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In the Design degrees there are pathways you can take, combining selections of electives, which will give you a range of specialised skills and in-depth knowledge. Below you can see a range of options provided currently in the Bachelor of Design with Honours and the Bachelor of Design.

These pathways are sets of electives from Visual Communication Design that fit together well, sometimes in combination with electives from other design disciplines, fine arts, creative media production, and even commercial music. Unless otherwise indicated, any design student can take these pathways regardless of their major. Plenty of other elective combinations work towards other specialisations, too. Including from the other majors, such as a focus on sustainability within Fashion, or a focus on design for stage and performance in Spatial. For more advice, come and talk to us, or get in touch with Student Central, phone 0800 MASSEY.

Illustration practice

Explore illustration as both art form and as medium for design communication. Develop industry-level illustration skills for print, as well as for online and physical platforms. Develop these skills (text analysis, conceptual development, visual representation, visual style and rendering, 3D modelling) while exploring and developing your own artistic style in response to both course and industry briefs. Learn how to produce illustrations on a range of topics for a wide range of audiences which engage, innovate and inspire.


Develop award-winning skills in typographic design, explore letter forms and layout, understanding how the shape of words shapes our perceptions. Explore type as a communication tool and as creative expression, and its use in both 2D and 3D space. Investigate type in long-form text, in an editorial context, and research, innovate and challenge contemporary typographic practice.

Information design

Explore information design – learn how to transform complex data and information into impactful messages. In a world that is increasingly built on information and facts, ‘information design’ takes these elements and makes data accessible and entertaining, transforms this into stories, and figures out how to engage the user and change minds. Information designers are the storytellers of data, and through this pathway we will show you how to unlock these skills.

*This pathway is best suited to students who are enrolled in the Visual Communication Design major


People experience brands through both products and services. This pathway equips you as a designer to understand both, and arms you with the skills to build and maintain the perceptions of a brand. More than designing logos – you will gain the skills required to design and art direct for brand communication, design effective marketing messages, and deliver transformative services and experiences, while developing a critical understanding of, and theories for, branding.

Interaction design

Everything is an interaction – you reading this right now is an interaction, what you do with this information will continue this journey. Through exploring interaction design you will explore how humans interact with each other, how humans interact with objects, spaces, and with ‘the machine’ – the technology that increasingly enables us. Designers develop how visual interfaces work – such as websites and apps, but also how services and experiences work. How the user’s experience evolves as they move through a series of interactions. Explore how you can guide and communicate with the user on this pathway.