Bachelor of Arts Graphic Design
CAO Course Code
Why take this course?
As one of the top graphic design courses in Ireland, the BA in Graphic Design course will provide you with a unique and exciting educational experience while learning to become a designer. Built on a legacy of over 40 years of art and design, your creative talents will be nurtured by a team of lecturers who are passionate about their field. Within each design studio you will have your own designated work space where you will receive one-to-one tuition from staff who want your experience to be the very best and who understand that design learning must be tailored to the student’s individual creative flair and interests. You’ll be encouraged to follow your passion and to develop your style. At the same time, you will be exposed to a host of new exciting disciplines and skills that will enhance and inform your work. Using design and critical thinking, you’ll learn how to generate ideas and visually communicate creative design solutions. Over your design education journey, supported by committed staff, you will grow into a designer with an individual voice who can think for themselves and visually communicate their ideas in their work.
What will I experience?
The programme comprises of a series of core pillars; design, image, studio practice and visual culture that advance over the four years.
- Design – Provides the student with the technical skills, design knowledge and creative know how to utilise the design process in order to fulfil the design briefs. Allowing the student to become competent in creating communication systems across multiple platforms and media, including traditional design for print, design for screen and motion graphics.
- Image – Is the exploration of visual language where the student will learn to communicate and build narratives using illustration, photography, animation and film.
- Studio practice – Builds on the personal and professional development of the students within the studio environment, allowing the student to build their profile, grow in confidence and promote who they are as a designer. This is done through live client briefs, collaboration and work placement.
- Visual Culture – Develops the students understanding of cultural, social and historical contexts in which the practice of art and design has evolved and, importantly, how it is essential to the development of the students’ studio practice.
What opportunities might it lead to?
Design students at TUS Athlone have a track record of winning awards at local, national and international student’s assessment schemes and competitions. Graduates enjoy excellent employment prospects in Ireland and overseas, and are employed in graphic design for both print and screen, advertising agencies, publishing houses, printing, the arts, the film and television industries and in teaching roles in second level, PLC and third level courses.
Click here to see some examples of our students achievements
Applicants can choose to be assessed via one of the following options:
- For assessment, we require that each applicant selects three of their best pieces of work. Each individual piece has a weighting of 200, the work submitted should represent the best traits of the candidate, the work can be in individual or related pieces. If the candidate’s strengths are in problem solving, they may submit research as one of the three. Again, work submitted reflects the strengths and personality of the candidate be that in illustration, typography, photography and/or research. When you have selected your three pieces mount them on A3 or A2 sheets of paper. You can present your 3 pieces in person on your assessment date or applicants can submit their 3 pieces digitally You can present your 3 pieces in person on your assessment date or applicants can submit their 3 pieces digitally if they wish by 5pm Friday 10th. If submitting digitally, photograph your work and save it as a pdf. Preferably, combine the three pdfs into one pdf file for submission. Assessment date is Friday 10th March 2023. For Change of Mind assessment, applicants will be invited to submit their work digitally by Friday June 2nd 2023 at 5pm.
2. Applicants may choose to participate in an applied project, this will be carried out remotely/ electronically. Applicants who choose the applied project option will be issued with the project brief on Thursday 9th March. Staff will guide you in the process through workshops and live advice online. The resultant project will subsequently be assessed. Completed work must be submitted by Monday 13th March at 5pm. For Change of Mind applicants, only option 1, above, applies.
Click here for further details and FAQs.
TUS considers applicants who are 23 years or over on 1 January in the year of entry to be mature applicants. Such applicants may not be required to have the minimum entry requirements. However, TUS will look for satisfactory evidence of the applicant’s ability to pursue and benefit from the course. Knowledge and skills gained through experiential learning will be taken in account. Such applicants should apply through the CAO system, and will be required to present a portfolio and attend an interview at TUS Athlone as part of the selection process.
- Course Duration:
- 3 Years
- CAO Course Code:
- Cut Off CAO Points:
- Course Award:
- Bachelor of Arts
- Course NFQ Level:
- Level 7
- Dept of Mechanical, Polymer Engineering & Design
- Minimum Entry Requirements:
Grade O6 in five subjects. Two of these subjects must be Mathematics and a language (English or Irish). Note: An F2 in Foundation Level Mathematics will be accepted as meeting the minimum Mathematics requirement. *For all applicants, portfolio presentation is required.
QQI: Any QQI level 5 qualification is acceptable.
Mature Applicants Mature applicants are not required to meet minimum entry requirements. For all applicants, portfolio presentation and interview are required.
Careers & Opportunities
Graduates enjoy excellent employment prospects in Ireland and overseas, and are employed in graphic design for both print and screen, advertising agencies, publishing houses, printing, the arts, the film and television industries and in teaching roles in second, PLC and third level courses.
In year 3, you will undertake a work placement, this first-hand industry experience will give you a valuable insight into the workings and requirements of the industry and inform your learning in year four.
As a graduate of this ordinary degree, you are eligible to apply to join the add-on Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Graphic and Digital Design programme, subject to end of year results at TUS or related NFQ Level 8 programmes at TUS or other third-level institutions.
Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Animation and Illustration
Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Bachelor of Arts (Hons) Graphic & Digital Design
Bachelor of Arts (Honours)
Graphic & Digital Design Add-on
Bachelor of Arts (Honours)