The Department of Graphic Design provides students with a professional
education that prepares graduates through a solid understanding and mastery of
the analytical, conceptual, creative and technical skills required to enter
professional practice. The aim is to develop graphic designers that can analyze
communication problems, communicate ideas in visual form and produce
effective design solutions.
• Provide the student with the design skills to interpret, inform, instruct or persuade according to the needs of audiences and contexts for which
communication is intended
• Develop critical thinking skills that can be applied to design analysis and all
• Prepare students to be ethical and responsible industry professionals
• Develop an understanding of basic business and marketing practices
• Promote and develop a commitment to continued exploration in design
• Support a general studies curriculum in communications, writing, humanities, behavioral and social science, that enhances the educational breadth of the
• Student capability has a broad range from excellent to poor
• Department cares about the students’ education/preparation
• Recruiting is not focused on Graphic Design department
• Program is successful in preparing students for the profession
• The University provides students with a comprehensive, holistic, positive college experience
• To nurture and develop intelligent, thoughtful, ethical, and socially responsible
• To broaden the students exposure to international study
• To establish an excellent reputation and thereby higher profile in the Los Angeles professional and educational design community
• To promote and invite more alumni involvement and provide continuing education experiences
• To prepare students to be independent, critical thinkers who remain current in their discipline yet grounded with historical perspective
• To prepare students for professional practice through the study of business and
• The ability to solve communication problems, including the skills of problem identification, research and information gathering, analysis, generation of alternative solutions, prototyping and user testing, and evaluation of outcomes.
• The ability to describe and respond to the audiences and contexts which communication solutions must address, including recognition of the physical, cognitive, cultural, and social human factors that shape design decisions.
• The ability to create and develop visual form in response to communication problems, including an understanding of principles of visual
organization/composition, information hierarchy, symbolic representation, typography, aesthetics, and the construction of meaningful images.
• An understanding of tools and technology, including their roles in the creation, reproduction, and distribution of visual messages. Relevant tools and technologies include, but are not limited to, drawing, offset printing, photography, and time-based and interactive media (film, video, computer multimedia).
• An understanding of design history, theory, and criticism from a variety of
perspectives, including those of art history, linguistics, communication and
information theory, technology, and the social and cultural use of design objects.
• An understanding of basic business practices, including the ability to organize
design projects and to work productively as a member of teams.
• New leader provides an opportunity to reinvent the program, increase academic
rigor and establish department community
• Small, personalized program and class size
• Dedicated, knowledgeable, experienced faculty and strong advisement for both curriculum and career
• Liberal studies combined with professional major
• Excellent advisory board from diverse backgrounds in the profession
• Junior Portfolio Review for advancement and required Internships
• Inclusion with new school structure, Media, Culture and Design providing
stronger media, communications and psychology connections
• Untapped alumni as a resource for industry connections, studio reviews,
speakers and advisement
• Location near entertainment industry, museums and galleries, providing access
to the art and design culture of Los Angeles
• Diverse and growing population providing large enrollment pool
• Reinventing program provides opportunity for graduate programs
CROSS IMPACT ANALYSIS
STRENGTHS AND OPPORTUNITIES
1. The new Chair in the department of Graphic Design provides an opportunity to
reinvent the program, increase academic rigor and establish a new community.
The timing of this appointment is especially advantageous with the establishment
of the School of Media, Culture and Design as it allows opportunity for both
program and community development.
2. The new School of Media, Culture and Design provides stronger media,
communications, and psychology connections to Graphic Design and
strengthens both the academic program and marketing profile. It allows the
opportunity of promoting the liberal studies and professional education in a much
more integrated way.
3. The new chair provides an opportunity to reinvent the program, increase
academic rigor and establish a greater sense of department community.
Accessing alumni can assist in the development of community and bring their
experiences and advise to the formation of new curriculum.
4. The new School of Media, Culture and Design and its integrated yet diversified
majors, provide the opportunity for graduate programs that can increase both the
department’s and University’s status, influence and public profile.
• Lack of gallery space for both student and professional exhibitions
• Lack of breadth in class choices
• Lack of technological support for graphic design
• Maintaining enrollment base while requiring academic rigor and demanding
higher quality from students
• Lack of community due to commuter population, large adjunct faculty and dedicated studio space at only the senior level
• Lack of entrance portfolio review
• Proliferation of unskilled “desk-top publishers” lacking design education
• Lack of societal sensitivity to design and its value in the marketplace
• Local competing schools with better funding, reputation and publicity
• Poor school visibility in the community
• Lack of connections with industry clients that provide sponsored projects yielding “real-world” experience for the students and publicity for the program and
• Poor recruiting and public profile
CROSS IMPACT ANALYSIS
WEAKNESSES AND THREATS
1. The lack of gallery space for both student and professional exhibitions diminishes the credibility of a professional design program, inhibits public discourse with visiting artists/designers and professional associations, and diminishes the programs public profile. Competing local programs with gallery space are afforded these opportunities, which further accentuate the discrepancies.
2. The lack of breadth in course offerings, specifically media based, interactive study, creates susceptibility to low enrollments and lower quality students. Competing local programs are able to attract more and better-qualified students because of their breadth of opportunities.
3. The lack of technological support for graphic design computer platforms, creates frustrated, disgruntled students and faculty that “spread the word” throughout the community. Our reputation suffers and potential students consider competing local programs over Woodbury.
4. The lack of a portfolio entrance review attracts lower quality students while competing local schools are able to attract higher quality recruits because of higher standards, better facilities and support, and more prestigious reputations.