module specification

SM4000 - Creative Digital Imaging (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Creative Digital Imaging
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 300
108 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
192 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Image series
Coursework 50%   Design Portfolio
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year (Spring and Summer) North Tuesday Afternoon
Year North Tuesday Afternoon

Module summary

This module provides an introduction to digital image creation placing it within the wider context of the history of illustration, graphic design, photography and fine art. The programme provides support for the creation of a series of images and a design portfolio that convey a particular idea developed by the student. The module introduces a range of key techniques for originating, and developing images and documents from digital manipulation, and illustration to document layout. It discusses further the technical issues relating to the media formats in which the students will present their image sequence and design portfolio.

Module aims

This module aims to:

  • Introduce students to the potential of conveying ideas using digital images and graphics
  • Provide an introduction to visual design principles
  • Develop student’s skills in preparingand manipulating digital images and graphics for a range of media formats
  • Equip students with skills in creating a digital portfolio for different formats



An indicative programme of study covers the following:
• Analogue to digital technologies
• Pixel and vector based images and graphics
• Image and graphic formats
• Visual aesthetics
• Image reality and authenticity
• Audiences
• Semiotics
• Montage techniques
• Visual language
• Image capturing
• Image creation and manipulation using computer software
• Vector graphic creation using computer software
• Layout creation using computer software
• Typography
• Output formats for digital images and portfolios

Learning and teaching

This module will be delivered through a combination of modes of delivery. Each week there will be a three-hour lab session and a one-hour lecture or seminar. These sessions will consist of case studies, discussions and demonstrations. Key to the delivery of this module is availability of open access facilities with appropriate software for the development of project work. Support to individuals and smaller groups will be provided through tutorial sessions and via email. Lecture notes and web links will be made available on the VLR. Students will be encouraged to experiment and develop a portfolio during the workshops in a studio atmosphere and in their self-directed study time and discuss those with tutors and peers. Attendance at all sessions is essential to fulfil the work requirements.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module students will be able to

  • Select appropriate technical strategies to prepare an image/graphic for a range of media formats and employ appropriate style and visual language in developing digital images and graphics for the context within which they will be used (LO1)
  • Apply a wide range of techniques for digital image manipulation and document layout to create a design portfolio (LO2)

Assessment strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to assess students in the main issues involved in the design and production of digital images and documents.

A) A series of images presented both in print and web format accompanied by developmental work and a rationaleof their design choices.(Weighting 50%) (LO1)

B) A design portfolio (Weighting 50%) (LO2)

Students may pass on aggregate


• Benjamin, W. (1936) The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction. In Benjamin, W. (1999) Illuminations, London: Pimlico
• Bolter.D, Grusin R. (2000) Remediation: Understanding New MediaThe MIT Press.
• Chandler, D. (2007) Semiotics: the basics, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
• Hashimoto, A. and Clayton, M. (2009) Visual design fundamentals: a digital approach, 3rd ed Imprint Boston, Mass.: Course Technology.
• Kress, G. R. and van Leeuwen, T. (2006) Reading images: the grammar of visual design, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
• Manovich, L. (2001) The language of new media. Cambridge, Mass; London: MIT Press.
• Mirzoeff, N ed. (2002) The visual culture reader, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.
• Pope, R.(2005)Creativity: Theory, History and Practice. Routledge.
• Fletcher, A.(2001)The Art of Looking Sideways. Phaidon Press.
• McCloud, S. (1993)Understanding Comics. Harper Collins.
• Ware, C. ( 2008)Visual Thinking: for Design. Morgan Kaufmann.

Creative Review [electronic library resource]
CGI Magazine, Advanced Photoshop, Computer Arts, Future Publishing (not available over the library)
Leonardo [electronic library resource]
Visual communication quarterly [electronic library resource]