The University of Southampton

ARTD1103 Specialist Practice and Research 1a (Dalian)

Module Overview

This module is one of the common core modules taken by all students on the University of Southampton undergraduate programmes taught at Dalian Polytechnic University. Whilst the learning outcomes are the same no matter which of the programmes you are following, your output from this module will reflect the media and approaches of your chosen programme.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

• extend awareness of your practice through evaluation of underlying concepts • build upon the subject specific practice skills introduced in Year One through a range of specialised workshops • present a contextual theme interpreted effectively through your specialist subject • enable you to begin to make informed choices using a range of research methodologies

Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Understanding

Having successfully completed this module, you will be able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of:

  • a range of methods, materials, techniques and skills
  • how to visually communicate a concept through a variety of media supporting your creative development
  • contemporary concepts and practice associated within your specialist subject
Subject Specific Intellectual and Research Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • apply critical thinking and to a range of different specialist techniques and processes relevant to your programme of study in order to manifest your ideas
  • evaluate perceptions and concepts in relation to contemporary practice covered by the scope of your programme of study
  • present information effectively to demonstrate how your research enables you to make sound judgements
Transferable and Generic Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • conduct a range of research methodologies relevant to your studies
  • gather information, analyse and evaluate sources appropriately
  • complete an assignment to a deadline
  • communicate your ideas demonstrating awareness of global contexts
Subject Specific Practical Skills

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • demonstrate an appropriate range of techniques
  • apply a variety of processes to extend your practice
  • reflect on your practice to solve a problem


This module continues the work of the Year One module, Introduction to Specialist Practice, Skills and Research. It is similarly contextualised by themes and you will be set discipline-specific projects, which will help you focus your work. If you are studying BA Fashion Design, indicative themes have included: Deconstruction of a Qipao dress, examining the traditional garments in contemporary society. If you are studying BA Graphic Arts, indicative projects have addressed the themes such as exploring the grid examining a collection of shapes, lines textures or patterns presented in organised or regular formats. Presentation of these to your peer group will help you to organise and communicate relevant information. An important feature of this module is the way in which your involvement with your specialist subject can begin to direct and focus your thinking towards a more individual understanding of specialist practice. To support this process you will be involved with academic staff who will introduce you to some of the background and current thinking particular to your chosen subject. Specialist workshop inductions will increase your skills and competency to your subject and enable you to explore your ideas through experimentation.

Special Features

The module will include a range of workshops and studio sessions where you are expected to engage fully with learning the skills that will support your technical ability in your practice. The experimental nature of this module offers opportunities to engage with critical debates through your practice and raise your ability in expressing your concepts through your practice.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Teaching methods include • project briefings • tutorials • seminars • group critiques • practical workshop inductions Learning activities include • project briefings • seminars • group critiques • practical workshop inductions • tutorials • peer group learning • self-assessment Relationship between the teaching, learning and assessment methods and the planned learning outcomes In this module learning and teaching activities focus on helping you to explore contemporary perceptions relevant to your programme of study. Specific attention will be given to developing an understanding of particular issues, methodologies and practices of your specialist subject. You will explore one or more projects through tutor-led and independent practice in the studio/specialist area and use the workshops to advance your ideas and personalise your work. This level is about establishing a foundation of relevant skills and working methods and we will expect you to explore your creativity and imagination to produce creative and informed responses to your project ideas. Formative feedback in a studio setting will provide opportunities for peer group learning and self-evaluation. Group critiques will help you develop an understanding of your own work and that of your peer group. You will have tutorials which will help you review your progress.

Practical classes and workshops27
Follow-up work50
Completion of assessment task200
Preparation for scheduled sessions100
Project supervision15
Wider reading or practice28
Total study time450

Resources & Reading list

Caruana, N., & Fox, A. (2012). Basics Creative Photography Vol. 3: Behind the Image - Research in Photography. 

Breward, C. Dingemans, J (1999). Mastering fashion styling. 

Woodward, S. (2007). Why women wear what they wear. 

Breward, C. (2003). Fashion. 

Ingledew, J. (2011). The a-z of visual ideas: How to solve any creative brief. 

Breward, C. and Evans, C. (2005). Fashion and modernity. 

Aldrich, W. (2013). Fabrics and Pattern Cutting. 

Coles, S. (2013). The Geometry of Type: The anatomy of 100 essential typefaces. 

Entwistle, J. (2000). The fashioned body: fashion, dress, and modern social theory. 

Taylor, F. (2010). How to create a portfolio & get hired: A guide for graphic designers and illustrators. 

Frings, G. S. (2008). Fashion: from concept to consumer. 

Hebdige, D. (1984). Subculture: The Meaning of Style. 

Lupton, E., & Phillips, J. (2008). Graphic design: The new basics. 

Jones, T. (2012). Vivienne Westwood. 

Ruder, E. (1977). Typographie: Ein Gestaltungslehrbuch = Typography = Typographie. 

Heller, S., & Vienne, V. (2012). 100 ideas that changed graphic design. 

Briggs-Goode, A. (2013). Printed Textile Design. 

Hopkins, J. (2012). Fashion design : the complete guide. 

Lupton, E. (2010). Thinking with type: A critical guide for designers, writers, editors, & students. 

Friedrichs, H. A. (2012). Cycle Style. 

Muggleton, D. (2000). Inside subculture : the postmodern meaning of style. 

Roberts, L., & Wright, R (2010). Design diaries: Creative process in graphic design. 


Assessment Strategy

The summative assessment of this module will be assessed through a portfolio of work. A portfolio of work is a collection of developmental work appropriate to your subject,, e.g. sketchbooks, drawings, photographic references, digital media, samples, material manipulations, visual experiments and where appropriate, finished work. For the duration of this module you will be timetabled to take workshops and when taught time is not scheduled to take place you are expected to work independently in the studio and complete research to support your project. Independent study is crucial to your development and positive achievement in this module. The work and outcomes of your independent study will be discussed in tutorials and group critiques.




MethodPercentage contribution
Portfolio 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Portfolio 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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