Speaking a visual language is about more than graphic design. In our BA Degree in Visual Communication, you’ll learn to apply your talents in both strategic and creative subjects from the get-go. Highly practical projects in graphic design, art direction, illustration, photography, and digital design give you a solid foundation in knowledge and skill, while marketing communications and visual studies build your strategic and critical-thinking ability.

  • Duration

    3 Years

  • Qualification

    NQF 7 Degree

  • Class fee


  • Registration fee

    R9 500

  • Starts

    06 February 2023

Application requirements

A valid National Senior Certificate with degree endorsement / a Bachelor’s pass, Visual Art and/or Design as a subject are advantageous but not required.

About the Degree

In an increasingly visual world, visual thinkers and communicators thrive. Our BA degree in Visual Communication is a 3-year full time, face to face programme where you’ll walk away with an internationally recognised qualification and a highly competitive portfolio that will grant you access to higher levels of learning or open the doors to the industry.

Unlike a typical graphic design degree, the course is highly practical and you’ll be exposed to all disciplines of Art Direction, Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography and Digital Design, from first year which gives you a strong background in each and enables you to confidently choose a major and one minor subject in second year followed by just focusing on a your major in third year, creating a highly specialised portfolio. The theoretical subjects are there to arm you with strategic and critical thinking skills relevant to staying ahead in the ever-changing business landscape.


You will work hard, have fun and make lasting friends. You’ll gain a wealth of real-world, practical experience, and the theory and practical skills to back your creative genius. Industry-relevant practical projects coupled with theory and skills-based learning is what you’ll work on with one-on-one interaction with experienced lecturers. Guest speakers from the industry and a work-integrated learning component (internship) in the final year will give you the practical experience you need to develop a highly sought-after skill set. You’ll be industry-ready and firmly ahead of the pack.


3 years of Marketing Communications and Visual Studies provides the logic (strategic and critical-thinking) component of the programme. We’ll test your abilities via recognised academic assessments of research, referencing, essay writing, presentations and formal examinations. This ensures that you’re a strategic and critical thinking force to be reckoned with, and gives you a solid academic backing that will grant you access to Honours-level programmes upon completion of the course.


  • Get equipped with the design thinking and skills to be a Graphic Designer, Art Director, Illustrator or Digital Designer
  • Learn the necessary software (Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign and more of the Adobe Creative Cloud Suite), illustration, presentation and time-management skills
  • Apply these skills in the execution of a series of digital and print design media
  • As you work through your projects, you will compile an interactive PDF portfolio, which will help you get the creative career you’re looking for

Course outline

First year (120 credits): ENGAGE IN ALL THE DISCIPLINES
  • Creative Skills: (Graphic Design, Art Direction, Digital Design, Illustration)
  • Support Subjects: Photography
  • Critical Skills: Marketing Communications, Visual Studies
Second year (120 credits): PICK YOUR MAJOR & MINOR
  • Creative Skills: 1 x Major (Graphic Design / Art Direction / Digital Design / Illustration) & 1 x Minor (Graphic Design / Art Direction / Digital Design / Illustration)
  • Support Subjects: Photography
  • Critical Skills: Marketing Communications, Visual Studies
Third year (120 credits): FOCUS JUST ON YOUR MAJOR
  • Creative Skills: 1 x Major (Graphic Design / Art Direction / Digital Design / Illustration)
  • Critical Skills: Marketing Communications, Visual Studies
  • Practical: Work Integrated Learning (Internship)

Who you’ll meet

Meet our amazing team of lecturers who are equipped with industry knowledge and skills to prepare students for the dynamic changes in this 21st Century world

  • “I have been lecturing for 8 years and am a practising illustrator and storyteller – I let this feed into my lectures and reviews with my students. My mantra for my students is Play until something happens as I encourage them to make mistakes, take chances and experiment. When I’m not lecturing, I like to be drawing on the couch with my cat and my husband, watching crime documentaries.”

  • I believe in teaching for change – I believe that passion, curiosity & creative thinking are what helps us thrive in an ever-changing environment. For me teaching is a two-way street. I learn as much from my students as I teach. As a creative person I have always liked wearing many hats; painter, illustrator, designer, art director, stylist, potter and lecturer.

The application process

Please have the following ready to complete your online application

Need more details?

Prefer a friendly chat, WhatsApp or email?

Frequently bought together


Bachelor of Commerce in Marketing in association with Unilever


3 Years



Start date:

06 February 2023


Why choose Red & Yellow


Degrees, Diplomas, National and Higher Certificates that cater for everyone and the high employability of our graduates have earned us close to 142 awards

15 K

Education that combines knowledge and practical skills, providing our 15 392 alumni with traits they can use in all aspects of their lives

87 %

87% of our students find employment on graduating due to a combination of experiential learning and know-how.

100 %
Unmatched Creativity

For 28 years we have had a single minded approach to teach students how to harness a skill that will stand the test of time and the metaverse. That skill is creativity.


Frequently asked questions

What sets this degree apart from others?

The notion of choice is what sets us apart from the rest. In your first year, you delve into all the disciplines, which informs your choice of major and minor for your second year. In your final year, you focus on your major subject choice only, allowing you to enter industry with an individualised, industry-applicable portfolio.

Will this be recognised internationally?

Some of you might want to work or study further overseas, we get that. Our accreditation will be recognised internationally – so all you need to ascertain is how this aligns with the particular requirements of the school you want to study at.

Will this lead to meaningful career success?

Creative thinking is the way of the future – it’s going to become the most important skill for the 21st Century. Don’t think of ‘design’ as only about expertise, it’s about a way of thinking. One that industry sectors across the board are starting to incorporate into cross-disciplinary teams.

What are my career options?

If you’re talented, you’ll have many choices – from agencies, to in-house corporate brand teams, to starting your own small business.

Describe the on-campus experience

We have a great, centrally-located campus that is designed to ensure students have constant access to staff and our industry-guests. Class-sizes are small to ensure personal attention, and our dedicated lecturers spend inordinate amounts of one-on-one time with students, who are treated as individuals.

Make your mark while studying

Our students enter their work into highly-respected national awards, and to date, have amassed outstanding wins – from Loeries, to Ad Focus, to Pendorings and more.