A large number of students used appropriate visual communication language in the written sections of the paper and this was good to see. Some students did not read questions carefully – students should take care to answer all parts of a question. There were a few students who confused the elements with principles (and visa versa), and some students chose an element that was not dominant within the visual communication. The phrase ‘makes it eye-catching’ and ‘grabs the audiences attention’ tends to get overused. Whilst it’s doesn’t necessarily make the response incorrect, students need to expand beyond this; i.e WHY is it eye-catching?

Finally, make sure you spell each element & principle correctly, and don’t generalize. i.e “the visual communication uses straight lines to guide to viewers attention”. There are clearly more than just simple straight lines that make up the visual communication.

Figure A

Dominant elements include:

  • Colour
  • Shape
  • Letterform
  • Line


LINE is prominent because the patterns and arrows draw the eye into the centre of the page. The line creates a basic downward visual attraction, moving attention from the bold heading down the page past the various pieces of information. It also presents a striking, powerful and aggressive looking poster, possibly echoing the genre of the band.

Figure B

Dominant principles include:

  • Hierarchy
  • Balance
  • Scale
  • Figure-Ground


Most students achieved good results in this area. Obvious audience categories to discuss were gender, age and interests. The advertisement clearly indicates the location, which was rarely highlighted in student’s responses. In some cases, students neglected to mention the visual indicators and therefore were unable to achieve maximum marks.


When describing the purpose, students MUST use correct terms as described in the text. i.e; to inform, to educate, to advertise. Those that did not use these terms could not achieve maximum marks.


Naming the computer method was an excellent and easy choice when responding to this question, though there seemed to be some confusion as to the correct terminology used for methods. The correct term would be ‘computer’, rather than ‘digital manipulation’ or naming of a software program. Other methods which may have been discussed and awarded high marks were printing or photography.


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