Bachelor of Fine Arts | College of Creative Arts
What is Graphic Design?
Graphic designers use various creative techniques to invent images that communicate or influence ideas, emotions, and messages to others.
This program is structured in a problem-solving format. You'll develop visual communication skills, learn to integrate type and images using a variety of traditional and computer media, and imaginatively deliver clients' messages to their audiences.
What are the features of Miami's program?
Miami's art department, accredited through the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, brings together students of varied interests and talents: students who are studying to be practicing artists, students who are preparing to be art teachers, and students who are concentrating on art history. Often, art classes are composed of students from each of these three areas. This enriches and broadens exposure to different points of view.
During the upper-level years, students participate in Highwire Brand Studio and/or the Interactive Media Studies capstone, nationally-recognized interdisciplinary programs where students work with profit and non-profit clients. Another opportunity for real-world work is during the required internship experience.
Although study abroad is valuable to any student, art students can benefit especially from this rich experience. Through our Dolibois European Center in Luxembourg, you have the opportunity to study abroad, earn regular Miami credit, and live in the heart of Western Europe. A wide variety of courses is offered, all designed to take advantage of the European location. Because travel is part of the program, you have many opportunities to see the great museums of Europe and to experience the ancient artistic traditions of the continent.
Are there special admission requirements?
Yes, in addition to the entrance portfolio review required by the Department of Art, students pursuing a graphic design major must undergo an additional portfolio review near the end of the second semester of the freshman year. This portfolio and interview process determines advancement into the degree program in the sophomore year. A limited number of students are admitted each year.
What courses would I take?
This program includes 43 semester hours of basic art/design history and studio requirements in the first and second years, including five courses specific to graphic design. Upperclass students must earn 30 hours in graphic design course work, with 18 in the third year and 12 in the fourth year; three additional hours of studio at any level; three semester hours in the history of art at the 300 or 400 level; and 12 additional hours in one of the following eight focus tracks: Art and Architectural History, Business, Communication, Cultural Studies, Environmental Design, Interactive Design, Perception & Cognition, and Studio Art (see list below for specific course choices). Students must also complete at least one summer internship.
What can I do with this major?
Graphic designers work in a wide variety of firms. Advertising agencies employ designers, with the possibility of rising to the position of art director. Many large businesses have graphic designers producing websites as well as print publications for internal and external use. Museums, cultural centers, and universities also employ graphic designers to communicate with their audiences.