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Graphic DesignMajor

Our immersive art experience combines a small studio environment with the resources of a major research university. You’ll get the skills, theory and aesthetic practice you’ll need for a career in the ever-evolving field of graphic design.

By the numbers30

Clients served annually by Studio 2453, a student-run model design studio.


What is Graphic Design at WVU like?


Our program aims to capture one definition of design: improvement of a situation, be it for health, efficiency, user experience, aesthetics or entertainment. Our design studio approaches problems by researching on-site to understand the environment and culture for which we are designing.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design begins with learning a foundation in typography, color, symbolic drawings, design for small and large formats and design thinking. Tactical elements of design are explored hands-on through paper engineering, book arts courses and access to a letterpress studio.

All interested students must apply to the University and submit a portfolio for the School of Art and Design for acceptance.

Graphic Design program highlights:

At a Glance

Next Steps

Interested in this major? Here are some suggested next steps:

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Fast Facts

What makes Graphic Design at WVU unique?

Research and Academic Opportunities

The program’s reputation and quality faculty open up many doors for our students to continue learning through top graduate programs and internships, or to launch directly into studio work.

Academic opportunities include:

  • Fully-equipped design studios for realizing 2-D, 3-D, digital and multimedia projects
  • Fully-equipped art studios for printmaking, sculpture, ceramics, photography, painting and foundations classes
  • Advanced digital technology, including 3-D printing
  • Letterpress equipment
  • Access to the GramLee Collection, a collection of historical print blocks
  • Design studio projects, such as developing a branding system for Tucker County

Living-Learning Communities (LLCs)

Live, study and pursue outside-the-classroom learning in a residence hall community that shares your interests:

Transfer Articulation Agreements

To simplify the transfer process, we have formal agreements with certain institutions. These agreements outline the courses you should take to prepare for transferring to WVU. Review the full list of transfer articulation agreements to see if your institution is listed.

Professional Organizations

Network with professionals in your field as a student member of:


How does this degree prepare students for a career?

Graduates go on to portfolio careers, private studios, artist residencies/internships and graduate school for the MFA in Graphic Design.

Our alumni live and work in most major U.S. cities and abroad. They have careers at the headquarters of Coca-Cola; at the helm of NBC’s entertainment division in Burbank, California; in major packaging firms; designing the web interests of the New York Times; creating multimedia for large corporations in D.C.; and designing for social concerns in the national offices of Big Brothers/Big Sisters and for numerous environmental groups.

Possible Careers

Wondering what you can do with a degree from WVU's Graphic Design major? Check out these ideas from WVU Career Services and the Occupational Information Network (O*NET). A median salary is the midpoint of what people typically earn—half of those surveyed earned above the median salary, and half earned below.

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.


Graduates from this major have gone to work at:


What are the courses like in Graphic Design at WVU?

Plan of Study

Check out a program overview, learning goals, course descriptions and suggested plan of study for WVU's Graphic Design major.

View the Plan of Study

Popular Courses

ART 111:
Drawing 1

The course emphasizes fundamental principles of drawing with a focus on building basic skills through direct observation, using traditional graphic media and expression.

ART 112:
Drawing 2

The course emphasizes fundamental principles of drawing with a focus on more expressive approaches to basic problems. Greater emphasis is placed on abstraction and non-traditional drawing processes and media.

ART 121:
Visual Foundations 1

The course provides an introduction to the fundamental principles and concepts of two-dimensional image making with an emphasis on color theory and design. Through creative assignments students develop abilities and visual awareness emphasizing the basics of color perception, form, proportion and rhythm.

ART 122:
Visual Foundations 2

The course incorporates projects involving abstract and representational ideas in three dimensions and investigates the basic concepts of line, plane, volume, form, mass, texture, composition and time.

ART 223:
Introduction to Graphic Design

The course emphasizes the application of traditional and technological skills emphasizing color, composition, symbolic drawing, and typography fundamental to the field of graphic design.

ART 224:
Graphic Design 2

This course emphasizes typography, sequential projects and complex compositions, and includes preparation as well as review of upper-level entrance portfolios.

ART 323:
Graphic Design 3

Varied hypothetical projects give students a methodology for solving applied design projects in a range of formats. This class will deal with a combination of computer graphics, book arts, publication design and multi-media projects. Portfolio review. (May be repeated for credit.)

ART 324:
Graphic Design 4

Senior graphic design studio includes a model studio with real projects, most of which are produced and printed. Emphasis is on developing professional skills in design and design management. (May be repeated for credit.)

Cost and Aid

How much does Graphic Design at WVU cost? And how can you save?

Tuition and Fees

Estimated rates for the 2021-22 academic year. Rates are subject to change. Anyone that is not a current West Virginia resident will be charged non-resident rates. That includes international students.

West Virginia Resident
Per Credit $421
Per Semester $5,052
Fall and Spring Semesters $10,104
Per Credit $1,134
Per Semester $13,608
Fall and Spring Semesters $27,216
Per Credit $1,134
Per Semester $13,908
Fall and Spring Semesters $27,816
Scholarship Chart

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Net Price Calculator

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Ways to Save

Here are a few ways for you to save on the cost of attending WVU in addition to university scholarships.

Ohio Tuition Reciprocity

As the result of a special agreement, students from Ohio who are fully admitted to Graphic Design can enroll at WVU and pay in-state tuition rates. Students must be admitted to both the University and this major.

Learn More

Transfer Articulation Agreements

To simplify the transfer process, we have formal agreements with certain institutions. These agreements outline the courses you should take to prepare for transferring to WVU.

Review the full list of transfer articulation agreements to see if your institution is listed.

Learn How to Transfer Course Credits


What are the requirements to apply for Graphic Design at WVU?

To be admitted to WVU's Graphic Design major, you must meet WVU's first-time freshman admission requirements for the 2022-23 academic year. Interested in transferring? Review the transfer admission requirements.

Next Steps

I like this major. What are the next steps?

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Your first step to becoming a Mountaineer is applying for admission. Our online application makes the process as convenient as possible.

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Request Information

Want to know more about Graphic Design at WVU? Fill out the Request Information form to receive more information about the program and life at WVU.

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