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Graphics at Norwich

Welcome Week starts on Monday 16th September, and this is when we will meet you on campus and introduce you to our buildings and facilities.

You will meet the staff team and other students on your course and take part in some introductory activities designed so you can get to know each other and remain safe on campus. You will also attend talks about the services and facilities the University offers. 

The four Graphics courses (BA Graphic Design, BA Graphic Communication, BA Design for Publishing, and BSc User Experience Design) are taught together in the combined delivery of Year 1. The curriculum is specifically designed to support, develop, and allow exploration of subject knowledge appropriate to all course areas. The foundational skills, design thinking, problem solving, and communication gained are relevant to all specialisms and are the proven building blocks to success in your chosen subject area.   

The first taught day of your course is Monday 23rd September. We are running this as a Wayfinding Week, so that you get to know how things work and settle into your studies. 

Generally, over this year, you will have timetabled sessions on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday each week, with additional lectures from industry on Wednesday mornings. 

The timetabled sessions will be made up of half day studio teaching sessions and hour-long tutorials. The rest of your time during the week will usually be independent study time for you to research and develop your projects. 

Individual timetables will be given at the start of the course. In addition to sessions on campus, there will also be digital teaching sessions such as pre-recorded briefings and lectures, group seminars and individual tutorials too. You will be introduced to all these elements so don’t worry about any of this now! 

On independent study sessions, and days where digital teaching is scheduled, you will be able to access the campus to continue your work as needed, or you can elect to work remotely. We will help you plan your time. 

You will see that we’ve included some suggestions of things you might like to read, watch and do before you arrive, and provided suggestions about equipment and materials you are likely to need, so please read through the page carefully. 

Summer Preparation for Graphic Design, Graphic Communication, Design for Publishing, and User Experience Design

Prior to joining us in September, please take a look at the various blogs, websites, books and films/documentaries listed below. These will give you a head start in thinking like a designer, solving problems, and exploring visual creativity. 

An important part of your studies at university will involve looking at various things your tutors recommend. Following up on such resources is a key aspect of your Independent Study and is central to your learning and development. It is good practice, therefore, to get in this habit now. We hope that the things you see will both excite and inspire you.


Look at design related websites/blogs — These get continually updated, so re-visit them regularly!

Watch and Listen

Here are a few films and documentaries that are well worth your time to help you get inspired before you start

Design Matters

Design Matters

UI Breakfast 

UI Breakfast

Cover Meeting 

Michael Bierut on how to think like a designer

Design Disruptors

Design Disruptors

Abstract: The Art of Design (Season 1) – Paula Scher

Annie Atkins | The secret world of graphic design for filmmaking

(We will be going to see a Wes Anderson Film in Welcome Week, so this is an eye opener, seeing how graphics are used in ways you may have never thought of before.)

Equipment and Materials list for Graphic Design, Graphic Communication, Design for Publishing, and User Experience Design

This is a list of equipment that you will need over your time on the Graphics course. Some of it you probably already have, but all of it you will use at some point, so read through the list to check what you need to purchase in preparation for commencing your course.


While we have computers in the studios and labs for you to use (Apple iMacs), you may find it more convenient to bring your own laptop. 

Apple Mac computers tend to be common in the design industry, so if you are planning to buy a new or second-hand laptop, we recommend you consider this. However, if you already own a PC laptop you do not need to replace it. 

Make sure the computer you buy can run the Adobe Creative Cloud apps, particularly InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, and After Effects. We will provide this software for you for your computer, so there is no need to buy your own copy. Refer to the guide for details of laptop specifications. 


In addition to a laptop, you may like to buy a tablet for drawing e.g. an Apple iPad, but this is not essential, and should not be bought instead of a laptop, because iPads are not able to run the full Creative Cloud suite of applications which you will need to use for your projects 


  • A3 Layout pad
  • A4 Note book / journal
  • Pencils
  • Fine Liner pens
  • Marker pens in a range of colours.
  • Soft eraser
  • Swann-Morton Scalpel – Size 3 Handle and 10A blades
  • Scissors, small and large, suitable for paper cutting
  • 30cm steel ruler
  • A3 cutting mat
  • Masking tape
  • Sellotape
  • Glue stick
  • USB Memory stick or hard drive — Mac compatible

Most of these items are available from our campus shop, at discounted prices. So, if you don’t have them, look to get them during Welcome Week