Course Title: Source and apply information on the history and theory of design

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2014

Course Code: GRAP5334C

Course Title: Source and apply information on the history and theory of design

School: 345T Media and Communication

Campus: City Campus

Program: C4312 - Certificate IV in Photo Imaging

Course Contact : Program Administration

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4815

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Teacher: Naomi Herzog
Phone: 9925 4170

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


Course Description

In this course you will be able to source, understand and apply information on design history and theory with particular emphasis on design in photography. This course will cover current and more traditional trends in design and examine photographic design history and theory.
You will be identifying and producing images that demonstrate the critical elements and principles of design that contribute to a final image or work.

This is also reflected in the training and assessment of this unit.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

BSBDES305A Source and apply information on the history and theory of design


Element 1. Collect information on history and theory of design

Performance Criteria:

1.1. Identify and access relevant sources of information on design history and theory
1.2. Organise research material and findings for current or future use in design practice, in a manner which facilitates easy access and cross-referencing


Element 2. Apply information to own area of work

Performance Criteria:

2.1. Evaluate information in the context of current design practice
2.2. Assess ways in which aspects of information on design history and theory could be used or adapted to inform current practice
2.3. Use relevant information in a culturally appropriate way to develop an understanding of own area of work


Element 3. Update and maintain knowledge of design trends

Performance Criteria:

3.1. Identify and use opportunities to update and expand knowledge of design trends and developments
3.2. Incorporate and integrate knowledge into design activities

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to source, understand and apply information on design history and theory with particular focus on design in photography. You will be able to identify and produce images that demonstrate the critical elements and principles of design that contribute to a final image or work.

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities will consist of:
In class learning activities include, but are not limited to:

  • lectures & tutorials
  • class exercises
  • class presentations
  • group discussion
  • online research
  • work shopping of students’ own projects

Out of class activities include, but are not limited to:

  • research (online /library /public displays/galleries)
  • independent project based work

Teaching Schedule

Week Class content Assessment Due Elements

Lecture –– Design Elements –
the Frame & other such dissections

Assignment Briefing / Overview of semester/ Planning Timeline

 Assignment Briefing  1, 2,
2  Lecture –– Frame & the rule of thirds

Genius of photography 1

Prac - Local shoot – the frame

   1, 2,
3 Lecture – Line
the journey through the image

Genius of photography 2

Prac - Local shoot – Line

   1, 2,
4 Lecture – Colour
Impact and Persuasion

Cracking the colour code 3

Prac - Local shoot – Colour

   1, 2, 3
5  Lecture – Space (Perspective, shape, form and balance

Genius of photography 3


Formative 1 Local Shoot proof sheets submission 1, 2, 3

(Surface, Tone, rhythm & unity)

Genius of photography 4

Analysis of 3 photographers – class crit

Prac - Local shoot – Texture and/or Repetition

   1, 2, 3

 Lecture – Light
The photographer’s element

Prac - Local shoot – Light and your subject

 Formative Item 2 due
Analysis of a photographer class exercise
 1, 2,
8 LECTURE - Design in perspective – Contemporary Australian photography

Genius of photography 5

Formative Item 3 due  1, 2,
9 Lecture – Design in perspective – Contemporary Chinese photography    2, 3
10 Lecture – Design in perspective – Contemporary Western photography
Genius of photography 6
 Summative Item due 4 local shoot images and report  2, 3

Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts

Freeman M., The Photographer’s Eye - Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos. Focal Press, 2007
Szarkowski J., The Photographer’s Eye, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 2007


You are advised to look at the course Blackboard site for ongoing updated information and to make use of RMIT’s library database facilities.

Other Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online system.

RMIT has a range of equipment available for students to use to complete their assignments including access to RMIT labs with computers, server storage space and required software to complete exercises and assignments. Many students prefer to also have their own personal computer with current Photoshop, Acrobat, Bridge and editing software as well as personal data storage devices (generally a minimum of two)

Overview of Assessment

Assessment in this class requires you to:
• Integrate a specific Design element into your images
• Research & analyse work by well known photographers
• Arrange typographical elements within an image utilising the principles and elements of design and photography


Assessment Tasks

Assessment items include:

  1. Local Shoots Proof Sheet
    Incorporating the frame, line and colour
    Due Week 5
  2. Analysis of a photographer
    Class exercise - review 3 works by a photographer and respond to questions provided. Due Week 7
  3. Local Shoots Proof Sheet
    Incorporating Space/Shape, Texture/Repetition and Light
    Due Week 8


Pdf of images and Report of 4 final selected images from the Local Shoot series
Review the work from the local shoots and select the top four images from different shoots  that best represent the selected subject. Respond to the key questions provided and submit as a pdf
Due – week 10

Assessment tasks in this course are either formative or summative. Formative tasks provide the basis for ongoing feedback and can be considered essential building blocks for the more substantial summative assessment tasks. Summative assessment tasks in this unit are graded.

To demonstrate competency in this course you need to complete each one of the listed assessment items to a satisfactory standard.
You must submit all pieces of assessment in order for your competency to be assessed in this course.
For further information on the assessment and grading criteria, please refer to the course Blackboard site.

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


CA - Competency Achieved - Ungraded
NYC Not Yet Competent
DNS Did Not Submit for Assessment

Assessment Matrix

The assessment matrix demonstrates alignment of assessment tasks with the relevant Unit of Competency. These are available through the course contact in Program administration.

Other Information


The major learning experience involves studio based exercises, demonstration and production. It is strongly advised that students attend all sessions in order to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring the maximum opportunity to gain the competency.

Cover Sheet for Submissions
You must complete a submission cover sheet for every piece of submitted work. This signed sheet acknowledges that you are aware of the plagiarism implications.

Feedback - You will receive spoken and written feedback from teachers on your work. Where appropriate, this feedback will also include suggestions on how you can proceed to the next stage of developing your projects.
Student feedback at RMIT;ID=9pp3ic9obks7

Student Progress
Monitoring academic progress is an important enabling and proactive strategy to assist you to achieve your learning potential. Student progress policy;ID=vj2g89cve4uj1

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. You can apply in writing for up to a week’s extension from your course teacher. If you need a longer extension, you wil need to apply for special consideration. Special consideration, appeals and discipline;ID=qkssnx1c5r0y

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;ID=kw02ylsd8z3n

Work Placement:
It is a requirement of this program that all students participate in authentic work related tasks. These may be either simulated or in a real work environment. On occasion, we are approached by industry and given opportunities for students to apply for short term placements. When these placement opportunities arise, students are required to negotiate the specific details with the relevant program coordinator or teacher. All industry placements require students, RMIT staff and host organisations to sign a written agreement prior to the commencement of the placement.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview