Art Department Majors

We offer a BFA in Graphic Design and a BA in Fine Arts and Art History. As an art and/or graphic design major you should register for at least two art classes each quarter. It is very important to take courses sequentially since most have prerequisites. As a freshman, you should follow the Art Department Road Map which provides the recommended sequence of courses in each program.

The university catalog provides the following course information online:
Complete list of Art Department courses
Curriculum sheets



BFA in Graphic Design

The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design focuses on intensive work in art and design supported by a program of general studies.

    The Graphic Design Program Learning Objectives are:
  1. Ability to solve communication problems, including the skills of problem identification, research and information gathering, analysis, generation of alternative solutions, and prototyping.
  2. Ability to describe and respond to the audiences and contexts including recognition of the physical, cognitive, cultural and social human factors that shape design decisions.
  3. Ability to create and develop visual form in response to communication problems.
  4. Ability to effectively use typography and typographic principles.
  5. Fluency with the elements of design and the principles of organization, including color theory, composition, perspective, etc.
  6. Understanding information hierarchy, symbolic representation, and aesthetics.
  7. Ability to create and develop meaningful and original imagery.
  8. Have an understanding of tools and technology, including their roles in the creation, reproduction, and distribution of vital messages. Relevant tools include but not limited to, drawing, offset printing, photography and time-based and interactive media.
  9. Understanding design history, theory, and criticism from a variety of perspectives, including those of art history, linguistics, communication and information theory, technology, and the social and cultural use of design objects.
  10. Understanding the basic business practices, including the ability to organize projects and work productively as a member of teams.

BA in Fine Arts and Art History

The Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Art focuses on art and design in the context of a broad program of general studies. A minor in Art History is also offered through the B.A. program.

Art History Option

    The Art History Program Learning Objectives are:
  1. Knowledge of key works of art and design or monuments in specific art historical periods and/or geographical areas
  2. Knowledge of art historical tools of analysis: formal, iconographical and stylistic.
  3. Understanding of works of art and design or monuments in their historical and cultural contexts
  4. Critical and conceptual thinking
  5. Skills of reading comprehension of art historical writing and/or art criticism
  6. Skills of writing about art and art history
  7. Skills of research
  8. Introduction to the creative process in the visual arts
  9. Introduction to French or German languages
  10. Introduction to other humanities disciplines

Fine Art Option

    The Fine Art Program Learning Objectives are:
  1. Drawing skills developed from observation, memory, and imagination.
  2. Image-making ability that is original and authentic.
  3. The full range of image manifestation from high realism as in chiaroscuro drawing to highly expressive work using mixed and non-traditional media
  4. Fluency with the elements of design and the principles of organization, including color theory, composition, perspective, etc
  5. Skills at using drawing as an art form and as an end in itself; as a tool of communication; and as a means to facilitate the creative maturity of concept for a subsequent piece of art
  6. Technical skills using a variety of traditional and non-traditional art and building materials, methods, and processes; sensitivity for the attributes of material and the integrity of structure
  7. Fluency in the components of the creative process–concept, content, format, technique, installation, and documentation - and the ability to articulate about the art process in terms of these components
  8. Experience working in a collaborative, multi-disciplinary environment; ability to identify and develop a network to available resources.
  9. Foundation in the historical antecedents of art media; currency in contemporary theory, criticism, vocabulary, and manifestation through an anthology of readings, research, and class discourse
  10. Exposure to a range of creative motives from strategies for using artistic expression in the service of social, cultural, political as well as personal inquiry to the more sensate manifestation of art as beauty.
  11. Awareness of health and safety hazards associated with art making; an ethic that supports safe practices and positive work habits, and a respect for the well-being of others
  12. Preparation for professional practice, advanced degree programs, and teaching
  13. Knowledge of key works of art and design or monuments in each art historical period and/or geographical area


Last modified 2012-05-03