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DRPS : Course Catalogue : Edinburgh College of Art : Design

Undergraduate Course: Graphic Design 1B: Introduction to Typography (DESI08103)

Course Outline
SchoolEdinburgh College of Art CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 2 Undergraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course is an introduction to key typographic principles, methods and techniques. Students will be encouraged to explore, experiment and deconstruct typography, appreciating the forms of letters and producing work through instinctive and creative responses. The course allows students to apply basic design principles and acquire practical knowledge of typography from letterforms to typefaces. Students will learn how to select appropriate typefaces, composition resolution and how to arrange type on a variety of applications. Projects are experienced through a range of practical workshops and lectures implementing traditional and digital typesetting techniques.
Course description This course aims to encourage graphic design students to build fundamental knowledge of typography, examining its potential as a communication tool, and its expression of form and function. It will equip students with essential knowledge and specific skills that can be applied to their working practice. This course guides students through practical projects exploring historical and contemporary themes, encouraging written analysis and reflection in the form of sketchbooks.

The course encourages students to create sketchbooks that document a range of basic typographic themes and concepts. They will explore and experiment with letterforms, understanding why type plays an important role in helping the reader interpret information. Students will explore the basic principles of composition, making aesthetic judgments and creating their own designs using appropriate software. Students will understand the value of observing, analysing and documenting information. During the course students will discover how to choose and create letterforms for a range of typographic solutions and become knowledgeable in the use of typographic terms.

Students will be able to communicate using basic typographic design techniques, print and create layouts for small publications.

This course will comprise multiple projects, leading to a final, summatively assessed submission of preliminary work (approx. 1-2 sketchbooks); final resolved piece(s) (approx. 3-5); and a presentation both verbal and digital. The basic course structure is presented as follows:

Wks 1-5
Theory and Practice of Basic Typography
History and Anatomy of Type

Wks 6- Mid-Course Formative Review and Feedback

Wks 7-10
Practical Projects in Letterforms and Narrative
Basic principles of Composition
Introduction to Software

End of Course Summative Assessment and Feedback
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements If this course is Core to your programme, you will automatically be enrolled. For all other students, including Design students, the course is open on a first come, first served basis until the course is full. This course may have limited availability for non-Design students. Please contact the Course Organiser if you wish to enrol.
Additional Costs £50 for:
Studio Costs; Basic Graphic Materials: Pens Pencils, cutting tools, paper, ruler, sketchbooks, Portable USB Stick
Printing Costs; Print Workshop Materials (depending on specific project)
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2023/24, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  26
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 3, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 5, Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 32, External Visit Hours 3, Online Activities 3, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 15, Formative Assessment Hours 0.5, Summative Assessment Hours 0.5, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 134 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) Formative Assessment┬┐
Mid-way through the Course, students will submit 250-word self-reflection statement

Summative Assessment
At the end of the Course students will submit a multi-page assessment document (pdf format). This assessment document will comprise 100% of the final course summative grade and will contain:

Development of sketch and workbooks showing all experimentation.

Evidence and documentation of field visits, skills and technical workshops.

Presentation of graphic design solutions.

Worksheets or sketchbooks which show evidence of workshop experience, documentation of research themes, evaluation and critical analysis, illustrating their approach to the design process.

A 250-word self-reflection statement

Summative portfolio is assessed against all three course Learning Outcomes. Each Learning Outcome is equally weighted, and therefore comprises 33.33% of overall final course grade.
Feedback Formative Feedback
Mid-way through the Course students will be given verbal feedback during individual tutorials.

Summative Feedback
At the end of the Course students will be given written feedback plus summative grades.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Demonstrate broad research knowledge of typographic terminology and practice.
  2. Apply typography in expressive ways in response to design projects.
  3. Apply typographic concepts to 2D and 3D formats
Reading List
Ambrose, G; and Harris, P; The Fundamentals of Typography, 2nd Edition, AVA Publishing, 2011
Lupton, Thinking with Type; Ellen Princeton Architectural Press, 2010
Elam, Kimberly; Typographic Systems, Rules for Organizing Type, Princeton Architectural Press, 2007
Carter, R, Day, B, Meggs, P, Maxa, S and Sanders, M; Typographic Design: Form Communication 6th Edition, J Wiley and Sons Inc, 2015
Levine, F and Macon, S; Sign Painters, Princeton Architectural Press, 2013
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Enquiry Ability to access information from different sources.
Personal Effectiveness Ability to use a range of approaches to reinterpret a problem or situation.
Communication Convey ideas in a structured and coherent form.
KeywordsFonts,typeface classification,letterform,anatomy,leading,kerning,hierarchy,grids and structure
Course organiserMr Orlando Lloyd
Course secretaryMr Paddy Marr
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