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Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communication Design

 

Design reaches nearly every part of life: from toothpaste tubes to cell phone screens, to magazines and books, to trademarks and logos, to websites. This diversity of design practice is reflected in the program of design studies offered at Metropolitan State University of Denver.

Communication Design is the term we use to identify our program. Communication is the most fundamental human act and Communication Design expresses the fusion of semantics, pragmatics, and syntactics that our program embodies. At MSU Denver, Communication Design is part of a professional education that emphasizes oral, written, and visual communication. This approach, coupled with sound strategy in research, practice, and visual studies, gives students the opportunity to engage in a broad spectrum of today's design practice.

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Communication Design program underscores three distinct focal points: design fundamentals; traditions of the discipline (history/theory, strategy, research); and interactive, time-based content. As a student in this program, you will first learn how to use typography, imagery, space, and time to communicate ideas and create narratives or stories. You will expand on these fundamentals in intermediate studies, where you will engage in design problem solving through critical inquiry and research. At advanced levels, you will explore a wide range of design endeavors in projects that satisfy your personal interests as well as those that connect you with the Denver community and the world beyond the classroom.

MSU Denver's Communication Design program challenges students to become informed, thinking designers. Through specific course work that fuses semantics, pragmatics and syntactics, students discover how to design for the people and contexts that require communication while learning to craft effective and culturally appropriate messages in a broad range of design media. The program positions five pedagogical pillars as significant to our mission: making meaning, furthering function, pursuing process, mediating messages, and fostering form. These pillars are underscored by a contemporary practice that integrates design fundamentals with emerging media, research, and history/theory. As a design student, you will come to rely upon these critical aspects in your course work and beyond. These are the very tools of the discipline that will enable you to be a successful designer.

 

Portfolio Requirements and Admission

All students entering the Department of Art as majors are admitted under either the B.A. in Art or the B.A. in Art History, Theory, and Criticism. After completing the foundation courses and one other course in ART, CDES, or ARTH, those wishing to pursue the B.F.A. in Art, B.F.A. in Art Education, or the B.F.A. in Communication Design will be required to pass a formal portfolio review for admittance. Please click on the Portfolio Requirements link for more information.

Portfolio Requirements

 

Degree Requirements: Fall 2019 Curriculum Launched

Advising sheet for BFA in Communication Design - 2019

Students on a Fall 2012 – Summer 2019 curriculum can find equivalents to required course equivalencies. 

Communication Design Fall 2019 Curriculum Matrix
 

Communication Design Print Services

Students wishing to utilize CDES Print Services, please view: 

CDES Print Services 

Make a Payment (Look for your price and the invoice number in the email you recieve from cdesequipment@msudenver.edu with subject "CDES Print Services Invoice.")


Future Leaders of Design

Future Leaders of Design is MSU Denver's student chapter of AIGA, The Professional Association for Design. Dedicated to connecting Communication Design students with the design community at large, programming features a monthly Brown Bag lecture series and sponsorship of programming, events, and discussions. The student club makes a point of getting students involved in the annual AIGA national conference by applying for university-supported funding.

 

Facilities:

The Communication Design program is housed in the Central Building, on the southeast side of Auraria Campus. Here you will find approximately 4000 square feet of state-of-the-art digital technology, studio and lecture spaces, printing and production facilities, as well as faculty offices. This design hub offers the functions of a professional design studio. As a student, you will be free to work in any number of spaces based on your needs, interests, and coursework requirements, and thus have the opportunity to build a spirit of collaboration with other students in your discipline.

The studio features a design library and gallery for student reference; for in-depth research needs, the Auraria Library is just a building away. A collaborative learning lab features innovative strategies for team-based collaboration on design projects. An integrated print studio boasts an 1895 Columbia and Mitchell tabletop platen-press, and a Vandercook 3.  As a student you will be able to work with faculty and/or trained studio assistants to produce a variety of printed ephemera. The historical significance of printing with movable type will connect you with your studies in design history and typography, among other subjects. Emphasizing the connection between history and modern technology, data projectors and white boards are strategically positioned in teaching spaces to allow for project demonstration and group critique of work. When faced with producing design solutions, you will have at your disposal industry-standard color and black-and-white laser printers as well as a large-format archival printer. These in-house options will make it easy for you to make your design solutions a reality very quickly. Additional resources in the studio include video and still digital cameras, microphones, tripods, data projectors, and headphones, all available for student checkout.

 

Open Lab Studio Hours:

Tuesday
10:45a - 12:15p CN309
6:30p - 8:30p CN311H

Wednesday
10:45a - 12:00p CN309

Thursday
10:45a - 12:15p CN309
6:30p - 8:30p CN311H

Friday
1:00 - 5:00p CN311F

 

Location:

The Department of Art office is located in AR 187 on the Auraria Campus and is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m. The Communication Design Studio is located in Central Classroom, room 311.

 

Faculty:


Lisa Abendroth

Lisa Abendroth
Professor - Communication Design


303-615-0102



abendrot@msudenver.edu

Position Role:
Faculty

Office Location:
CN

Office Number:
311D

Office Hours:

Fall 19 Office Hours:

Tuesdays & Thursdays  12:30pm-3pm

Office hours are scheduled by appointment. Please contact the Department of Art office at 303-615-0300.

Campus Box Number:
59


Directory Profile

Bio:

Lisa M. Abendroth is a Professor in the Communication Design program at Metropolitan State University of Denver. She led the program as coordinator from 2000 to 2018. Her research focuses on public interest design and the social, economic, and environmental impacts created with, and within, the contexts of underserved people, places, and problems. Her pedagogy is committed to community-centered design practices that embolden access and equity. Lisa is a SEED Network cofounder, a SEED Evaluator coauthor, and a recipient of the SEED Award for Leadership in Public Interest Design. She is also a contributor to the Public Interest Design Institute. Lisa is a coeditor of two books in Routledge’s Public Interest Design Guidebook series: Public Interest Design Practice Guidebook: SEED Methodology, Case Studies, and Critical Issues, published in 2015; and, Public Interest Design Education Guidebook: Curricula, Strategies, and SEED Academic Case Studies, published in 2018. She has earned degrees from Virginia Commonwealth University and the Rhode Island School of Design. Lisa lectures, curates, exhibits, and publishes her work nationally and internationally. She was named a 2019 AIGA Fellow.              



Peter Bergman

Peter Miles Bergman
Associate Professor - Communication Design


303-615-0188



pbergma3@msudenver.edu

Position Role:
Faculty

Office Location:
CN

Office Number:
311A

Office Hours:

On sabbatical until spring 20 semester.

Office hours are scheduled by appointment. Please contact the Department of Art office at 303-615-0300.

Campus Box Number:
59


Directory Profile

Bio:

Since graduating with a highly conceptual art degree from UCSD in 1996, I've sought to compliment a fine art practice oriented around mass communications by learning as much as possible about printing and publishing. I've worked as a screen printer's assistant, hand stripped film for packaging, jockeyed PDF's for Web Offset. I have a 1930 Chandler and Price letterpress in my garage.

After a decade covered in ink I decided to return to school, earning an MFA in Visual Communication from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, and become a teacher so I could put my skills at the service of young people setting out on their own creative journey.

Feel free to look at my ongoing design, publishing and letterpress printing on instagram @is.press                  



Shawn Meek

Shawn Meek
Assistant Professor - Communication Design Interim Program Coordinator


303-615-1437



smeek3@msudenver.edu

Position Role:
Faculty

Office Location:
CN

Office Number:
311B

Office Hours:

Fall 19 Office Hours:

Tuesdays & Thursdays  3:30pm-5pm

Fridays  9am-11am

Office hours are scheduled by appointment. Please contact the Department of Art office at 303-615-0300.

Campus Box Number:
59


Directory Profile

Bio:

Shawn Meek specializes in UX/UI design and front-end web development with over a decade of commercial experience. As a designer who also codes, he has served clients small and large to create custom websites, digital campaigns, social integrations and UX/UI for mobile and web applications.

Meek has worked for a number of award-winning advertising agencies commercially as a UX/UI designer and web developer. His teaching experience spans from the University of the Incarnate Word, Texas State University, Fort Lewis College to currently teaching interactive design as an Assistant Professor of Communication Design at Metropolitan State University of Denver. Meek also serves as Director of Mentorship & Education within the statewide AIGA Colorado Board of Directors.

When he is not teaching, Meek runs a freelance operation with clientele in the nonprofit, education and startup tech industries. Meek’s work has been recognized for excellence by leading communication design organizations, publications and journals, which include: Graphis, Logo Lounge, GDUSA, CMYK, AIGA, American Advertising Federation, The One Club, Rockport and HarperCollins Publishers.

shawnmeek.com

 



Kelly Monico

Kelly Monico
Associate Professor - Communication Design and Studio Art


303-615-0879



kmonico@msudenver.edu

Position Role:
Faculty

Office Location:
CN

Office Number:
311C

Office Hours:

Fall 19 Office Hours:

Wednesdays  9:30am-11am & 12:30pm-4pm

Office hours are scheduled by appointment. Please contact the Department of Art office at 303-615-0300.

Campus Box Number:
59


Directory Profile

Bio:

Kelly Monico is a visual artist and designer who rearranges ordinary materials, physically and digitally, to explore notions of identity, objectivity and the inherent value implied by a gesture or act of intervention. The majority of her creative projects have drawn on the use of repetitive gestures, actions and patterning, as a means to study human behavior.

Kelly Monico is a Denver-based artist who received her MFA from the Electronic Media Arts and Design Program at the University of Denver in 2005. Monico currently teaches Integrated Media and Communication Design coursework at Metropolitan State University of Denver. She is the recipient of several residencies and has been included in numerous international exhibitions, which include the Videomedeja Audio/Visual Festival in Serbia, The Banff Centre, Elsewhere Artist Collaborative, Sante Fe Complex, Point of Transition in Kassel, Germany and in conjunction with dOCUMENTA 13, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and the URB11 Arteles at the Kiasma Museum of Contemporary Art in Helsinki, Finland.



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