Graphic Design Technology

Student Showcase Information

Graphic designers--or graphic artists--plan, analyze, and create visual solutions to communications problems. They find the most effective way to get messages across in print and electronic media using color, type, illustration, photography, animation, and various print and layout techniques. Graphic designers develop the overall layout and production design of magazines, newspapers, journals, corporate reports, and other publications. They also produce promotional displays, packaging, and marketing brochures for products and services, design distinctive logos for products and businesses, and develop signs and signage systems--called environmental graphics--for business and government. An increasing number of graphic designers also develop material for Internet Web pages, interactive media, and multimedia projects. Graphic designers also may produce the credits that appear before and after television programs and movies.

Graphic designers use specialized computer software packages to help them create layouts and design elements and to program animated graphics.

Graphic designers held about 279,000 jobs in 2010. Most graphic designers worked in specialized design services; advertising and related services; printing and related support activities; or newspaper, periodical, book, and directory publishers. A small number of designers produced computer graphics for computer systems design firms.

Some designers do freelance work--full time or part time--in addition to holding a salaried job in design or in another occupation.

According to the Labor Department, employment of graphic designers is expected to grow 13 percent, as fast as the average for all occupations from 2010 to 2020, as demand for graphic design continues to increase from advertisers and computer design firms.

Design Your Future

Santa Fe College offers an Associate of Science degree in Graphic Design Technology. It is a full-time, cutting-edge program that teaches the skills needed to enter graphic design and related fields. Graphic design is an exciting, high-tech field where you can use your artistic and creative skills to earn a good salary. More than 80 percent of Santa Fe's A.S. degree graduates find jobs or go on to further higher education.

The Mac-based Graphic Design Technology program is housed in Technology Building N at Santa Fe's Northwest Campus in Gainesville. There are four computer labs, a fully equipped photography studio, a production room, a viewing room (affectionally called The Little Theatre) and a theory/ illustration classroom. To help you find a job, the program offers a highly regarded internship program. Internships give you on-the-job experience and enable you to meet people who hire graphic designers.

Small classes encourage one-on-one contact with your instructors, and qualified professionals who have real-world work experience. The program emphasizes creative thinking and problem solving in combination with hands-on instruction on industry standard computer hardware and software. When you graduate you will be able to use the latest technologies to translate ideas into images.

You Learn the Industry's Leading Graphics Software

  • Adobe InDesign
  • Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Dreamweaver
  • Flash Catalyst

While In The Program You Will Learn:

  • Magazine & newspaper advertising layout
  • Logo design
  • Brochure design
  • Computer graphics
  • Desktop publishing
  • Direct-mail marketing design
  • Outdoor advertising design
  • Illustration art direction
  • Newsletter design
  • Package design
  • Point-of-purchase display
  • Web page design
  • Digital photo manipulation
  • Pre-press technology and printing methods

Core Courses

  • ADV1210 Introduction to Advertising Design & Graphics
  • ADV1212 Advertising Graphics & Production
  • ADV2803 Professional Practicum
  • ADV2211 Advanced Advertising Design & Graphics
  • ARH2722c History of Graphic Design
  • CGS1820 Web Authoring
  • DIG2782 Advanced Interface Design
  • GRA1150c Raster Graphics
  • GRA2100C Computer Graphics for Artists and Designers
  • GRA2124 Graphic Design for Desktop Publishing
  • GRA2143C Advanced Web Design
  • GRA2151C Illustration Methods 1
  • GRA2157C Computer Illustration Methods
  • GRA2203 Prepress and Printing Methods
  • GRA2940 Graphic Design Internship
  • PGY2801C Electronic Still Photography

A minimum grade of "C" is required for all specialization required courses.

When you graduate with the A.S. degree, you will have completed 64 semester hours of course work. You will also have produced portfolio pieces and developed a professional resume.

Accelerated Curriculum

The Graphic Design Technology degree is a full time program. It consists of five semesters of study. The full curriculum requires 16 classes in your chosen field of specialization and five General Education classes. As a full time student you will be required to take four program classes per semester. You can shorten the time it will take you to finish your degree by taking your General Education classes concurrent with your program classes or taking them over the summer. Once admitted to the Graphic Design Technology program, students take classes full-time in a specific, or lockstep, sequence.

Community Involvement

The Graphic Design Technology department holds frequent art shows in galleries and public spaces around Gainesville as part of our efforts to help our students' outstanding work become an integral part of our community.

Our students also work developing marketing material for art organizations and non profit organizations, enriching our community and making the professional contacts that will later help them launch their careers.

Transferring Your Degree

You can transfer Graphic Design Technology credits earned at SFC to Miami International University of Art and Design or the Fort Lauderdale Art Institute (both of them members of the prestigious Art Institutes national arts schools group,) and pursue a bachelor's degree in Graphic Design.

However, your AS degree does not transfer to the University of Florida or any of Florida's public universities. So if you are planning to move on to UF, this may not be your best option.

Special Application Process

Admission is competitive. Because demand for spaces in the field of graphic design is high, and because space is limited by the resources available to us, you need to complete an application to be accepted into the Graphic Design Technology program as well as an application to Santa Fe College. Admission is based on faculty rankings of the departmental applications.

Potential students must take the Computerized Placement Test (CPT) and complete all required prep classes before applying for admission to Graphic Design Technology. Because the Graphic Design Technology department offers classes only in the fall and the spring terms (no summer classes) it is recommended that students plan to take their general education courses during the summer terms. For this reason it is not a requirement that students complete their general education requirements before applying for admission to Graphic Design Technology.

Please use the online application to apply to the Graphic Design Technology department.

Printable Forms

Download Application
Graphic Design Handout

If you still have any question, don't hesitate to call us or contact us. We can help.

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