Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design

Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design

  • Program Length 
    4 Years
  • Credential 
    Bachelor Degree
  • Location Offered 
    Nanaimo

The Program

The Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design is intended for students who wish to pursue a professional career in the creative discipline of digital and print Graphic Design. "Graphic Design is an interdisciplinary problem-solving activity that combines visual sensitivity with skill and knowledge in areas of communication, technology and business. A Graphic Designer specializes in the structuring and organizing of visual information and to aid communication and orientation. They provide clients with the following: research, costing, planning, coordination, project management, quality control, design and aesthetic judgment, advertising and art direction." (Ashworth, Hilary ed. The Business of Graphic Design, A Professional's Handbook. Toronto: Association of Registered Graphic Designers of Ontario, 2001).

Graphic designers work in new media and web design, packaging, illustration, animation, production and prepress, advertising, marketing communications design, art and creative direction, corporate identity, broadcast design, corporate communications, information design, editorial design, education, environmental and exhibit design, signage, and related occupations. Graphic designers develop skills that are in demand in today's economy and that can be applied to nearly any career, including creative problem solving and design thinking.

This degree program is hands-on and rich in applied elements and experiential learning to prepare students for the evolving requirements of the graphic design and visual communication industry in today's knowledge and information-based culture. The degree also promotes the skills associated with Bachelor of Arts programs, including analytical and critical thinking skills, solid oral and written communication skills, and general flexibility and adaptability. Students will develop awareness of social responsibility, ethics, cultural contexts and global communications considerations. The program features lectures, studio classes, computer lab instruction, critiques, project work, portfolio development and a graduation show. A rigorous work ethic and time-management skills are required for all courses. As in the profession, students juggle multiple projects and deadlines, undertake projects as teams, research, report, cooperate, communicate and present their work.

The program will build on a solid foundation of general skills at the first-year level. Second-year courses will require that students apply and expand upon foundational skills in more detailed and specific sub-fields. Upper-level courses in the degree will explore problem-solving, research, creative exploration, innovation and cultural and contextual issues at a deeper and more complex level. Students must take 21 credits of electives and may select both employment-oriented and academic electives (in consultation with the program).

Students are required to purchase industry standard laptop computers and software (as specified by the program), as well as supplies and textbooks for classes.

Program Outline

Year 1

Credits

ARTG 110 - (Professional Practices)

3

ARTG 111 - (Design History)

3

ARTG 120 - (Design Principles)

3

ARTG 124 - (Applied Design Technologies I)

3

ARTG 130 - (Applied Design Technologies II)

3

ARTG 140 - (Illustration I)

3

ARTG 150 - (Typography I)

3

ARTG 160 - (Design Photography I)

3

ENGL 115 - (University Writing and Research)

3

One non-ARTG elective

3

Total Credits

30

Year 2

Credits

ARTG 237 - (Applied Design Technologies III)

3

ARTG 241 - (Illustration II)

3

ARTG 251 - (Typography II)

3

ARTG 261 - (Design Photography II)

3

ARTG 271 - (Design Seminar)

3

ARTG 272 - (Presentation Studio)

3

DIGI 110 - (Introduction to Digital Media)

3

DIGI 220 - (Web Production I)

3

ENGL 204 - (Business and Technical Writing) (effective September 2012) or,
ENGL 225 - (Business and Technical Writing) (prior to September 2012)

3

One non-ARTG electives

3

Total Credits

30

Year 3

Credits

ARTG 345 - (Information Design)

3

ARTG 351 - (Typography III)

3

ARTG 371 - (Packaging Studio)

3

ARTG 372 - (Publishing Studio)

3

ARTG 373 - (Interface Communication Design)

3

ARTG 374 - (Environmental Design Studio)

3

DIGI 320 - (Web Production II)

3

Three non-ARTG electives

9

Total Credits

30

Year 4

Credits

ARTG 475 - (Design for Business)

3

ARTG 476 - (Portfolio Studio)

3

ARTG 477 - (Design Studio Practice)

3

ARTG 480 - (Design Research Project)

3

ARTG 481 - (Design Thinking)

3

ARTG 482 - (Design Research)

3

DIGI 260 - (Interactive Motion Media)

3

DIGI 496 - (Senior Digital Media Project)

3

Two non-ARTG electives

6

Total Credits

30

Note: ARTG 377 can be substituted for any upper-level ARTG required course, with the exception of ARTG 480, with approval from program chair and instructor.

Management Stream

Students who wish to enroll in the Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design Management Stream must notify the department at the time of application and must fulfill the requirements for Management courses including mathematics prerequisites. Management Stream students must take the same core courses defined in the General Graphic Design Stream. For their electives students must take the following courses:

  • MGMT 192 - (Principles of Management) and,
  • MGMT 292 - (Organizational Behaviour) and,
  • MGMT 381 - (Entre/Intrapreneurship) and,
  • ONE of the following courses:
  • AND three other electives.

Note: Prerequisites must be considered.

Updated 
Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Admission Requirements

Students must fulfill all the Institutional B.A. degree requirements as outlined in the Calendar, including Degree English Requirements, the requirements listed below, and the courses listed in the matrix.

To meet the requirements for the Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design, all students must complete 120 credits over 4 years as specified in the matrix. Electives for the degree can be chosen from a wide range of course options. Students must check the University Calendar, the timetable, seat availability and the necessary prerequisites for all selected electives. Students are encouraged to select courses that complement their graphic design studies.

All students must maintain a grade of "C" in all required courses to continue to the next level of study in this degree.

Admission Requirements

  • General admission requirements apply.
  • Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design students must submit the following to support their application:
    • A portfolio
    • A 100-300 word written statement on reasons and goals for seeking enrolment in the program and indicating research about the profession
    • A résumé including two references
    Applicants' portfolios should include 6-12 items. The work can come from a variety of mediums, including, but not limited to:
    • hand rendered sketching (pencil, ink)
    • painting (water colour, oils, acrylics)
    • collage (mixed media, other)
    • photography
    • 3D sculpture or prop building
    • writing (essays, poems, blogs)
    • digital work (commissioned or not)
    • jewelry making
    • pottery
    • fabric work (original sewing, needle work)
    • motion (video, digital)
    • websites (blogs, animation)
    • sound (music, recordings)
    • journals (sketching, writing)
    • process sketch books

Students who meet or exceed the minimum admission requirements may not necessarily be admitted to the program.

The degree program will be limited to 24 students. Transfer students must proceed through the same admission process. For students outside the Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design program, some program courses will have spaces available for elective purposes. Students from other disciplines may be permitted to apply for spaces providing they have met the required prerequisites and program requirements, and have permission from the department. Course applicants from other programs may be required to submit a portfolio and other documentation and be screened for required hardware and software experience in order to enter individual courses.

Admission with Advanced Standing

Admission to the Bachelor of Design in Graphic Design at the second or third-year levels may be possible based on available seats and will be determined on the basis of a portfolio interview and credit equivalencies determined by all of the above plus review of course outlines from the transferring institutions and/or PLA. Official post-secondary transcripts are required. Candidates with an Applied Arts Diploma in Graphic Design from Vancouver Island University who have been interviewed and meet the requirements for continuing students will qualify for entry into the third year but may not be guaranteed a seat as enrolment in limited.

Notes on Admission

  • Why do we want a portfolio?

The Graphic Design program values creativity in many forms including sketches, paintings, photography, 3D work and sculpture, as well as other forms of creativity like poetry or film/video. A variety of work can be included as part of the portfolio. Applicants may also consider adding work that demonstrates exploration and independent thinking including rough sketches and processes leading to final outcomes.

  • Note that for students taking the Management Stream (or other certain electives), a minimum grade of "C+" is required in either Principles of Mathematics 11 or Foundations of Mathematics 11.

Domestic Fees | International Fees

Domestic Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees for Year 1*

Amount

Tuition (30 credits x $147.76 per credit)

4,432.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

177.31

Student Services fee (30 credits x $6.53 per credit)

195.90

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 1: Books and supplies (approximate costs)**

3,000.00

Total

8,236.45

Fees for Year 2*

Amount

Tuition (30 credits x $147.76 per credit)

4,432.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

177.31

Student Services fee (30 credits x $6.53 per credit)

195.90

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 2: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,100.00

Total

7,336.45

Fees for Year 3*

Amount

Tuition (30 credits x $147.76 per credit)

4,432.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

177.31

Student Services fee (30 credits x $6.53 per credit)

195.90

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 3: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,300.00

Total

7,536.45

Fees for Year 4*

Amount

Tuition (30 credits x $147.76 per credit)

4,432.80

Student Activity fee (4% of tuition)

177.31

Student Services fee (30 credits x $6.53 per credit)

195.90

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 4: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,800.00

Total

8,036.45

Notes

*  The above table is based on ten 3–credit courses taken over two semesters.

** Students are required to purchase a MacIntosh laptop and specified software prior to commencing the program. Refer to the software and hardware requirements for further details and estimated costs.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

International Fees

Tuition Fee Schedule

When applying to the program, applicants will be charged a non-refundable application fee.

When applying to graduate, students will be charged a non-refundable graduation and alumni fee.

Some courses have additional fees to pay for extraordinary class–related expenses.

Fees for Year 1*

Amount

Tuition (2 semesters x $7620 per semester)

15,240.00

Ancillary Fee (2 semesters x $374.4 per semester)

748.80

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 1: Books and supplies (approximate costs)**

3,000.00

Total

19,419.24

Fees for Year 2*

Amount

Tuition (2 semesters x $7620 per semester)

15,240.00

Ancillary Fee (2 semesters x $374.4 per semester)

748.80

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 2: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,100.00

Total

18,519.24

Fees for Year 3*

Amount

Tuition (2 semesters x $7620 per semester)

15,240.00

Ancillary Fee (2 semesters x $374.4 per semester)

748.80

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 3: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,300.00

Total

18,719.24

Fees for Year 4*

Amount

Tuition (2 semesters x $7620 per semester)

15,240.00

Ancillary Fee (2 semesters x $374.4 per semester)

748.80

VIU Students' Union fee (8 months x $19.43 per month)

155.44

Health and Dental Plan fee ($275 per year)

275.00

Year 4: Books and supplies (approximate costs)

2,800.00

Total

19,219.24

Notes

The above table is based on 15 credits or less per semester. Additional fees of $635.00 per credit will be applied if taking more than 15 credits per semester.

*  The above table is based on ten 3–credit courses taken over two semesters.

** Students are required to purchase a MacIntosh laptop and specified software prior to commencing the program. Refer to the software and hardware requirements for further details and estimated costs.

The Health and Dental Plan fee is in effect only for full–time students at the Nanaimo Campus.  

All fees are subject to change without prior notice.

Updated
Sunday, April 1, 2018
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