What are the top Mississippi graphic design schools for 2023?

Top Mississippi Graphic Design School Programs - 2023 College Rankings
1Mississippi State UniversityStarkville
2University of Southern MississippiHattiesburg
3University of MississippiOxford

Our 2023 ranking of the top graphic design school programs in Mississippi. For an explanation of the ranking criteria, click here.

1. Mississippi State University, Starkville, University
 Mississippi State University

The College of Architecture, Art and Design (CAAD) at Mississippi State University (MSU) houses the Department of Art—home to the state’s largest undergraduate Studio Art Program. Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), the Program has Concentrations in Graphic Design, Fine Arts, and Photography.

Leading to a BFA, the MSU Studio Art Program emphasizes immersive studio experiences, hands-on studio learning, and internships. For admission to the Graphic Design Concentration, Studio Art students must pass a Foundation Portfolio Review after completing courses such as Introduction to Computing for Art, Design I-II, Drawing I-II, and Three-Dimensional Design.

Once students enter the Concentration, they will take electives and required courses such as Graphic Art Design, Advertising Design, The Art of Typography and Layout, Illustration, Advanced Print Production, Multimedia Design and Authoring, Advanced Studio – Graphic Design, Digital Photography, Print Production, and Graphic Design for the Internet. This 123 credit hour program culminates with a Thesis and Senior Presentation.

Graduates of the Graphic Design BFA Program at Mississippi State University are Product Designers, Brand Managers, Digital Publishers, Art Directors, Packaging Designers, Book Illustrators, Exhibit Designers, Advertising Designers (print and web), Motion Designers, Visual Information Specialists, Interactive Designers, and Creative Directors.

Mississippi State University was founded in 1878 as the Agricultural and Mechanical College of the State of Mississippi. The school serves approximately 23,085 students enrolled in more than 175 programs leading to a bachelor’s, master’s or doctoral degree. Programs at Mississippi State University are housed across eight academic colleges including Agriculture and Life Sciences; Architecture, Art, and Design; Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Bagley Engineering; Forest Resources; and Veterinary Medicine. Mississippi State University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

2. University of Southern Mississippi, Hattiesburg, Mississippi
University of Southern Mississippi

The College of Arts and Sciences at University of Southern Mississippi (USM) houses the School of Performing and Visual Arts (SPVA). Within the SPVA is an Art BFA Program with an Emphasis in Graphic Design. A Graphic Design Minor is also available. As part of USM, both pathways are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD).

The Graphic Design Minor at USM requires 21 credit hours of study including Graphic Design History, Drawing I-II, Introduction to Design Software, Design I, Graphic Design II/Typography, and Graphic Design III/Presentation. The Art BFA/Graphic Design Program requires 124 credit hours, with 89 credit hours in the major area of study. Students in this program have ample opportunities to develop additional skills in multiple areas through 20 required credit hours in Art and Design courses. Examples include Bookmaking, Printmaking, Motion Graphics, Experimental Photography, and Figure Drawing.

In the Major, students will take courses such as History of Art I-II, Interactive Design I-II, Graphic Communication, Graphic Design I-III, Illustration, and Introduction to Design Software. An optional Internship is part of the program as well as the Graphic Communication Project (Capstone) and Graphic Design Portfolio course completed over two semesters. The Capstone Project will be presented to the public at the end of the program.

Graduates of the Graphic Design Programs at University of Southern Mississippi are prepared to pursue positions such as Graphic Designer, Brand Identity Designer, Photo Editing Artist, Logo Designer, Advertising Designer, User Interface (UI) Designer, Packaging Designer, Creative Director, Layout Artist, User Experience (UX) Designer, Exhibit Designer, Book Designer, Multimedia Artist, and Publications Designer.

University of Southern Mississippi was founded in March 10, 1910 as the Mississippi Normal College. The school serves approximately 13,525 students enrolled in more than 100 programs across 30+ colleges, departments, and schools. University of Southern Mississippi is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and the National Association of Schools of Art & Design (NASAD).

3. University of Mississippi, Oxford, Mississippi
University of Mississippi

The College of Liberal Arts at University of Mississippi (Ole Miss or UM) houses the Art and Art History Department, which has two paths to study Graphic Design. The Art BFA with a Concentration in Expanded Media Arts has a Graphic Design Emphasis. Art BFA students may also enroll in the Graphic Design Emphasis, without the Expanded Media Arts Concentration. For both options, the Graphic Design Emphasis is the same.

Graphic Design students will take courses such as History of Graphic Design, Advanced Graphic Design and Illustration, Graphic Design I: Typography, Vector Imaging, Letterpress, Graphic Design II: Production Design, Advanced Typography, Graphic Design III: Package Design, History of Graphic Design, Web Design I-II, and Exhibition Design. Expanded Media Arts students will also take Book Arts, Printmaking, Imaging Arts, and Alternative Photographic Processes.

The Art BFA/Graphic Design Program at University of Mississippi culminates with Art 491: Thesis, which requires the design and fabrication of a cohesive body of artwork presented through a professional quality exhibition.

Graduates are prepared for careers such as Graphic Designer, Packaging Designer, Book Artist or Designer, Brand Identity Designer, Logo Designer, Advertising Designer, User Interface (UI) Designer, Layout Artist, Publications Designer, Art Director, User Experience (UX) Designer, Web Designer, and Exhibit Designer.

University of Mississippi was chartered on February 24, 1844. The the school opened on November 6, 1848 as the state’s flagship university with a liberal arts curriculum, four faculty members, and 80 students. Today, Ole Miss serves approximately 19,870 students enrolled in hundreds of programs across 16 colleges and schools. University of Mississippi is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).