This is the legacy website of Wakefield College’s HND [Higher National Diploma] Interactive Media and HNC [Higher National Certificate] Interactive Media courses, predecessors of the UK’s best web design course: FdA Web Design.
First delivered in 1999, both HND and HNC established a reputation for producing a stream of employable graduates for the web design industry, and in doing so anticipated the shift towards the more strenuous work-related studies of the later Foundation Degrees.
Our graduates are now spread far and wide, from Front-End Developer Tom Smith, working just 5 minutes down the road at Horbury Design, to Creative Director James Carrington, working for Atlantic Southeast Airlines in Atlanta, USA.
Despite being called Interactive Media – or even ‘Multimedia’ in an earlier incarnation – we always considered ourselves a specialised web design course. We recognised the need to concentrate on its core disciplines, rather than diversify into appealing but ultimately superfluous skills such as AV, animation or 3D modeling. And we valued the ‘design’ part of web design too, which meant that armed with both creative and technical skills, graduates were better placed to get to enter the job market.
We also threw in a bit of design for print for good measure, in order to repurpose those emerging creative skills.
The Edexcel [or was it BTEC – we never really worked that out] syllabus posed many challenges: the ‘Computing Fundamentals’, ‘Historical & Contextual Referencing’ and ‘Cultural Interpretation’ units to name a few. But in doing so, they presented the opportunity for invention and innovation, and even if we do say so ourselves, we produced some truly unique assignment tasks.
The ability to import units from other syllabuses, particularly HND Graphic Design, also enabled us to transform a potentially dry, technical course into a vibrant and meaningful qualification for the creative industries.
Former students will remember with a mixtures of emotions:
Our commercial work built steadily over the years and culminated in winning the right to redesign and rebuild the Wakefield Trinity Wildcats website; the city’s only professional sports club.
Based on little more than a hunch, a student team led by Tim Stringer speculatively pitched a new website solution to the Wildcats, and were delighted to be invited to implement it. The result, weighing in at well over a thousand pages, is still the basis for the club’s current website.
As the role of honour [to the right →] will testify, HND Interactive Media did an outstanding job at what we considered to be the essence of Higher Education in the UK: creating employable graduates; who got jobs; and helped drive the local economy forward.
Web designers; graphic designers; front-end developers; web developers; software developers; freelancers; creative directors and small business owners. HND Interactive Media produced them all. We fashioned a whole generation of creative and technical talent for the local web design sector and beyond.
So if you're reading this, looking for a web design course, and disappointed that you've missed out, fear not. We continue to inspire a new generation of designers, developers, creative professionals and business owners through our new Foundation Degree qualification, FdA Web Design.
Head over to the FdA Web Design course website to find out more.
Here’s where our former students are now working: