Graphic Design AFA Degree

Associate of Fine Arts
Graphic design image

Are you looking for an intensive art school experience to prepare you for a BFA program at a prestigious four-year school? Then the School of Art + Design (SA+D) is for you.

Our graphic design associate of fine arts degree offers affordable tuition, small class sizes, and faculty mentorship from leaders in the field.

During the first year of the program, you will participate in a cohort that mirrors the first-year experience at an art school. In your second year of the degree, you will focus studies on graphic design classes and prepare for transfer to premier art colleges.

The graphic design AFA curriculum includes studio art foundations courses, and specialized study in graphic design and typography. Courses focus on the fundamentals of visual arts and design, and parallel the coursework in the first two years of a BFA degree at a four-year institution.

The School of Art + Design has specific admission requirements. All students should meet with a discipline adviser in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts to gain acceptance into the program and to plan their program of study, as well as their transfer and career goals.

Enroll at MC and set your sights on a successful career in the visual arts.

Students who plan to major in graphic design in the School of Art + Design will be assigned the temporary major code of 902A until they are officially admitted to the program. Students may take preparatory courses and courses that fulfill General Education requirements during the application period.

Program Outcomes

Upon completion of this program a student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate visual problem solving capability.
  • Utilize foundational skills and demonstrate competency in a range of art media and techniques.
  • Demonstrate comprehension of art and graphic design within an historical and contemporary context.

Program Advising

Meet with your academic advisor regularly to discuss your academic plans and make sure you are on track to graduate and/or transfer.  The program advising guide outlines the degree requirements and is meant to supplement the advising process.

Transfer Opportunities

MC has a long history of successfully preparing students for transfer to four-year institutions. See all transfer agreements.


Graphic designers create visual concepts, using computer software or by hand, to communicate ideas that inspire, inform, and captivate consumers. They develop the overall layout and production design for various applications such as advertisements, brochures, magazines, and corporate reports.


Suggest Course Sequence: Graphic Design

A suggested two-year course sequence for full-time students in Graphic Design follows

A suggested two-year course sequence for full-time students in Graphic Design follows

All students should review the advising guide and consult an advisor. Most courses have either assessment levels that must be met or prerequisites (courses that must be taken first). Part-time students and those who need to meet assessment levels or take prerequisite courses will take longer to complete a degree. An advisor will help make sure you are taking your courses in the right order.

All degree-seeking students must take a central group of General Education courses in English, mathematics, arts, behavioral and social sciences, humanities, and science. These courses are included in the suggested course sequence below.

Suggested Course Sequence

All students should review the Advising Worksheet and consult an advisor.

First Semester

ARTT 100 - Introduction to Drawing 3 semester hours


ARTT 102 - Introduction to 2D Design 3 semester hours


ARTT 116 - Digital Tools for the Visual Arts 4 semester hoursARTT 200 - Art History: Ancient to 1400 3 semester hoursENGL 101 - Introduction to College Writing 3 semester hours


Second Semester

ARTT 103 - Introduction to 3D Design 3 semester hoursARTT 201 - Art History: 1400 to Present 3 semester hours

line break

ARTT 204 - Intermediate Drawing 3 semester hours


ARTT 205 - Figure Drawing I 3 semester hours

line break

ENGL 102 - Critical Reading, Writing, and Research 3 semester hours
  • Mathematics foundation 3 semester hours (MATF)


Third Semester

ARTT 152 - Photographic Expression I 3 semester hours


  • Printmaking elective 3 semester hours ‡‡

line break

ARTT 263 - Professional Practice for the Visual Artist 1 semester hourGDES 210 - Graphic Design I 3 semester hoursGDES 220 - Typography I 3 semester hours
  • Humanities distribution 3 semester hours (HUMD)
  • Craft elective 3 semester hours

Fourth Semester

GDES 211 - Graphic Design II 3 semester hoursGDES 221 - Typography II 3 semester hours
  • Behavioral and social sciences distribution 3 semester hours (BSSD)
  • Natural sciences distribution with lab 4 semester hours (NSLD)

* ENGL 101 3 semester hours/ENGL 101A 3 semester hours, if needed, for ENGL 102 3 semester hours/ENGL 103 3 semester hours or elective.

‡ Select ARTT 120 3 semester hours, ARTT 123 3 semester hours, ARTT 245 3 semester hours, or ARTT 247 3 semester hours.

‡‡ Select ARTT 152 3 semester hours, ARTT 225 3 semester hours, ARTT 227 3 semester hours, ARTT 228 3 semester hours, ARTT 230 3 semester hours, ARTT 233 3 semester hours, or ARTT 226 3 semester hours.

Get Started: Apply and Register

Related Programs and Courses

General Studies Degree

Students who major in general studies explore personal, professional, and academic areas of interest within a flexible framework supporting transfer.

Workforce Development & Continuing Education

MC offers a wide variety of noncredit classes designed to help you upgrade your skills, pursue career training, or learn something new.

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