the LESS IS MORE lifestyle


Hello there, my name is Warren Walkinshaw. I am the lecturer of the Design Communication, Advanced Design Communication, Applied Design Communication, Introduction to Material Studies and Advanced Material Studies.

The Design Communication modules comprises of two subjects: AutoCAD and REVIT and is carried through all 3 years of studies in the Interior Design and Decorating syllabus. Both programs are forms of Computer Aided Design or CAD and are licensed by Autodesk which is their holding company.

AutoCAD was released 1982 and REVIT in the year 2000, both having set the bar for the building industry globally. Both software applications are updated annually and are in constant development to meet the demands of a rapidly evolving industry.

Interior designers, architects, project managers, engineers, graphic designers, city planners, landscape architects, structural engineers, product designers as well as contractors are among many of the professionals that use these tools as a means of executing, collaborating, and publishing technical drawings and creating digital visualizations of concepts and design solutions for both clients and contractors alike.

Our syllabus planning has been created for students who have no experience in Computer Aided Design (CAD). Introducing the fundaments of both programs and systematically building on our students the students skill set through exercises that make them more comfortable with the complex software through constant in depth assessment and evaluation. These modules are designed to align with other modules – specifically the Building Science Theory Module which comprises of both Structural Studies and the Study of Materials in both 1st and 2nd years. The 1st year at introductory level and the 2nd at an advanced level.

Having a fully formed understanding of the technical components and characteristics of various design elements – from staircases and vertical circulation to water reticulation and sanitary fittings – is fundamental to understanding how to draw and model these components accurately at scale. Understanding the building processes and physical attributes of each element encourages our future professionals to concisely and accurately work with the technical parameters required to utilize both software applications and more recently Building Information Management (BIM) to its full potential.

The application of these accumulated skills is the primary focus in your 3rd year of Design Studies at Potchefstroom Academy. The Building Science Theory Module (Materials and Structural Studies) evolves into a Technical Specifications Module which aligns with industry standards. This ensures that our candidates are well versed in composing professional documentation which fully captures all technical information needed to articulate their design solution. In application this supports the Working Drawings Module (created in AutoCAD) and 3D Visualizations used in the Design Studies (created in REVIT) for the purposes of client approval, planning, analysis as well as costing. Synchronously paving the way for our graduates leaving our as competent professionals who ultimately will create jobs and drive the industry towards an ethically sustainable future within the guidelines set out by in South African National Building Regulations (SANS 10400).