Department of Art and Design Patti & Rusty Rueff School of Visual and Performing Arts

Course Descriptions

The Visual Communications Design curriculum is comprised of fundamental and innovative selections of Visual Communications Design topics. The primary courses in Visual Communications Design are taught by designers and scholars who are experts in their respective art and design fields, as well by design practitioners. The faculty provides students with a broad range of mentoring and learning experiences. Below is our primary curriculum. For a listing of courses required to complete the major, check the undergraduate and graduate programs of study. 

AD 20500 - Design III

Problems in two- and three-dimensional design, utilizing a variety of tools, materials, and processes.  Study is made of the interaction between designer and society, involving concepts in art, psychology, technology, anthropology, and history. Typically offered Fall. Credit Hours: 3.00.

AD 20600 - Studio in Visual Communications Design

Investigation of visual communications design theory, history, skills and methodology, as well as preparation of art and mechanicals for graphic arts reproduction. Typically offered Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.

AD 22800 - Visual Communications Design Computing I

An introductory course in visual design computing programs used in the study and production of Visual Communications Design. Typically offered Fall. Credit Hours: 3.00.

AD 22900 - Visual Communications Design Computing II

An intermediate course in visual design computing programs used in the study and production of Visual Communications Design. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.

AD 31800 - Fundamentals of Interactive Multimedia Design

Fundamental issues of interactive multimedia design: Animation, interface design, and experience design from a visual communications perspective. Typically offered Fall. Credit Hours: 3.00. 

AD 31900 - Web Design for Visual Communications

Introduction to web-based design from a visual communications application. Typically offered Spring. Credit Hours 3.00.  

AD 33200 - Visual Communications Design I

A course designed to introduce the student to projects that will develop an understanding of basic problem-solving techniques in the areas of publication and promotional graphics. Acceptance into professional VCD sequence via mandatory portfolio review required. Typically offered Fall. Credit Hours 3.00.  

AD 36600 - Visual Communications Design II

The study of corporate graphics and visual identity programs. Field trips may be required. Typically offered Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.

AD 43100 - Visual Communications Design III

The advanced study of communication concepts of poster and poster application in current media. Typically offered Fall. Credit Hours: 3.00.  

AD 43200 - Visual Communications Design IV

The study of product identity, packaging and branding. Typically offered Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00. 

AD 43400 - Professional Practice for Visual Communications Design

Specific professional practice topics for the visual communications designer. Subjects range from contracts, professional associations, ethics to portfolio and resume preparation, the job market and the future of the profession. Field trips may be required. Typically offered Spring. Credit Hours: 2.00.  

AD 52000 - Student Visual Design Service

The course will simulate the operation of a professional design studio affording the opportunity for hands-on experience in the development of a total graphic product from concept to finish and will include contact with clients, typesetters, and printers. Permission of instructor required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours 2.00.   

AD 60600 - Problems in Visual Design

Problems relating to printing technology, videotape, film design, computer graphics, perception, and the development of visual communcations prototypes. Typically offered Fall, Spring, Summer. Credit Hours: 3.00.  

AD 60800 - Advanced Typography

Explores the communicative and structural aspects of traditional and nontraditional typography, its current and past practitioners, and its evolving presence in the computer age. Independent research and group projects will supplement lectures, assigned readings, and field trips.  Prerequisite: Admission to the MFA program in Art and Design. Permission of department required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.  

AD 60900 - Information Design

This course aims to teach specific principles and methods pertaining to information design, an emerging discipline within visual communication design (graphic design) involving the selection, organization, and presentation of information to a given audience, covering a wide and varied group of delivery mediums. Prerequisites: Admission to the MFA program in Art and Design.  Permission of department required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00  

AD 61000 - Advanced Poster Design

Specific principles and methods pertaining to poster design. Explores the historical and social implications of poster design. Practical and theoretical exercise will aid students in creative thinking and concept generation. Prerequisite: Admission to the MFA program in Art and Design.  Permission of department required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.  

AD 61100 - Advanced Web Design for Visual Communications Design

Explores experimental interface design issues and surveys emerging and advanced theories of interface design for the Web. Appliciation of motion graphics design principles and design experimentation is a part of the curriculum. Prerequisite: Admission to the MFA program in Art and Design. Permission of department required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.  

AD 61200 - Color Aesthetic and Research

Explores color aesthetic based on the works of color masters (e.g. Albers, Itten, Chevreul, Birren, Munsell, and Ostwald) and contemporary color research issues applied to art and design. Color research methodology will be addressed. Prerequisite: Admission to the MFA program in Art and Design. Permission of department required. Typically offered Fall, Spring. Credit Hours: 3.00.


Internship Classes

AD 23400 – Art and Design Internship Preparation

Introduction and preparation for Art & Design Internship experience. Students will develop a resume, cover letter, and other resources in their search for a suitable internship placement. Typically offered Fall, Spring, Summer. Credit Hour: 1.00.   

AD 67800 - Graduate Internship

Intensive exposure to professional experience through supervised internship in art or design firms, departments, or studios. The internship will consist of work to enhance the development of future professionals. The internship experience will help students integrate theory and practice and confirm career choices. Prerequisite: Admission to the M.F.A. program in Art and Design. Permission of instructor required. Typically offered Fall, Spring, Summer. Credit Hour: 1.00 to 6.00.   


Cross-Disciplinary Learning

All Visual and Performing Arts students are encouraged to take advantage of courses outside of their specific major, to enrich their creative experiences at Purdue. You can explore course options by viewing this comprehensive course list in Art and Design. Also, visit the Theatre DepartmentDance, and Music Divisions for their course offerings.

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The Patti and Rueff School of Visual and Performing Arts is conveniently located at Pao Hall, which serves as an artistic hub for students across campus and specifically all visual and performing arts divisions and departments. Purdue students have the unique opportunity to develop collaborative relationships with other creative disciplines, students, and faculty members inside a single creative arts facility equipped with art galleries, theatres, art and design studios, and classrooms. 

CURRENT STUDENTS: Please refer to the Course Catalog or Schedule of Classes on My Purdue for updates, registration restrictions, prerequisite, co-requisite, and special fee information.

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Program Summary

Undergraduate Plan of Study

Graduate Plan of Study

Purdue Admissions Website

AD Graduate Admissions

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DEPARTMENT OF ART & DESIGN

Pao Hall of Visual and Performing Arts
Purdue University
552 W. Wood Street
West Lafayette, IN 47907
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Phone: (765) 494.8662
Fax: (765) 496.2076

AD Info: ADinfo@purdue.edu
AD Director of Graduate Studies adgraddirector@purdue.edu


COLLEGE OF LIBERAL ARTS
Academic Advising
Advisors Directory
(765) 494.3670
(765) 496.1910 (FAX)

RECRUITMENT OFFICE
Undergraduate students
newstudent@purdue.edu
(765)494-6291

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The Visual Communications program at Purdue University is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

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"Being ranked in the top 100 reaffirms that a Purdue degree represents a world-class educational experience."

Victor Lechtenberg
Purdue's Acting Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost

Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN 47907 (765) 494-4600

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