Thursday, December 1, 2011

2011 Student Showcase at Moses Mabhida Stadium

It was that time of the year again when the students of Style Design College SA exhibit their work at one of the spectacular venues in Durban. For 2011, it was the stunning Moses Mabhida Stadium that played host to students, staff, proud parents, Vip's and guests. The stadium was completed on 24 November 2009 as the officially venue of the 2010 Fifa World Cup. This proved to be an awesome backdrop matched only by the brilliant effort and work showcased by the SDC students.
View from Field
The Presidential Atrium
Students putting up work in their designated spaces. SDC facilitates Photography, Interior, Graphic and Fashion Design at levels 1,2 & 3
Students are required to submit their best work for the exhibition and external moderation by professionals from the various fields of design

3rd Year Students are allocated a cubicle in which to install their work and display their unique signature style or brand
Behind the scenes before the fashion show event, the ramp is installed
Models and young designers get organised before the show in change room
Hair and Make up
Fashion lecturers Charlene and Julia discussing a few last minute details
Finally the guests start to arrive
 Founder of SDC SA and SDC Italy, Claude Fourie chats with guests and parents before the fashion show

Sarah Wilson [Interior Design Lecturer] Left
Lillian Ferreira [Accounts Manager] Right

Stunning denim recycled garment by a 1st year Fashion Student

3rd Year ranges dazzled the audience. Originality and ingenuity was the order of the day.

SDC SA Graduation Ceremony 2011 was held at the Westville Country Club
SDC Online would like to wish all fulltime graduates the very best as they begin their careers in the respective fields of design.

Top left: Lyndall Stols [Dean SDC SA] briefing guest speaker Matthew Willman [commissioned photographer to the Nelson Mandela Foundation]
Top Right: Lyndall addresses the audience
Bottom: Proud parents, anxious graduates, lecturers and invited guests
An inspiring evening, with Claude Fourie [Founder of SDC SA and Italy] bestowing the students with their Degrees and Diplomas.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Legalities & Copyright Issues Regarding Web Images

During Sandra Burke's (published author of a range of fashion books) latest visit to SDC, I had the priviledge of discussing many of the legal issues and restrictions that we will face as an Online Academic Institution, placing our material on the Web. These copyright stipulations may not just be relevant to the Online College but our full time course material as well. Sandra has mentioned, that she had to deal with many restrictions when writing her books, as to what she could include as "borrowed" material. After doing further research on this very complex legal mine field, I cam across this article
Entitled "Legal Copyright issues Web Site Management Law Suites Schools Education" (Jamie McKenzie) which very simply end effectively explains in "lay person's" terms somme of the possible scenario's and offers links to related legal sites. I found this article very informative and I realised that certainly more insight and safegaurds needs to be enforced in order to avoid any infringement issues further down the line.

Sandra Burke has been requested by Mr Claude Fourie to endorse the SDC Online Illustration Short Course which references her book "Fashion Artist". After reviewing the course material, she suggested that we use more of our own photographic imagery,  student work etc in order to remain within the  ethical boundaries of "intellectual property" and copyright restrictions. Our material for this course in particular will be reviewed and re-submitted for her approval.

I am also certain that SA laws regarding the use of images and information found on the web could be still in it's developmental phase or using the American or European standard model. Please do consider everything mentioned when preparing your lessons and Online material. Once I have done extensive research in this area I will submit a detailed outline of what steps will be taken, clauses and waivers that will be implemented. All I want to offer for now is that we document our own processes, use images taken by our students/tutors and basically produce work that is as authentic to our institution as possible. I do realise being a compiler of modules myself that there will always be a need for examples "borrowed" from web sources, I will in a future "Tutor Zone" e- letter give all educators and contract professionals guidelines to follow when using these sources.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Bibliographies: Proper Format for Academic Writing

  • Failure to acknowledge source references for images and written information is refered to as plagiarism.
  • SDC Online doesn't condone stealing or blatant copying of the ideas, images or thoughts of others.
  • Please follow the ffg guidelines as to how to write a proper Bibliography, as this is often requested by Tutors for essays or even research.
  • If any of your material is based heavily on a published work, in the form of a book, periodical, journal, website etc, you need to include it in your Bibliography.
  • For the our purposes we will use a combination of the Harvard and Running Notes Method
Formats for Bibliography


Author. Year of Publication. Title. Edition. Publication: Publisher.


Goldman, B. 1972. Reading and writing in the arts: a handbook. Detroit: Wayne State University Press.

Periodicals/ Magazines:

Author. Year of Publication. Title of article. Title of Publication Volume Number: (Issue Number ) Month/ Season: Page Numbers.


Perry, AD. 1990. Photography  and postmodern thought. Art & Design 22: (3) February: 32-36.


Author. Year. Title. Website address(Start with the words “Available at”). Date of access.


When author is known

Weddington, G. 2002. Challenge in South Africa. Available at (accessed on 23/7/2003).

When author is unknown (accessed on 23/7/2003).

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

How to navigate your course

Many first time students seem to have difficulty in grasping the Online System. It is quite simple:
  1. When you register you automatically receive x3 Modules(1) and x3 Assignments for each module. A due date for these Assignments are set at approximately x4 weeks after course activation (meaning after you have paid and have become an active student).
  2. The 4 week cycle for submission is considered FAST TRACK in terms of pace and duration of course, if this pace is maintained throughout the course. Please note that a student can opt to change any due date allocated, but must inform the college prior, in order to adjust our marking schedules.
  3. On submission of your x3 assignments, the college reserves the right to a week for proper Feedback & Marks to be uploaded to your student portal. Only if you have obtained a pass mark of 55% and above for all x3 modules will you be allowed to continue to the next x3 Modules & Assignments.This cycle continues until you complete the course.
  4. Should you not obtain the pass mark, the tutor concerned will request another submission, guidelines will be offered, in order to improve your performance.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Student Views on E Learning with SDC Online

"I have always wanted to study, but working full time restricts the amount of time you have to put into studies as well as where and what you can study. I searched the internet, and found countless universities and colleges that offer the Fashion Design course, but it was hard to find a college that offered it part – time.

Luckily, I came across Style Design College, which offers the Fashion Design Diploma via correspondence – I then applied immediately.

Within a matter of hours after enquiring about Style Design College Online, I was a registered student, and my modules had been uploaded.

The modules are easy to understand, and explains all assignments perfectly. I didn’t have any previous experience in art or sewing, but after working through the modules, with a lot of helpful pictures and illustrations, I was able to complete the assignments.

Marking of assignments doesn’t take long either, but what I find most helpful is the extensive feedback that I receive after handing in assignments. The tutors compliment my efforts, but also give constructive criticism which helps me to excel in my work.

The SDC Online website is extremely user friendly and whenever I ask questions, I always receive a quick and helpful response from the tutors.

Studying via correspondence can make you feel that you are isolated, but with so many social platforms that SDC Online provides, like a Facebook page, Twitter Page and blogs, it really helps to make you feel a part of Style Design College.

I would really recommend SDC Online for anyone out there looking to study via correspondence, as SDC Online provides the perfect support system for a student that does not have the luxury of having a tutor."

Thanks and regards
Janine Turner (SDC Online Fashion Student 2011)
Servicing the needs of many students, working at different levels of various courses, is not an easy undertaking. Many existing distance colleges have very poor feedback mechanisms in place and don't often offer the student a personalised experience. Often help lines that aren't manned or emails that end up an abyss of student queries are the reality for many correspondence learners.
This leads the the perception that distance learning is problematic or somehow inferior to attending full time lectures. On the contrary distance or web based training has been growing in popularity since the 1970's in the US. Many developments in technology and faster Internet speeds have contributed positively to this educational medium world wide. E Learning meets the demand for efficient training packages for individuals needing skills or qualifications while working. In some cases the geographic location of some students makes conevntional study impossible, so why not transcend borders and study at a college anywhere in the world . E Learning makes this possible.

Monday, June 13, 2011

New Tutors for Interior Design

All Online students please note that there have been a few changes with regard to tutors. Sarah Wilson and Jaimie Stone have joined our Interior department. Note also Lyndall Stols is not longer an active Online tutor, but will be assisting with compiling modules and will act as a professional liason within the Online Interior Department.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Guidelines for MVA (Master of Visual Arts) Proposal

I have opted to share my progress, research and methodology with students, colleagues and  friends via this blog. Hopefully it will demystify the process of academic writing, conceptual underpinning and unpacking ideologies surrounding specific social, political and philosophical discourses (within the scope of my selected topics).
The context of my work must be seen from a South African perspective, unless otherwise stated. Having lived and worked in this country for most my adult life, it goes without saying that my experiences and the cultural structures serve as a major influence in my perception of the physical world and the cerebral sphere of ideas.

When beginning the process, consider the guidelines offered by the institution to which you are submitting your proposal. Although a basic structure for this document exists, many institutes, schools, colleges and departments within the university's framework may have specific formats and requirements, which must be adhered to. According to UNISA's rules for Masters and Doctoral studies a proposal should consist of:

(a) Proposed title

(b) The research problem

One cannot carry out a coherent research project

unless one first identifies a research problem.

Perhaps where there is a gap in our

knowledge or understanding or where our existing

knowledge could be further refined and

demonstrated. This requires a thorough survey of the

relevant sources and literature. We can talk about the

research problem in terms of what questions: What

exactly is the research problem you have identified?

What questions are you going to be asking in the

process of investigating the problem? What

hypotheses are you going to be testing? What will be

the contribution of your research to the solution of the


(c) A brief literature survey indicating the sources and

literature relevant to your topic, in order to identify the

gaps and shortcomings that your dissertation/thesis

will address.
Context of the research problem

Because of the connectedness of knowledge, all

research problems can be situated against a

background of existing findings and understanding.

Without a clear understanding of this background, it is

of course impossible to identify the gaps in our

knowledge. You should therefore very briefly sketch

the present state of our knowledge of the context in

which your problem is embedded, mentioning the

sources that you have consulted so far that are

particularly relevant to your problem. Depending on

the nature of the problem you have identified, you

may be able to situate it not only within its academic

or research context, but also within a wider (e.g.

pedagogical, sociological, political) context. Part of

your task here is, then, to answer the why question:

Why is this particular problem important enough to be


(e) The method/theoretical framework

The crucial question here is How? How do you

propose to carry out your research so as to address

and solve your research problem, thereby generating

knowledge where previously there had been a gap or

a lack of refinement: At a further level of detail, the

following are possible questions: What kind of data

are you going to use? From what kind of theoretical

and analytical framework are you going to approach

the data?

(f) Outline

In about a page or so you should outline the structure

of your dissertation/thesis, indicating very briefly what

each chapter or section will cover.
(This ‘hypothetical index’ is a necessary beginning, but it will probably

change more than once during the writing process.)

(g) Sources

You should provide full bibliographical references to

the sources you mentioned in (c), and also to any

other sources that you feel are very relevant to your