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Communication Design, B.F.A.

About the Program

National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) Accredited

The B.F.A. degree in Communication Design is a studio-intensive program of study. This degree offers students a specialized studio-oriented education in preparation for advanced or graduate studies, or for beginning careers as professional designers.

Students begin with foundation courses in two-dimensional design, three-dimensional design, color, art history, and design history. The major is completed with courses in communication design and selected major electives. Internships are required of senior level majors.

The remaining credit hours are completed in required Intellectual Foundations courses and in other chosen studio courses.

All students entering the communication design major enter with a bachelor of fine arts (BFA-AH CMD) intent, and are required to pass a portfolio review for admission into the upper division. Commit-to-major portfolio reviews are conducted by faculty and generally take place during the sophomore year after the completion of selected foundations courses, as well as the first course in the intended major. To continue in the B.F.A. degree program, a 3.0 GPA must be maintained in the major.

Transfer students are urged to submit their portfolios the semester before transfer in order to facilitate placement in departmental courses and/or for possible commit-to-major portfolio review. Please call the Design Department for additional information.

The Design Department reserves the right to retain students’ work for official purposes, such as exhibitions, catalogs, teaching aids, or permanent collections. Students are expected to assume the costs of materials used in courses. Some studio courses may have an additional charge for materials used in class. Students enrolled in a studio course are expected to work a minimum of two additional hours each week outside of class for each credit granted for that class.

The Design Department may be in the process of curricular revision. Please refer to the college Web site or the department for updated information.

Program Requirements

Intellectual Foundations Requirements 33-39 cr

Total Required Credit Hours in Communication Design 79 cr

A. Foundation Courses (37 cr)
DES 101 Introduction to Design: 2D I
DES 103 Introduction to Design: 3D I
DES 277 Computer Graphics I
DES 314 History of Graphic Design
DES 377 Computer Graphics II
DES 307 Color Theory
DES 414 Senior Seminar (4)
FAR 101 Drawing I
FAR 104 Themes and Issues in Contemporary Arts
FAR 220 Photography
FAR 250 Art History I
FAR 251 Art History II

B. Major Courses (39 cr)
DES 270 Visual Communication I
DES 271 Typography
DES 370 Visual Communication II
DES 374 Advertising I
DES 378 Web Design
DES 379 Motion Design I
DES 380 Illustration I
DES 382 Digital 3D I
DES 472 Web Design II
DES 473 Graphic Design
DES 475 Graphic Design Practicum (6 cr)
DES 489 Motion Design II

C. Studio Electives Selected by Advisement (3 cr)
DES 220 Ceramics I
DES 230 Introduction to Jewelry
DES 242 Fibers I
DES 250 Wood I

All College Electives 2-8 cr

Total Required Credit Hours 120 cr


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Art and Design Department

1300 Elmwood Ave  •  Upton Hall 402 •  Buffalo, NY 14222
Phone: (716) 878-6032 •  Fax: (716) 878-4231