Graphic Design Colleges in Cleveland with Degree Overviews

The Cleveland area has a few schools within 40 miles of downtown that offer graphic design programs. Learn about the degree programs, admission information and program requirements for three of these schools to make an informed education decision.

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Cleveland, OH, Colleges with Graphic Design Programs

Aspiring graphic designers in the Cleveland, OH, area can find programs at two private schools and a public university, which are detailed in the paragraphs below. Prospective students will also find a table with essential school statistics, such as enrollment, tuition and acceptance rates.

  • The Cleveland Institute of Art is only five miles away from downtown Cleveland. Students there can pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design.
  • A Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Graphic Design is available at Notre Dame College. This school is just ten miles from Cleveland's downtown.
  • The University of Akron, located 40.2 miles from downtown Cleveland, also offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Advertising and Commercial Design
  • Commercial Photography
  • Fashion Design
  • General Visual Communications Design
  • Graphic Design
  • Illustration and Drawing
  • Industrial Design
  • Interior Design and Decorating

Comparison of Schools

Undergraduate graphic design students will be relieved to find out that all three of the featured schools offer financial aid to the majority of first-year students.

Cleveland Institute of Art Notre Dame College University of Akron
School Type 4-year; private not-for-profit 4-year; private not-for-profit 4-year; public
Total Enrollment (2014) 559* 2,281* 23,962*
Campus Setting Large city Large suburb Midsize city
Tuition & Fees (2015-2016) $38,487* $27,520* $10,509 for in-state; $19,040 for out-of-state*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Financial Aid (2013-2014) 94%* 100%* 91%*
Acceptance Rate (2014) 67%* 89%* 96%*
Retention Rate (2014) 81%* 62%* 74%*
Graduation Rate (2014) 65%* 36%* 42%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

Cleveland Institute of Art

The Cleveland Institute of Art offers programs in a wide variety of artistic subjects, including traditional areas like ceramics, drawing and painting, and more technological areas like game design, graphic design and video.

BFA in Graphic Design

Graphic design students in this program learn about production, print, marketing and advertising design. They also study interactive and motion graphics, editorial and publication design and event and exhibition design. As a result, students often work with students from the interior design and industrial design departments. There's also a publication course for graphic design majors who're interested in developing their work portfolios. There are also classes in package design, typography and signage.

Notre Dame College

At this college, graphic design students can pursue an additional concentration in marketing, public relations or studio art.

Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design

In addition to general education courses, this program requires a 33-credit core in art. Courses include topics in color and design, drawing, 3-dimensional design and printmaking. Graphic design majors also learn about the relationship between images and texts, photography, poster art and typography. To fulfill the technology requirements, students take courses in advanced multimedia design and development, as well as website development and design. Courses on advertising and consumer behavior also help undergraduates become familiar with the business aspects of graphic design.

University of Akron

At this school's career center, students have access to career fairs, computer stations, internship and co-op opportunities, along with a career resource library.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design

In general, the Bachelor of Fine Arts program requires 128 credits to complete. Graphic design majors in their first year pursue coursework in 2-D and 3-D design, art history and production. From there, they study graphic design history, graphic presentations, typography and digital imaging. Courses in design for web and mobile devices, packaging, corporate branding and 4-D motion graphics are also part of this program; students also learn about professional design practices. In the final semester, candidates for graduation participate in a senior exhibition.

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