According to Graphic Design Program Director Eric Rosenfeld, the two things that make one successful in the design industry are their portfolio and their personality. So throughout the course of the online Graphic Design Bachelor’s Degree program, the goal for each student is to figure out what makes them unique as a designer, and to showcase that in a portfolio of their best individual work.
While the program is similar to the on-campus Digital Arts & Design program, there are a few differences. “Graphic Design Online is a little more focused on the core graphic design skill set,” says Eric. “With the nature of being online, we do a little less of the hands-on production and we use that time instead to really focus on the graphic design workflow and the creativity behind the design industry.”
Students work on a variety of projects throughout the 32-month program, in courses like Design and Art Theory, Digital Storytelling, and Typography and Page Layout. In the Color Theory course in Month 8, students re-package a minor league sports team by giving it a new logo, new uniforms, and new colors. In Corporate Branding in Month 23, they re-brand the capital of their home state, complete with a 30-page booklet that documents every step.
“Generally, the first courses cover a series of exercises to [help students] learn how to think like a designer,” says Eric. “And as they get more advanced they do two projects a month, or one large project with many different versions.”
In the Personal Identity Project course in the final month of the program, each student curates 5-7 of their best pieces (under the advisement of faculty) to create their final portfolio. It includes projects from previous classes and additional work in order to help tie the entire portfolio together.
“Your personal identity is part of the package,” says Eric. “The final project is putting the package together and making sure the story is complete.”