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AOs/LOs by level

Technological practice (TP)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3

Technological knowledge (TK)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3

Nature of technology (NT)

6-1 | 6-2

7-1 | 7-2

8-1 | 8-2

Design in technology (DET)

6-1 | 6-2

7-1 | 7-2


Manufacturing (MFG)

6-1 | 6-2

7-1 | 7-2


Technical areas (TCA)


Construction and mechanical technologies (CMT)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3 | 6-4

6-5 | 6-6 | 6-7

7-1 |  7-2 |  7-3 |  7-4

7-5 |  7-6 |  7-7

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3 | 8-4

8-5 | 8-6 | 8-7

Design and visual communication (DVC)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3

Digital technologies (DTG)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3 | 6-4

6-5 | 6-6 | 6-7 | 6-8

6-9 | 6-10 | 6-11 | 6-12

7-1 |  7-2 |  7-3 |  7-4

7-5 |  7-6 |  7-7 |  7-8

7-9 |  7-10 |  7-11 |  7-12

8-1 | 8-2 | 8-3 | 8-4

8-5 |  8-6/7 | 8-8 | 8-9

8-10 |  8-11 | 8-12

Processing technologies (PRT)

6-1 | 6-2 | 6-3

7-1 | 7-2 | 7-3

8-1/2 | 8-3

Graphics practice DVC 6-2

Achievement Standard 1.35 AS91068

Graphics practice refers to the creative application of drawing and design knowledge and techniques to develop conceptual outcomes that address a brief, or a technological outcome of a graphical nature.

The brief used may be provided to the students or developed by the students as part of their practice. Quality outcomes resulting from graphics practice rely on the selection of appropriate and well-executed drawing techniques, and presentation methods that allow conceptual designs to be communicated effectively.

Learning Objective: DVC 6-2

Students will:

  • Demonstrate ability to explore and develop design ideas by applying visual communication and design techniques in response to a brief


Students can:

  • explore and refine design ideas by considering possible alternatives;
  • integrate principles of aesthetics and function, and design judgements, in a coherent and connected way to develop design ideas;
  • convincingly communicate design ideas visually in accordance with the context specified in the design brief.


Prior to level 6 students should develop foundation understanding and skills through a junior technology programme (which may include a specialist DVC course), where students learn to apply understanding of design thinking and creative strategies to visually communicate design possibilities, through empathy and understanding the design context.

At level 6 students have progressed to exploring and refining design ideas by applying visual communication and design thinking.

The Teacher Guidance section provides information that supports teachers scaffolding of learning from levels 1-8 of the curriculum. This allows for differentiation of a programme of learning.

The deliberate use of provide, guide, and support in this section signals that as students' capacity for self-management increases, teachers progressively reduce the level of scaffolding provided.

  • Provide – the teacher should take full responsibility for introducing and explicitly teaching new knowledge, skills or practices.
  • Guide – the students have a level of understanding and competency on which they can draw but the teacher remains primarily responsible for continuing to develop these.
  • Support – the students take primary responsibility for their own learning, drawing on all their previous experiences to consolidate and extend their understanding. The teacher is supportive rather than directive.
  • The Teacher Guidance also uses the term ensure to indicate when the teacher plays a monitoring role to check that conditions critical for learning are present.

Teacher Guidance

To support students to explore and develop design ideas by applying visual communication and design knowledge and techniques in response to a brief, at level 6, teachers could:

  • Provide opportunity for students to develop design knowledge and a range of visual literacy techniques that can be used to address a brief.
  • Provide opportunity for students to explore, generate, and refine design ideas informed by principles of aesthetics and function.
  • Provide opportunity for students to develop design ideas to a conceptual design informed by research and testing.
  • Provide opportunity for students to incorporate design judgements when developing design ideas and

undertaking ongoing critical analysis and reflection during the development of a conceptual design.

  • Provide opportunity for students to present conceptual designs to an audience that visually communicate the details of design ideas in response to the design brief.

Contexts for teaching and learning

  • Ensure students have a design context or problem to work to.
  • Teach students the creative process of design thinking and ensure they are familiar with the intentions of each phase (for example; convergent and divergent thinking, Stanford design thinking model, play versus process etc)
  • Discuss with students how to create design work that builds a clear narrative as it evolves.
  • Teach students techniques that support the exploration of design ideas. The emphasis is on "ideas" so students need to consider possible alternatives so they don't get hooked up on a set "idea".
  • Teach students the design language to be able to evaluate their design ideas to enable them to make design judgements
  • Teach students how to express their design thinking visually with annotatation to support design visuals
  • Ensure students identify the aesthetic  and functional considerations around the design context or problem to inform making design judgements.
  • Functional considerations could include; materials and surface finishes, construction, internal components, size, sustainability, ergonomics, spatial requirements, environmental factors (climate, wind, sun ditrection etc), views and vistas, topography (lie of the land), neighbouring features (built, vegetation, water, etc.)
  • Teach students to actively engage in research throughout all stages of the design process to keep informing their work; bring in new ideas/ perspectives.
  • Teach students how to justify their design decisions based on the principles of design, their research, their own opinions and taste
  • Conference with students to have robust "design conversations" to encourage deeper thinking / other perspectives.
  • Expect students to develop depth to their designs (eg conceptually, functionally etc)
  • Provide creative tasks and scenarios that develop strategies that encourage lateral thinking and more divergent and unpredictable outcomes
  • Provide a scaffold of design considerations that cover both broad (overall) and specific (detail) requirements for a potential design outcome that suitably responds to a design situation

Literacy considerations

Support students to understand the language associated with the assessment as well as the creative application of visual communication and design knowledge to develop design thinking.

  • Graphics practice involves expressing a visual literacy through the development of a design idea by applying design and visual communication techniques and knowledge.
  • Visual literacy refers to the visual modes (e.g. drawing, model-making, digital modelling) used as tools for aiding design thinking and the visual communication of the features of design ideas.
  • Design context refers to the environment in which the design is to be situated. An exploration of the design context includes consideration of the milieu and the environment’s link to various factors, including but not limited to legal, ethical, cultural, historical, economic, and technological factors
  • The refinement process is the process by which we evolve design ideas to improve the aesthetic and/or functional qualities of the design. This is informed by such aspects as research, analysis, making design judgments, reflection, and critique.

Resources to support teaching and learning


  • "DVC: A visual journey from brief to design resolution" by Paul Bourdot, looking at the progression from junior to level 6
  • AVA Academia’s "Basics Design" series
  • ESA Level 1 Design and Visual Communications Study Guide
  • "Design and Visual Communication: Senior NCEA" by Elizabeth McHugh
  • "Geometry of Design: Studies in Proportion and Composition" – Kimberly Elam (Princeton Architectural Press)
  • "Archi-Doodle: An Architect’s Activity Book" – Steve Bowkett (Laurence King)
  • "The Art of Folding: Creative Forms in Design and Architecture" – Jean-Charles Trebbi (Promopress)
  • "Nano House: Innovations for Small Dwellings" – Phyllis Richardson (Thames & Hudson)
  • "Forty-Six Square Metres of Land Doesn’t Normally Become a House: Maximising Living Space Australia & New Zealand" – Stuart Harrison (Thames & Hudson)
  • "The New Modern House: Redefining Functionalism" – Jonathan Bell & Ellie Stathaki (Laurence King)
  • "Materials in Architecture: Unique Architectural Expressions" – (Gingko Press)
  • "Made Of…: New Materials Sourcebook for Architecture and Design" – Christiane Sauer (Gestalten)
  • "Great Designs: The World’s Best Design Explored & Explained" – Philip Wilkinson (DK)
  • "1000 New Eco Designs and Where To Find Them" – Rebecca Proctor (Laurence King)

Assessment for qualifications


Last updated June 8, 2018