Graphic Design

BA (Hons) Graphic Design

UCAS CODE: W568 (Full-time) or W564 (Foundation Year)
TARIFF: 88 - 112 (Full-time) or 32 - 56 (Foundation Year)
  • Study Mode: Full Time
  • Location: High Wycombe
  • Duration: Three or Four Years
  • Start Date: September 2024

You can also study this course:

If you want to break into the world of graphic design and visual communication, this course emerges you within industry-ways before you even graduate. Experiment across a variety of media and find your style, whilst bringing stories, brands and products to life to audience all over the world.  
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No. 1 in England for Student Satisfaction*
*Measured by % of positivity across all questions within the larger providers only: taught or registered population (NSS 2023)
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No. 1 Students' Union in the UK*
*As ranked among taught students at non-specialist HEIs (NSS 2023)
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Top for our response to the cost-of-living-crisis*
*Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023
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5th for learning opportunities*
*NSS 2023
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Top 10 for student support*
*Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023
Throughout my course I’ve had so many workshops, guest lecturers and experiences. You can also expect a great variety of projects that you can tackle through the three years, each with a purpose to teach you something different. From typography and branding, to editorial, there is a bit of everything. It’s so exciting to not know exactly what your next piece of work will look like.
Rebecca Cochran
Rebecca Cochran

Magda's BNU story

Magda originally decided BNU was where she wanted to study because of the size, facilities and location. Her time at BNU helped her grow as a person and gain the skills to enter the working-world. Magda can now be found working as a Junior Graphic Designer for Interactive Schools.


Read the full story

Magda Wachowicz headshot photo

Why study this subject?

Graphic design is in every aspect of our life, from the packaging our food comes in, to the adverts we see on the tube. This dynamic subject area, is continually evolving to keep up with audiences and new and emerging trends and topics within society, including economically, politically, socially, and culturally.

This course is also offered as a four-year programme, including an initial Foundation Year. The Foundation Year will allow you to develop your academic study skills and build confidence in your abilities, identifying your own strengths and development needs for progression onto an undergraduate programme. 

Why study at Buckinghamshire New University?

With a history of delivering industry-standard graphic design education for more than 30 years, Buckinghamshire New University is the perfect place to start your creative career in graphic design.

As a well-established course, we have built up an excellent network of Alumni. Many are now in senior positions in the design world, both nationally and internationally, whom we can call upon.

Led by our enthusiastic and dedicated team of design practitioners and experienced academics, you’ll benefit from their industry knowledge and network of professional they bring to the course.

Opportunity modules are a key part of the BNU curriculum. You’ll choose modules in your first year from a broad selection in areas such as sustainability, entrepreneurship, creativity, digital skills, personal growth, civic engagement, health & wellbeing and employment. Opportunity modules are designed to enable you to develop outside the traditional boundaries of your discipline and help you to further stand out from the crowd to future employers.

Our Small group sizes enable staff and students to work together as a friendly and collaborative community of learners and designers. 

As well as this you’ll get direct access to guest lectures and live project briefs, master classes, and plenty of networking chances. As well as this you’ll have the opportunity to enter a range of industry-established competitions.

And with London only a short journey away, you can take the opportunity to visit some of the world’s best exhibitions, galleries, and museums for inspiration.

At Buckinghamshire New University the thing I enjoyed the most was being able to work in the graphics studio with my friends, I had all the facilities I needed there like A3 printers, a plotter and a whole building full of different printing presses. The studios were open till 10pm so I would stay late and get my work done.
Charlotte Batterbee
Charlotte Batterbee

What facilities can I use?

The course is located within the School of Art, Design and Performance, giving you access to a community of creative learners and diverse resources to help you achieve your creative outcomes. You’ll be encouraged to explore both traditional and current mediums to craft your design solutions, you can do this through our;

  • silkscreen equipment
  • plotter cutters
  • letterpress equipment
  • photography studios
  • litho equipment
  • laser cutting
  • 3D printing technology
  • Adobe Creative Cloud

You also benefit from our specialist technicians and demonstrators on site, who can support you in the area you want to explore.

The Graphic Design course itself is situated in an open plan studio alongside the Creative Advertising course, meaning you get to experience how a working advertising and design agency would run in the real-world.

Two females using Printing press machine at BNU

What will I study?

Studying on the graphic design course will help prepare you for this continually expanding field. Not only will we support you as an individual in the development of your visual and creative problem-solving skills, but we also equipped you with the knowledge and confidence to enter and negotiate your career in this challenging, but exciting field.

Over the course of the graphic design degree, you'll be given lots of opportunities to explore the diverse world of graphic design and its practice, including vital skills in creative problem solving, research methods, team working, project management, presentation skills, design strategy, art direction and independent learning. 

Through practical hands-on, project-based learning you'll explore the fundamental core aspects of the subject like typography, narrative structure, hierarchy, layout and composition, information design, image creation and conceptual thinking skills.


You’ll develop your historical perspectives, research, and writing skills and gain the academic grounding on which to develop critical understanding and practical application. As well as this you'll explore the many workshop facilities and equipment our design department has to offer, from laser cutting and letterpress printing, to photography and the Adobe Creative Suite. Our experienced technical instructors will be there in your workshop sessions to support you with your activities and help bring your ideas to life.

We always encourage our students to take risks in their work and learn to challenge established languages and processes through questioning and individual experimentation. All our modules on this course reflect this ethos, they are in place to help you form and consolidate presentation, critical and strategic thinking, and complex problem-solving skills, whilst at the same time developing and refining practical design abilities.   


The art and design facilities, in particular the equipment in the Red Shed, is not something most universities have access to. There is also lots of opportunity to engage in competitions as well as collaborate with companies who have approached the University. We also have the benefit of smaller classes and therefore a stronger relationship with tutors.
Charlotte Ketteridge
Charlotte Ketteridge

How will I be taught and assessed?

At the centre of this course is studio-based activity. You’ll spend a significant amount of time in the Graphic Design studio working on both individual study and group tuition. On the course you are pushed to explore your own style, which you’ll build into your own distinctive portfolio that demonstrates your unique strengths and interests for prospective work opportunities after graduation.

During your time with us you'll study modules that are centred around your own career aspirations and, through guest lectures from industry specialists, seminars and live industry projects,

We also aim to provide masterclasses and industry brief opportunities for you to apply your knowledge, skills and understanding into real-world contexts, whilst gaining feedback from current industry-leaders.

Individual and small group tutorials led by industry professionals, are not only to support you throughout the degree but more importantly to prepare you the professional world afterwards with an outstanding portfolio and a network of employers. 

You’ll also be assessed though; 1:1 or small group tutorials, Portfolio and presentations, written assessments, sketchbooks, group critiques and self-directed study.

At the end of your studies, you’ll have the chance to take part in the graduate Art and Design Showcase exhibition at the University. In addition, students are offered the opportunity to put forward work for the D&AD New Blood exhibition in central London where a selected group of students are also invited to attend.

When I started at BNU, I was incredibly shy and quiet. During my time at university, I was able to develop my social skills and become more confident. The close relationships of students, tutors and staff really helped with this, as well as the homely and friendly atmosphere around the campus.
Magda Wachowicz
Magda Wachowicz

BA (Hons) Graphic Design Programme Specification

BA (Hons) Graphic Design Additional Course Costs

What are the course entry requirements?

A typical offer will require a UCAS tariff score of: 88 - 112 (Full-time) or 32 - 56 (Foundation Year)

UCAS points can be obtained through qualifications such as A levels, T levels, BTEC or an Access to Higher Education course in a relevant subject. Please list all your qualifications on the application form as you will be asked to provide copies when we receive your application.

A minimum of two full A-levels (or equivalent) is required. Every application is considered on an individual basis.

On review of your application, you may be invited for an interview and portfolio review.

For further details of our international English entry requirements, please visit our international pages.

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the three-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a degree course, can apply for a four-year programme including a Foundation Year; find out more.

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the three-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a degree course, can apply for a four-year programme including a Foundation Year.


This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

This course has Opportunity modules.

Opportunity modules are a key part of the BNU curriculum. You’ll choose modules in your first year from a broad selection in areas such as sustainability, entrepreneurship, creativity, digital skills, personal growth, civic engagement, health & wellbeing and employment. Opportunity modules are designed to enable you to develop outside the traditional boundaries of your discipline and help you to further stand out from the crowd to future employers. Find out more.

What are the tuition fees

  • Home, Academic Year 2024 - 2025: £9,250 per year
  • Overseas/International, Academic Year 2024 - 2025: £15,150 per year

Additional course costs and financial support

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.
You could benefit from financial support through a bursary or scholarship during your time as a student. For more details visit our financial support, bursaries and scholarships section.

Questions about fees?

If you have any questions about the fees above, contact our Enquiries team by calling 0330 123 2023 or emailing

What are my career prospects? 

Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on the route to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders. Our Careers and Employability Team also help you find employment after graduation.

Our BA (Hons) Graphic Design course will help prepare you for a range of career possibilities, such as:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Branding and Identity Design
  • Editorial Design
  • Illustrator
  • Web Design
  • Art Director
  • Advertising
  • Freelance Designer

You may also wish to stay on at Buckinghamshire New University and study a full-time or part-time postgraduate course, such as our MA Advertising degree.



The course often pushed me completely outside of my comfort zone, which allowed me to grow and prepared me for working in a very tough and competitive environment.
Krystian Zun
Krystian Zun
BNU prepared me for the design industry by encouraging me to experiment with my work, it gave me an idea of how to work with letterpress, linocut, Adobe programs and many more.
Natalia Gasior

Course leader

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Jon Place
  • Senior Lecturer
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Dr Elisavet Kalpaxi
  • Senior Lecturer
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Chris Allen
  • Lecturer
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Dr Louisa Lee
  • Lecturer
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Al Watkins
  • Technical Demonstrator for Digital Arts
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Nick Wiltshire
  • Technician Demonstrator
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Joseph Davies
  • Technical Tutor
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Rupert Hammerton-Fraser
  • Technical Demonstrator
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BA (Hons) Graphic Design
BA (Hons) Graphic Design with Foundation Year