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Graphic Design

The Graphic Design concentration delves into those complex questions that absorb both the novice and the expert in the expanding arena of visual communication. The curriculum encourages a rigorous handling of thought processes combined with inquiries springing from the traditional through the transitional and emerging media. The emergence of new multifaceted word and image forms opens the way for informed expression solidly built on curiosity, honest work and the need to reason and create. The faculty allows for the intellectual, intuitive, and perceptual approaches to problem solving, all balanced on the fundamental belief that effective communication, not style, is the desired goal.

Although the Graphic Design concentration constantly acknowledges the influence and significance of new technologies in education, the question of essential sources for creative formative work is addressed through attention to development in the following areas: mark-making, reading, and writing. These areas of observation are anchor points for the development of the graphic designer. Together, they provide the student with a comprehension of the intellectual and visual environment in which we live. The study of design history, in association with instruction in typography, word and image, sign/symbol, semiotics, and a range of digital and analog production methods, forms the foundation for a commitment through which research and expression can be accomplished.

What can I do with a degree in Graphic Design?

Graphic design involves using words and images to visually communicate ideas. There are many career options available in all areas of the creative field. See some of these sites for further information;

Why study design at UMBC?

The graphic design emphasis area seeks to develop an internationally renowned program for aspiring designers and related practitioners. Our area seeks to achieve this goal through excellence in teaching, research, and practice and through relationships with institutions, industries, and technologies associated with the discipline of design.

As design faculty, we share a fundamental belief that the design process is central to the development of culture by way of combining and ordering various elements of the arts, humanities and sciences. As designers, we bring our insight, expertise, and myriad thinking styles to the world community. We create a visual language of signifier and symbol that evolves from oral traditions, the printed page, and from electronic moving images.

As educators, our purpose is to extend the application of design beyond professional practice. Researching the design process and developing tools for learning graphic literacy expand our discourse, sharpen our skills, and broaden our knowledge base for sharing with students.

Graphic Design Courses

The Department of Visual Arts is currently not accepting students into its BA in Visual Arts with a concentration in Graphic Design. Instead, we encourage prospective students interested in pursuing a career in graphic design or visual communications to apply to the BFA in Design with a concentration in Graphic Design.

Visual Arts, Graphic Design Concentration, B.A.
Design B.F.A.

Graphic Design Faculty

Guenet Abraham   Associate Professor
Kelley Bell   Associate Professor
Gary Rozanc   Associate Professor
Peggy Re   Associate Professor