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What are the top Utah graphic design schools for 2023?
|1||Brigham Young University||Provo|
|2||University of Utah||Salt Lake City|
|3||Utah State University||Logan|
|4||Utah Valley University||Orem|
|5||Southern Utah University||Cedar City|
Our 2023 ranking of the top 5 graphic design school programs in Utah. For an explanation of the ranking criteria, click here.
1. Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah
The College of Fine Arts and Communications at Brigham Young University (BYU) houses the Department of Design—home to the Graphic Design BFA Program. This limited enrollment program of 40 students requires 120 credit hours to graduate, including 72.5-73.5 in the major. Course examples include History of Graphic Design, Branding, Ethnographic Research Design and Methods, Typography, Design Thinking, Letterpress Studio, Interaction Design, Studio Practices for Designers, and Interdisciplinary Motion.
A Professional Internship worth six credit hours is part of the Graphic Design BFA Program, as well as a Capstone Project completed over two courses (BFA Capstone Project: Research and BFA Capstone Project: Implementation) worth a total of five credit hours.
For students seeking a shorter program with a flexible schedule, Brigham Young University has a Graphic Design Fundamentals Certificate that can be completed entirely online. Available through BYU-Idaho and BYU-Pathway Worldwide, the Graphic Design Fundamentals Certificate explores visual design, typography, and conceptual design. Building into BU’s Professional Studies BAS degree, the Certificate Program consists of 15 credit hours.
Courses for this Certificate Program include Introduction to Graphic Design, Graphic Design, Creating Online Media, Typography, and User Experience Design. Potential careers for graduates of the BYU Graphic Design Fundamentals Certificate Program include Junior Graphic Designer, Marketing Production Artist, Design Assistant, and Junior Production Artist.
Graduates of the Graphic Design BFA Program at Brigham Young University Graphic work in design-related disciplines such as branding and product design, publishing and interaction design, motion graphics, web design and mobile app development, data visualization, and experience and service design. Program alumni can be found at major advertising agencies, traditional design studios, and interactive agencies. Graduates also work on internal teams at a variety of businesses, corporations, and organizations. Some BYU Graphic Design graduates go on to launch their own design studios or establish a freelance career.
Brigham Young University was founded as Brigham Young Academy (BYA) in 1875 by Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints President Brigham Young. With 34,390 students enrolled in more than 435 programs, BYU is the one of the largest private universities in the U.S. Brigham Young University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).
2. University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
The College of Fine Arts at University of Utah (U of U or The U) houses the Department of Art & Art History, home to the new BFA in Graphic Design. Formerly the BFA in Studio Art–Graphic Design Emphasis, the program consists of 122 credit hours, with a minimum of 79 in the major. Students may declare the Graphic Design major in the first year of study. To advance the second year, students must successfully complete all first year coursework and submit a portfolio. A second year review is required to advance to the third year of the program.
Course examples for the U of U Graphic Design BFA include six Studio Foundations courses that explore areas such as action, mapping, and touch, Typography 1-2, Communication Design 1-5, Design Strategy, History of Graphic Design, Visual Rhetoric, Digital Drawing, Writing for New Media, and Digital Imaging for Visual Artists. Upper division courses include Design Theory And Practice, Visiting Designer Studio: Design Co-op, Professional Practices Seminar, Graphic Design Capstone 1: Research And Inquiry, and Graphic Design Capstone 2: Development And Presentation.
The Visiting Designer Studio course is a requirement for all BFA Graphic Design majors. The course consists of workshops led by guest lecturers and studio driven projects. In the Professional Practices Seminar, students will complete a portfolio and professional resume. The Capstone courses are required to complete the Final BFA Project. Graduates are prepared to pursue positions in all areas of Graphic Design.
University of Utah houses the College of Fine Arts at University of Utah (The U), home to the Department of Art & Art History, which houses the Graphic Design BFA Program. Formerly the BFA in Studio Art–Graphic Design Emphasis, this new and improved program consists of 122 credit hours, with a minimum of 79 in the major. Students may declare the Graphic Design major in their first year of study. To advance to the second year, students must successfully complete all first year coursework and submit a portfolio. A second year review is required to advance to the third year of the program.
The Graphic Design BFA at The U includes six Studio Foundations courses that explore areas such as mapping, action, and touch. Course examples for the program include Design Strategy, Visual Rhetoric, Communication Design 1-5, Digital Drawing, History of Graphic Design, Writing for New Media, Typography 1-2, and Digital Imaging for Visual Artists.
Examples of upper division courses include Design Theory And Practice, Visiting Designer Studio: Design Co-op, Professional Practices Seminar, Graphic Design Capstone 1: Research And Inquiry, and Graphic Design Capstone 2: Development And Presentation.
The Visiting Designer Studio course is a requirement for all BFA Graphic Design majors. The course consists of workshops led by guest lecturers and studio driven projects. In the Professional Practices Seminar, students will complete a portfolio and professional resume. The Capstone courses are required to complete the Final BFA Project. Graduates of the Graphic Design Program at University of Utah are prepared to pursue positions at advertising agencies, design studios, publishing companies, web design firms, marketing agencies, and in all industries that require graphic design skills.
Founded in 1850, University of Utah is the state’s public flagship institution. A top-tier research university, The U serves more than 34,900 students enrolled in over 200 programs across 17 colleges and schools. University of Utah is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).
3. Utah State University, Logan, Utah
Caine College of the Arts (CCA) at Utah State University (USU) houses the Department of Art and Design, which has two paths to study Graphic Design. At the undergraduate level, the Department has a Graphic Design BFA. At the graduate level, students can earn an Art MFA with a Specialization in Graphic Design.
Across programs, students benefit from internship and co-op opportunities, annual study trips to places such as Switzerland, Germany, Korea, and Scotland, and participation in the weekly Hashimoto Communication Arts Seminar, which features local and regional professional designers.
The Graphic Design BFA at USU prepares students for jobs with Design Studios, Advertising Agencies, and more through intensive training in the creative process, industry standard technology, theory, collaboration, sustainability, and professional practice. Consisting of 120 credit hours, the program requires courses such as Two-Dimensional Design, History of Graphic Design Studio, Type, Image, and Visual Continuity, Brand Identity Design, and Graphic Design Interface Design.
The Graphic Design BFA Program at Utah State University ends with the Senior Capstone course which builds students professional portfolios through critiques, lectures, and studio work. The course culminates with the Annual Senior BFA Exhibition. Graduates are prepared for immediate employment in the field or a graduate program, such as the USU Art MFA with a Specialization in Graphic Design.
This three-year, 60 credit hour program consists of advanced coursework in typography, print and publication design, symbols, trademarks, interactive media, layout, digital imaging, motion graphics, and illustration. The Art Department provides graduate students with ample studio space, as well as opportunities to develop skills in other areas such as Human-Computer Interface (HCI) Design. The Department also has a partnership, known as “Design Thinking,” with the Huntsman School of Business.
The Art MFA Program at Utah State University culminates with the Thesis Exhibition and Professional Portfolio. Graduates are prepared to pursue advanced-level and leadership positions in areas such as Advertising, Publishing, Design Studios, Museums, In-house Design Departments, Corporate Branding, Packaging, HCI Design, Web Design, Public Relations, User Interface (UI) Design, User Experience (UX) Design, and Entertainment.
Founded March 8, 1888 as the Agricultural College of Utah, Utah State University is the state’s only land- grant institution. The school has eight statewide campuses that serve approximately 27,945 students enrolled in more than 400 undergraduate, graduate, and minor programs. The academic offerings at USU are housed across eight colleges. Utah State University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).
4. Utah Valley University, Orem, Utah
The School of the Arts at Utah Valley University (UVU) houses the Department of Art and Design, which has both AAS and BFA degree options with a Graphic Design Emphasis. Situated in the heart of the Silicon Slopes, UVU’s Graphic Design Program prepares students for careers as creative leaders in the field of design or for graduate study.
The AAS Program with a Graphic Design Emphasis requires 63 credit hours of study with 15 credits in Discipline Cores, and 23 credits in the Emphasis. Course examples include Graphic Computer Applications, 3D Computer Modeling, Production Design, Typography, Motion Graphics, Branding, and Digital Imaging. Students in this program have the opportunity to enhance the degree through nine credits of Art and Design electives.
The BFA Program with a Graphic Design Emphasis at Utah Valley University is a 120 credit hour program that features training in the latest software, internship experiences, and job-placement opportunities. Students will in this program will explore both print and interactive design. Course examples for the program include 2D and 3D Design, Observational Drawing, Graphic Design, 3D Computer Modeling, UI/UX Design, Branding I-II, Motion Graphics Studio, Typography I-II, and History of Design and Visual Arts.
The culminating experience for the BFA Program includes the following Capstone requirements: Design Studio and the Art and Design Internship. The Design Studio is worth three credits and explores issues, technology, and topics related to Graphic Design. The Design Internship is worth 1-6 credit hours and combines classroom theory with related, practical job experience. Students will work as employees of an agency, business, or institution while enrolled in classes related to their career major.
Graduates of the Graphic Design Program at Utah Valley University are prepared to pursue employment at advertising agencies, design studios, printing firms, and publishing companies, as well as for in-house design departments. Some graduates go on to launch their own design studios or freelance businesses. The types of job responsibilities could include Advertising Design, Branding/Identity Design, Digital and Traditional Publishing, Logo Design, Layout Design, Exhibit Design, Information Design and Data Visualization, Packaging Design, and Web and Interactive Design.
Utah Valley University (UVU) was established in 1941 as Central Utah Vocational School (CUVS).The school’s primary function was to provide war production training. Today, the UVU serves approximately 43,100 students from all backgrounds, making it the largest public university in the state. UVU students have access to more than 200 degree and certificate programs housed across eight colleges and schools. Utah Valley University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
5. Southern Utah University, Cedar City, Utah
The College of Performing and Visual Arts (CPVA) at Southern Utah University (SUU) houses the Department of Art and Design. Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), the Department has a Graphic Design Program with BFA and Minor options.
The Graphic Design Minor at Southern Utah University requires 19.5 credit hours, including 16.5 credits of required courses. The remaining three credits can be selected from 3000- or 4000-level Graphic Design courses, or students can take User Experience Design I. Other course examples include 2D Design, Art Insights, Typography I, and History of Graphic Design. The Graphic Design Minor also helps students develop skills in industry-standard computer software.
The 120 credit hour Graphic Design BFA at SUU is a professional degree that focuses on user experience and user interface design (UX/UI), branding, print, interactivity, packaging, and web design. The curriculum is project-based, with an emphasis real-world design issues and solutions. Students will take Art Foundation courses (28 credits), Graphic Design courses (39 credits), Portfolio Development courses (nine credits), and six credits of Art Electives.
Course examples for the program include Art Insights, Digital Tools, User Experience Design I-II, Junior/Senior Design Studio, Typography I-II, 3D Digital Illustration, Branding, Letterpress, Publication Design, Graphic Design I-II, Interaction Design, Intaglio/Lithography, Motion Graphics, and Silkscreen/Relief. All students will complete an internship, with the opportunity to complete an optional study abroad experience.
The SUU Graphic Design BFA Program culminates with the completion of a professional portfolio that showcases the students interactive design and print work. Student work will be presented at the Senior BFA Exhibition.
Graduates of the Southern Utah University Graphic Design Program are prepared for positions in areas such as Advertising, Print, Branding, Marketing, Packaging, UX/UI, Entertainment, and Exhibit Design. Some graduates go on to pursue graduate study at top colleges and universities across the nation.
Founded in 1897, Southern Utah University serves 14,330 students enrolled in 150 undergraduate programs, 32 graduate and certificate programs, and a professional doctorate degree program. Academic options are provided across seven colleges and schools, and dozens of departments. Southern Utah University is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).