St Michael's
We believe that a three way partnership between the school, its students and their parents is vital to success


 A downloadable version of this information is available here.


Graphic communication is defined as the practice of creating work to convey information, ideas and emotions through the use of graphic elements such as colour, icons, images, typography and photographs.

What skills will pupils develop?

Learners must explore, acquire and develop skills, knowledge and understanding through the application of techniques and processes specific to their chosen area(s).

Learners must explore practical and relevant critical and contextual sources such as the work of historical and contemporary graphic designers and the different purposes, intentions and functions of graphic communication as appropriate to their own work.

Learners must demonstrate the knowledge, skills and understanding through area(s) of study relevant to graphic communication.

Areas of Study:

Learners are required to work in one or more area(s) of graphic communication, listed below:

  • Typography
  • Communication graphics
  • Advertising
  • Package design
  • Signage


  • learners must demonstrate the ability to work creatively with processes and techniques appropriate to these area(s) of study
  • pupils will get more freedom to design creatively as their skills develop
  • homework activities generally focus on research and developing skills

What will help pupils to learn?

  • access to the internet at home
  • an ability to draw, particularly in 3D
  • competence in ICT/computing
  • practising drawing skills voluntarily as a hobby and free time activity

KS3 Course Structure

This is a KS4/GCSE course only. However, many of the skills and much of the knowledge learnt in KS3 Design and Technology and KS3 Art and Design courses will support pupils as a foundation for this course.

KS3 Assessment

This is a KS4/GCSE course only. However, in KS3 D&T and KS3 Art lessons GCSE grades and grade descriptors are used. These are useful indicators as to the pupils’ competence and progress in this subject area.

KS4 Course Structure

OCR GCSE Art Graphics is split between coursework and a practical examination:

Unit 1 -  is a portfolio piece of coursework which accounts for 60% of the overall GCSE.

Unit 2 -  is an externally set task and accounts for the remaining 40% of the Grade. (10-hour examination, plus preparation time.)

KS4 Assessment

Work throughout KS4 is continuously assessed against syllabus criteria, GCSE level grades, and exam board criteria.

Unit 1 will be internally marked and externally moderated by the exam board, whereas, Unit 2 is completed under exam conditions.


Mr D. Hughes – Head of DT

Opportunities out of lessons

  • homework
  • STEM activities and clubs
  • hobbies/drawing at home
  • to help pupils keep up to date with coursework after school catch up sessions are available alongside occasional weekend and holiday sessions

Career Pathways in this subject

A practical skills-based subject is a useful one to have on your CV for many post 16 courses and jobs. This subject will be an obvious choice to any wanting to study ‘A’ level product design, study graphics or design at university, or do apprenticeships of many kinds. Publishing, signwriting, engineering design and kitchen/bathroom design are all supported by this qualification.