Graphic Design at the University of Florida is a highly selective, limited access program that emphasizes concept development and collaborative studio work. Working together in the studio rather than alone at home is crucial to the development of a vibrant community of learners and pre-professional designers. Each student is asked to install his/her own computer system in the student design studio, which is equipped with high-speed network access, secure workspaces, and color output. Graphic Design students at UF have a superior level of access to technology and a strong community spirit.
The degree program in Graphic Design prepares students for serious professional work in the field. The curriculum emphasizes concept development and application, work with clients, and professional development, including the establishment of a working portfolio. UF Graphic Design graduates are extremely competitive in the job market and go on to work in a number of design-related fields, including print and advertising, interactive design, and web design and multimedia. Some students also choose to earn a master’s degree in the field or pursue other professional degrees.
Working together in the studio, not alone at home, is critically important in order to build a vibrant community of learners. We ask students to install their computer systems in our student design studio (with high-speed network access, secure workspaces, and color output). Our graphic design students now have a superior level of access to technology combined with a strong community spirit.
Since the early 1990s, the graphic design area has offered a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree, the terminal degree in the field. The graduate degree program is intended to foster a level of superior research to advance the profession and positively contribute to society. This is a 60 credit-hour program of study (usually 3 years) for persons interested in advanced, academic exploration of design.
Our UF program is primarily focused on the academic study, not professional practice, of graphic design. This includes areas of design such as history, theory, criticism, and pedagogy, which are difficult to explore from within the profession. These topics are approached through creative studio projects sharpened with generous amounts of scholarly research and discussion.
MFA applicants are expected to have substantial professional or academic design experience. However, our faculty also values students from other disciplines such as architecture, communications, cultural studies, and so on, who can provide a diverse vision and viewpoint.
VOX GRAPHIS (Graphic Design Student Organization)
This student design group is driven by the motivation and energy of our students. It allows us to access student government funds and a structure to organize design events outside of our normal curriculum — workshops and demos, an exhibition, guest speakers, travel to AIGA events, and so on. The intent is to educate ourselves, our school, our campus and community on design issues. The primary event each year is LIGATURE — a cluster of activities that includes a show of student work juried by notable designers and educators. These guests travel to campus to lecture and interact with students. It has become a kind of homecoming event for alumni who return for the events.