GD at OSU

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The action of design

The Graphic Design Program at Oregon State University prepares students to take an influential role in shaping contemporary graphic design practice.

Our philosophy focuses on the ‘action of design’ — how design transforms, translates and communicates.

Students graduate with the ability to generate and execute ideas with ‘intended actions’ that can be applied to a diverse range of design problems. The designed intention centers on effective audience communication and delivery across a multitude of user-interfaces that form a necessary and expected part of living in today’s world.

From the pre-application course as a freshman, to our senior capstone course–students are encouraged to find their own voice, seize opportunities, create a unique process that works for them, and build a portfolio of work that puts them on the competitive edge of industry.

Professional Program

On average, 65 freshmen students apply to each cohort during Spring term, and 36 to 40 students are admitted to the professional school. Acceptance is based on several evaluated components: passing and scoring well in the pro-application course, minimum 2.5 OSU GPA, foundation course grades, and the freshman First Year Experience.

The first year objective is to take classes that build visual making and thinking skills to prepare students for the pro-application course.

Once accepted into the professional program, this second year of courses introduces students to the core principles, processes, materials and techniques needed to become a successful graphic designer.

In the third year of the GD program, students are building on those core principles, processes, materials and techniques to further develop their own unique set of skills, interests and design voice.

The fourth year readies designers for the professional and practical aspects of entering into a graphic design career. The senior capstone project is an opportunity to ‘dive deep’ into a topic that each student feels passionate about. Over the span of 9 months, seniors research, ideate and prototype to build a cohesive design project of their own making from inquiry to solution.

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