Graphic Design

Degrees and Certificates


GD 125: Design and Digital Media Foundations

Using the computer as a tool for both experimentation and creative production, this course introduces the elements and principles of two-dimensional design. Integrating technical and formal (visual) learning, students will become proficient with current software for making and editing images while simultaneously developing and applying understanding of composition, color and other fundamental attributes of design and visual art.

GD 213: Visual Communication

This introductory graphic design course provides a foundation in visual communication and creative problem-solving. Projects, readings and exercises focus on form, concept, abstraction, composition, type and image and semiotics. Working methods range from traditional hand skills and studio art media to digital media.

GD 285: Graphic Design Internship

This introductory elective internship is intended to provide any students in the graphic design program (BFA, BA or minor) with exploratory, on-site design-related work experiences and opportunities. Internships may be completed in design studios or firms or in-house in businesses or nonprofit organizations. A graphic design or studio art faculty member serves as the student's internship sponsor. An application must be submitted and approved by the faculty advisor and the Harrington Center prior to the beginning of the internship. Graded Pass/Fail.

GD 312: Typography

This intermediate graphic design course provides a focused foundation in typography. Projects, readings and exercises address type anatomy and classification, typeface selection, typographic principles, expressive typography, syntax, typesetting best practices, grids and typographic layouts and typographic systems.

Recommended Prerequisite: GD 213

GD 327: Information Design

This intermediate graphic design course builds on students’ visual communication and typography skills by providing an introduction to information design principles and demanding more extensive research and analysis of content, context and audience/users in creative problem-solving. Topics of exploration include the organization and classification of information, the visualization of data and the development of visual systems.

GD 328: Interactive Design

This intermediate graphic design course provides both a conceptual introduction to interactive design principles and a hands-on introduction to contemporary technical practices and approaches employed in web and mobile design. By developing basic understanding of coding, working knowledge of styling, familiarity with current programs and content management systems and fluency with relevant terminology, students will become able to plan, organize, envision and construct interactive projects for digital contexts.

Recommended Prerequisite: GD 213 and GD 312

GD 330: Illustration

This studio course facilitates diverse explorations in the creation of illustrations. Students are encouraged to work in both analog and digital media - and to integrate these ways of working - experimenting with drawing, painting, collage, composite images, digital translation and more. Applied exercises and projects will guide students in tailoring illustrations to various contexts and purposes (such as editorial, narrative, informational and promotional).

GD 339: Motion Design

This intermediate course provides an introduction to motion design principles and technologies, equipping students with the skills needed to create narrative, sequential and time-based digital works. Based on student interest, project contexts can range from interactive design to installation art. Students will become familiar with software for video, animation and sound as well as professional working methods such as iteration and storyboarding.

Recommended Prerequisites: GD 213

GD 422: Identity System Design

This advanced graphic design course provides an extensive introduction to the design of corporate, institutional and product identity systems. Applications of identity design systems include (but are not limited to) logos, collateral materials, publications, packaging, environmental graphics and digital media. An emphasis is placed upon the design of contextually relevant and meaningful applications.

GD 427: Information Design II

This advanced graphic design course provides an opportunity for interested students to build on the design, research and analysis skills developed in GD 327 Information Design. Students will develop independent projects to challenge and further their capabilities in the organization and classification of information, the visualization of data and the development of visual systems. This class will be stacked concurrently with GD 327, so students should be prepared both to work independently during class and to interact periodically with the Information Design cohort for critiques and other in-class activities.

GD 485: Graphic Design Internship

An internship is required for all students in the graphic design major, both B.A. and B.F.A. Students arrange internships that offer experiences with mentoring professionals in client-based design firms, design studios or in-house design departments. A faculty member serves as the student’s internship sponsor. Students must submit an internship contract application to the Harrington Center for Experiential Learning for approval prior to beginning the internship. Graded Pass/Fail. Internships are arranged through the Harrington Center with approval and evaluation by faculty sponsors. Specific information is available from the Harrington Center.

GD 490: Design Methodologies

This advanced graphic design course focuses on context, process and theory and provides the opportunity for students to apply their design capabilities to complex and integrated independent projects. Students will be expected to engage in relevant research, to consider conceptual possibilities for visual communication broadly and deeply and to develop advanced creative problem-solving skills.