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Visual Communication: Academic Sources

A guide for Visual Communication students on finding & referencing high-quality academic books, articles and images, and well as resources for developing graphic design & data visualisation skills.

What are academic sources?


Academic sources include: 

  • Academic books - provides broad overviews of a topic
  • Journal articles - contain information about specific aspects within a topic area

The Library collection 


UTS Library has a large collection of books & journal articles. It's a great place to start your search. Watch the video to learn how to use the Library Catalogue to search for books & articles.



Academic databases are large collections of academic books, book chapters, journal articles and more. The following databases are good for finding information about design & visual communication topics. 



Looking through journals is another way to find academic articles. Find a journal on a topic relevant to the area you're studying, and search within it to find articles.

Find a journal using our journal search

Suggested journals

Design Journals

  • Journal of design history
  • Design issues
  • Design and culture
  • Early popular visual culture
  • Journal of advertising

Graphic Design Journals

  • Grafik
  • Graphis
  • Baseline
  • Visual Communication 
  • Eye
  • Novum



Academic books are great for information on broad topics. You can search for books online or browse them in the library. 

Browse books in the Library

The Library shelves are organised by Dewey Decimal Numbers, which means all the books on a subject are in one place.

For books on Visual Communication topics, look on: 

  • Level 9 - books between 700-750
  • Level 8 - books in the early 300s

Use the Library Catalogue to search for books online. 

eBooks - can be accessed directly from the library catalogue & read online from your own home. 

Print books - some books are only available in print. You can still search for them in the library catalogue. Just note down their location and come into the library to borrow them. 

Search tips


What do you do when you're not getting the results you want from your search?