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BA (Hons) Illustration

The online BA (Hons) Illustration programme teaches students the fundamentals of illustration, honing their skills in drawing, animation and visual storytelling as they build up a portfolio of professional-level work.

Image: IDI Student Sandrine Pilloud

What You'll Learn

Master the Fundamentals

Throughout the BA (Hons) Illustration programme, you’ll build your confidence in the essential illustration skills and the use of creative techniques in drawing, animation and visual presentation.

You’ll gain a comprehensive understanding of core principles and skills in image-making, problem solving, experimental practices, software for illustration and other key areas – and will learn how to use these principles to craft a compelling visual message.

Key Modules

Illustration Essentials Part 1, Illustration Essentials Part 2

Develop Your Personal Style

During your studies, you’ll develop your individual language and style as an illustrator, as you begin to define your future contribution to the creative industries.

You’ll be given the opportunity to develop a personal portfolio in a range of print and digital formats, allowing you to demonstrate your own unique individuality, style, skill and quality of work to professional standards.

Key Modules

Illustration: Professional Development, Illustration Advanced Practice 2

Embrace Visual Storytelling

Throughout the programme, you’ll learn how to clearly communicate ideas through the use of visual media and deliver a compelling visual message with your illustrations.

You’ll be challenged to consider your creative thinking while producing exciting visually narrative artwork, as you develop your awareness of target audiences and refine your presentation and communication skills.

Key Modules

Visual Communication

Improve Your Core Drawing Skills

While on the course you’ll also enhance your core drawing skills, refining your technique to give yourself the best possible foundation for future development and innovation.

You’ll build a variety of skills in typography, layout, print formats and production, digital design software and problem-solving – producing a portfolio of both print and digital graphic design outcomes.

Key Modules

Illustration Essentials Part 1, Illustration Essentials Part 2

Make Use of Emerging Techniques

Through your BA studies you’ll experiment with digital media and animation, using multiple mediums to equip yourself with all of the skills needed in a multi-skilled professional workplace.

You’ll be introduced to emerging industry techniques and encouraged to investigate these further, widening your knowledge of contemporary illustration practice and the varied platforms available for image-making, equipping you with a more advanced visual toolbox.

Key Modules

Illustration Essentials Part 1, Illustration Essentials Part 2, Visual Communication

Complete Live Award Briefs

Take the opportunity to enter live briefs and respond to international student design awards and competitions as part of your studies.

Opportunities to enter awards and competitions are built into selected modules at both Level 5 and Level 6. Past IDI illustration students have been successful in awards such as the D&AD New Blood Awards, the Adobe Student Achievement Awards and more.

Key Modules

Illustration Advanced Practice 1, Illustration Commissions

The Interactive Design Institute has been partnered with the University of Hertfordshire since 2008, with the aim of giving everyone the opportunity to get their creative degree from a UK university without having to attend on-campus.

87% of our Masters students achieve Commendation or Distinction
Over 1000 online students from over 70 countries
72% of our undergraduate students gain a 2:1 or above

*All statistics taken from our Annual Monitoring and Evaluation Report 2017/18.

Course Overview

  • Level 4: Certificate of Higher Education

    The first level of your degree is designed to improve your core knowledge and understanding of illustration and the creative industries.

    You’ll explore and develop a foundation of fundamental skills in a wide range of media, using both traditional illustration techniques and industry-standard digital software.

  • Level 5: Diploma of Higher Education

    In this next level, you’ll develop your newfound skills through activities in development and presentation as you progress towards working independently as a professional illustrator.

    You’ll also learn how to produce professional-standard work within constraints imposed by clients in the creative industries.

  • Level 6: BA (Hons)

    In your final bachelor’s level, you’ll focus on building a portfolio of professional-level illustration work, while developing a critical approach to your design process.

    You’ll work on professional projects such as live briefs and competitions, while also expanding your self-promotion work by applying your illustrative style to 3D packaging design.

Start Dates & Schedules

The four-year programme is split into three levels: Levels 4, 5 & 6.

Each level has four semesters, consisting of 12 weeks of study followed by four weeks of assessment.

While you’re studying, we recommend you set aside a minimum of 15-20 hours per week for activities, as well as additional time to read supporting materials and for discussion with your tutors and peers.

Study Pattern for Loan-Funding Students

For students paying for the programme by part-time tuition fee loan, the BA (Hons) Illustration is taught over 5 years, with a semester-long break in each Level.

Amanda Hamilton,
Programme Coordinator

Meet Your Programme Coordinator

As the Programme Coordinator for the BA (Hons) Illustration programme, Amanda will be your first point of contact for any non-tutorial enquiries.

Amanda has oversight of all aspects of the programme, and will therefore be best-placed to provide you with guidance and advice throughout the entirety of your studies.