Design & Communication Graphics

Subject Overview

Design and Communication Graphics provides students with the opportunity for visualizing and comprehending information presented verbally or graphically. Problem solving and creative thinking skills are developed through the analysis and solution of both 2- and 3-dimensional graphics. Graphics and design are communicated using freehand sketching skills, traditional draughting equipment and CAD.


The content is presented as a core plus options. All elements of the core must be covered whilst only two of the options must be covered.

Core: (A) Plane and Descriptive Geometry

Projection Systems

  • Orthographic Projection
  • Isometric drawing and axonometric projection
  • Perspective drawing/projection

Plane Geometry

  • Construction of Plane figures
  • Construction of loci
  • Circles in contact with points, lines and curves

Conic Sections

  • Terminology
  • Ellipse, Parabola and Hyperbola as section of cone and as geometric loci
  • Tangency
  • Derivation of focal points, directrix and eccentricity.

Descriptive Geometry of Lines and Planes

  • Definition of plane, its true shape and inclinations
  • Oblique and tangent planes; intersections
  • Rectangular co-ordinates
  • Skew lines
  • Spatial relationship between lines and planes

Intersection and development of surfaces

  • Surface development and envelopment of solids
  • Intersection of surfaces; intersection of solids

Core: (B) Communication of Design and Computer Graphics

Graphics in Design and Communication

  • Design strategies and design appraisal; the processes of design
  • Generation and interpretation of design briefs

Communication of Design

  • Drawing standards and conventions, presentation methods and layout
  • Dimensioning and notation

Freehand Drawing

  • Materials for freehand drawing
  • Representing shape, form, texture and material; light and shade; use of colour

Information and Communication Technologies

  • Graphics and CAD: terminology and software; sketching principles
  • Presentation drawings, parametric models; use of templates and libraries
  • Image processing and manipulation; data exchange; graphic output

Options: (Choose any 2)

Dynamic Mechanisms

  • Involutes, helices and spirals and associated tangents
  • Linkage mechanisms
  • Cam profiles

Structural Forms

  • Singly and doubly ruled surfaces, their projections and sections
  • Translated surfaces; hyperbolic paraboloid
  • Plane directors
  • Geodesic Dome

Geologic Geometry

  • Determining dip, strike, outcrop and thickness of strata; profiles from contours
  • Use of skew boreholes
  • Sections through strata
  • Cutting and embankment sections for level and inclined constructions

Surface Geometry

  • Development of surfaces, ducting and transition pieces
  • Projection of transition pieces


  • Interpretation of exploded and assembled drawings.
  • Drawing layout and conventions; sectional views, hatching, dimensioning
  • Machine surface and texture symbols; modelling assemblies


Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics is assessed at two levels, Ordinary and Higher. At each level,


is by means of one 3 hour terminal examination and the production of a student assignment related to a theme or topic requiring investigation and decision making.


This syllabus, which replaces Leaving Certificate Technical Drawing, was introduced into schools in September 2007 for first examination in June 2009.


Leaving Certificate Design and Communication Graphics Syllabus