Online Courses Available

Undergraduate Online Courses Available

 


 

Places fill up fast, and we cannot offer an extended number of places in each course - so make sure you enrol early before the start of semester!

COFA Online offers the following fully online undergraduate electives (If you are looking for postgraduate online electives, please click here). These electives may usually be taken as part for your study no matter which faculty your degree is based in*. However it is always best practice to check with the UNSW student centre about the requirements of your degree before enroling in a COFA Online course.

All COFA Online courses are highly interactive, and do not follow the traditional 'distance' style of online learning where you download course notes and complete your work in isolation. You will have the chance to interact and collaborate with students from different disciplines, and the flexible nature of online learning means that you can still study online while juggling work, other study and life commitments.

Not every course you see listed here will run every semester. For a list of courses that will be running in Semester 1, 2010, click the Links to Current Courses button.

 

*INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS - If you are an international undergraduate student studying on-campus in Australia, you are not permitted to study more than 25% of your program online. It is the responsibility of each student to check with the UNSW student centre that undertaking a COFA Online course complies with the requirements of their degree. 

 

 

Discipline-specific Undergraduate Electives

COFA0201 Graphics & Contemporary Society

This fully online course comprises a series of lectures, learning activities and assessment tasks introducing topical issues in contemporary graphic design and its significance in society. These issues include form and function in communication design, pictorial and narrative structures in visual communication, systems of icons and symbols as a global visual language, and the influence of technology on aesthetics and visual experience.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0202 Design, Interactivity and Emerging Media

This fully online course comprises a series of lectures, learning activities and assessment tasks that seek to discover and understand the underlying language of interactivity. The content includes a broad history of interactive media, questions existing conventions of interactivity, and explores the notions of play and interactive design. The course aims to develop a set of ideas, approaches and practices that are essential to the creation of engaging interactive experiences. 

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry 

 

COFA0203 Collaboration and Visual Communication in Graphic Design

The activity of designing has witnessed a definitive shift in attitude over the past decade. More and more designers, from a variety of disciplines, are choosing to adopt collaborative working approaches when undertaking commercial and experimental projects. Design theorists now acknowledge that designing is fundamentally a collaborative, interdisciplinary, geographically distributed and multimedia activity; thus supporting the notion of an evolution in contemporary design methodology. You will examine creative and conceptual approaches to graphic design by engaging in theoretical and visual research, abstraction of ideas and resolution of collective design proposals. Both individual and group assessment/feedback will be given throughout the course to enhance your experience of creative collaboration in graphic design. 

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0205 Curating Art and Exhibitions

Today’s contemporary art practice includes temporary and site-specific projects, screen-based, digital and online art. The role of the curator, whether museumbased or freelance, has changed dramatically with the emergence of these new art practices. This course investigates key exhibitions and art projects internationally, providing a range of approaches to curating art today. It focuses on new models of exhibition-making both in traditional and alternative art venues, including public art.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0206 The Art of Plants and Nature

This fully online course comprises a series of lectures, activities and assessment tasks that seek to increase your visual awareness of plant structures, the analytical and conceptual means by which you see and define them, the possibilities for pictorial and aesthetic outcomes, and the translation of these understandings into your own art/design products. ssessment tasks will focus on individual projects and online team activities that encourage participation and collaboration. You do not need to have high levels of drawing skill to successfully participate in this course.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0207 Textiles: Technology and the Body

In 20 years time, will clothes be intelligent, self cleansing, or grown from a living layer of tissue? This fully online course will look at the exciting possibilities of the future of textile design in relationship to the body including wearable fabrics, clothing, extensions and accessories. Developments in textile technology are evolving at a rapid pace, with innovations that will allow you to reassess what textiles for the body can be. The course will look at textile design in relationship to both the surface and structure of a ‘fabric’. By experimenting with your own individual projects you will examine the influence of traditional processes on technology and how traditional techniques utilise new technology. 

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0208 Fashion 1980 - Now

Why do high-heeled shoes feature in the television series Sex and the City? How are fashion, gender and sexuality linked? Why can women now wear a cheongsam dress and trainers? Fashion history and theory is one of the most rapidly developing areas of humanities research, drawing upon new theories of the body, social space, surfaces, ephemerality and popular culture. This course examines fashion as a vehicle of self-fashioning since the 1980s.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0209 Cross Cultural Sculpture

This is a practical sculpture course that will introduce the student to ways of making culturally blended, contemporary sculpture and installation art through online projects. The influence of colonialism, migration, globalisation, mass media, cultural displacement, multi-culturalism, travel and tourism will be examined. Studio theory components will enhance awareness and understanding of how and why contemporary artists often blend and quote diverse cultural practices in their artwork.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0210 Visual Identity in the Built Environment

It may seem obvious why a fashion boutique stamps a big logo on the front of its commercial premises, however, ask yourself: why do local councils label street signs in their municipality with a council emblem, or why do public parks nowadays have a logo designed to represent them? Most environments we encounter on a daily basis have been designed to carry a specific visual identity or brand. The course explores a range of commercial and non-commercial spaces. It examines how visual identity has been programmed into these spaces and how this affects the user-experience.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0211 Print Advertising for a World Market

This course considers such issues when looking at cross-cultural representation and perception in graphic advertising design. It invites you to analyse some interesting advertising design case studies, with emphasis on print media advertising from magazine ads to billboard posters. Nowadays, with many companies trying to sell their goods in the global market, there is a claim that the developed world has evolved into a global monoculture. Nevertheless, designers and entrepreneurs still need to be aware of cultural nuances.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0212 Textiles for Interiors - Senses and Spaces

Exploring various dimensions of visual aesthetics, you will learn about contemporary trends in textile and interior design, and possible futures of textile design using new digital technologies. These will be placed in an overview of the context of an historical timeline. Through personal analysis, shared experiences and observation, you’ll understand more about how textiles affect your home and work environments. This online course offers you opportunities for both individual and collaborative learning activities. These will include problem solving, critical thinking and establishing design outcomes that support you in developing a heightened awareness of the sensory and spatial influences of textiles on interior settings.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0213 Contemporary Aesthetics in Digital Architecture

How will tomorrow’s built and landscaped environments look and feel? In these first few decades of the digital age, the planet’s leading architects have been discovering the creative potentials of on-screen design tools which behave very differently from pens, slide rules and paper. You will examine how emerging convergences of diverse technologies are influencing how architects aim to reinvent the way buildings look and feel - not only to answer humanity’s next challenges but to continue telling humanity’s stories through aesthetics.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0214 Creative Thinking Processes

This course introduces you to some of the many tools that can facilitate creative thinking. Visual, verbal and physical techniques will be used to help participants understand and apply creative thinking principles such as interconnectivity, non linear (associative) thinking, and use maps, models and metaphors.

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COFA0215 Society Through the Lens

This course introduces participants to an emerging and rapidly growing discipline, Visual Sociology. As a field that is providing new methods with which to document, evaluate and consequently better understand society through the lens, it is of increasing importance worldwide.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0216 Celebrity and the Face in Cinema

In this fully online course, you will learn how a particular style of performance and cinematography emerged in Australia in the first century of cinema. From early technical experiments in Australian cinema to the casting of performers whose body types differed significantly from European and American cinema in the same period, you will examine how different ideas of beauty and movement developed in Australian cinema. In more recent cinema, you will assess how these earlier ideas affect performance style when actors go global and become 'stars'. You will be engaged in interactive activities and discussion that will support your development of a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of celebrity and a greater appreciation of Australian cinema.

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COFA0217 The Art of Scientific Visualisation

How have imaging and visualisation technologies changed our lives? This fully online course will offer a critical framework for examining the contemporary and historical crossovers and collaborations between art, science and medicine. It will highlight the problems and challenges involved in such collaborations, as well as investigating how relationships between these disciplines have evolved from the seventeenth century to the present time. 

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0218 Experiencing and Understanding Art

This online course will help give you a better understanding and appreciation of art. You will learn how to observe and appreciate art from different perspectives, and will be asked to draw on experience and knowledge from your own area of study. Sharing your own perspective with others, and learning how to broaden and contextualise your understanding of artwork and exhibitions are key elements to this course.

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COFA0219 Digital Illustration for Concept Art

This course aims to take you through the world of concept art with a focus in its digital pre-production process. The course will have both practical and theoretical aspects about how to use digital tools to produce concept art more effectively. This course will be useful for anyone who wants to experience the process of creating concept art using digital tools.

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COFA0220 Spatial Design - Retail, Exhibition & Hospitality

When did trade fairs evolve into innovative exhibition design? Why did ‘flagship stores’ replace the importance of shopping centres? When did chain hotels give way to boutique resorts? What are signature restaurants and concept stores? The design of interiors, spaces or buildings relating to retail, hospitality and exhibition design has changed dramatically over the past 20 years.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry

 

COFA0221 Draw Your World

Have you ever wished you could draw something from your imagination or from the real world so other people could understand it? This fully online course will introduce you to techniques that will help you to accomplish this. You will learn how to use the key elements of drawing: line, tone, proportion and composition and to understand their expressive uses through experimentation with a broad variety of media including charcoal, pen, pencil, ink and chalk.

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COFA0222 Unraveling Urban Design

This course will take you through a progressive series of lectures drawing on historical and contemporary examples of urban design so that you will be equipped with a strong skill in spatial literacy and urban design potential. 

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COFA0223 Visualising the Past

Every time any of us walk into a museum, stroll about our neighbourhood, or browse thorough our city, we will inevitably be confronted by visual reconstructions of the past. It is paramount that we are fluent with knowing how integrated they are into our understanding of the past and essential to be able to analyse them from a standpoint that sees them more than pretty pictures. Our appreciation of our own culture and cultures earlier than ours depends on interpreting the images made to visualise the past.

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COFA0225 Creative Character Design

This fully online course would suit anyone who wishes to explore characterisation for their own portfolio, the web, comic or 3D worlds. Through individual and collaborative exercises participants will explore considerations required for strong and visual and enduring characters for the screen, page and game environments.

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COFA0226 Digital Animation Using Flash

This fully online course takes you through some practical work methods in Flash that you can develop and expand in many different ways. Flash is a perfect tool to begin learning animation techniques and results can be easily published on the web. One of the main aims of the course is not to simply equip you with specific software techniques, but teach you an appreciation of fundamental timing skills that add greatly to the professional appearance of your animations. You will need a copy of Adobe Flash MX or later.

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     Read the UNSW Handbook Entry