The graphic design program is housed in the Department of Industrial and Graphic Design and is allied with the Department of Art. Students are prepared for professional practice in visual communication. The curriculum includes art, art history and theoretical and applied graphic design courses, as well as web design, interactive design, design history, photography and illustration, all supported by a strong foundation in drawing and design. Students begin study in the discipline in the freshman year, and matriculate through a series of core, elective and portfolio studios. Their work culminates in a senior thesis project that anticipates professional practice.
The department, college and university extend numerous extra-curricular opportunities that help students transition into professional life. Graduates hold positions in design firms, in-house creative offices, in public institutions and private corporations both within Alabama and across the country.
The Bachelor of Fine Art in Graphic Design
in the Department of Industrial and Graphic Design at Auburn University is fully accredited
as the professional bachelor's degree by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design
—the only accrediting agency covering the whole field of art and design recognized by the US Department of Education. As home to multiple art and design programs, Auburn University is a charter member of NASAD
Students pursuing the bachelor of fine arts degree (BFA) in graphic design (GDES) will enroll in the College of Architecture, Design and Construction as Pre-Graphic Design (PGDE) major for the first year level curriculum.
Curriculum models for the Graphic Design program.
Acceptance and Progression in the B.F.A. in Graphic Design Program
Acceptance and Progression into the Professional Graphic Design Program — The program maintains the right to limit freshmen and transfer enrollment. Admission into the BFA in graphic design is selective, is limited, and is based on a multiple step process.
1) Accepted as Pre-Graphic Design major
Once accepted to Auburn University students will be designated as Pre-Graphic Design (PGDE) for the first year of the curriculum. Entering freshmen admitted to Auburn who are admitted as PGDE to the major must begin their program of study in the fall or spring term of the academic year after they are admitted, or they will be held to the same admission requirements as transfer students.
2) PGDE to GDES second year level Courses
After completing the first year level Pre-Graphic Design curriculum, an admission process based on GPA ranking admits qualified students into the Graphic Design second year level program for the GDES 2210 and GDES 2220 courses. Once accepted into the second year level the students will be classified as GDES and be considered probationary. The admissions process into the second level GDES program is as follows:
Pre-Graphic Design students must complete at least 28 semester hours of
credit including: GDES 1110 Foundation Drawing; GDES 1210 Foundation
Design I; GDES 1220 Foundation Design II; two courses from the sequence
ARTS 1710, 1720, 1730 Art History I, II, III; and at least 6 hours of
coursework counting toward the University Core Curriculum.
The GPA for entrance to the second level of Graphic Design will be calculated on the above listed courses only. (The two highest Core grades will be utilized.) [Grades received at other institutions in courses that have been accepted by Auburn, as Core or fundamental art course requirements, will be included in the GPA.]
Following completion of the above listed courses, PGDE students will submit an Application to B.F.A. in Graphic Design Degree Program to the CADC office of Student Services. Students will be ranked by GPA and the top students will be selected. These students will be notified and then registered in the next level courses – GDES 2210 Production Processes and GDES 2220 Typographics I, by CADC Student Services. Students who are not accepted can reapply in following semesters.
3) B.F.A in Graphic Design Entrance Review
All probationary second-year level GDES students who have achieved a minimum 2.50 GPA in GDES 2210 and GDES 2220 are eligible to apply through a portfolio review process for GDES 2230. The Graphic Design Review Committee will conduct an entrance review twice per academic year, at the end of fall semester and at the end of spring semester. To advance to GDES 2230, it is required that students submit an unofficial transcript showing the required GPA, a portfolio of work from GDES 2210 and GDES 2220, and a one page typewritten statement of intent.
The portfolio will consist of 6 projects from the two courses (no more than four projects from one course). The statement of intent should include reasons for choosing the Graphic Design major and address career goals. The Graphic Design Review Committee will evaluate the student’s portfolio and written statement in terms of the individual student’s skills, artistic perception, conceptualization, and professionalism. Upon successful admission by portfolio review, the student will be required to purchase a laptop computer that meets minimum specifications and allowed to register for 2230 and 3000-level courses.
4) Continuation in the Program
All required coursework must be competed with a grade of "C" or better.
In the event a grade of "D" or "F" is received in any required course in
the major, a review is required for continuance in the program. Based
on the outcome of this review, a student may be required to repeat the
course or not allowed to continue in the program. Students receiving a
second "D" or "F" will be reviewed for continuance in the program.
Similarly, a student receiving two or more grades of "C" in required
classes may be reviewed for continuance in the program.
The Graphic Design (GDES) program maintains the right to limit transfer enrollment based on available resources. On-and off-campus transfer students must file a PGDE-TRANSFER-APPLICATION-Fall2013
and meet criteria listed in the application with the CADC Office of Student Services no later than the posted deadline.
A student must have a minimum cumulative unadjusted GPA of 2.8 (on a 4.0 scale) on all collegiate work attempted and will be accepted on a space-available basis as determined by the department head.
On and off campus transfer applicants must meet criteria listed in the “Academic Policies” section of the Auburn University Bulletin. The application packet includes an application form, statement of intent, and official transcripts from all schools
attended. A portfolio is required for consideration of transfer credit for any studio classes taken. Applicants must be admitted to Auburn University at the time of application. Screening of applications for fall admission begins in March with applicants notified by April 15. Screening of applications for Spring admission begins in October with applicants notified by November 15. Students admitted MUST begin the program the following term. Course work in the major must be taken in sequence; transfer students should anticipate that additional semesters of study may be required to complete the program.
As a student in the College of Architecture, Design and Construction (CADC), you will be required to pay a professional fee in addition to your normal tuition. This fee is used to support our professional programs in regard to the provision of information technology infrastructure and the general needs of professional instruction.
Online registration and information on applying to the Professional Program
Hardware and Software required for all Graphic Design students.
- Kelly Bryant
- Ray Dugas
- Ross Heck
- John Morgan
- Carlton Nell
- Wei Wang(Graphic Design Program Chair)
Listing of current Advisory Council members.
A listing of all CADC, Industrial Design and Graphic Desgin Student Chapter Organizations.
The curriculum has been designed to meet accreditation standards set by SACS and NASAD (National Association of Schools of Art and Design) and is structured to provide students with a course of study that ensures growth and development over time.