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Bachelor's Degrees in Graphic Design (BA or BFA)

bachelors in graphic design.

Concept driven in creativity.

Whether artistic skill and talent are an innate part of you and you are ready to fine-tune and craft those skills, or whether you simply have a passion for art and a strong will to learn, our bachelor’s in graphic design program was created for you.

Graphic design is about taking a concept, an idea, a new creation and using it for a specific purpose. It is art with direction. You will be designing for a purpose, from both a passionate heart and strategic mind.

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Fine Arts Options in Graphic Design

Our different degree programs give you the opportunity to be as narrow or broad as you wish in this field. Through a BFA, a 70-hour, more inclusive major, you will focus heavily on the arts, which can be advantageous for those students planning to do post-graduate study. The BA and BS in Graphic Design provide the option for you to pair your degree with another area of study. These 46-hour majors allow the time for students to take a required minor in another area of expertise.

Special opportunities

  • Engage in learning activities and assignments that have a strong connection to work you will be doing in your professional career, helping to build your portfolio
  • Participate in collaborative projects with other disciplines, such as Business and Information Technology, to provide experience in integrating your artistic skills with other fields
  • Work side by side with your professors and mentors, who offer their personalized attention to your development and their guidance as a professional in the field
  • Show off the products of all your hard work and time spent through an exhibit in the Cox Gallery, located on-campus in Fulton, MO, during your capstone semester
  • Gain experience with Thriving Artists Group (TAG) creating artistic content in the field of Communication
  • Work to revamp and redesign client websites as part of the Student Website Advancement Team

Our Graphic Design degree at Work

There are countless career paths you can embark on as a professional graphic designer. Whether you are part of a small team of six in an in-house agency designing packaging for new and upcoming products, working on an ad campaign with a team of 40 at a creative agency or magazine, or whether you take an entrepreneurial path and start your own business, you can find the right fit for you.

Graduates of this program have gone on to work with these employers as well as many others:

  • Cabela’s Outdoor, Inc.
  • Purdue University
  • Missouri Department of Natural Resources
  • National Horseman Magazine
  • Modern-Litho Print Co.
  • The Callaway Bank

Alumni Perspectives

My education at WWU undoubtedly provided me with a solid foundation that has allowed me to work my way up and continue the tradition of growth and excellence in my company. My experience and education at William Woods was not just limited to the classroom. The conversations with professors after class and the countless extracurricular activities provided me with more education than one could have ever hoped for.

Toby Stowe, graphic design graduate, now president of Design Supply, Inc., and DS Wholesale, Inc,. in Kansas City, Mo.

William Woods had a tremendous positive influence on me. I feel as if my professors truly cared about my development as a professional designer and fine artist. Without their talent and guidance, I wouldn't be where I am today. I enjoyed my WWU college experience immensely.

Holly Dirnberger, graphic design graduate, designer and illustrator for Red Letter Communications, Inc., in Cape Girardeau, Mo.

My proudest moment of working in this program has been to play a role in helping students define and achieve their professional and life goals.

Robert Elliot, Assistant Professor of Graphic Arts at William Woods University

Requirements/Curriculum

Courses you may take

ART 105 - Basic Design -A - 3.00

Students will study the elements and principles of composition as applied to two-dimensional and three-dimensional forms. A wide range of materials and techniques will be covered. For non-art majors. (Lab fee)

ART 110 - Drawing I -A - 3.00

A basic study of drawing techniques and concepts. (Lab fee)

ART 202 - Fundamentals of Graphic Design - 3.00

As the introductory graphic design course, this course sets the framework for the Grapic Design concentration. The course introduces students to the graphic design profession, acquainting them with the fundamentals of desktop publishing, layout, design, and typography. (lab fee) Prerequisite: ART 105

ART 230 - Art History: Prehistory to Renaissance - 3.00

A study of sculpture, painting, architecture, and the minor arts from prehistory to the Renaissance. The main focus is the placement of the art of each period within the society by which it was produced.

ART 231 - Art History: Renaissance to Today - 3.00

A study of sculpture, painting, architecture, and the minor arts from the Renaissance to contemporary times. The main focus is the placement of the art of each period within the society by which it was produced. ART 230 is not required.

ART 256 - Introduction to Photography -A - 3.00

This course introduces students to creative photography as a method of visual communication. While experimenting with manual camera controls through both film and digital processes, students explore methods of imaginative and meaningful image-making. Additionally, students develop skills in composition, sequencing, and preparing files for print.manipulation. (Lab fee)

ART 303 - Intermediate Graphic Design - 3.00

Offers students the opportunity to apply graphic design techniques and principles to scenario-based projects simulating real world design situations. Students learn to work as members of a design team in competitive situations. Special emphasis is placed on developing intermediate-level computer design skills. (Lab fee) Prerequisite: ART 202

ART 332 - Publication Design - 3.00

Explores the use of graphic design in a variety of publishing situations. Students are required to apply their design skill and knowledge in the production of sophisticated printed pieces. Students are expected to develop an advanced level of ability in computer assisted design. Students also begin production on their formal professional portfolio. (Lab fee) Prerequisite: ART 202

ART 210 or ART 350 - Portfolio Development or Professional Practice - 1.00 or 3.00

Designed to introduce students to the importance, concept, and production of a professional art portfolio. During the course students produce both a conventional and an electronic portfolio of their work. Prerequisite: ART 105 or Designed to introduce students to the importance, concept, and production of a professional art portfolio. During the course students produce both a conventional and an electronic portfolio of their work in preparation for careers in art and graphic design. Prerequisite: ART103 or ART105

ART 470 - Senior Practicum - 1.00

This capstone course includes production of independent work which will be exhibited during the Senior Show; participation in planning and mounting the Senior Show; a self-assessment report; and presentation of a Senior portfolio. Should be taken last semester of senior year.

MIS 325 - Website Development - 3.00

This course is designed to instruct the student in the proper design and analysis of website development. Students will learn the basics of HTMl, CSS, website portals, content management systems, web hosting and domain name construction. A final project will require the student to maintain a website, host and domain name. Although there is no textbook associated with the class, students will be required to purchase a web hosting package of approximately $70. This will allow the student to develop a website for the class.

Bachelor of Arts Curriculum

The Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design degree at William Woods University consists of 122 distinct credit hours for graduation—including 40 core major credits, 6 required elective credits, a minor, and a year of a foreign language.

Bachelor of Fine Arts Curriculum

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design degree at William Woods University consists of 122 distinct credit hours for graduation—including 58 core major credits and 12 required elective credits.


Admissions Information

Learn more about undergraduate admissions requirements, deadlines, tuition and financial aid available to you.

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