Graphic Design

Graphic Design student working on computer looking at images.


What is Graphic Design?

The Graphic Design concentration at South equips students with the critical and problem solving skills needed to produce work in a diverse range of areas including branding, web design and traditional print design. Students explore current design practices as well as historical and contemporary influences that have and continue to shape the face of advertising and visual communication. 

Careers in Graphic Design

A degree in graphic design allows graduates to pursue careers in a variety of design positions, such as print design, web design, advertising, marketing, illustration and publication design. Students are expected to demonstrate an understanding of design principles and proficiency in the Adobe® Creative Suite. Faculty encourages students to tackle design problems with unique and creative solutions. This graphic design program trains students that, upon graduation, are able to thrive and succeed in the field.

Graphic Design Internships

Graphic Design Internships Guidelines  
All graphic design students are required to enroll in two design electives. One of which may be a Graphic Design internship. Internships are a great way to gain hands-on experience in the field of graphic design. These  can be done locally, out of town, out of state, and/or internationally. If registered for the class, ARS 496,  the following guidelines should be followed: 

  • The student should have a GPA 2.80 or higher.  
  • Though the faculty might provide assistance in finding an internship, it is ultimately the student’s responsibility.
  •  As long as the work performed is design, an internship can be at a large or small studio, agency,  newspaper, marketing agency, etc.. Internships should be done in person. Unless there are exigent  circumstances and these can be documented and explained.  
  • Internships must be performed under the guidance and supervision of a senior designer, who will  evaluate the student. 
  • The work performed should be documented in a binder containing both examples of the work  executed and a daily record of activities. In certain circumstances, these can be submitted by video  to the instructor of record. Details are included in the syllabus.  
  • The student should work a minimum of 12 hours weekly.  
  • Financial compensation is not required and will be worked out between the student and the employer.  We strongly  recommend that the student be compensated for their work.  
  • The student should not be required to work beyond the numbers of hours mandated by the class’  guidelines unless a mutual agreement is reached.  
  • If there are problems between student and employer, it is the responsibility of the student to inform the  instructor.  
  • The employer will submit a final evaluation to the instructor by the date established in the syllabus.  
  • The student will also submit, along with their documentation, a final evaluation of their experience. 

For more information about graphic design internships, contact Associate Professor of Graphic Design Alma Hoffmann at ahoffmann@southalabama.edu.

▼   Graphic Design Sophomore Review

Each Spring semester, students who wish to pursue a degree in graphic design at the University of South Alabama may apply for admission to the BFA program in graphic design. 

Only design majors who have completed ARS 271 Introduction to Graphic Design and ARS 273 Graphic Design Foundations with a grade of C or higher, AND have completed ARS 272 Typography OR are currently enrolled in the Typography course are eligible to apply.

Design majors who are currently enrolled in one of the required courses can participate, but will be dropped from the program if their final course grades are not C or higher.  

This Spring, the Sophomore Review will be an application form to fill out by Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Please fill out the form below (also emailed to all eligible applicants) by 5pm on March 16. 

ACCESS FORM HERE

For any questions please email Diane Gibbs at dgibbs@southalabama.edu.

Acceptance into the program is determined by a review process, which is coordinated each spring semester. Only those admitted to the program are allowed to enroll in upper-level graphic design courses. 

  1. Review Process
    Upon completion of the aforementioned courses, each student who wishes to be considered for admission to the BFA program in graphic design will fill out this  application form for evaluation by the Graphic Design Review Board.
  2. Written Statement of Intent (included in the application form)
    Each student must submit a minimum 250-word essay outlining why they feel they should be accepted into the program and what they intend to accomplish with a graphic design degree. Attention should be given to writing quality.
  3. Acceptance into the Graphic Design Program
    Students are permitted to apply for the graphic design program only twice. Students will receive written email notification of acceptance or non-acceptance. Upon acceptance, the chosen students will be allowed to register for further graphic design classes and continue their studies toward the BFA in graphic design as outlined by the University of South Alabama Bulletin. Students must register for the designated graphic design class for the semester following acceptance to the program. Failure to register for class or failure to progress through the graphic design curriculum in a timely manner will result in revocation of admission status.

Maintaining the Student’s Position in the Program:

  • A low grade in the first semester after acceptance into the Program: If a student makes a D in one of their Graphic Design courses, in the first semester of their Graphic Design studies, the student is no longer in the Program and will need to be readmitted through the Sophomore Review process.
  • A low grade after the first semester in the Program: If a student makes a D after their first 300 level Graphic Design course while in the Graphic Design Program, the following will apply:
    • The student will be allowed to retake the course when it is offered again, (most courses in the last two years are offered only once a year). However, they will not continue with their current cohort of students. They will lose one year in their progress to complete the Program. For Example: If a D is made in a course that is only offered in a Spring Semester the student must then wait until the following Spring semester to retake the course. If the course is passed with a C or better, they will continue their studies from that point.
  • Failing a Graphic Design course during the Graphic Design Junior year: In the event that a student makes an F in one of their Junior level Graphic Design courses, that student is no longer considered part of the Program. She/he must be readmitted via the Sophomore Review Process. If readmitted they will then be allowed to restart the Program at the point of failure.
  • Failing a Graphic Design course during the Graphic Design Senior year: If a student fails a Graphic Design course within their Graphic Design Senior year, they will be allowed to retake the course when it is offered again. However, they will not continue with their current cohort of students. They will lose one year in their progress to complete the Program.
  • Transfer Students: Any student transferring into the university must be accepted into the program via a portfolio review process and based on having completed the required prerequisites.
    • If the student is entering in a spring semester, they must go through the Sophomore Review process that will take place during that semester.
    • If the student is entering in a fall semester, they can submit an application (this form) for review by August 1st prior to that semester. 

 

After the Review Committee deliberates, students will receive written notification of acceptance or non-acceptance to the BFA program in Graphic Design. Upon acceptance, the chosen students will be allowed to register for upper-level graphic design classes and continue their studies toward the BFA in graphic design as outlined by the University of South Alabama Bulletin. 

Students must register for designated graphic design classes for the fall semester following acceptance to the program. Failure to register for classes or failure to progress through the graphic design curriculum in a timely manner will result in revocation of admission status. 

Please refer to the Policy Statement for Admission to the BFA Program in Graphic Design above for details.