Greenside Design Center College of Design (GDC) celebrated its 35th anniversary in August 2022, marking over three decades of commitment to excellence in design education. Founded by Professor Desmond Laubscher, GDC has established itself as a premier institution dedicated to nurturing creative talent and fostering innovative design solutions. The college offers a diverse range of programs across graphic design, multimedia design, interior design, industrial product and furniture design, and digital design & arts, all tailored to equip students with the skills needed to excel in the dynamic field of design.

Course Requirements

GDC offers various programs designed to meet local and international standards, ensuring students receive a high-quality design education. The curriculum emphasizes practical learning through workplace scenarios, providing students with a robust understanding of how to apply their skills in real-world settings. Below are the key qualifications offered:

Graphic Design

  • Higher Certificate in Design: Graphic Design
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Focuses on the fundamentals of graphic design, including the use of images and text to communicate messages through both hand-drawn and computer-generated images.
  • BA Degree in Graphic Design
    • NQF Level: 7
    • Duration: 3 years
    • Overview: Provides in-depth training in graphic design principles, techniques, and software.
  • BA Honours in Graphic Design
    • NQF Level: 8
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Advanced studies in graphic design, preparing students for professional practice and leadership roles in the industry.

Multimedia Design

  • Higher Certificate in Design: Multimedia Design
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Covers the integration of multiple forms of media and interactive elements for user interaction.
  • BA Degree in Multimedia Design
    • NQF Level: 7
    • Duration: 3 years
    • Overview: Comprehensive training in multimedia design, including digital media, animation, and interactive design.
  • BA Honours in Multimedia Design
    • NQF Level: 8
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Advanced multimedia design studies, emphasizing innovative approaches and professional skills.

Interior Design

  • Higher Certificate in Design: Interior Design & Decor
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Introduction to interior design principles, focusing on problem-solving in interior spaces and space planning.
  • BA Degree in Interior Design
    • NQF Level: 7
    • Duration: 3 years
    • Overview: In-depth study of interior design, covering design processes, materials, and spatial planning.
  • BA Honours in Interior Design
    • NQF Level: 8
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Advanced interior design studies, preparing students for professional practice and complex design challenges.
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Industrial Product & Furniture Design

  • Higher Certificate in Design: Industrial Product & Furniture Design
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Practical program exposing learners to a range of product types and design processes.
  • Higher Certificate in Design: Jewellery and Accessory Design
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Focuses on the design and creation of jewellery and accessories.

Digital Design & Arts

  • Higher Certificate in Design: 2D Illustration & Motion Graphics
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Training in 2D illustration and motion graphics, including software skills and project management.
  • Higher Certificate in Design: 3D Animation & Visual Effects
    • NQF Level: 5
    • Duration: 1 year
    • Overview: Focuses on 3D animation and visual effects, providing skills in various software and communication techniques.


How to Apply

To apply for a program at Greenside Design Center College of Design, follow these steps:

  1. Visit the GDC Website: Go to GDC and navigate to the admissions section.
  2. Choose Your Program: Select the course you are interested in from the list of available programs.
  3. Complete the Application Form: Fill out the online application form with your personal details and academic history.
  4. Submit Required Documents: Upload necessary documents such as your ID, academic records, and any other specified documentation.
  5. Submit Application: Complete and submit your application online.

Is It Worth It to Study Here?

Studying at Greenside Design Center College of Design offers numerous benefits for aspiring designers. The institution’s emphasis on practical learning through workplace scenarios ensures that students gain hands-on experience and a deep understanding of how to apply their skills in professional settings. The college’s commitment to maintaining high standards in education, combined with access to experienced lecturers and the latest software, provides a robust foundation for a successful career in design.

While GDC does not qualify for the NSFAS Bursary Fund, as it is a private higher education institute, it provides a range of programs tailored to meet the demands of the design industry. The focus on accessibility, affordability, relevance, and excellence ensures that students receive a quality education that prepares them for the dynamic world of design. As Nelson Mandela aptly said, “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” Studying at Greenside Design Center equips students with the knowledge and skills to drive innovation and create impactful design solutions.

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Fair and Honest Findings about Greenside Design Center College of Design

Should anyone study here or not and why?

Greenside Design Center College of Design (GDC) in Randburg has been praised for its dedication to quality education in design and its supportive learning environment. With a rating of 4.4 out of 5 based on 36 reviews from Google, Hello Peter, and other sources, the general consensus among students is positive. However, there are mixed reviews that highlight both strengths and areas for improvement.

Positive Feedback

Many students have expressed high satisfaction with the quality of education and the teaching methods at GDC. For instance, Anel Goosen, an online student, shares that the classes are “fun and interactive” and the lecturers put considerable effort into creating an ideal learning environment. Specific lecturers, such as Duran Burnett and Quintin Mallac, are noted for their dedication to making classes enjoyable. Anel concludes her review by recommending GDC as an excellent place to start a design journey.

Another student, Zante Duveen, who studies part-time, commends the lecturers for their keen ability to help students understand the goals and outcomes of lessons. She specifically thanks lecturer Tarien Laubscher-Smit for her “contagious passion and dedication.”

In addition to the educational experience, the administrative support also receives praise. Lina Da Cruz thanks the GDC accounts department, particularly Jean Hose, for prompt and fantastic assistance, highlighting the supportive nature of the administrative staff.

Negative Feedback

Despite the positive feedback, there are significant concerns that potential students should consider. One of the more alarming reviews comes from Geo Nicholas, who claims to have experienced severe communication issues with the administration. Geo mentions paying R11,000 for a laptop in December but had not received it by the time of his review. He also mentions that GDC’s staff ended calls abruptly and did not respond to emails, which led to frustration and disappointment. However, it is worth noting that GDC responded by clarifying that the delays were due to the courier company and that all queries had been addressed.

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Another negative point is raised by Jaco Viljoen, who simply states, “Bad, worse, GDC,” without further elaboration. While this review is less detailed, it suggests dissatisfaction with the institution.

Additionally, practical issues such as parking are highlighted by Elaine Van Der Plank, who describes it as a “nightmare,” indicating potential logistical problems for students attending the campus in person.

Summary

Should anyone study here?

Yes, with reservations. The positive reviews suggest that Greenside Design Center offers a robust and supportive educational environment with dedicated lecturers and a good curriculum, especially in design. The feedback highlights the interactive and enjoyable nature of classes and the helpful administrative support. However, potential students should be aware of the logistical and administrative issues reported by some students.

Why? The majority of the reviews are positive, emphasizing the quality of education and the commitment of the faculty. The issues raised, particularly regarding administrative delays and communication problems, are significant but seem to be addressed by the institution when raised. Therefore, prospective students might consider GDC a strong option for design education while remaining proactive in addressing any concerns directly with the administration to avoid potential issues.

FAQs

Does Greenside Design Center Have an Open Day?

Yes, Greenside Design Center has multiple Open Days scheduled for 2024.

  • 06 July 2024: On-campus presentations in Cape Town and Johannesburg, and a virtual presentation.
  • 31 August 2024: On-campus presentations in Cape Town and Johannesburg, and a virtual presentation.
  • 07 December 2024: On-campus presentations in Cape Town and Johannesburg, and a virtual presentation.

Does Greenside Design Center Offer an Interior Design Course?

Yes, Greenside Design Center offers BA & BA Honours Degrees in Interior Design.