Course Title: Design Principles and Elements

Part A: Course Overview

Course Title: Design Principles and Elements

Credit Points: 12.00

Important Information:

Please note that this course may have compulsory in-person attendance requirements for some teaching activities.  

To participate in any RMIT course in-person activities or assessment, you will need to comply with RMIT vaccination requirements which are applicable during the duration of the course. This RMIT requirement includes being vaccinated against COVID-19 or holding a valid medical exemption.  

Please read this RMIT Enrolment Procedure as it has important information regarding COVID vaccination and your study at RMIT:  

Please read the Student website for additional requirements of in-person attendance:  


Please check your Canvas course shell closer to when the course starts to see if this course requires mandatory in-person attendance. The delivery method of the course might have to change quickly in response to changes in the local state/national directive regarding in-person course attendance. 


Course Code




Learning Mode

Teaching Period(s)


City Campus


320T Architecture & Urban Design


Sem 1 2009,
Sem 1 2011,
Sem 1 2012,
Sem 1 2013,
Sem 1 2014,
Sem 1 2015,
Sem 1 2017,
Sem 1 2018,
Sem 1 2019


City Campus


375T Vocational Design and Social Context


Sem 1 2020,
Sem 1 2021


City Campus


515T Creative Industries


Sem 1 2022

Course Coordinator: Julian Pratt

Course Coordinator Phone: +61 3 9925 4820

Course Coordinator Email:

Course Coordinator Location: 71.02.02

Course Coordinator Availability: by appointment

Pre-requisite Courses and Assumed Knowledge and Capabilities

Co-requisite - GRAP 2377 

Course Description

Design Principles and Elements is focused on providing you with a design language through familiarity with the essential concepts and principles underlying all good design.
The course encourages you to experiment with different forms and different elements. The course is an essential introduction to later studies in design and aims to help you develop creative methods of thinking and a critical approach to your own work.
In this introductory phase you will extend basic modelling skills and a working knowledge of materials and processes by developing concepts using models and presentations.
Learning takes place in a studio environment and you will be encouraged to take part in critiquing your own and other’s work. The practice of design combines both independent and collaborative work and this course requires you to use both methods of design development.


Objectives/Learning Outcomes/Capability Development

In this course you will develop the following program learning outcomes:
• Evaluate your own work, ideas and concepts, including self, peer and industry critique.


Upon successful completion of this course, you should have an understanding of:
• Develop of creative concepts.
• Evaluate designs against the essential principles and elements of good design.
• Formulate and communicate an aesthetic judgement of forms in a variety of communicative modes including digital.
• Outline critique of own and peer’s work.
• Develop a creative concept from a project topic.
• Create three dimensional models from the own concepts.
• Contribution to peer discussions of your own and other’s concepts
• Plan, organise and manage concept development process to model-making stage.

Overview of Learning Activities

You will be engaged in learning that involves a range of activities such as:
• Studio based discussion and development of design ideas with teachers and peers.
• Topic specific seminars; space to introduce, explore and extend key course topics, theories and design projects.
• Group-based learning; group discussion, collaborative projects and peer critique.
• Presentations; the communication of your ideas to peers and teachers.
Negotiated learning – during the program you will have the opportunity to negotiate project outcomes in consultation with your teachers.

Overview of Learning Resources

RMIT will provide you with resources and tools for learning in this course through our online systems.
A list of recommended learning resources will be provided by your lecturer.
You will also be expected to seek further resources relevant to the focus of your own learning.

The University Library has extensive resources for Furniture 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 Tristan Badham (

Overview of Assessment

You will be assessed on how well you meet the course’s learning outcomes and on your development against the program capabilities.
You will be required to submit a portfolio of works that includes evidence of all of the work undertaken in the course, including representations or copies of any project proposal, culmination or outcomes.

Feedback will be given on all assessment tasks.

If you have a long term medical condition and/or disability it may be possible to negotiate to vary aspects of the learning or assessment methods. You can contact the program coordinator or the Equitable Learning Services if you would like to find out more.
Your course assessment conforms to RMIT assessment principles, regulations, policies and procedures: