Clarke offers a bachelors of arts (BA) and bachelor of fine arts (BFA) studio degrees. What is the difference in the studio degrees? The bachelor of arts degree requires 48 credits in art or about one-third of your course credits while at Clarke. With this option, students can double major or minor in a complementary area like communication or business, or complete K-12 art education certification. The bachelor of fine arts studio degree is a professional degree with over 60 credits in art. These programs, whether with fine arts or graphic design emphasis, prepare you to enter the professional workplace or graduate school.
Areas of Studio Emphasis
- Graphic Design
You do not need to commit to a career path when you walk in the door. All art students take the same foundation or core classes in the first year. This gives you the opportunity to explore diverse media and art concepts. Exposure to these new ideas may open new doors or career paths. Your college art experience will be very different than high school. Imagine being surrounded by art students who all want to pursue a life in the arts – what a great community! A professional and critical atmosphere encourages students to extend their artistic involvement beyond studio exercises into juried exhibitions, internships, independent study and travel.
Graphic Design Emphasis
Today’s world is overloaded with more communication than ever. Everywhere you turn, there are print ads, billboards, Web graphics, and display advertising. That’s why now, more than ever, it’s important that visual elements of business and advertising be as strong as possible.
Clarke University’s graphic design program, which leads students to a BFA degree in art with an emphasis in graphic design, prepares students to produce cutting-edge, industry leading design work. Students will graduate ready to embrace the exciting and challenging profession of creating innovative print, Web, and multimedia design solutions for promotional, advertising, and marketing business needs.
The foundation of the graphic design curriculum is creative problem-solving. This problem-solving goes hand-in-hand with learning the elements of design and creativity, developing of a solid design process and enhancing fine arts hand skills. Using the latest computer technology in the design industry, coursework incorporates the creation of digital images; photo usage and manipulation; typographic layout and production; and Web site development.
At Clarke students can earn a bachelor of fine arts degree (BFA) in art with an emphasis in graphic design. The BFA degree is seen as a professional degree, compared to a bachelor of arts degree (BA), which is a liberal arts degree. The BFA degree provides student designers the opportunity to focus more coursework in his or her area of concentration, thus developing greater skill and expertise.
The graphic design emphasis is enhanced by variety rarely found in small liberal arts colleges. A rich art environment exists at Clarke that provides student designers with the opportunity to explore, broaden, and nurture their creative potential and visual vocabulary. Through a wide variety of art history courses and fine art studio, which include both two- and three-dimensional choices, the opportunities are many. Two-dimensional drawing, painting and printmaking are available as well as three-dimensional ceramics and sculpture.
In addition to Clarke’s general education curriculum and art department requirements, the following courses make up the graphic design core:
Graphic Design I – Introduction to Visual Language
Graphic Design II – Exploring Typography and Layout
Graphic Design III – Publication Design
Graphic Design IV – Corporate Design Systems
Graphic Design V – Web Site Design
Graphic Design VI – Multimedia Design