Academic Programs Catalog

College of Arts and Letters

Department of Art, Art History, and Design

Undergraduate Programs
Graphic Design

The Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design, which is administered by the Department of Art, Art History, and Design, is a professional degree that prepares students through intensive, immersive, upper-level study in several areas within the discipline to be successful in the field of graphic design.


Students enrolled at Michigan State University are eligible to apply for the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design if they:

  1. have completed STA 360 and STA 365 and;
  2. are in their second semester or later at Michigan State University or equivalent standing at another university, and have not yet earned their 30th credit in studio art.
To apply, students must submit an application consistent with the process outlined by the department. Applications will include a portfolio of graphic design produced in studio art course work taken to date at Michigan State University. Exceptions will be considered for transfer students. Applications are due by the end of the eighth week of the spring semester and decisions will be made in time for annual enrollment. Fall semester applications will be reviewed as warranted. Oral interviews may be requested. Students denied admission may reapply one additional time.
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Requirements for the Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Graphic Design
  1. The University requirements for bachelor's degrees as described in the  Undergraduate Education section of this catalog; 120 credits, including general elective credits, are required for the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Graphic Design.

    The University's Tier II writing requirement for the Studio Art major is met by completing Studio Art 492.  That course is referenced in item 3. a. (1) below.
  2. The requirements of the College of Arts and Letters for the Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
  3. The following requirements for the major:
a. The following Studio Art courses (65 to 68 credits):
(1) All of the following courses:  Studio Art 110, 112, 113, 114, 160, 360, 365, 460, 492, and 492A (28 credits).
The completion of Studio Art 492 satisfies the capstone course requirement for the Graphic Design major.
(2) Four of the following courses including at least one course from each of the following three areas (12 credits):
Two-Dimensional Area
Painting: Studio Art 320
Printmaking: Studio Art 330, 335
Three-Dimensional Area
Ceramics: Studio Art 340, 345
Sculpture: Studio Art 350, 351, 354, 355
Electronic Art and Intermedia and Photography Area
Photography: Studio Art 370
Electronic Art and Intermedia: Studio Art 380
(3) Five of the following Graphic Design electives: Studio Art 303, 462, 465, 466, 467, 468, and 491E (18 to 20 credits).
(4) Completion of a service learning component through enrollment in Studio Art 493 or 494 (3 or 4 credits).
(5) Studio Art electives:  Additional credits in Studio Art courses at the 300–400 level as needed to meet the requirement of at least 65, but not more than 68, credits in courses in the major.
b. Art History and Visual Culture:  Four courses including the following (12 to 14 credits):
(1) History of Art 101 and 102 (6 credits):
(2) At least one course that includes the post World War II period. History of Art 240, 252, 261, 450, 452, 474 or other applicable History of Art courses approved by the advisor (3 or 4 credits).
(3) One additional course in History of Art at the 200 or 400-level (3 or 4 credits).