Students in Minnesota interested in studying graphic design can find undergraduate certificate and diploma programs as well as associate and bachelor's degree options. One school mentioned in this article also offers several relevant master's degrees and one doctoral program. Some programs are available in design or studio art, but they provide specializations in graphic design. Students may also be able to choose a graphic design concentration, such as print or interactive media. Students gain skills using industry software, such as Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign, and work on developing a portfolio of their work. The schools below are the 10 largest non-profit, public colleges in the state that offer graphic design programs.
Located in Minneapolis, this college offers a graphic design certificate program. Students will learn about basic principles like typography and digital imaging. Students will also learn how to use software like Dreamweaver, Photoshop and Illustrator for the creation of websites. The college has 22 Apple computers installed with industry software, tablets, scanners and printers. The college updates its computer and graphic design equipment regularly.
Dakota County Technical College
Found in Rosemount, this college offers a 72-credit associate's degree program that provides basic graphic design education. Degree students must complete career research and portfolio development classes to prepare them for employment.
Hennepin Technical College
Based in Brooklyn Park, this school has diploma and associate's degree programs in graphic design, all with creative, production and Web design specializations. The creative emphasis is designed for artistic students who want to learn about color theory, typography and digital manipulation. The production emphasis focuses on industry computer software and advertising design. Students who are interested in websites and user interface can opt for the Web design emphasis. The college also has 60 Apple workstations, current software, scanners, printers and a production lab.
Minneapolis Community and Technical College
This Minneapolis college has certificate and associate's degree programs in graphic design. Those interested in designing for advertisements, books and brochures can specialize in print media. The Web and interactive media specialization is suited for students who want to incorporate design, art, animation and multimedia in their studies. Associate's degree students also must develop a portfolio and exhibit for graduation.
Minnesota State Community and Technical College
This Fergus Falls-based college has certificate and associate's degree programs in graphic design technology. All students are required to have an Apple laptop with current Adobe Creative Suite software. Students will learn how to apply principles of color and design to projects, and they will develop a professional portfolio.
Minnesota State University Moorhead
Located in Moorhead, this university has a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design. Students need to complete 2 portfolio reviews. The program will teach students about drawing, art history, graphic design, visual concepts and typography. Students are also required to complete studio classes.
North Hennepin Community College
An associate's degree program in graphic design is available at this Brooklyn Park college. Students will learn about visual communication, along with how to incorporate typography into design and manipulate images using computer software. Studio art courses provide a foundation for graphic design principles. The program recommends that students complete a capstone practicum course that includes developing a portfolio.
Rochester Community and Technical College
Students in Rochester can find a graphic design associate's degree program at Rochester Community and Technical Colleges. Students will learn about graphic design, digital art, motion graphics and typography. Due to this school's articulation agreement with Minnesota State University Moorhead, graduates of the associate's degree program can transfer their credits to a 4-year degree program at the university.
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Located in Winona, this university has a bachelor's degree in digital graphic design. The program examines the creation of digital images, website design, photography and the use of software programs like Illustrator, InDesign and Photoshop. All graphic design students must complete a senior exhibit and portfolio.
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities
This university is in Minneapolis, and it has several degree programs related to graphic design. Students in the bachelor's in graphic design program must complete a portfolio review to get into the program, and they will learn about effective visual communication. The design graduate programs all have graphic design tracks. The Master of Arts and Master of Science degree programs require students to complete a thesis and final exam. The Master of Fine Arts program has the requirements of an exam and thesis capstone project. PhD students are required to complete dissertation research.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Graphic Design Certificate and Degree Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)*|
|Augsburg College||4-year, private not-for-profit; large city||Certificate in Graphic Design||$38,800|
|Dakota County Technical College||2-year, public; rural fringe||Associate in Applied Science (AAS) in Graphic Design Technology||$5,713|
|Hennepin Technical College||2-year, public; large suburb||Diploma in Graphic Design-Creative,
Diploma in Graphic Design-Production,
Diploma in Graphic Design-Web Design,
AAS in Graphic Design-Creative,
AAS in Graphic Design-Web Design
|Minneapolis Community and Technical College||2-year, public; large city||Certificate in Graphic Design,
Certificate in Graphic Design-Print Media,
Certificate in Web and Interactive Media Core,
Certificate in Web and Interactive Media,
AAS in Graphic Design-Print Media,
AAS in Interactive Media
|Minnesota State Community and Technical College||2-year, public; remote town||Certificate in Graphic Design Technology,
AAS in Graphic Design Technology
|Minnesota State University Moorhead||4-year, public; midsize suburb||BFA in Graphic Design|| $8,496 (in-state)
|North Hennepin Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Associate in Science (AS) in Graphic Design||$4,433|
|Rochester Community and Technical College||2-year, public; midsize city||AS in Graphic Design||$5,639|
|Saint Mary's University of Minnesota||4-year, private not-for-profit; distant town||BA in Digital Graphic Design||$35,110|
|University of Minnesota - Twin Cities||4-year, public; large city||BFA in Graphic Design,
Master of Arts in Design-Graphic Design,
Master of Fine Arts in Design-Graphic Design,
Master of Science in Design-Graphic Design,
PhD in Design-Graphic Design
Source: *NCES College Navigator