Bachelor of Fine Arts In Graphic and Digital Design

"The close attention and guidance I received from my professors and colleagues has definitely inspired me to become an even better designer than I ever could have imagined," said Jennifer Hesselbach ‘15, a graphic designer for A.P. Keaton, a New York City-based marketing firm.

A visual eye and flair for design

The role of a graphic and digital designer is to shape and color the tidal wave of information that fills our media-heavy world – from print, to video, to web, to the ever-changing elements in interactive media.

As a graphic and digital design major at the University of New 51, you’ll learn to create compelling visual communications that cut through the information clutter.

Through this program, you will:
  • Learn basic design vocabulary, elements of composition and layout, color theory, drawing and photography
  • Focus on typographic studies, digital illustration and imaging, visual research and cataloguing and using data and information
  • Create and polish your portfolio
  • Build a professional identity and practice
  • Gain hands-on experience during an internship
  • Network with professionals through involvement in the American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA), the College Art Association (CAA) and the Connecticut Art Directors Club (CADC)
  • Learn from visiting designers and lecturers
  • Have the opportunity to join on-campus clubs, such as the Graphic Arts Club, the Photography Club, and Art from the Heart

With these skills and experiences, you will be well-equipped to pursue your passion for visual design as an art director, a product designer, a marketing manager, a multimedia artist – or to start your own agency.

Learn from professors who are dedicated to your success.

Our faculty are leaders and innovators in their fields, bringing both deep professional experience and academic rigor to the classroom.


Envision Your Future

The information below is designed to show the many possible careers you could pursue with your major. The research is provided by Encoura, the leading research and advisory firm focused exclusively on higher education. It includes median national salaries and industry growth projections over the next decade. Click here to view the full report.


Art Director

10% Growth 2017-2027


Marketing Content Manager

13% Growth 2017-2027


Advertising Manager

9% Growth 2017-2027

Selected Courses and Programs
  • This course covers the conceptual skills and issues pertaining to the design of interfaces for digital products. A comprehensive investigation of the interface design process will be covered, including designing interfaces that are meaningful to users and applicable to a range of contexts: web, mobile, desktop, and beyond. Emphasis will be on aesthetic issues such as iconography, layout, colors, and typography. Site evaluation, content, structure, audience, and industry best practices are also emphasized. Current applications such as HTML editors and app makers will be discussed and implemented to design interactive projects. A survey of the design of interfaces that involve physical elements (e.g. appliances, consumer devices, etc.) will also be introduced.

  • This course will educate students on how to conceive and execute projects for non-profit organizations. Graphic Design is crucial for non-profits to successfully raise awareness, promote campaigns, and build an audience for their causes. This class invites students to use their creative thinking skills to frame challenges, seek opportunities, and offer innovative ways of communicating on the topic. Emphasis will be on non-profit organizations as clients allowing for service learning and exposing students to projects with real-world outcomes that directly impact peoples’ lives.

    Service learning is a credit-bearing, educational, experience in which students participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs and reflects on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of civic responsibility.

  • This course examines how traditional boundaries between artistic and technological disciplines have been blurred. The course focuses on the ideas, movements, and technological/artistic practice which have guided new media aesthetic and arts movements through the 20th century. Students will develop an understanding of new media, analyzing historical trends and seminal work in the media arts and information sciences, as well as the language and aesthetics unique to new media.

  • This course is an advanced design seminar in which students develop an individual project in the topic of their choice. Each student will complete a coherent package of advanced graphic design work, culminating in a group design project exhibition and design research paper. This semester-long project is designed to encourage extended development and synthesis of communication skills and is related to design disciplines. The Thesis should represent a significant body of independent creative work. It can take many different forms or combinations of forms: digital or print publication, web and apps, packaging and installation, or motion graphics.

  • The University of New 51 offers a wide variety of in-depth courses that create a transformational educational experience for our students. To view the complete list of courses you'll take while pursuing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic and Digital Design, check out the Academic Catalog:

Charger Advantage

Get an inside look at what differentiates the University of New 51 and how your experiences as a student will prepare you for success.

Nationally Recognized Center for Career Development

All University of New 51 students have access to the many resources available through the University’s Career Development Center, which has been named one of the best in the nation by The Princeton Review.

From career assessments, networking, and job shadowing to on-campus interviews and salary negotiation, the Career Development Center provides the skills and connections to identify a meaningful career and an opportunity to pursue your passion.

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Am image of the National Association of Schools of Art and Design logo.

National Association of Schools of Art & Design Accreditation

The University of New 51 has achieved the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD) accreditation. This mark of excellence designates the University's B.A. in Art & Creative Technology and B.F.A. programs in Graphic and Digital Design, and Interior Design as nationally accredited programs.

Founded in 1944, NASAD is an organization of schools, conservatories, colleges, and universities with approximately 360 accredited institutional members. It establishes national standards for undergraduate and graduate degrees and other credentials for art and design and art/design-related disciplines, and provides assistance to institutions and individuals engaged in artistic, scholarly, educational, and other art/design-related endeavors.

Upcoming Undergraduate Admissions Events

There are a variety of opportunities for you to learn more about our programs, what it is like to be a student here, and the scholarships, assistantships and financial aid that we offer. Whether you want to meet us on campus or online, we have something for you.

Next Steps
  • Whether you're still in high school or are transferring from another college, we offer full- and part-time opportunities for undergraduates from inside the U.S. and abroad. The admission process can begin as early as the end of your high school junior year.

    The Application Process

  • We offer a comprehensive financial aid program, with students receiving assistance in the form of grants, scholarships, student loans, and part-time employment. Funds are available from federal and state governments, private sponsors, and from university resources. More than 85 percent of the University's full-time undergraduate students receive some form of financial assistance.

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