Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design
Iowa State’s dedicated four-year Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design program is the only public degree of its kind in the state of Iowa and is a top ranked program nationally. The program combines both traditional and new graphic design media, providing graduates with a wide range of in-demand skills. The graphic design curriculum emphasizes how to design through organization of visual and verbal information, and it’s concept-based approach can be applied to printed material, digital media, motion, and environmental graphics.
The BFA in Graphic Design is a four-year degree consisting of one year in the College of Design’s Core Design Program, followed by three years in the professional degree program. It features graphic design practicums (providing real-world experience with clients such as Habitat for Humanity and the Special Olympics), and internship or study abroad opportunities.
The program also features option studios in a variety of graphic design applications, such as:
- User experience (UX) design
- Creative technology
- 3D modeling and augmented reality
- Web design
- Advanced typography
- Motion graphics
- Exhibition design
- 3D animation
- Branding and logo design
Core Design Program
The undergraduate curricula in design are divided into two phases: the Core Design Program and the professional or general degree program. Classes in the Core create a shared experience and community that exposes students to all nine majors within the College of Design.
Iowa State’s BFA in Graphic Design is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).
Beyond meeting the minimum high school requirements for admission to Iowa State University and the College of Design, students who plan to enter the professional Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design degree program are encouraged, but not required, to take courses in:
- Graphic Design
- Journalism or Computer Science
Success in Design
Students graduate career-ready with internships, capstone projects, professional practice and portfolio classes integrated into the Design programs, and support from the Design Career Services Office. The college also hosts an annual Design Career Fair focused only on design majors. It attracts more than 125 firms recruiting for jobs and internships, with College of Design alumni making up more than half of the recruiters in attendance.
Possible career paths
With 91% of our 2021-2022 graduates employed or continuing their education within six months of graduation, we make it easy for students explore career opportunities. Some recent graduates of Iowa State’s graphic design program have pursued careers in the following:
- Advertising design
- Animated products design
- Book design
- Digital art
- Exhibition design
- Film or television titling and design of on-air graphics
- Interactive media design
- Magazine design
- Museum exhibitions, publications and signage
- Newspaper design
- Packaging and label design
- Video or film design and production website design
A Designer in the Making.
Find your place at Iowa State University’s College of Design, where we like to ask questions, poke and prod, create something new, and make a difference through design.