Yale School of Art
1156 Chapel Street, POB 208339
New Haven, Connecticut, 06520-8339
(203) 432-2600
GRAPHIC DESIGN

GRAPHIC DESIGN (MFA)

Course overview
The graphic design program focuses on the development of a cohesive, investigative body of work, also known as the student’s thesis. At Yale, the graphic design thesis is conceived as a loose framework within which each student’s visual method is deployed across many diverse projects during the two-year course of study. While every thesis project is unique, there are several common features: a focus on methodology, the application of a visual method to studio work, and the organization of the work in a thoughtfully argued written document and “Thesis Book.”

The individual collection of graphic design work by each student is supported on several levels simultaneously: studio work led by faculty meeting weekly; small six-person thesis groups meeting biweekly; individual sessions with writing and editing tutors; and lectures, presentations, and workshops.

Facilities
The School of Art provides digital lab facilities however all graphic design students are expected to have their own personal computer. Each student has a designated work space in the design studio loft and has access to equipment including bookbinding materials, wide format printers, a RISO duplicator, Vandercook press, and work spaces in the School of Art buildings. More resources supporting interdisciplinary projects including motion capture and VR is available at the nearby Center for Collaborative Arts and Media. In addition, students draw on the extraordinary resources of Yale University courses, conferences, films, lectures, and museums, and especially the extensive research and rare book collections of Sterling, Haas, and Beinecke libraries.

Two-year and preliminary-year programs
Each year, up to twelve students are admitted into the two-year graphic design program, and up to six students are admitted into the preliminary-year program. Two-year program students typically have a BFA in Graphic Design and are expected to have substantial and distinguished professional experience. Students applying to the preliminary-year program typically have relevant experience in a field of study outside design and demonstrate evidence of strong visual acuity. After successful completion of the preliminary year, these students automatically continue on in the two-year M.F.A. program.

Credit Requirements

60 credits total are required to graduate. 42 credits in your area of concentration (including Art 949a, Critical Practice), and 18 additional credits, including a minimum of 6 academic credits which can be selected from throughout the University’s rich offerings.

Typical Plan of Study

Preliminary-Year
The preliminary year has a required studio course sequence and additional electives are not recommended.

Fall
Art 710a, Preliminary Studio: 6 credits
Art 264a2, Typography: 3 credits
Art 370a, Designing with Time, Motion and Sound: 3 credits
Art 468a, Advanced Graphic Design: Series and Systems: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for fall term: 15

Spring
Art 711b, Preliminary Studio: 6 credits
Art 265b, Expression, Structure, and Sequence: Typography: 3 credits
Art 369b, Interactive Design and the Internet: 3 credits
Art 469b, Advanced Graphic Design: History, Editing, and Interpretation: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for spring term: 15

First year
There are 3 required courses in the first year of the two-year program, totaling 15 credits. The remaining 15 credit requirements for the year must be fulfilled through a combination of studio and/or academic electives.

Fall
Required courses:
Art 720a, 1st-year Graduate Studio: 6 credits
Art 949a, Critical Practice: 3 credits

Design electives offered:
Art 743a, Letterform Design: 3 credits
Art 744a, Moving Image Methods: 3 credits
Art 750a, Programming as Writing: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for fall term: 15

Spring
Required courses:
Art 720b, 1st-year Graduate Studio: 6 credits

Design electives offered:
Art 742b, Networks & Transactions: 3 credits
Art 743b, Letterform Design: 3 credits
Art 745b, Total Typography: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for spring term: 15

Second year minimum credits
There are 4 required courses in the second year of the two-year program, totaling 18 credits. The remaining 12 credit requirements for the year must be fulfilled through a combination of studio and/or academic electives.

Fall
Required courses:
Art 720a, 2nd-year Graduate Studio: 6 credits
Art 739a, Degree presentation: 3 credits

Design electives offered:
Art 740a, Intermediality: Topography: 3 credits
Art 752a, Mobile Computing: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for fall term: 15

Spring
Required courses:
Art 730b, 2nd-year Graduate Studio: 6 credits
Art 739b, Degree presentation: 3 credits

Design electives offered:
Art 752b, Print to Screen: 1.5 credits
Art 762b, Exhibition Design: 3 credits

Total minimum credits for spring term: 15

Last edited by: Julian Bittiner
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