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Preview Spring 2021 courses before enrollment opens on December 8th. Browse courses

About This Certificate

Be a future-focused creative professional. Today's graphic, Web, and interactive designers must be adaptable and stay up-to-date in the evolving world of technology and visual culture. Our graphic design courses develop foundational design skills (concept, type, layout, color) and provide training in industry-standard software. Tailored instruction enables both beginning and advanced students to advance in these courses.

Timeline to Completion: Most courses last nine weeks or more. Courses meeting for fewer than nine sessions count as half of an elective and would need to be combined to fulfill one elective requirement. Most students take two courses per semester. The certificate must be completed in two years.

Enrollment Type: Noncredit

Number of Courses: 8

Format: Online, on-campus or a combination of both

Course Sequence: Courses should be taken in the order in which they are listed.

$814 (required courses); $6,174 – $6,512 total


Start by completing the following foundational courses:

After you complete your foundation, your next step will be to enroll in the following:

After you complete these courses, your final step will be to enroll in three electives. Choose one of the following options: 

Option 1: Recommended Electives

  • Typography I
    Online | On campus 
    An in-depth understanding of typographic concepts and methods is essential for effective visual communication. Students examine the evolution of the alphabet and the history and basics of typographic style (with an emphasis on 20th-century type design and application). Projects help students understand the difference between legibility and readability and develop a discerning eye and the ability to create effective and expressive type designs. The impact of technology on type design and the work of typographic innovators are discussed. Online sections require access to a scanner.

  • Digital Layout: Adobe InDesign
    Online | On campus
    In this course, we explore the potential of InDesign as a design tool. InDesign is the industry-standard program for professional page layout. The focus of the class is on using the features of InDesign to develop design skills. There is an emphasis on typography. Discussions include design critiques, in which students learn how to analyze design and how to give and receive constructive criticism. Prerequisite: Familiarity with the Mac operating system, and some exposure to Illustrator or Adobe products is desirable. CS Adobe InDesign will be used in the course. Online students must have InDesign CS or higher (Mac or Windows platform).

  • One elective - Choose from our offerings in graphic design and digital design. View elective offerings here.

Option 2: Choose your own elective track

  • Three electives - Choose from our offerings in graphic design and digital design.
What You’Ll Learn
  1. The basic elements of graphic design: point, line, plane, texture, modularity, rhythm and balance, scale, and figure/ground
  2. Visual identity and packaging: how to develop a client’s identity
  3. The integral relationship between form and content in design
  4. The design process, including research collection, concept development, iteration, editing and reflection
  5. The aesthetics of designing typographical compositions and eye to distinguish refinements
  6. How to use type in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign (at a beginning level)
Who Should Enroll
  • Beginning students who are interested in visual communication.

  • Professional designers from other practices who are interested in combining graphic design with other skills, such as illustration, multimedia design, design of graphics for soft and hard products, and package design.

  • Designers who want to brush up on their basic skills and learn about the latest digital software programs.

  • Digital designers and Web developers who need to learn the basics of graphic design and/or would like to switch to print.

Jobs for Graphic Designers:

  • Multimedia Digital/Print Communication Designer
  • Photo Editing/Photoshop Artist
  • Graphic Illustrator
  • Web Designer
  • Brand Identity Designer
  • Creative/Art Director
  • Data Visualization Designer
  • Information Graphics Specialist

How to Enroll

More than a course.
A new kind of network.
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