Computer Graphic Design

Studying Computer Graphic Design at the University of Waikato makes you highly sought after, with a unique combination of design and coding skills. You will be able to meet the increasing demand for designers who can work in a variety of media, such as websites, apps, gaming and virtual reality.

Jon Allitt

Bachelor of Science
Since 1998 Jon has worked at Weta Digital on the visual effects for many well-known movies, including The Lord of the Rings trilogy, King Kong, Avatar, and most recently Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit trilogy.

Scott Alonzo

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design

Gage Hall

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design
Former Hamilton Boys’ High School student Gage Hall is in the final year of a Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design at the University of Waikato.

Emma-Jane McIntosh

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design
Wanting a qualification that would stand out and make her a versatile designer, Emma-Jane McIntosh chose to complete the Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design at the University of Waikato.

Bridie McPherson

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design with Honours
University of Waikato honours student Bridie McPherson is exploring how consumers react differently to typography and hand lettering.

Sam Thompson

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design

Kelly Wilson

Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design
Kelly chose the Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design because of its strong design focus and programming component.

Please note:

There will be no new enrolments in the Computer Graphic Design major from 2018. We will be offering a Bachelor of Design from 2018 with the following majors: Communication Design, Interface Design and Media Design. Computer Graphic Design will still be available as a postgraduate subject.

The Bachelor of Computer Graphic Design (BCGD) will equip you with the required technological skills and teach you how to explain and tailor design decisions to meet specific project needs. The programme also closely follows current design industry trends with a focus on both the local New Zealand and international design markets.

You’ll become a designer who can code – making you highly desirable. Waikato also trains computer graphic design students to problem-solve, and to apply an aesthetic edge, while seeing the full range of creative design possibilities.

In the first year, students learn the core elements and principles for both 2D and 3D design. Additionally, you'll develop visual and verbal skills needed for further study.  By the second year, you'll move into motion graphics and explore how visual communication and screen-based technologies interact. The third year is the year of application and pushing creative limits. Waikato also places you into internships where they take on business projects, collaborate with peers, and learn from industry professionals.

Graduate level study in Computer Graphic Design (Master of Computer Graphic Design (MCGD)) is an opportunity to plan, develop and carry out a large-scale design project supported by original research. Research topics are tailored to suit you and therefore provide an opportunity for honing a particular aspect of graphic design further, which could be a pathway to your chosen career.

Computing facilities at Waikato

The University of Waikato offers students 24-hour computer lab access with all the latest computer software, and several labs fully equipped with Mac computers, commonly used in professional design environments.  Graduate students have a dedicated lab space and access to all undergraduate facilities.

 Career opportunities

  • Advertising Designer
  • Computer Games Designer
  • Interactive Designer
  • Motion Graphics Designer
  • TV Graphics Designer
  • Web Designer


Study Computer Graphic Design in any of these qualifications

300 level

Computer Graphic Design 3CGRD34320.0 Points
Computer Graphic Design 4CGRD34420.0 Points
Intern ProjectCGRD35020.0 Points
Advanced Studies in Visual CommunicationCGRD35320.0 Points
Degree ProjectCGRD36020.0 Points
Portfolio PreparationCGRD36120.0 Points
Interaction DesignCOMP32420.0 Points
Human-Computer InteractionCOMP32520.0 Points
Web Applications DevelopmentCOMP33320.0 Points
Graphics and Computer GamesCOMP33620.0 Points

Prescriptions for the GradCert(CGD) and GradDip(CGD)

A Graduate Certificate and Graduate Diploma are available to graduates who have not included Computer Graphic Design at an advanced level in their first degree.

For further details contact the Faculty of Computing and Mathematical Sciences.

Prescriptions for the PGDipCGD, BCGD(Hons) and MCGD

Topics in Interaction DesignCGRD52415.0 Points
Information VisualisationCGRD53215.0 Points
Studio ManagementCGRD55115.0 Points
Design Research MethodsCGRD58130.0 Points
Design Dissertation and ExhibitionCGRD59130.0 Points
Design Dissertation and ExhibitionCGRD59260.0 Points
Design Thesis and RealisationCGRD59390.0 Points
Design Thesis and RealisationCGRD594120.0 Points
Programming for Research 1COMP57515.0 Points
Programming for Research 2COMP57615.0 Points
Programming for ResearchCOMP58930.0 Points
Research in Computer ScienceCOMP59030.0 Points

In addition to the practical experience gained throughout the BCGD degree, you have the opportunity to undertake a real-world design project in the 300 level paper CGRD350. In this project you work relatively independently and collaborate with your peers and with members of the professional design industry.

The final semester 300 level paper CGRD360 involves a self-directed brief which culminates each year in a Degree Show. The Degree Show projects cover a wide range of media including web design and production, mobile design, interactive design, brand development, visual identity work, interactive installation, motion graphics, 3D animation and more.

The MCGD provides an opportunity for you to plan, develop and carry out a large scale design research project.  This will enable you to collaborate with other students and academics, and to work with members of the professional design industry.

CMS International Exchange Scholarship

For students who have completed at least one year of study in the Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences (FCMS), applied for a University of Waikato exchange programme, and who are currently enrolled full-time in FCMS.

Closing Date: 2018-03-31 23:59:00

Design Fees Scholarship

For school leaver students intending to enrol full-time in the first year of an undergraduate degree, with a major in either Communication Design, Interface Design or Media Design, within the Faculty of Computing and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Waikato. The Scholarship will have a value of up to $5,000.

Closing Date: 2017-10-13 17:00:00

Computer Science Undergraduate Scholarship

For students who are currently in Year 12 or Year 13 and who are studying at a New Zealand High School. Students should be intending to enrol in a BCMS(Hons), BSc, BSc(Tech), BE(Hons) or BDes degree, in one of the computing streams, at the University of Waikato. Students will sit a Scholarship exam. The exam will be held on 20 and 21 October 2017.

Closing Date: 2017-09-22 17:00:00

FCMS Summer Project Scholarships

This is by nomination only. Nominees must be high achieving undergraduate students currently enrolled part- or full-time in the Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences. It supports a ten-week period of full-time project work during the summer break. The Scholarships will have a value of $5,000. Interested students should contact FCMS for further information.

Closing Date: 2015-10-16 23:59:00


Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences

Phone: 0800 924 528 ext: 4322 or +64 7 838 4322