Top Graphic Design School - Anaheim, CA

The Anaheim area has several schools with programs in graphic design. Find the best program for you by reading about schools' rankings, program offerings, and tuition info.

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School and Ranking Information

There are more than 10 schools within a 20-mile radius of Anaheim that offer graphic design programs; most of these schools are 2-year community colleges. The following schools are regarded as the top three schools for graphic design according to location relative to Anaheim, graduation rate and quantity of graphic design degrees awarded:

  • Winner: Chapman University in Orange, CA, earns first place for its proximity to Anaheim (about five miles away), graduation rate and high regional rankings from U.S. News & World Report in 2013.
  • Runner Up #1: California State Polytechnic University, located in Pomona, is the first runner up due to it awarding the most graphic design degrees in 2011.
  • Runner Up #2: Santiago Canyon College, which is also in Orange, is in third place. This school offers both certificate and associate degree programs in graphic design.

School Comparison Chart

Category Chapman University California State Polytechnic University - Pomona Santiago Canyon College
Rankings (2013) 6th among regional universities in the West*
1st among up-and-coming regional universities in the West*
34th among regional universities in the West*
8th among top public regional universities in the West*
Location Orange, CA (4.9 miles from Anaheim) Pomona, CA (17.9 miles from Anaheim) Orange, CA (7.2 miles from Anaheim)
School Type 4-year, private not-for-profit 4-year, public 2-year, public
Undergraduate Tuition & Fees (2012-2013) $42,084** $6,125 (in-state); $17,783 (out-of-state)** $1,142 (in-state); $4,910 (out-of-state)**
Graphic Design Program Levels Offered Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree Certificate; associate degree
Graphic Design Degrees and Certificates Awarded (All Levels) in (2011-2012) 28** 77** 3 (graphic design and commercial and advertising art)**
Most Popular Graphic Design Program (2011-2012) Bachelor's (28 awarded)** Bachelor's (77 awarded)** Certificate (2 awarded)**
Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal program time) 72% (for 2006 entering class)** 51% (for 2006 entering class)** 31% (for 2009 entering class)**
Noteworthy Student Graphic Design Club allows students to network and become a part of the local design community Student clubs include the Art Student Alliance and American Institute of Graphic Design N/A

Sources: *U.S. News & World Report, **NCES College Navigator.

Winner: Chapman University

  • All graphic design students complete a 120-hour internship in their final year of study
  • The Department of Art hosts guest artists every two months as part of a visual arts lecture series
  • The graphic design program publishes a biannual magazine for students, faculty, and alumni

Chapman University's Wilkinson College of Humanities and Social Sciences houses art programs, including the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design. This program integrates studio classes with lectures and internships. Consisting of 78 major credits, coursework covers drawing and planning, typography, packaging design, and web design. Students have the opportunity to use new technologies and software specific to the field. Additionally, students construct a portfolio and gain business skills necessary to seek employment. Chapman also offers a minor in graphic design.

Runner-Up #1: California State Polytechnic University - Pomona

  • Internship opportunities are available at a wide selection of design agencies and studios in the surrounding area
  • The Department of Art has three Macintosh computer labs and two design studios

California State Polytechnic University, or Cal Poly - Pomona, offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design through the Department of Art in the College of Environmental Design. This BFA requires completion of general education courses and core courses in drawing, design, printmaking, illustration, art history, web design, and motion graphics. Support courses can include photography, marketing, art promotion and contemporary art, while electives cover topics like package design and advanced motion graphics. Additionally, students may opt to complete an internship or a senior project for either presentation or exhibition.

Runner-Up #2: Santiago Canyon College

  • SCC reports that the Art Department is comprised of one full-time and 12 part-time faculty members
  • The associate-level graphic design program allows students to transfer to an art school or state university

SCC offers undergraduate certificates and associate-level degrees in a wide variety of subject areas, including graphic design and digital media arts. Administered through the Art Department, students can earn a 21-credit digital media arts certificate with a graphic design emphasis. Coursework covers typography and introduction to drawing. The associate degree program is designed for students who are either interested in seeking entry-level employment or transferring to a 4-year institution or professional art school. Students complete 33 credits within the major, including 2-dimensional design, illustration for design, painting, and art concepts. Additionally, students work with various digital media and traditional tools used in the field, enabling them to gain in-depth practical experience.

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