A mobile app mockup of graphic design elements.

Graphic Design

Our design students work in digital, print, motion, immersive and emerging media.

Build your skills, add your creative vision

Graphic designers are a critical link in the communications model, creating solutions in every sector of the industry. Their expert grasp of the highly sought-after “design thinking” and emphasis on human-centered approaches make designers key players in everything from web and motion design, to advertising and branding, to magazine and news design, to the emerging fields of augmented reality, virtual reality and even voice-driven products.

This program prepares students for creative careers in a variety of digital, print, motion, immersive and emerging fields by focusing on crucial visual principles and communication strategies, introducing them to the latest technology and methods, and helping them find their unique visual voice and niche in the industry.

As graphic design majors at Newhouse, students learn a broad range of disciplines through courses that focus on the following:

  • typography (handling type and designing typefaces)
  • layout (combining type and imagery)
  • branding (creating visual corporate identities)
  • publication design (presenting editorial content in the form of books, magazines and newspapers)
  • motion (combining space, time, audio, type and illustration to create solutions that move)
  • UIUX (anticipating user needs and designing experiences for mobile, online and digital products)
  • immersive design (exploring virtual space and augmented reality)

To round out their design-specific skills, students also learn entrepreneurship and communications ethics and law while developing skills in business, photography, illustration, writing and presenting.

Bachelor of Science

Unlike at art schools and technical institutes, design students at Newhouse earn a bachelor’s of science degree, which means they take a significant number of courses outside their major for a more well-rounded education, one rooted in liberal arts and intended to produce big thinkers with perspective and a critical understanding of the world.

Real-world experience

One unique aspect of our program is that students work for real-world clients during their time at Newhouse, especially in their final semester as part of the senior capstone course, which runs as a fully functioning design studio. Synthesizing their problem-solving skills, visual storytelling skills and design expertise with the realities of running a design business, the capstone prepares graduating students for a smoother transition into the industry.

Another hallmark of our program is the annual Pixels & Print workshop, an intense, all-hands-on-deck effort that in a single weekend conceives of and generates a body of designed collateral—logos, websites, books, apps, signage, posters, augmented reality experiences, etc.—for a deserving organization or business. About 10 design professionals from all around the country and the industry join us as coaches, leading their team of students to successful solutions that make a difference while illustrating the power of design and the power of designing for good.

Beyond coursework, students can further maximize their time at Newhouse by …

  • collaborating with other students on anything from journalism projects to advertising and public relations campaigns.
  • engaging in person with the myriad professionals who join us for lectures, portfolio reviews and workshops.
  • working as a design editor or art director with campus publications.
  • taking advantage of the many impressive internships available to our students.
  • participating in an overseas trip with Newhouse’s Center for Global Engagement.
  • studying with one of our international design school partners or through SU Abroad.
Renée Stevens

Featured Faculty

Renée Stevens

Assistant Professor Associate Chair Visual Communications Also teaches in: Graphic Design Photography Communications Military Visual Journalism

Renée Stevens teaches various design courses to undergraduate, graduate and military students, including introduction to graphic design theory and practice, motion design and immersive design for augmented reality. She also teaches the undergraduate design capstone course, which operates as a fully-functioning design studio that helps students transition into the industry by teaching them to combine their problem-solving skills, visual storytelling skills and expertise in cutting-edge design technologies to create client work and to market themselves.

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