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

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term1 2024

Course Code: GRAP5415C

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

School: 515T Creative Industries

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C4414 - Certificate IV in Design

Course Contact: Robin Blood

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 4683

Course Contact Email:

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

Jansen Lye


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 learn the skills and knowledge required to source information on design history and theory, and to apply that information in the individual’s design work.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUADES305 Source and apply information on the history and theory of design


1. Collect information on design history and theory

Performance Criteria:

1.1 Identify and access applicable sources of information on design history and theory

1.2 Organise research material and findings for use in design practice, facilitating easy access and cross-referencing


2. Apply information to own area of work

Performance Criteria:

2.1 Evaluate information in the context of current design practice

2.2 Assess which aspects of information on design history and theory could be used or adapted to inform current practice

2.3 Apply understanding of own area of work using applicable information in culturally appropriate way


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 course you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate competency in the above elements. 

Details of Learning Activities

Learning activities will take place in a studio and computer laboratory using industry standard tools and resources. You will complete exercises and industry style projects. You will also be required to undertake independent study. In-class activities will include:

  • class exercises
  • tutorials
  • practical demonstrations
  • workshops
  • group discussion
  • 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

While all course content will be delivered, the order and mode of delivery may change depending on the availability of specialist facilities and equipment. Please check Canvas regularly as any updates will be communicated by your teacher.

Week Date(beginning of the week) TopicAssessment / Learning activities
Week 1 12 Feb

Overview of Assessment Task 1 and Assessment Task 2.

Overview of unit and topics explored in Assessment Task 1 - booklet:
1. Cultural and Creative movements
2. Modernist movements and their impacts on design
3. Graphic Design
4. Current trends 

Referencing and sourcing

Design Principles and Elements

Week 2 19 Feb

Topic 1 - Cultural and creative movements
1A - Victorian Era

Referencing and sourcing workshop


Week 3 26 Feb

Topic 1 - Cultural and creative movements
1B - Art Nouveau / La Belle Epoque - Arts and Craft movement

Week 4 4 March

Worksheet discussion for Topic 1A & B.

Draft 1 - Worksheet Topic 1A and B (non-assessable)
Week 5 11 March Topic 2 - Modernist movements and their impacts on design
2A - Cubism and Futurism, Constructivism, suprematism
Week 6 18 March

Topic 2 - Modernist movements and their impacts on design
2B - De Stijl and Bauhaus

Draft 1 - Worksheet Topic 1,2,3,4 (non-assessable)
Week 7 25 March

Topic 3 - Graphic Design
3A - 1930-1950, The age of Poster and Magazine Design, American Modernism World War 2 propaganda

1950-1965, Post WWII design, The Fused Metaphor, The New York School, Swiss Typography


Easter Break 29: March - 7 April

Week 8 8 April

Topic 3 - Graphic Design
3B - 1965-1975 Corporate Identity design, Protest, Fillmore, Typographic Eclecticism, Album design


Discussion on Assessment Task 2

Week 9 15  April

Topic 3 -  Graphic Design

1975-1990 Japanese design, Punk and New Wave, Low-tech Seattle, Post Modernism

3C -  1990-2010 The emergence of Digital, Minimalism, Vernacular, technology and design

Week 10 22  April

Topic 4 - Contemporary Design trends

4A - Professional Associations and knowledge development opportunities

AT1: Booklet for review and discussion
Date -25/04/2024 -
is a public holiday

Week 11 29 April


Introduction to Assessment Task 2 - Part A Project, Part B knowledge questions

Research and resourcing

Discussion on Knowledge Development

Week 12 6 May Concept development 1 Assessment Task 1 - Due
Week 13 13 May

Concept development 2

Feedback session

Week 14 20 May

Resolution of concept

Principles of Design and Elements

Week 15 27 May

Resolution of concept

Week 16 3 June Class Consultation  
Week 17 10 June

Class Consultation

Assessment Task 2 - Due
Week 18 17 June

No Class, consultation only



Learning Resources

Prescribed Texts


Other Resources

Students will need to refer to CANVAS as teaching resources may vary according to teaching schedule and task requirements.


Prescribed Texts: There are no compulsory prescribed texts in this course.

You are advised to look at the Learning Hub at myRMIT site for ongoing updated information.
A range of learning resources and references are provided throughout the year.
You will require a personal storage device and tools as outlined in tool kit list.
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.


Study Support

RMIT Library.
You will also have access to the library resources.
Among 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. The University Library has extensive resources for Design students.

RMIT Library has produced the following:
subject guide that includes quality online and print resources for your studies.

Overview of Assessment

Assessment for this course is ongoing throughout the semester. Your knowledge and understanding of course content is assessed through participation in class exercises, oral/written presentations and through the application of learned skills and insights. Full assessment briefs will be provided and can be found on CANVAS.  

Assessment Tasks

Students enrolled in Vocational Education and Training qualifications are assessed for Competency. To be assessed as Competent means you have consistently demonstrated the required knowledge and skills at a standard expected in the workplace. 

To be assessed as Competent in this course, you will need to complete each assessment task to a satisfactory standard. You will receive feedback from the teacher for each assessment task. This course has 2 assessment tasks. 
Overview of Assessment 
The assessment tasks will be as follows:
AT1 - History Flash Cards
AT2 - Design project

Assessment Tasks

AT1 - History Flash Cards - Due Week 12
You are tasked with creating a History Flash card containing images and annotated content including referenced links for easy access and cross referencing based on the 20th and 21st-century key stylistic periods. To do this, you are required to compile your responses based on the supporting worksheets provided in (Appendix A) that relate to the history and theory of design.
AT2 - Design Project - Due Week 17

You are required to design and produce one personal design outcome referencing a selected style period in a contemporary way. The project chosen should reflect your own work and design interests, however, you may also consider the following project option:

  • Wall graphics for indoor or outdoor space


*Due dates for assessment tasks dependent on access to specialist facilities and equipment may change. Please check Canvas regularly as any updates will be communicated by your teacher.

You are required to demonstrate all learning outcomes to a satisfactory standard.
You will receive feedback with verbal and/or written evaluation of your progress within class time. 
The submitted projects will be assessed with written feedback as well as a checklist that relates to separate components of the project and the overall outcome.

Results that apply to courses that are delivered and assessed in accordance with competency-based assessment are:

CA: Competency Achieved

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 matrices are available through Program Administration.

Other Information


Your learning experience will involve class-based teaching, discussion, demonstration and practical exercises It is strongly advised that you attend all timetabled sessions. This will allow you to engage in the required learning activities, ensuring you the maximum opportunity to complete this course successfully.


Feedback - 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

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


Information on assessment including Special consideration, Adjustments to assessment, (e.g. applying for an extension of time):


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 competency assessment. 
Submissions that are assessed as Not Satisfactory can be re-submitted once and this is 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.

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 about your studies:

You can access My Studies through the RMIT website for information about timetables, important dates, assessment dates, results and progress, Canvas etc.



Credit Transfer and Recognition of Prior Learning:

Credit transfer is the recognition of previously completed formal learning (an officially accredited qualification).

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is an assessment process that allows you to demonstrate competence using the skills you have gained through experience in the workplace, voluntary work, informal or formal training or other life experiences.

Please speak to your teacher if you wish to discuss applying for Credit Transfer or RPL for the unit(s) of competency addressed in this course.

Course Overview: Access Course Overview