CMA Design Courses - Diploma
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Diploma in Communication Design

Professional Diploma in Advertising and Design Course

Someone once said, 'If you're going to do something, do something which makes you happy.' So are you sure you are doing what really makes you happy? You secretly are a passionate designer at heart; one who has always had a keen eye for aesthetics. We know how it must feel, taking up every course but design, the one thing you truly live for. Let us, help you break free from your shell.

You will undergo comprehensive training in using computer graphic software and taught the principles of design in this course. You will also be taught how to conceptualize development for design applications such as editorial and packaging. You will be exposed to the practical know-hows of the industry, as well as the common "DOs" & "DON'Ts" practiced. In this course, project-based training will be key.


Visual Communication

The visual communication module acts as an orientation programs for students to embark on their discovery journey of what it takes to become a successful designer, relevant to the industry. Students will be exposed to the various forms of design, as well as understanding fundamentals such as design principles, symbols, colors, etc. This module will focus mainly on the following areas :

  • Design appreciation and communication
  • Fundamentals and Principles of design
  • Colour fundamentals and theories
  • Idea development
  • Research development
  • Protocols and processes
Digital Studios

In this digital studio module, students will be introduced to the fundamentals of computer-aided-design with industry standard applications - Photoshop and Illustrator. The objective of this module is to equip students with the skills necessary to stay relevant in the digital age. This module is divided into two equal parts, 6 sessions for each application.

  • Photoshop
  • Understanding Photoshop tools and work area
  • Working with Photoshop layers and masking features
  • Understanding colour modes, color correction
  • Working with transparencies, blending mode, paths and clipping paths
  • Filters and plug ins
  • File formats, smart objects, etc
  • Illustrator
  • Understanding the workspace of a vector-based environment
  • Basic layout techniques
  • Drawing with Illustrator
  • Working with layers, transparencies, graphic styles
  • Precision drawing with Illustrator
  • Path operations, masking and filters
  • Creating proofs (draft, print, press)
Typography and Communication Design
The typography & communication design module will gear students to the next level of design driven skills with a greater emphasis in graphic design and typography. Students will learn how typography forms a visual unit, utilising graphic design to create an outstanding piece of work – delivering accurate information with communication design. This module will focus mainly on the following areas:

  • Type evolution and history
  • The graphic designers' layout grid
  • Typography as a visual language
  • Working within a given space and a body
    of information
  • How typography affects graphic design
  • Type anatomy, measurements, classifications, styles, weights
  • Type spaces (kerning, tracking, leading, etc)
  • Applying variations in layouts and identifying common mistakes
  • Creative research, how to get inspiring ideas and applying through Art Direction
  • Choosing the right photo or cropping the
    wrong photo
  • File Formats
Corporate Identity and Design
This module will provide students the science behind every corporation's 'persona'. Besides creating the corporate personality, the module also explores the components of a corporate identity programme that will promote consistency in both discipline and application. This module will focus mainly on the following areas:

  • The coming of corporate communications
  • The story, the visual, the package
  • The science of symbols and colors
  • The logotype and the semiotics
  • Supporting devices/ applications
  • The corporate design mandatories
  • The corporate identity system, why is it
    so important?
Packaging and Print Technology

This packaging & print technology module introduces the technologies and procedures of modern lithography and packaging studies to students, equipping them with real industrial knowledge of managing the studio workflow through a visit to a printing plant. This module will focus mainly on the following areas :

  • Understanding colors and inks for press
  • Understanding dpi, ppi and lpi.
  • The different forms of lithography with emphasis on offset lithography
  • Pre and post press. Managing the workflow
  • Color separation
  • Understanding packaging as an extension of a brand
  • Choosing the right stock
  • Creating prototypes for packaging
  • Techniques in performing really nice mockups
Editorial Design

This editorial design module covers important aspects on how to structure a set of cohesive editorial content, grids and components through the use of InDesign as the technical aspects. Students not only will learn content gathering, they will also understand how to create personalities and tone for publication. This module is divided into 6 sessions for Editorial Design and 6 sessions on InDesign. This module will focus mainly on the following areas :

  • Editorial
  • Editorial design and its objectives
  • Anatomy of a publication
  • Creating layouts
  • Essential layout skills
  • InDesign
  • Working with InDesign's features such as master pages and section markers
  • Creating paragraphs and character styles
  • Working with InDesign's table feature
Online Media Design

This online media design module allow students to integrate communication design with realism through rich media, with studies focusing on web criteria, restrictions and how to use Dreamweaver for dynamic web presentations. This module will focus MAINLY on the following areas :

  • Understanding what is the internet, worldwide web and the progress
  • The internet and communication design
  • Fundamentals of Dreamweaver
  • Flowchart
  • Understanding tables in Dreamweaver
  • Navigating the site with buttons
  • Consistency with CSS styles
  • Technical skills such as image quality, file format, color space, etc
Communication Design

Students embark on their final journey for communication design through integrating the modules learnt with a selfinitiated project. The communication design major project will allow students to implement design methods, communication design strategy and design for both print and web into a remarkable piece of creative work through non-mass media means.

Upcoming intakes
Part Time
14th Aug 2017
Full Time
4th Sept 2017

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Interactions and hands-on workshops, consultations and practical assignments as well as presentations and critiques are provided to better aid you in your understanding of the topics being covered, and to better your skills after graduating from this course.

This purely-design course is recommended for those who aspire to become full-pledged designers.

Course Duration

Maximum 20 Months (Full Time)
Maximum 28 Months (Part Time)

Lecturer:students Ratio

1:20 (Full Time)
1:25 (Part Time)
Average Number of Students: 15 per class

Entry Requirements

For Singapore Citizen / PR

  • Applicants are to be aged 16 or above when applying.
  • GCE 'N' level with minimum 3 credits (C6) or equivalents
  • Applicant not meeting the entry requirement may need to undergo an interview.

For Others (with valid visa)

VIETNAM - Minimum year 10 education

CHINA - High School Senior Level 2 or equivalent


MALAYSIA - SPM / STPM / Chinese Independent – High School Senior Level 2


  • Minimum year 10 education
  • China and other countries : High School Senior Level 2 and above or equivalent Diplomas
  • Indonesian : SMU2 and above
  • Malaysia : SPM/STPM/Chinese Independent – High School Senior 2
  • Others : Min Year 10 and above.

Exemption will be considered for applicants with related working experience or graduates from other design schools. (Exemption for design modules is strictly based on portfolio evaluation and interview)

Language Requirements
At least 'N' Level English (C6) or equivalents

Graduation Requirements and Course Assessment


"My experience in CMA was highly enjoyable and fulfilling, with an atmosphere that's familial and caring. During my time in CMA, I was able to complete a portfolio unique from the other applicants, having applied the different techniques from the MAD Formula. I also applied the various thought processes I learnt to tackle the interview which impressed the judges greatly."

Natalie Gay
CMA Graduate
Entered NTU with just 4 months worth of portfolio

What other students say...
Crowbar Awards
1 Silver Award
1 Bronze Award


Joyce Tay, Trevor Chua
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Category: Silver – Direct Category
Bronze – Integrated Campaign Category
Crowbar Awards
1 Bronze Award

"Digital Detox"

Audrey Khang, Chelsea Chen
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Category: Bronze– Integrated Campaign
Crowbar Awards
3 Bronze Awards

"Breathing Life into Stories"

BrandonLoh, Jimmy Yap
and Seng Hwee Ho
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Category: Bronze (Posters, Transit)
Bronze (Posters. Non-Transit))
Bronze (Print/Press)
Crowbar Awards

"It's Nice that / Powered by Peers"

Fuad Rahmat, Marcus Ng, Brandon Loh
and Joyce Tay
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy

Crowbar Awards

"Soothe Your Stomach"

Roana Koh
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy

Crowbar Awards

"Burning Point"

Ting Yu Goh, Xue Ni Yeo, Jimmy Yap, Seng Hwee Ho, Roana Koh
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Crowbar Awards

"Pacer, Every step counts"

Joyce Tay, Trevor Chua
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Crowbar Awards
4 Silver Awards

"Nanoblock - Small Creation, Big Stories"

Andy Xu Dexiang, Chua See Hiang, Kam Pei Wan Amelie
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Advertising (Posters)
Advertising (Posters Non-Transit)
Advertising (Print/Press Newspaper & Magazines)
Advertising (Art Direction)
Crowbar Awards
3 Bronze Awards

"Oral B - Catch"

Idris Bin Afandi

School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Advertising (Posters Non-Transit)
Advertising (Print/Press Newspaper & Magazines)
Advertising (Illustration)
D&AD Logo
Student Yellow Pencil

"Peace One Day"

Amelie Kam Pei Wen, Andy Dexiang Xu,
Fleur Vella, Goh Ting Yu, Violaine Hemery
School: Chatsworth Medi@rt Academy
Category: Open Brief
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