Courses in

Creative Arts and Media


Certificate in Design in Traditional Signwriting

Applications for September 2021 are no longer being accepted.

Discipline: Creative Arts and Media

Location: Mayo

NFQ Level: 6

Programme Duration: One year

Mode of Study: Part time

Application Route: Apply direct to GMIT

Entry Requirements: There are no entry requirements for this Special Purpose Award

Credits: 10

Places: 16


The cost of this module is €540. 

An instalment plan is available on request. Please contact 

Programme Modules

This module is a practical introduction to the craft of traditional signwriting and hand-lettering, aimed at life-long learners.

It is designed to develop skills that are applicable in commercial and community contexts.

Learning Outcomes: 

On completion of this module, you will/should;

  1. Have the ability to design traditional painted signs, chalkboards and other hand-lettered projects.
  2. Have the technical competence to paint and write traditional signs, chalkboards and other hand-lettering projects.
  3. Be able to catalogue a body of work and demonstrate project documentation skills.
  4. Have a basic understanding of the essentials of design and lettering.
  5. Develop your professional working practices in the producton and presentation of sign and lettering projects.


You will learn about the following:

  1. Letters: development of the alphabet and typography; legibility; methods of drawing letters; weight, style and spacing.
  2. Drawing: geometrical drawing; preparing full-size drawings; heraldry.
  3. Colour: the colour wheel, the Munsell colour system; the British standard colour chart; colour and legibility.
  4. Coatings: composition; mediums, thinners, pigments, driers; handling and storage.
  5. Signwriting: tools, their use and care; the signwriting process; brush control and the mahlstick; writing signs on wood, render and glass.
  6. Chalkboard projects: setting out, chalks, soft pastels and wet-wipe markers.
  7. Costing sign, chalkboard and hand-lettering projects and presenting quotations, specifications and drawings.
  8. Presentation of sign and other hand-lettering projects, including on social media.

A complete list of materials and equipment required by the students for this module will be provided prior to the commencement of the course.

Essential Information: 

Start Date
September 2021


Entry Requirements to a Level 6 award

Minimum Leaving Certificate entry requirement grade O6/H7 or higher in 5 Leaving Certificate subjects including Mathematics and English or Irish with a minimum of 160 points.

- OR a Pass in any QQI FET major award at level 5 or 6

- OR Mature applicants (age 23 on or before the 1st January) do not have to meet the Leaving Certificate entry requirements/points, but are considered on an individual basis (previous education, work experience and demonstration of ability and competence to undertake the programme).


Course Delivery

This course is delivered part-time with attendance required on campus on Saturdays. 


How to Apply

***Applications for September 2021 are no longer being accepted.***

If you have any queries on this please email 


Contact Us

For queries relating to the course, please contact 

Dr. John Mulloy, Programme Co-ordinator



For queries relating to applications/enrolments, please contact:

Department of Graduate Studies and Professional Development