Designing Effective Visual Communication (DAAE2009)


Visual communications such as PowerPoint presentations are now a common expectation at any level of employment. But how can we make sure our visual communication presentations are effective? The aims of this unit are: (1) Awareness that the design of effective visual communications (such as PowerPoint presentations, etc) involves decisions about the elements and principles of design. (2) To present knowledge about design theory as well as research- based information about design and associated topics that can be applied to visual communications design. (3) To demonstrate how information and knowledge about the mechanics of human vision and theories of visual perception can contribute to the design of effective visual communications. (4) To have students use their skills and knowledge about the elements and principles of design as well as theories of visual perception in the assessment tasks of this unit. The information provided in this course builds on Bauhaus principles and elements of design, and examines current theories of design within the context of visual communications design. In addition, students are provided with evidence-based information about visual perception and the cognitive processing of information relevant to visual communication design. The assessments tasks provide students with the opportunity to examine and evaluate examples of visual communications, and apply their knowledge in practical exercises in which they can demonstrate their understanding of the information presented in the learning modules of the unit.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


Online; expected total workload is approximately 35 hours online, plus independent study and preparation


Critical Evaluation & Analysis (50%); Report (50%)

Faculty/department permission required?


Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.