Diploma in Desktop Publishing

Professional / Short Course / Undergraduate
16 Weeks x 1 Evening (6.30pm – 9.30pm)
Validated by
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Course Overview

Master desktop publishing skills and graphic design principles with Adobe CS

This part-time course combines basic desktop publishing skills and graphics design principles with the specifics of how to use the Adobe suite to create visual communications.

The course is validated by The Institute of Commercial Management (ICM). This course focuses on the development of professional skills and does not sit on the national framework.

Why Study Desktop Publishing at Griffith College?

The Diploma in Desktop Publishing course is conducted on a part-time evening basis over a 16-week period. The aim of the course is to give participants the advanced skills and knowledge required to work in a desktop publishing/graphic design environment.

  • You develop skills in key technologies like Adobe InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop, and Acrobat
  • You develop key techniques used to create and edit complex publications using industry standard software applications and how to prepare them for submission to commercial printers
  • You acquire practical experience in publishing through pre-defined exercises designed to highlight a particular area or technique
  • You develop and extend your skills and knowledge to either progress in your current career or with a view to moving into other work areas
  • Validated by a leading commercial and business developmental body in the Institute of Commercial Management (ICM).
  • Full access to Student Adobe Creative Cloud - All Apps plan, which gives you 20+ cutting-edge creative tools for desktop, mobile, and web

Intake Dates

The next intake for this course will be: 

  • September 2023*

*subject to sufficient numbers

Please see the timetable section for course dates.

Course Details


This module introduces the students to the Photoshop software package. This is the industry standard software application for photograph manipulation and editing. The module covers an introduction to the basic tools and techniques used in this programme as well as introducing the more advanced tools used in photographic editing. The main areas covered include:

  • Exporting images
  • Editing and repairing images
  • Using the Photoshop repair tools
  • Selecting objects in a photograph
  • Using the various selection tools
  • Using advanced selection techniques
  • Working with colours and colour palettes
  • Working with gradients and patterns
  • Working with layers
  • Using layer styles
  • Introduction to masks and masking techniques
  • Working with adjustment layers
  • Creating and editing vector paths and masks
  • Creating composite images
  • Removing backgrounds from images
  • Inserting text in an image
  • Applying special effects to text using layer styles
  • Working with the Photoshop filters
  • Creating actions, droplets and batch processing
  • Using Photoshop with other DTP packages
  • Understanding file formats
  • Creating a file for publication in Photoshop.

This module introduces the students to the Adobe Illustrator work environment and to the concept of vector art and design. The module covers the basic Illustrator tools and menu options. The students are shown the similarities and differences between Illustrator and Photoshop and how to choose the correct package for a particular job. The main areas covered include:

  • Changing the stacking order of shapes
  • Working with the stroke and fill attributes
  • Using the pencil tool
  • Modifying lines using the smooth and erase tools
  • Introduction to using the pen tool
  • Drawing straight lines with the pen tool
  • Drawing curves with the pen tool
  • Drawing complex shapes using the pen tool
  • Working with paths
  • Working with layers in Illustrator
  • Working with colour and swatches
  • Working with pantone colours
  • Creating gradient swatches
  • Using the mesh tool to create colour blends
  • Applying 3D effects
  • Working with text in Illustrator
  • Adjusting leading/kerning/tracking
  • Importing Photoshop images to Illustrator
  • Using the effects and filters menus
  • Perspective drawing
  • Tracing raster images
  • Using live trace and live paint
  • Creating slices for web graphics
  • Using graphs
  • Saving and exporting files.

This module covers the use of Adobe InDesign to create multi-page documents. The module covers the differences between InDesign and Photoshop and Illustrator. The students are shown how to use InDesign to bring together work for the other applications to create a completed publication. The main areas covered include:

  • Inserting text frames on a page
  • Creating automated type styles
  • Advanced frame techniques
  • Methods of inserting text on a page
  • Flowing text from frame to frame
  • Formatting text frames
  • Typography
  • Typing on a path
  • Working with character and paragraph styles
  • Working with images
  • Inserting images on a page
  • Applying effects to objects on a page
  • Working with colours and swatches
  • Working with pantone colours
  • Creating a gradient swatch
  • Creating a table
  • Modifying a table
  • Formatting a table
  • Working with tabs
  • Using the spellchecker
  • Working with books
  • Pre-flight and package
  • Saving your documents
  • Creating print ready files.

This module covers the use of Adobe Acrobat as an editorial and proofreading tool. It covers the creation of pdf documents both from the other Adobe packages and also from Microsoft Office documents. It also covers the editing and collaboration features of Acrobat and how it can be used in a work environment. The main areas covered include:

  • Creating a pdf document from multiple file formats
  • Adding headers and footers to a document
  • Placing watermarks on a document
  • Adding stamps to pages
  • Colour management
  • Printing colour separations
  • Using the Acrobat editorial tools
  • Adding comments to a document
  • Direct editing of text
  • Creating bookmarks for a document
  • Using the articles palette
  • Inserting hyperlinks
  • Working with forms
  • Securing a document
  • Formatting the appearance of a document
  • Using digital signatures.

In this module, the students are given the opportunity to bring together everything they have covered during the course and work on actual documents. This part of the course focuses on deciding on which application to use for a particular task and then bringing each design element together in the finished publication. The main areas covered include:

  • Integrating Photoshop and Illustrator files in an InDesign document
  • Saving and exporting files in different formats
  • Preflight and package of finished documents
  • Reviewing a final proof
  • Making last minute changes to a document
  • Printing instructions for a document.

Course Contacts

If you have any questions please get in touch with us at [email protected] or 01 415 0429.


This course is scheduled to commence in September 2023 at Griffith College Dublin, main campus, South Circular Road. Contact shortcourses@griffith.ie for further information.

This part-time evening course runs one evening per week (Friday) from 6.30pm - 9.30 pm over 16 weeks, course dates outlined below.​

Year 2023 


·Dates to be Confirmed

How to Apply

Entry Requirements

All participants of the Diploma in Desktop Publishing must have a good working knowledge of the basics of Adobe Photoshop, InDesign, Acrobat and Illustrator.

All applicants should be proficient in the use of Mac/MS Applications.

How to Apply

Directly to Griffith College Short Courses Department.

Applicants under 23 years of age:

Old Leaving Cert (Pre 2017)

5 Ordinary Level D3s (subjects to include a language, English, Irish or another language) or equivalent exam taken.

New Leaving Cert

5 O6/H7 grades, to include Maths and a language (English, Irish or another language).

Applicants over 23 years of age (Mature students):

If you are 23 years or over from the 1st January of this year, you can apply for this course directly using the College’s online application form.


Tuition Fees

Study Mode: Part-Time


EUR 990.00


What further study can I do?

Successful applicants may also elect to pursue further studies in this area.

What career paths could I have?

This professional course is the perfect foundation for participants who wish to progress in the workplace.

Ready to take the next step?