Graphic Design Specialist

Start your professional work portfolio right here in our Graphic Design program. With the option to earn a Diploma or an Associate in Applied Science Degree in Graphic Design, you’ll receive the education and experience needed to launch your career in our dual-track program.

Develop skills in design, graphics, animation, typography, digital illustration, drawing, photography and advertising techniques while learning in our state-of the-art Macintosh Computer Lab. Featuring 17 new iMac computers with the latest Adobe Creative Cloud suite applications, the graphic design classroom has everything you need to do your work efficiently.

Gain on-the-job experience through internships, increasing your chances for job placement after graduation. Working on a shared network drive with other students and your instructor will also give you a taste of how graphic designers work in the field.

Whether you choose to pursue print design, animation or multimedia authoring, the digital portfolio you produce in our program will help get you started for a creative career path.

Faculty Contact

Mark Rosenberg
Graphic Design Program Coordinator & Assistant Professor
712-362-7976 |

Program Details


DEGREE: Diploma (16 credits)

CAMPUS: Estherville


Did You Know?

Starting Salary $29,442

Average Salary: $43,918

Projected Employment Growth: 0.6%


Term 1

Credits: 4

This foundation course focuses on the general knowledge and essential skills used in creating two dimensional designs. Fundamental design concepts including the use of the elements and principles of design, along with color theory, are introduced through a variety of hands-on-experiences.

Credits: 3

Basic understanding of the components used in an electronic publishing system and an introduction to desktop publishing. Emphasis is on using a computer for page layout using existing art, creating art and combining text and art to create page layouts and output to hard copy. Students will learn about the basics of design and layout, typography and about the many design tools and resources available.

Credits: 3

Introduction to vector based drawing application. Students will create both black and white and multi-color graphics using applica­tion tools and menu commands. Various projects of interest will be completed during the semester that incorporate your understand­ing of drawing tools, color theory, and typography.

Credits: 3

This course provides insight into the effective use of color through the study of contemporary color theory including additive and subtractive color. This course involves the development of color perception, expression and application in traditional and digital design, through a series of problem-solving exercises and projects. Fundamental student experiences, along with a historical perspective will provide insight and understanding to the intrinsic power of color in design.

Credits: 3

Basic digital theory, how the digital camera works. Includes digital capture of both still and video; input into the computer; digital manipulation; basic Photoshop and photography; saving digital images for future use and long term archiving. How to prepare digital images for print social media, web and other uses and how to send digital images after formatting for upload.

† indicates a course that fulfills the diversity requirement. This course may also fulfill another general AA requirement.