Bachelor of Arts Degree in Design

Curriculum

The following are the required courses for this major. Students meet with the Education Department to provide personalized academic counseling. Transfer credits, changes in curriculum, and other factors may affect the academic plan for individual students. The FIDM Education Department can provide additional information.

Click on the green tab to see curriculum for each degree. Click on a course title to expand and read the course description.

Prerequisites:

The Bachelor of Arts in Design program is open to student who have earned an Associate of Arts degree from FIDM in one of the following majors: Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Textile Design, Visual Communications.

Curriculum Options for Bachelor of Arts in Design

BDSN 3100
Advanced Practices in Color, Design & 3-D Form
UNITS: 6
This course is designed to explore the relationship between color and three-dimensional form. Students explore how an object changes when color and pattern is applied to three-dimensional forms and space. Through the formal principles and elements of design students increase sensitivity to the application of color. This course includes both collaborative and individual explorations.
BDSN 3200
Structural Drawing*
UNITS: 3
Students refine their abilities to create convincing volumetric images through perspective, matrix analysis, cross-contour, light, and shadow. They explore the application of structural drawing to their respective design disciplines and individual styles. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3400
Drawing the Figure in Context
UNITS: 6
This course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human figure as essential to developing a naturalistic approach to rendering the human form. The use of live models reinforces students’ understanding of the anatomical structure of the human body. Formal elements such as line, gesture, volume, proportion, and perspective are emphasized. Prerequisite: BDSN 3200
BDSN 3500
Human Dynamics*
UNITS: 3
Students consider the physical and physiological link between design and the human body, individually and in shared environments. They analyze possible design alternatives to a variety of products in terms of function, comfort, movement, and social impact. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3600
Creative Design Strategies
UNITS: 3
Working collaboratively, students approach design problems as opportunities for creativity and innovation, drawing upon analysis, research, experimentation, and concept development, to achieve design solutions. Using divergent and convergent thinking, students develop a variety of results that target specific markets and resolve specific design challenges.
BDSN 3700
Digital Photographic Image
UNITS: 3
This course focuses on students’ ability to express their point of view creatively through photography. Students learn to “see” photographically by exploring the basic tools, techniques, and aesthetics of digital photography, with special attention to lighting, focus, color, contrast, formal effects, and intent.
BDSN 3850
Theory & Context of Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students formulate a personal creative research project relevant to their area of specialization, culminating in a written thesis proposal that they approach through various contexts in their senior year studio courses. Emphasis is on careful documentation of content, reference and source materials, and design research.
BDSN 4100
Visual Identity & Image
UNITS: 3
This multimedia course builds on prior drawing courses while focusing on the elements of image-making as communication. Students continue the development of drawing styles in both black and white and color, by hand and with the use of digital media. Techniques are applied to a variety of subjects as students explore the relationship between form and content. Prerequisites: BDSN 3200, BDSN 3400
BDSN 4250F
The Studio I – Fashion Apparel
UNITS: 6
This is the first of a three quarter sequence in which the students focus on conceptualizing a collection of work and synthesizing the research compiled in Theory & Context of Design. In this phase students use an existing business model as a base to explore, identifying market and customer profiles to develop product parameters. (Fashion Design majors only).
BDSN 4500F
The Studio II – Fashion Apparel
UNITS: 6
Course two in the Studio series considers the designer's influence in society. The students redefine and conceptualize the research they compiled in BDSN 3850 Theory & Context of Design into a new collection of work from the perspectives of contemporary societal issues, social needs, and civic and social responsibility. (Fashion Design majors only).
BDSN 4750F
The Studio III – Fashion Apparel
UNITS: 6
The final studio course in this sequence is dedicated to the pursuit of individual expression of the design thesis. Expanding on previous studio courses, students synthesize design knowledge and skills to create a collection of work with a sharp design focus. Students are expected to demonstrate sophisticated design decisions and thoughtful design solutions that exemplify a high level of expertise and achievement. (Fashion Design majors only).
BDSN 4950
Design Thesis Presentation
UNITS: 3
This capstone course is the culmination of personal and industry-centered creative work, beginning in the prior studio courses and resulting, in this course, in the creation of an e-portfolio. A written thesis statement defines this body of work with an emphasis on problem solving, critical thinking, and clear communication skills applied to the student’s chosen field of exploration. An emphasis is placed on professionalism in presentation and documentation. Prerequisites: BDSN 3850, BDSN 4500
BUMT 3100
Ethics in Business
UNITS: 3
This course addresses the importance of ethical issues and the financial impact on business performance and ownership. The costs and consequences of failing to act ethically are explored. Students learn strategies to solve real life dilemmas. Students explore the importance of ethics as a dimension of social responsibility and business ethics in the global economy. Prerequisite: BUMT 4840
GNST 1450
College Mathematics
UNITS: 3
An application course focusing on mathematical concepts used in everyday life. Students integrate computation and analysis with authentic learning in graph analysis, Venn diagrams, analytical geometry, statistical measures of central tendency and variation, and financial mathematics. Prerequisites: To register for GNST 1450, students must successfully pass the math placement test or pass GNST 450.
GNST 2470
Principles of Biology
UNITS: 3
This course explores and explains the workings of the human body. Students learn how human anatomy functions to support life, how lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol, and drugs affect the human system, and how disease and aging progress.
GNST 2470L
Principles of Biology Lab
UNITS: 1
This introduction to laboratory investigations in biology is a one-unit course stressing processes common to living organisms. It helps students understand the concepts of scientific thinking and their connection to their lives. Students conduct online activities that simulate in-lab investigations and real-life events. Topics include organic molecules, cell transport systems, photosynthesis, evolution, classification and identification, plant physiology, and ecology.
GNST 2630
Principles of Chemistry
UNITS: 3
Students study the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications. The relationships between atomic particles and their effect on bonding, chemical reactions, and matter are explored.
GNST 3000
World Political History
UNITS: 3
This global survey traces the quest for independence and prosperity on the part of emerging economies around the world after WWII. The course examines the varying fortunes of countries as they encountered the crucial questions of political organization, state control, and personal freedom from 1945 to the present. It also examines the issue of environmental sustainability in the face of pressures posed by population, industrialization, and consumerism.
GNST 3150
Research on Topics of Design History
UNITS: 3
An in-depth exploration into the major design movements of the 20th and 21st centuries focusing on the importance of research and writing on topics of the applied arts. Emphasis is placed on contextualizing design movements and the designers within their historical framework and the changes in society they have inspired. Conversations consider the effects of form and function, technology, identity, corporate branding, globalization, and visual communication on the development of design and how it has shaped our environment.
GNST 3400
Social Psychology
UNITS: 3
A course that examines social psychology and how the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of individuals are created and modified by the social and cultural conditions in which they live. Issues of social influence, cooperation and conflict, conformity, perception, change, and leadership are explored.
GNST 3450
Applied Mathematics
UNITS: 3
Students working in teams use mathematical reasoning to draw conclusions, solve problems, and make decisions in real-world contexts. Emphasis is on topics relating directly to careers in design and business management: geometry, statistical data analysis and interpretation (including graphs and charts), proportion equations, and financial math.
GNST 3600
Future Trends in Society
UNITS: 3
This course examines current demographic trends, shifts in technology, communications, economic landscape, and the rise of new cultural sociological expectations in anticipation of changing cultural values and practices. Evaluating these shifts and trends, students identify future social practices that will impact their lives and careers. Prerequisite: GNST 3400
GNST 3700
Multicultural Perspectives Through the Short Story
UNITS: 3
This course explores the co-existence, integration, and assimilation of cultural values through the literary vehicle of the short story. Diversities such as race, ethnicity, class, family, gender, disability, religion, and language are investigated. The course will culminate with students authoring a personal short story that articulates their own value system.
GNST 3750
Mapping Your World: Introduction to Global Production
UNITS: 3
This geographical survey of the world’s major regions covers population distribution, natural resources, and relationships between different regions in reference to trade and environment, with a focus on current geo-political issues.
GNST 3800
Icons of Culture: The Context of Meaning
UNITS: 3
Students explore universal design concepts underlying the applied arts, the decorative arts, and architecture/architectural form. Using the language of aesthetic analysis, they relate formal elements of color and structure, pattern and motif, and icon and symbol to the origins, development, and diffusion of a wide range of designed objects from many cultures and historical periods. In the process, they gain insight into the durability, adaptability, and resonance of concepts and images that have achieved iconic status in the world of design.
GNST 3900
Issues in Contemporary Society
UNITS: 3
A General Studies capstone course addressing current issues in social diversity, globalization, business ethics, and civic responsibility. Students combine critical analysis, scientific inquiry, and technological skill to research and prepare a clear written and oral presentation on a challenging, advanced question of their own choosing. Prerequisites: GNST 3050, GNST 3500
Total Units of Credit: 91
BDSN 3100
Advanced Practices in Color, Design & 3-D Form
UNITS: 6
This course is designed to explore the relationship between color and three-dimensional form. Students explore how an object changes when color and pattern is applied to three-dimensional forms and space. Through the formal principles and elements of design students increase sensitivity to the application of color. This course includes both collaborative and individual explorations.
BDSN 3200
Structural Drawing*
UNITS: 3
Students refine their abilities to create convincing volumetric images through perspective, matrix analysis, cross-contour, light, and shadow. They explore the application of structural drawing to their respective design disciplines and individual styles. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3400
Drawing the Figure in Context
UNITS: 6
This course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human figure as essential to developing a naturalistic approach to rendering the human form. The use of live models reinforces students’ understanding of the anatomical structure of the human body. Formal elements such as line, gesture, volume, proportion, and perspective are emphasized. Prerequisite: BDSN 3200
BDSN 3500
Human Dynamics*
UNITS: 3
Students consider the physical and physiological link between design and the human body, individually and in shared environments. They analyze possible design alternatives to a variety of products in terms of function, comfort, movement, and social impact. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3600
Creative Design Strategies
UNITS: 3
Working collaboratively, students approach design problems as opportunities for creativity and innovation, drawing upon analysis, research, experimentation, and concept development, to achieve design solutions. Using divergent and convergent thinking, students develop a variety of results that target specific markets and resolve specific design challenges.
BDSN 3700
Digital Photographic Image
UNITS: 3
This course focuses on students’ ability to express their point of view creatively through photography. Students learn to “see” photographically by exploring the basic tools, techniques, and aesthetics of digital photography, with special attention to lighting, focus, color, contrast, formal effects, and intent.
BDSN 3850
Theory & Context of Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students formulate a personal creative research project relevant to their area of specialization, culminating in a written thesis proposal that they approach through various contexts in their senior year studio courses. Emphasis is on careful documentation of content, reference and source materials, and design research.
BDSN 4100
Visual Identity & Image
UNITS: 3
This multimedia course builds on prior drawing courses while focusing on the elements of image-making as communication. Students continue the development of drawing styles in both black and white and color, by hand and with the use of digital media. Techniques are applied to a variety of subjects as students explore the relationship between form and content. Prerequisites: BDSN 3200, BDSN 3400
BDSN 4250D
The Studio I – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
This is the first of a three quarter sequence in which the students focus on conceptualizing a collection of work and synthesizing the research compiled in Theory & Context of Design. In this phase students use an existing business model as a base to explore, identifying market and customer profiles to develop product parameters. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only)
BDSN 4500D
The Studio II – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
Course two in the Studio series considers the designer's influence in society. The students redefine and conceptualize the research they compiled in BDSN 3850 Theory & Context of Design into a new collection of work from the perspectives of contemporary societal issues, social needs, and civic and social responsibility. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only).
BDSN 4750D
The Studio III – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
The final studio course in this sequence is dedicated to the pursuit of individual expression of the design thesis. Expanding on previous studio courses, students synthesize design knowledge and skills to create a collection of work with a sharp design focus. Students are expected to demonstrate sophisticated design decisions and thoughtful design solutions that exemplify a high level of expertise and achievement. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only).
BDSN 4950
Design Thesis Presentation
UNITS: 3
This capstone course is the culmination of personal and industry-centered creative work, beginning in the prior studio courses and resulting, in this course, in the creation of an e-portfolio. A written thesis statement defines this body of work with an emphasis on problem solving, critical thinking, and clear communication skills applied to the student’s chosen field of exploration. An emphasis is placed on professionalism in presentation and documentation. Prerequisites: BDSN 3850, BDSN 4500
BUMT 3100
Ethics in Business
UNITS: 3
This course addresses the importance of ethical issues and the financial impact on business performance and ownership. The costs and consequences of failing to act ethically are explored. Students learn strategies to solve real life dilemmas. Students explore the importance of ethics as a dimension of social responsibility and business ethics in the global economy. Prerequisite: BUMT 4840
GNST 1450
College Mathematics
UNITS: 3
An application course focusing on mathematical concepts used in everyday life. Students integrate computation and analysis with authentic learning in graph analysis, Venn diagrams, analytical geometry, statistical measures of central tendency and variation, and financial mathematics. Prerequisites: To register for GNST 1450, students must successfully pass the math placement test or pass GNST 450.
GNST 2470
Principles of Biology
UNITS: 3
This course explores and explains the workings of the human body. Students learn how human anatomy functions to support life, how lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol, and drugs affect the human system, and how disease and aging progress.
GNST 2470L
Principles of Biology Lab
UNITS: 1
This introduction to laboratory investigations in biology is a one-unit course stressing processes common to living organisms. It helps students understand the concepts of scientific thinking and their connection to their lives. Students conduct online activities that simulate in-lab investigations and real-life events. Topics include organic molecules, cell transport systems, photosynthesis, evolution, classification and identification, plant physiology, and ecology.
GNST 2630
Principles of Chemistry
UNITS: 3
Students study the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications. The relationships between atomic particles and their effect on bonding, chemical reactions, and matter are explored.
GNST 3000
World Political History
UNITS: 3
This global survey traces the quest for independence and prosperity on the part of emerging economies around the world after WWII. The course examines the varying fortunes of countries as they encountered the crucial questions of political organization, state control, and personal freedom from 1945 to the present. It also examines the issue of environmental sustainability in the face of pressures posed by population, industrialization, and consumerism.
GNST 3150
Research on Topics of Design History
UNITS: 3
An in-depth exploration into the major design movements of the 20th and 21st centuries focusing on the importance of research and writing on topics of the applied arts. Emphasis is placed on contextualizing design movements and the designers within their historical framework and the changes in society they have inspired. Conversations consider the effects of form and function, technology, identity, corporate branding, globalization, and visual communication on the development of design and how it has shaped our environment.
GNST 3400
Social Psychology
UNITS: 3
A course that examines social psychology and how the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of individuals are created and modified by the social and cultural conditions in which they live. Issues of social influence, cooperation and conflict, conformity, perception, change, and leadership are explored.
GNST 3450
Applied Mathematics
UNITS: 3
Students working in teams use mathematical reasoning to draw conclusions, solve problems, and make decisions in real-world contexts. Emphasis is on topics relating directly to careers in design and business management: geometry, statistical data analysis and interpretation (including graphs and charts), proportion equations, and financial math.
GNST 3600
Future Trends in Society
UNITS: 3
This course examines current demographic trends, shifts in technology, communications, economic landscape, and the rise of new cultural sociological expectations in anticipation of changing cultural values and practices. Evaluating these shifts and trends, students identify future social practices that will impact their lives and careers. Prerequisite: GNST 3400
GNST 3700
Multicultural Perspectives Through the Short Story
UNITS: 3
This course explores the co-existence, integration, and assimilation of cultural values through the literary vehicle of the short story. Diversities such as race, ethnicity, class, family, gender, disability, religion, and language are investigated. The course will culminate with students authoring a personal short story that articulates their own value system.
GNST 3750
Mapping Your World: Introduction to Global Production
UNITS: 3
This geographical survey of the world’s major regions covers population distribution, natural resources, and relationships between different regions in reference to trade and environment, with a focus on current geo-political issues.
GNST 3800
Icons of Culture: The Context of Meaning
UNITS: 3
Students explore universal design concepts underlying the applied arts, the decorative arts, and architecture/architectural form. Using the language of aesthetic analysis, they relate formal elements of color and structure, pattern and motif, and icon and symbol to the origins, development, and diffusion of a wide range of designed objects from many cultures and historical periods. In the process, they gain insight into the durability, adaptability, and resonance of concepts and images that have achieved iconic status in the world of design.
GNST 3900
Issues in Contemporary Society
UNITS: 3
A General Studies capstone course addressing current issues in social diversity, globalization, business ethics, and civic responsibility. Students combine critical analysis, scientific inquiry, and technological skill to research and prepare a clear written and oral presentation on a challenging, advanced question of their own choosing. Prerequisites: GNST 3050, GNST 3500
Total Units of Credit: 91
BDSN 3100
Advanced Practices in Color, Design & 3-D Form
UNITS: 6
This course is designed to explore the relationship between color and three-dimensional form. Students explore how an object changes when color and pattern is applied to three-dimensional forms and space. Through the formal principles and elements of design students increase sensitivity to the application of color. This course includes both collaborative and individual explorations.
BDSN 3200
Structural Drawing*
UNITS: 3
Students refine their abilities to create convincing volumetric images through perspective, matrix analysis, cross-contour, light, and shadow. They explore the application of structural drawing to their respective design disciplines and individual styles. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3400
Drawing the Figure in Context
UNITS: 6
This course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human figure as essential to developing a naturalistic approach to rendering the human form. The use of live models reinforces students’ understanding of the anatomical structure of the human body. Formal elements such as line, gesture, volume, proportion, and perspective are emphasized. Prerequisite: BDSN 3200
BDSN 3500
Human Dynamics*
UNITS: 3
Students consider the physical and physiological link between design and the human body, individually and in shared environments. They analyze possible design alternatives to a variety of products in terms of function, comfort, movement, and social impact. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3600
Creative Design Strategies
UNITS: 3
Working collaboratively, students approach design problems as opportunities for creativity and innovation, drawing upon analysis, research, experimentation, and concept development, to achieve design solutions. Using divergent and convergent thinking, students develop a variety of results that target specific markets and resolve specific design challenges.
BDSN 3700
Digital Photographic Image
UNITS: 3
This course focuses on students’ ability to express their point of view creatively through photography. Students learn to “see” photographically by exploring the basic tools, techniques, and aesthetics of digital photography, with special attention to lighting, focus, color, contrast, formal effects, and intent.
BDSN 3850
Theory & Context of Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students formulate a personal creative research project relevant to their area of specialization, culminating in a written thesis proposal that they approach through various contexts in their senior year studio courses. Emphasis is on careful documentation of content, reference and source materials, and design research.
BDSN 4100
Visual Identity & Image
UNITS: 3
This multimedia course builds on prior drawing courses while focusing on the elements of image-making as communication. Students continue the development of drawing styles in both black and white and color, by hand and with the use of digital media. Techniques are applied to a variety of subjects as students explore the relationship between form and content. Prerequisites: BDSN 3200, BDSN 3400
BDSN 4250E
The Studio I – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
This is the first of a three quarter sequence in which the students focus on conceptualizing a collection of work and synthesizing the research compiled in Theory & Context of Design. In this phase students use an existing business model as a base to explore, identifying market and customer profiles to develop product parameters. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only).
BDSN 4500E
The Studio II – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
Course two in the Studio series considers the designer's influence in society. The students redefine and conceptualize the research they compiled in BDSN 3850 Theory & Context of Design into a new collection of work from the perspectives of contemporary societal issues, social needs, and civic and social responsibility. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only)
BDSN 4750E
The Studio III – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
The final studio course in this sequence is dedicated to the pursuit of individual expression of the design thesis. Expanding on previous studio courses, students synthesize design knowledge and skills to create a collection of work with a sharp design focus. Students are expected to demonstrate sophisticated design decisions and thoughtful design solutions that exemplify a high level of expertise and achievement. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only).
BDSN 4950
Design Thesis Presentation
UNITS: 3
This capstone course is the culmination of personal and industry-centered creative work, beginning in the prior studio courses and resulting, in this course, in the creation of an e-portfolio. A written thesis statement defines this body of work with an emphasis on problem solving, critical thinking, and clear communication skills applied to the student’s chosen field of exploration. An emphasis is placed on professionalism in presentation and documentation. Prerequisites: BDSN 3850, BDSN 4500
BUMT 3100
Ethics in Business
UNITS: 3
This course addresses the importance of ethical issues and the financial impact on business performance and ownership. The costs and consequences of failing to act ethically are explored. Students learn strategies to solve real life dilemmas. Students explore the importance of ethics as a dimension of social responsibility and business ethics in the global economy. Prerequisite: BUMT 4840
GNST 2470
Principles of Biology
UNITS: 3
This course explores and explains the workings of the human body. Students learn how human anatomy functions to support life, how lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol, and drugs affect the human system, and how disease and aging progress.
GNST 2470L
Principles of Biology Lab
UNITS: 1
This introduction to laboratory investigations in biology is a one-unit course stressing processes common to living organisms. It helps students understand the concepts of scientific thinking and their connection to their lives. Students conduct online activities that simulate in-lab investigations and real-life events. Topics include organic molecules, cell transport systems, photosynthesis, evolution, classification and identification, plant physiology, and ecology.
GNST 2630
Principles of Chemistry
UNITS: 3
Students study the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications. The relationships between atomic particles and their effect on bonding, chemical reactions, and matter are explored.
GNST 2750
Seminar in the Arts
UNITS: 3
A survey of the arts from a variety of origins, both classical and contemporary, with a particular emphasis on a diversity of fine, performing, and applied art forms. Students attend events that explore the following: pictures, sculpture, music, theatre, cinema, dance, architecture, and literature. Students gain an understanding of the different roles associated with these various art forms and critique these art forms through discussion, oral presentations, and essays, integrating their perceptions into their final projects.
GNST 3000
World Political History
UNITS: 3
This global survey traces the quest for independence and prosperity on the part of emerging economies around the world after WWII. The course examines the varying fortunes of countries as they encountered the crucial questions of political organization, state control, and personal freedom from 1945 to the present. It also examines the issue of environmental sustainability in the face of pressures posed by population, industrialization, and consumerism.
GNST 3150
Research on Topics of Design History
UNITS: 3
An in-depth exploration into the major design movements of the 20th and 21st centuries focusing on the importance of research and writing on topics of the applied arts. Emphasis is placed on contextualizing design movements and the designers within their historical framework and the changes in society they have inspired. Conversations consider the effects of form and function, technology, identity, corporate branding, globalization, and visual communication on the development of design and how it has shaped our environment.
GNST 3400
Social Psychology
UNITS: 3
A course that examines social psychology and how the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of individuals are created and modified by the social and cultural conditions in which they live. Issues of social influence, cooperation and conflict, conformity, perception, change, and leadership are explored.
GNST 3450
Applied Mathematics
UNITS: 3
Students working in teams use mathematical reasoning to draw conclusions, solve problems, and make decisions in real-world contexts. Emphasis is on topics relating directly to careers in design and business management: geometry, statistical data analysis and interpretation (including graphs and charts), proportion equations, and financial math.
GNST 3600
Future Trends in Society
UNITS: 3
This course examines current demographic trends, shifts in technology, communications, economic landscape, and the rise of new cultural sociological expectations in anticipation of changing cultural values and practices. Evaluating these shifts and trends, students identify future social practices that will impact their lives and careers. Prerequisite: GNST 3400
GNST 3700
Multicultural Perspectives Through the Short Story
UNITS: 3
This course explores the co-existence, integration, and assimilation of cultural values through the literary vehicle of the short story. Diversities such as race, ethnicity, class, family, gender, disability, religion, and language are investigated. The course will culminate with students authoring a personal short story that articulates their own value system.
GNST 3750
Mapping Your World: Introduction to Global Production
UNITS: 3
This geographical survey of the world’s major regions covers population distribution, natural resources, and relationships between different regions in reference to trade and environment, with a focus on current geo-political issues.
GNST 3800
Icons of Culture: The Context of Meaning
UNITS: 3
Students explore universal design concepts underlying the applied arts, the decorative arts, and architecture/architectural form. Using the language of aesthetic analysis, they relate formal elements of color and structure, pattern and motif, and icon and symbol to the origins, development, and diffusion of a wide range of designed objects from many cultures and historical periods. In the process, they gain insight into the durability, adaptability, and resonance of concepts and images that have achieved iconic status in the world of design.
GNST 3900
Issues in Contemporary Society
UNITS: 3
A General Studies capstone course addressing current issues in social diversity, globalization, business ethics, and civic responsibility. Students combine critical analysis, scientific inquiry, and technological skill to research and prepare a clear written and oral presentation on a challenging, advanced question of their own choosing. Prerequisites: GNST 3050, GNST 3500
Total Units of Credit: 91
BDSN 3100
Advanced Practices in Color, Design & 3-D Form
UNITS: 6
This course is designed to explore the relationship between color and three-dimensional form. Students explore how an object changes when color and pattern is applied to three-dimensional forms and space. Through the formal principles and elements of design students increase sensitivity to the application of color. This course includes both collaborative and individual explorations.
BDSN 3200
Structural Drawing*
UNITS: 3
Students refine their abilities to create convincing volumetric images through perspective, matrix analysis, cross-contour, light, and shadow. They explore the application of structural drawing to their respective design disciplines and individual styles. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3400
Drawing the Figure in Context
UNITS: 6
This course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human figure as essential to developing a naturalistic approach to rendering the human form. The use of live models reinforces students’ understanding of the anatomical structure of the human body. Formal elements such as line, gesture, volume, proportion, and perspective are emphasized. Prerequisite: BDSN 3200
BDSN 3500
Human Dynamics*
UNITS: 3
Students consider the physical and physiological link between design and the human body, individually and in shared environments. They analyze possible design alternatives to a variety of products in terms of function, comfort, movement, and social impact. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3600
Creative Design Strategies
UNITS: 3
Working collaboratively, students approach design problems as opportunities for creativity and innovation, drawing upon analysis, research, experimentation, and concept development, to achieve design solutions. Using divergent and convergent thinking, students develop a variety of results that target specific markets and resolve specific design challenges.
BDSN 3700
Digital Photographic Image
UNITS: 3
This course focuses on students’ ability to express their point of view creatively through photography. Students learn to “see” photographically by exploring the basic tools, techniques, and aesthetics of digital photography, with special attention to lighting, focus, color, contrast, formal effects, and intent.
BDSN 3850
Theory & Context of Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students formulate a personal creative research project relevant to their area of specialization, culminating in a written thesis proposal that they approach through various contexts in their senior year studio courses. Emphasis is on careful documentation of content, reference and source materials, and design research.
BDSN 4100
Visual Identity & Image
UNITS: 3
This multimedia course builds on prior drawing courses while focusing on the elements of image-making as communication. Students continue the development of drawing styles in both black and white and color, by hand and with the use of digital media. Techniques are applied to a variety of subjects as students explore the relationship between form and content. Prerequisites: BDSN 3200, BDSN 3400
BDSN 4250D
The Studio I – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
This is the first of a three quarter sequence in which the students focus on conceptualizing a collection of work and synthesizing the research compiled in Theory & Context of Design. In this phase students use an existing business model as a base to explore, identifying market and customer profiles to develop product parameters. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only)
BDSN 4500D
The Studio II – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
Course two in the Studio series considers the designer's influence in society. The students redefine and conceptualize the research they compiled in BDSN 3850 Theory & Context of Design into a new collection of work from the perspectives of contemporary societal issues, social needs, and civic and social responsibility. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only).
BDSN 4750D
The Studio III – Digital Communication
UNITS: 6
The final studio course in this sequence is dedicated to the pursuit of individual expression of the design thesis. Expanding on previous studio courses, students synthesize design knowledge and skills to create a collection of work with a sharp design focus. Students are expected to demonstrate sophisticated design decisions and thoughtful design solutions that exemplify a high level of expertise and achievement. (Graphic Design and Textile Design majors only).
BDSN 4950
Design Thesis Presentation
UNITS: 3
This capstone course is the culmination of personal and industry-centered creative work, beginning in the prior studio courses and resulting, in this course, in the creation of an e-portfolio. A written thesis statement defines this body of work with an emphasis on problem solving, critical thinking, and clear communication skills applied to the student’s chosen field of exploration. An emphasis is placed on professionalism in presentation and documentation. Prerequisites: BDSN 3850, BDSN 4500
BUMT 3100
Ethics in Business
UNITS: 3
This course addresses the importance of ethical issues and the financial impact on business performance and ownership. The costs and consequences of failing to act ethically are explored. Students learn strategies to solve real life dilemmas. Students explore the importance of ethics as a dimension of social responsibility and business ethics in the global economy. Prerequisite: BUMT 4840
GNST 1450
College Mathematics
UNITS: 3
An application course focusing on mathematical concepts used in everyday life. Students integrate computation and analysis with authentic learning in graph analysis, Venn diagrams, analytical geometry, statistical measures of central tendency and variation, and financial mathematics. Prerequisites: To register for GNST 1450, students must successfully pass the math placement test or pass GNST 450.
GNST 2470
Principles of Biology
UNITS: 3
This course explores and explains the workings of the human body. Students learn how human anatomy functions to support life, how lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol, and drugs affect the human system, and how disease and aging progress.
GNST 2470L
Principles of Biology Lab
UNITS: 1
This introduction to laboratory investigations in biology is a one-unit course stressing processes common to living organisms. It helps students understand the concepts of scientific thinking and their connection to their lives. Students conduct online activities that simulate in-lab investigations and real-life events. Topics include organic molecules, cell transport systems, photosynthesis, evolution, classification and identification, plant physiology, and ecology.
GNST 2630
Principles of Chemistry
UNITS: 3
Students study the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications. The relationships between atomic particles and their effect on bonding, chemical reactions, and matter are explored.
GNST 3000
World Political History
UNITS: 3
This global survey traces the quest for independence and prosperity on the part of emerging economies around the world after WWII. The course examines the varying fortunes of countries as they encountered the crucial questions of political organization, state control, and personal freedom from 1945 to the present. It also examines the issue of environmental sustainability in the face of pressures posed by population, industrialization, and consumerism.
GNST 3150
Research on Topics of Design History
UNITS: 3
An in-depth exploration into the major design movements of the 20th and 21st centuries focusing on the importance of research and writing on topics of the applied arts. Emphasis is placed on contextualizing design movements and the designers within their historical framework and the changes in society they have inspired. Conversations consider the effects of form and function, technology, identity, corporate branding, globalization, and visual communication on the development of design and how it has shaped our environment.
GNST 3400
Social Psychology
UNITS: 3
A course that examines social psychology and how the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of individuals are created and modified by the social and cultural conditions in which they live. Issues of social influence, cooperation and conflict, conformity, perception, change, and leadership are explored.
GNST 3450
Applied Mathematics
UNITS: 3
Students working in teams use mathematical reasoning to draw conclusions, solve problems, and make decisions in real-world contexts. Emphasis is on topics relating directly to careers in design and business management: geometry, statistical data analysis and interpretation (including graphs and charts), proportion equations, and financial math.
GNST 3600
Future Trends in Society
UNITS: 3
This course examines current demographic trends, shifts in technology, communications, economic landscape, and the rise of new cultural sociological expectations in anticipation of changing cultural values and practices. Evaluating these shifts and trends, students identify future social practices that will impact their lives and careers. Prerequisite: GNST 3400
GNST 3700
Multicultural Perspectives Through the Short Story
UNITS: 3
This course explores the co-existence, integration, and assimilation of cultural values through the literary vehicle of the short story. Diversities such as race, ethnicity, class, family, gender, disability, religion, and language are investigated. The course will culminate with students authoring a personal short story that articulates their own value system.
GNST 3750
Mapping Your World: Introduction to Global Production
UNITS: 3
This geographical survey of the world’s major regions covers population distribution, natural resources, and relationships between different regions in reference to trade and environment, with a focus on current geo-political issues.
GNST 3800
Icons of Culture: The Context of Meaning
UNITS: 3
Students explore universal design concepts underlying the applied arts, the decorative arts, and architecture/architectural form. Using the language of aesthetic analysis, they relate formal elements of color and structure, pattern and motif, and icon and symbol to the origins, development, and diffusion of a wide range of designed objects from many cultures and historical periods. In the process, they gain insight into the durability, adaptability, and resonance of concepts and images that have achieved iconic status in the world of design.
GNST 3900
Issues in Contemporary Society
UNITS: 3
A General Studies capstone course addressing current issues in social diversity, globalization, business ethics, and civic responsibility. Students combine critical analysis, scientific inquiry, and technological skill to research and prepare a clear written and oral presentation on a challenging, advanced question of their own choosing. Prerequisites: GNST 3050, GNST 3500
Total Units of Credit: 91
BDSN 3100
Advanced Practices in Color, Design & 3-D Form
UNITS: 6
This course is designed to explore the relationship between color and three-dimensional form. Students explore how an object changes when color and pattern is applied to three-dimensional forms and space. Through the formal principles and elements of design students increase sensitivity to the application of color. This course includes both collaborative and individual explorations.
BDSN 3200
Structural Drawing*
UNITS: 3
Students refine their abilities to create convincing volumetric images through perspective, matrix analysis, cross-contour, light, and shadow. They explore the application of structural drawing to their respective design disciplines and individual styles. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3400
Drawing the Figure in Context
UNITS: 6
This course addresses the structure and anatomy of the human figure as essential to developing a naturalistic approach to rendering the human form. The use of live models reinforces students’ understanding of the anatomical structure of the human body. Formal elements such as line, gesture, volume, proportion, and perspective are emphasized. Prerequisite: BDSN 3200
BDSN 3500
Human Dynamics*
UNITS: 3
Students consider the physical and physiological link between design and the human body, individually and in shared environments. They analyze possible design alternatives to a variety of products in terms of function, comfort, movement, and social impact. Includes a three (3) hour lab.
BDSN 3600
Creative Design Strategies
UNITS: 3
Working collaboratively, students approach design problems as opportunities for creativity and innovation, drawing upon analysis, research, experimentation, and concept development, to achieve design solutions. Using divergent and convergent thinking, students develop a variety of results that target specific markets and resolve specific design challenges.
BDSN 3700
Digital Photographic Image
UNITS: 3
This course focuses on students’ ability to express their point of view creatively through photography. Students learn to “see” photographically by exploring the basic tools, techniques, and aesthetics of digital photography, with special attention to lighting, focus, color, contrast, formal effects, and intent.
BDSN 3850
Theory & Context of Design
UNITS: 3
In this course, students formulate a personal creative research project relevant to their area of specialization, culminating in a written thesis proposal that they approach through various contexts in their senior year studio courses. Emphasis is on careful documentation of content, reference and source materials, and design research.
BDSN 4100
Visual Identity & Image
UNITS: 3
This multimedia course builds on prior drawing courses while focusing on the elements of image-making as communication. Students continue the development of drawing styles in both black and white and color, by hand and with the use of digital media. Techniques are applied to a variety of subjects as students explore the relationship between form and content. Prerequisites: BDSN 3200, BDSN 3400
BDSN 4250E
The Studio I – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
This is the first of a three quarter sequence in which the students focus on conceptualizing a collection of work and synthesizing the research compiled in Theory & Context of Design. In this phase students use an existing business model as a base to explore, identifying market and customer profiles to develop product parameters. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only).
BDSN 4500E
The Studio II – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
Course two in the Studio series considers the designer's influence in society. The students redefine and conceptualize the research they compiled in BDSN 3850 Theory & Context of Design into a new collection of work from the perspectives of contemporary societal issues, social needs, and civic and social responsibility. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only)
BDSN 4750E
The Studio III – Environment & Product
UNITS: 6
The final studio course in this sequence is dedicated to the pursuit of individual expression of the design thesis. Expanding on previous studio courses, students synthesize design knowledge and skills to create a collection of work with a sharp design focus. Students are expected to demonstrate sophisticated design decisions and thoughtful design solutions that exemplify a high level of expertise and achievement. (Interior Design and Visual Communications majors only).
BDSN 4950
Design Thesis Presentation
UNITS: 3
This capstone course is the culmination of personal and industry-centered creative work, beginning in the prior studio courses and resulting, in this course, in the creation of an e-portfolio. A written thesis statement defines this body of work with an emphasis on problem solving, critical thinking, and clear communication skills applied to the student’s chosen field of exploration. An emphasis is placed on professionalism in presentation and documentation. Prerequisites: BDSN 3850, BDSN 4500
BUMT 3100
Ethics in Business
UNITS: 3
This course addresses the importance of ethical issues and the financial impact on business performance and ownership. The costs and consequences of failing to act ethically are explored. Students learn strategies to solve real life dilemmas. Students explore the importance of ethics as a dimension of social responsibility and business ethics in the global economy. Prerequisite: BUMT 4840
GNST 1170
History of Costume
UNITS: 3
This course provides an overview of costume history in Western culture from ancient civilizations to the present. Students examine cultural, social, and historical events and analyze their effect on the history of costume and apparel, including the influence of historical costume on fashion today. Students develop a broad fashion vocabulary and become familiar with period costume terminology.
GNST 2470
Principles of Biology
UNITS: 3
This course explores and explains the workings of the human body. Students learn how human anatomy functions to support life, how lifestyle choices such as smoking, alcohol, and drugs affect the human system, and how disease and aging progress.
GNST 2470L
Principles of Biology Lab
UNITS: 1
This introduction to laboratory investigations in biology is a one-unit course stressing processes common to living organisms. It helps students understand the concepts of scientific thinking and their connection to their lives. Students conduct online activities that simulate in-lab investigations and real-life events. Topics include organic molecules, cell transport systems, photosynthesis, evolution, classification and identification, plant physiology, and ecology.
GNST 2630
Principles of Chemistry
UNITS: 3
Students study the fundamental principles of chemistry and their applications. The relationships between atomic particles and their effect on bonding, chemical reactions, and matter are explored.
GNST 3000
World Political History
UNITS: 3
This global survey traces the quest for independence and prosperity on the part of emerging economies around the world after WWII. The course examines the varying fortunes of countries as they encountered the crucial questions of political organization, state control, and personal freedom from 1945 to the present. It also examines the issue of environmental sustainability in the face of pressures posed by population, industrialization, and consumerism.
GNST 3150
Research on Topics of Design History
UNITS: 3
An in-depth exploration into the major design movements of the 20th and 21st centuries focusing on the importance of research and writing on topics of the applied arts. Emphasis is placed on contextualizing design movements and the designers within their historical framework and the changes in society they have inspired. Conversations consider the effects of form and function, technology, identity, corporate branding, globalization, and visual communication on the development of design and how it has shaped our environment.
GNST 3400
Social Psychology
UNITS: 3
A course that examines social psychology and how the behaviors, thoughts, and emotions of individuals are created and modified by the social and cultural conditions in which they live. Issues of social influence, cooperation and conflict, conformity, perception, change, and leadership are explored.
GNST 3450
Applied Mathematics
UNITS: 3
Students working in teams use mathematical reasoning to draw conclusions, solve problems, and make decisions in real-world contexts. Emphasis is on topics relating directly to careers in design and business management: geometry, statistical data analysis and interpretation (including graphs and charts), proportion equations, and financial math.
GNST 3600
Future Trends in Society
UNITS: 3
This course examines current demographic trends, shifts in technology, communications, economic landscape, and the rise of new cultural sociological expectations in anticipation of changing cultural values and practices. Evaluating these shifts and trends, students identify future social practices that will impact their lives and careers. Prerequisite: GNST 3400
GNST 3700
Multicultural Perspectives Through the Short Story
UNITS: 3
This course explores the co-existence, integration, and assimilation of cultural values through the literary vehicle of the short story. Diversities such as race, ethnicity, class, family, gender, disability, religion, and language are investigated. The course will culminate with students authoring a personal short story that articulates their own value system.
GNST 3750
Mapping Your World: Introduction to Global Production
UNITS: 3
This geographical survey of the world’s major regions covers population distribution, natural resources, and relationships between different regions in reference to trade and environment, with a focus on current geo-political issues.
GNST 3800
Icons of Culture: The Context of Meaning
UNITS: 3
Students explore universal design concepts underlying the applied arts, the decorative arts, and architecture/architectural form. Using the language of aesthetic analysis, they relate formal elements of color and structure, pattern and motif, and icon and symbol to the origins, development, and diffusion of a wide range of designed objects from many cultures and historical periods. In the process, they gain insight into the durability, adaptability, and resonance of concepts and images that have achieved iconic status in the world of design.
GNST 3900
Issues in Contemporary Society
UNITS: 3
A General Studies capstone course addressing current issues in social diversity, globalization, business ethics, and civic responsibility. Students combine critical analysis, scientific inquiry, and technological skill to research and prepare a clear written and oral presentation on a challenging, advanced question of their own choosing. Prerequisites: GNST 3050, GNST 3500
Total Units of Credit: 91


*Three (3)-hour lab included in 6 hours

This program starts each quarter on the Los Angeles campus, and selected courses are also available online.