title: The business of graphic design : a sensible approach to marketing and managing a graphic design firm
Author: Gold, Ed
Publisher: New York : Watson-Guptill 1985

Title: How to be a graphic designer, without losing your soul
Author: Shaughnessy, Adrian
Publisher: London : Laurence King 2010 

Title: Design is a job
Author: Monteiro, Mike.
Publisher: New York : A Book Apart, 2012.

Title: What they didn't teach you in design school : the essential guide to growing your design career.
Author: Cleaver, Phil
Publisher: S.l. : Writer's Digest, 2014

Other Resources

You are advised to look at the course myRMIT site (Blackboard) and also for Google Docs and Google Groups via your student Google Account for ongoing updated information. A range of learning resources and references are provided throughout the year. Additional information relating to this will be provided on an ongoing basis. A digital resource folder resides on network server. Further information regarding access to this is available in the ‘Computer Survival Kit’ provided during orientation.

You will require a personal storage device and tools as outlined in tool kit list.

Amongst the library’s electronic resources is the ability to access for online tutorials and lessons. You may be given these tutorials (and other resources) to supplement your classroom learning.

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems and access to specialised facilities and relevant software. You will also have access of the library resources.

The University Library has extensive resources for Graphic Design students. The Library has produced a subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies

The Library provides guides on academic referencing and subject specialist help via your Liaison Librarian


Overview of Assessment

Assessment is on-going throughout the course. Assessment tasks will require you demonstrate the application of knowledge and skills through practical projects and/or exercises and creative activities.
The assessment tasks are:
A folio of self promotional material.
Completion of a period of work placement.
A verbal presentation and written reflection about your WIL (work integrated learning) experience.

An assessment charter summarises your responsibilities as an RMIT student as well as those of your teachers.

Assessment Tasks

Tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Feedback throughout the course may be written, verbal or a combination of both.

Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks and you should engage in all formative tasks.

This course has two Summative Tasks, both of which must be completed. Each task has an allocated percentage of the total grade. You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.

Tasks and Projects:

Task 1 - Written Response/Personal Reflection A5 booklet
“What kind of designer do I want to be?”

Task 2 - Graduate’s Guide Publication
Collaborative team work. Working in a team as a designated role,
create a booklet with a set of industry resources for current and graduating students.

Project 1 - Self Promotion Suite - A5 Booklet
Business stationery, cv, cover letter sample for one job, online folio, business name
and ABN. Must be presented in the form of a booklet.
(Weighting: 50% of the result for this course)

DUE WEEK 14 and 15
Project 2 - Workplace Integrated Learning Presentation and report.
Work placement written reflection in the form of a class presentation and report.
(Weighting: 50% of the result for this course)

At the completion of the course, grading will be offered in addition to, and after, competency based assessment.

Grades which apply to courses delivered in accordance with competency-based assessment, but which also use graded assessment:

CHD Competent with High Distinction
CDI Competent with Distinction
CC Competent with Credit
CAG Competency Achieved - Graded
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment



Assessment Matrix

An assessment matrix demonstrating alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency is available from the course contact person (stated above) and on Blackboard.

Other Information


The major aspect of your learning experience involves studio based exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that you attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity for success.


You will receive verbal and written feedback by teacher on your work. This feedback also includes suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects. Student feedback at RMIT (unresolved)

Student Progress

Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. Student progress policy (unresolved)

Special consideration Policy (Late Submission)

All assessment tasks are required to be completed to a satisfactory level. If you are unable to complete any piece of assessment by the due date, you will need to apply for an extension. Special consideration


When submitting work for assessment you are required to complete a declaration of authorship. This must be done for every summative assessment task. This statement acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications. For non-digital submission use the printed form provided. For digital online submission please use e-Submission process. Information regarding the e-Submission process

On Time Submission and Impact of Late Submission
On time submission is an important factor in your assessment. Employability skills are embedded in all courses and these include Planning & Organising and Self-management. For this reason, late work impacts on your overall grade for each assessment task.

The following adjustments for late submission will be made: Work submitted late will be assessed for competency only. Submissions are only permitted during the period that the competency is scheduled.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

RMIT University has a strict policy on plagiarism and academic integrity. Please refer to the website for more information on this policy go to Academic Integrity. Academic Integrity (unresolved)


Course Overview: Access Course Overview