Course Title: Engage in the business of graphic design

Part B: Course Detail

Teaching Period: Term2 2014

Course Code: GRAP5341C

Course Title: Engage in the business of graphic design

School: 320T Architecture & Design

Campus: Brunswick Campus

Program: C6127 - Advanced Diploma of Graphic Design

Course Contact : Nicola Hardy

Course Contact Phone: +61 3 9925 9186

Course Contact

Name and Contact Details of All Other Relevant Staff

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

There are no pre-requisites however this unit will be co-delivered with CUVPRP505A Establish and maintain safe professional practice in a studio cluster called Design for Industry.

Course Description

In this unit 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 workplacement.

National Codes, Titles, Elements and Performance Criteria

National Element Code & Title:

CUVGRD601A Engage in the business of graphic design


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 ways in which graphic design work is costed and charged in different industry contexts
2.3 Assess the opportunities and avenues used by graphic designers to promote their services
2.4 Analyse the client perspective in graphic design practice and its impact on professional
2.5 Develop an individual approach to the commercial aspects of own practice based on evaluation of relevant information


3 Analyse the rights and obligations of graphic designers

Performance Criteria:

3.1 Evaluate the legal and moral rights and obligations of graphic
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 offered by current and emerging trends in 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, as a key component of professional and personal growth

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, you will have developed and applied the skills and knowledge required to demonstrate your competency in the above elements.

Details of Learning Activities

This course addresses the design process in a holistic way. It will support students to develop skills in areas such as design problem solving, concept development, design research, audience analysis, design production, application of design principles and design delivery. There is an emphasis on projects that simulate real world industry situations and finished graphic design work suitable for inclusion in an industry ready portfolio.

Learning activities will take place in a studio, workshop or classroom 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 may 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

Week Activities Elements

Work placement: Preparation for Work Placement
Formative Task 1: Designer Profile

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 4.1 - 4.2


Formative Task 1: Designer Profile DUE
Summative Assessment 1: Self Promotion Folder

CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 4.1 - 4.2

SELF PROMOTION: Cv, cover letters, jobs
Summative Assessment 1: Self Promotion Folder

CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 4.1 - 4.2

Summative Assessment 1: Self Promotion Folder

CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 4.1 - 4.2

Small business & freelance: SMALL BUSINESS MANAGEMENT
Summative Assessment 1: Self Promotion Folder

CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3

Small business & freelance: TIME MANAGEMENT
Summative Task 1: Self Promotion Folder DUE
Formative Task 2: Toggl Profile

CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 4.1 - 4.2
7 Work placement: preparation FOR WORK PLACEMENT
Summative Assessment 2: Work Placement Diary

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 3.1 - 3.3, 4.1 - 4.2

8 Small business & freelance: RECORD KEEPING BASICS
Summative Assessment 2: Work Placement Diary
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 3.1 - 3.3,
9 Work placement
Summative Assessment 2: Work Placement Diary

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3

10 Work placement
Summative Assessment 2: Work Placement Diary

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3

11 Work placement: debrief
Summative Assessment 2: Work Placement Diary DUE
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5
12 Small business & freelance: FEES CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3
13 Small business & freelance: CLIENTS, CONTRACTS AND AGENCIES CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3, 4.1 - 4.2
14 Self-promotional items for the exhibition

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3

15 Self-promotional items for the exhibition

CUVPRP505A : 1.1 - 3.3
CUVGRD601A : 1.1 - 1.5, 2.1 - 2.5, 3.1 - 3.3

Learning Resources

Prescribed 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 written tasks. Assessment in this unit is:

  • Design Project 1 (50% of final grade)
  • Design Project 2 (50% of final grade)

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, all 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.

Formative and summative tasks
DUE WEEK 2 : Formative Task 1.
Written Response/ Personal Reflection “what kind of designer do I want to be?”

DUE WEEK 6 : Summative Assessment 1.
Self promotion suite - business stationery, cv, cover letter sample for one job, online folio, business name and ABN.
Weighting: 50%

DUE WEEK 8 : Formative Task 2.
Time keeping. Keep track of all hours spent for 12 days. Written report and verbal/visual class comparison.

DUE WEEK 11 : Summative Assessment 2.
Work placement or class trip written diary, reflection and class presentation.
Weighting: 50%

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).

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

Student Progress

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

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

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

Course Overview: Access Course Overview