If you’ve got your head around what it’s like studying a Bachelor of Design Computing at USYD it would be perfectly understandable if you’re now looking for a personal rundown.
Well, lucky for you, we’ve got you covered. We got to chat with Monica, a Design Computing student at USYD, who had all of the answers to our questions.
Check it out!
Why should you study a Design Computing degree at USYD?
A Bachelor of Design Computing at USYD is a course that allows you to transform your ideas into technological reality. Maybe you’ve had a cool idea nestled in your brain for ages and you’re looking for a cool way to bring it to life — a Bachelor of Design Computing can help you do that!
In fact, most of what we know about Design Computing has actually come from USYD itself! USYD was one of the first institutions to undergo research into design and computing technologies and is the only uni in NSW to teach User Experience Design at a Bachelor’s level.
As a student in the Design Computing course at USYD, you can be confident that you’ll be in experienced hands. USYD laid the design computing foundations and even coined the name! If that doesn’t entice you, we’re not sure what will.
USYD actually ranks at #4 for Engineering and Technology courses in Australia!
Top 3 Pros of a Design Computing degree
#1: Unique experience
As we mentioned, USYD is one of the few universities in Australia that offers the full Design Computing experience, meaning it’s a pretty unique and one of a kind degree. It’s the kind of degree that can take you anywhere and can be whatever you make it.
The program looks into the role and impact of the internet, mobile apps, coding, virtual reality, visual design and digital media production.
Monica told us that she particularly values the User Experience (UX) technology that she has access to while studying.
“UX Design is a new and emerging industry and USYD is the only university in NSW that provides this degree at a higher education level. This makes the degree very unique but also makes graduates more employable,” Monica said.
#2: Hands-on projects
“The learning in Design Computing is very hands-on whether it be coding, 3D-modelling, videography or creating prototypes for apps and websites,” Monica said.
In fact, as a student in the Bachelor of Design Computing degree, you won’t have any exams! Instead, you’ll be taking extremely practical classes, studios and assignments.
Monica added, “They are all project-based assignments. However, they are big projects so the key is to work on them consistently leading up to the due date. Some units also have short weekly quizzes and the majority of assessments are group projects.”
This would be a great feature if you’re someone that prefers to be marked on applying your understanding to physical projects rather than memorising theoretical content for exams.
“This degree also prepares you for the workplace as you learn how to work in a team, present your ideas and justify them and master software and tools,” Monica told us.
#3: Easy to make friends
Another great part of Design Computing at USYD is that it’s a cohort that’s really easy to get along with because you’re surrounded by a relatively small group of students who are all in the same boat as you!
“The cohort is small and everyone takes the same classes in their first year so it’s very easy to make friends. It’s great to connect with like-minded peers and all the people I’ve met through this degree are amazing and I’ve also made friends I will definitely still keep in touch with after the degree,” Monica confirmed.
Since you’ll be with the same group of people in all of your core units, you can expect to make some good pals easily. If you want to take a look at these core subjects, check out USYD’s Design Computing handbook here!
#4: Great societies
Bonus round! Monica also told us about the great opportunities for students to join clubs and societies.
“I was part of the Sydney University Experience Designers (SUEDE) society where I met the majority of my friends. I highly recommend joining the faculty society if you want to make friends within your degree or exchange information about assignments, internships and job opportunities,” Monica said.
She added, “It’s super fun but also a very valuable networking opportunity! The faculty staff are friendly and you are supported by a lot of tutors who are also Design Computing alumni.”
Take a look at the other clubs and societies offered at USYD right here!
Top 3 Cons of a Design Computing degree
#1: Lots of group work
“This is a pro and a con. Group assignments make it easy to make friends and meet new people, however it can sometimes be a make or break situation. Your team members play a huge role in your mark and work ethic, so my advice would be to choose your team members carefully if possible,” Monica said.
There you have it. There will be a lot of group work but as long as you work hard and try to communicate well with your team, you’ll be okay!
Monica added, “Since you will be with the same group throughout the whole semester, it is important that you have similar work styles, goals and can get along well. On the opposite hand if you’re in a group with your friends, studying together makes it 100x more fun!”
#2: Large workload
Since Design Computing at USYD is such a practical, hands-on degree, you’ll be having to commit quite a lot of time to getting your head around it all. Monica said that it’s important to understand how critical time management and organisation is in Design Computing!
“This especially applies to the big studio projects. They can be very full-on sometimes and have many different components to them. You also need to find time outside of class with your teammates to work together and conduct interviews and group sessions for research,” Monica told us.
She added, “As much design there is, there is just as much research and report writing so you have to allocate your time efficiently to get different sections done in time. Time management is key!”
#3: That’s all!
That’s all Monica could think of! Just remember that if you are considering studying a Bachelor of Design Computing at USYD, it’s going to be a pretty big commitment.
You’ll have to learn to manage your time to stay on top of reports, group work and assignments. You’ve got this!
Monica also said, “I don’t have any regrets about this degree!”
So, there you have it. Design Computing has been a great fit for Monica despite the cons listed above. Of course, it’s important to remember that not everyone has the same experience at uni, maybe you won’t like the course as much or maybe you’ll like it even more than Monica!
What do you wish you had known before starting the degree?
#1: Take advantage of internship opportunities
“I wish I had known more about internship and grad opportunity deadlines as they don’t give you much information about this. It’s best to research and prepare in advance so you don’t miss important deadlines,” Monica said.
So, make sure you’re looking out and checking in with your tutors for these kinds of opportunities. USYD does offer Design Computing students some great internship programs to enhance professional experience and add to resumes!
Undertaking an internship or placement isn’t a compulsory element of the Bachelor of Design Computing course but Monica would suggest it! Since you’ve got quite a few electives to fill, you could always take USYD’s Internship Program which is the equivalent of 6 credit points.
#2: Aim to submit high quality assessments
Monica also told us about the importance of submitting great quality homework and assessments because it’ll come in handy later.
“Aim to produce high quality work on projects not just for the mark, but for your portfolio. Portfolios will be crucial when applying to internship and graduate roles so best to get started early on.”
So, when you do get to applying for those dream jobs, you’ll have heaps of quality work to show for it. Your employer will most likely want to see some of your past work so it’s great to have!
What makes this degree different from the ones offered at other universities?
Monica told us that USYD’s professional facilities and advanced resources means that the institution stands out from other programs she looked at.
“UX is a relatively new and emerging industry, so being able to get quality education at a higher level in this area makes USYD special,” Monica said.
So, if you value having access to the up and coming technologies, maybe USYD would be perfect for you!
What inspired you to choose this degree?
Monica actually began her uni search looking for a psychology course. It wasn’t until she serendipitously found USYD’s Bachelor of Design Computing degree that she realised it would be perfect for her!
“Originally I wanted to study Psychology but also had a passion for art and design. I really enjoyed visual art classes in High School and also had an interest in emerging technology. I accidentally stumbled on this degree during USYD’s open day and found out about UX Design. I thought this degree would be perfect for me as it was a blend of all my interests,” Monica said.
So, there you go arts and design students, Design Computing at USYD may be a great fit.
What are the possible career paths?
Once you graduate from the Bachelor of Design Computing at USYD, you can be confident that you’ll be equipped with the skills to secure a range of positions in the design and computing world and beyond!
Most likely, you’ll be wanting to score a position in the computing or designing world which is great because it’s an industry that’s always growing. We’re always needing creative, clever and original minds to come up with the best thing since sliced bread!
Gemma Billington is a Content Writer at Art of Smart and an undergraduate student at the University of Technology Sydney. While studying Journalism and Social and Political Sciences, Gemma enjoys spending her time at the gym or reading about Britain’s medieval monarchy – ideally not at the same time. She currently creates and administers social media posts for Central News and writes for the student publication, The Comma. After completing her undergraduate degree, she hopes to study a Masters of Medieval History and is very excited about the prospect!