New Student Programs

Visual Design Studies

About the B.A. in Visual Design Studies

The goal of the Bachelor of Arts in Visual Design Studies is to prepare designers of tomorrow with a flexible set of skills and knowledge, preparing them to visually communicate ideas and information while expressing themselves creatively. Upon completion of the degree, students should be able to describe, analyze, and interpret visual designs within social, historical and theoretical contexts.  Students will understand software for print, web and new media and gain the ability to seek out new uses for emerging technologies.  They will use primary and secondary research methods in the conceptualization and solution of design problems, and utilize advanced skills in typography, layout, information design, packaging design and other applications to create clear and dynamic results.

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For Orientation

On Campus Freshmen Students

If you are attending New Student Orientation as a freshman you do not need to bring a portfolio.  We do not evaluate non-college level work for incoming freshmen.  All AP credits will be evaluated by the Office of Degree Evaluation and do not require a portfolio review.

On Campus Transfer Students

Students should expect to see the results of applying to transfer course credit in the following classes no later than 4 weeks after transcripts have been evaluated by the Office of Degree Evaluation:

  • • Art History II
  • • Beginning Drawing
  • • 2-D Design & 3-D Design (unless course is otherwise named, then clarification of course content may be needed)

Students who are attempting to transfer credits for upper-level classes in the following disciplines should plan to bring a portfolio, as well as syllabi and course descriptions for those transfer classes.  In addition, you may want to bring an additional copy of your transcripts: 

  • • Graphic Design
  • • Advertising Art Direction
  • • Illustration
  • • Interior Architecture
  • • Fine Art
  • • Product Design

Students who are attempting to transfer credits for upper-level classes in Art History should plan to bring course descriptions and syllabi for those courses.

2nd BA students who took art and design classes as part of their undergraduate degree should bring a copy of their transcripts along with a portfolio of their work.

We regret that we are unable to register any transfer student for upper level courses without a portfolio review.

For more information regarding our transfer credit policies please visit:
Art + Design Transfer Credit Policies

Distance Freshmen Students

We do not evaluate non-college level work for incoming freshmen.  All AP credits will be evaluated by the Office of Degree Evaluation and do not require a portfolio review.

For information regarding registration and major specific class selection please refer to your Orientation Guide.

Distance Transfer Students

Students should expect to see the results of applying to transfer course credit in the following classes:

  • • Art History II
  • • Beginning Drawing
  • • 2-D Design & 3-D Design(unless course is otherwise named, then clarification of course content may be needed)

For more information regarding our transfer credit policies please visit:
Art + Design Transfer Credit Policies


Recommended First-Semester Classes

We recommend you try and take the following 3 classes in your first semester as a Visual Design Studies major:

  • • 22-1102 History of Art II: Renaissance to Modern
  • OR 22-1105 Introduction to Visual Culture

  • • 22-1220 Fundamentals of 2D Design
  • • 22-1212 Drawing I

View the Full Course Catalog