Graphic Designer Diploma

In the Graphic Designer diploma program, students learn the software programs that every professional designer needs to know: Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and lnDesign. Students learn techniques for creating digital images, illustrations, and layouts, and they develop a strong theoretical foundation in color, typography, and composition.

Students gain hands-on experience with a wide range of graphic design projects, ranging from photo editing and logo design, to poster design, magazine layouts, and more. Students learn the essentials of print production and how to prepare themselves for entry into the job market.

Graphic Designer Diploma Program

This program provides students with:

  • A foundation in the principles of color theory, typography, and page composition.
  • Professional skills in the essential tools of the graphic designer: Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.
  • Proficiency in key Microsoft Office applications.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of the program may pursue positions such as:

  • Graphic Designer
  • Graphic Artist
  • Layout Artist
  • Layout Designer
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Program Length
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Personal Attributes Required

  • Artistic interests and abilities
  • Strong customer/ client skills
  • Verbal and written communication skills
  • Aptitude to learn new application software
  • Team player
  • A good command of the English language

Program Outline

Professional designers make choices informed by the present and the past. In the Study in Graphic Design course, students will explore design movements from the early 20th century through today and gain experience in research, idea-building, and production of creative concepts. Students will learn how to use historical knowledge and cultural awareness as a springboard for contemporary design projects.

Graphic designers today must be ready to tackle a wide range of projects from identity design to editorial design to product and packaging design. In this  course, students will establish a firm foundation for professional design work and explore the challenges of designing posters, logos, magazine covers, book layouts, 3D designs, and brand identities. Students will hone the design process, as they research each project, develop concepts, incorporate feedback, and begin to develop a
portfolio.

What makes any image work, in graphic design or photography? Composition, the assembly or construction of elements, is the artful arrangement that guides the viewer’s eye and unifies a designer’s work. In this online 2D design course, students will develop compositional skills by analyzing everything from Grand Masters to Madison Avenue ads to tubes of toothpaste. Through a series of hands-on projects, students will learn the principles of effective composition.

This Photoshop Basics course starts you off with the basics of the Photoshop interface and quickly gets you working on hands-on projects based on real-world design scenarios. You’ll learn to choose and use the best techniques for common Photoshop jobs including selecting and isolating objects, creating image composites, masking and vignetting images, setting typography, and improving images with retouching and effects. In this course, students learn how to make high-quality selections and edits, and develop an efficient imaging workflow.
In the Illustrator Basics course, you’ll build a solid foundation in Adobe Illustrator, learning from a master teacher. You’ll start with a tour of important menus, tools, and panels, then explore selection tools, drawing tools, layers, the Pen tool (a lesson unto itself) as well as transformations/distortions, type tools, and modifying paths and shapes.

Layout designers today need the skills to move seamlessly between print and digital projects. Adobe InDesign is the tool that can handle it all. In the InDesign Basics course, students will explore a host of essential InDesign techniques and focus on developing efficient workflows. Students will develop a working knowledge of InDesign’s main capabilities, from basic features to master pages, importing and manipulating objects, controlling text flow and style, and organizing content with tables, layers, links, and conveyor tools. Hands-on projects provide students with training in a range of real-world print and digital publishing projects, from brochures to catalogs, magazines to ePubs, and an interactive folio for the iPad.

The Color Theory course focuses on developing appropriate color systems for graphic design projects. These projects explore the principles, terminology, and applications of color theory, with an emphasis on manipulating color. Students will acquire a working knowledge of the expression and perception of color, and color interaction, which lends credibility and sophistication to a designer’s work.
In the Fundamentals of Typography course, you’ll explore the anatomy of the letterform. Through interactive lectures and hands-on exercises, you’ll learn how to classify typefaces and use them creatively. Understanding the fundamentals of typography will give your work power, eloquence, and beauty.

Logos are the identity of a company. They are ubiquitous and vital. In this course, students will learn how to design logos that will strengthen the visual image of an organization. Students will explore logo development through a series of case studies. Each exercise combines a written, conceptual component with hands-on projects for creating effective logos.

For any designer, sending a job to the printer can be a process of trial and error. To manage a print job effectively, one must understand how printing companies work, how to communicate with them, and how to identify the best design solution to fit a budget. In this course, students will learn the fundamentals of producing professional-looking print publications. Students will also learn how to choose paper and Pantone inks, modify materials and processes based on a budget, use Adobe InDesign to prepare designs for print, and manage the phases of the production workflow to produce high-quality printed output.

In the Design Business course, students will learn the essentials of finding work as a designer, whether in a design firm, in-house design department, or as a freelance designer. Students will polish their portfolios and résumés and learn how best to present them, find employment opportunities, and market themselves. Students will also learn about networking in the industry.

The Marketing and Sales course introduces students to the theory and application of modern Canadian marketing concepts, principles, and techniques, and examines the importance of marketing in society as well as within a company. With the objective of learning how to develop a comprehensive marketing strategy and creating loyal customers, the major components of the marketing mix are studied. The role of marketing is explored at the local, national, and international level. Both the final consumer and the business customer are considered.

The Business Essentials course teaches students the basic necessities of business, to help them develop core competencies they can use in the business world. The course provides a broad introduction to business, covering business principles, structure, and functions of management. The course examines the purposes and activities of organizations of various types, sizes and structures, and explores the interrelationships among functional departments. Students will also learn about different forms of ownership, management functions, styles, and processes. This course highlights business in Canada, how government and global forces affect business in Canada, and addresses the impact of the global economy on Canadian business.

The Business Presentations course is designed to introduce students to tools and techniques used to create and deliver effective presentations to many types of audiences, including managers, colleagues and existing and prospective clients. Students are given the opportunity to explore and practice these techniques throughout the course. Students gain insight into producing effective presentations at each stage of the presentation development process, i.e., planning, creating, strengthening, and delivery. Students are given the opportunity to practice, apply, and develop presentation skills through the completion of hands-on tasks and exercises found throughout each lesson.

In Microsoft Word Level 1 course, students learn to create, navigate, and organize documents and use the help functions. They learn to edit and manipulate text, view and format documents, and use Word’s predefined functions. Students use the Find and Replace feature, use proofing and language tools, create, format and modify tables, work with hyperlinks and cross references, and learn how to preview and print a document.

In the Microsoft Excel Level 1 course, students learn to create and manage worksheets and workbook files; enter data and create basic formulas to perform calculations. They learn to edit and manipulate cell content, modify worksheet structure, view and format worksheets, and use Excel’s predefined functions. Students use the Find and Replace feature, use themes to format workbooks and practice preparing, previewing, and printing worksheets.

The Microsoft PowerPoint Level 1 course teaches students the fundamentals of this application and its usage within the Windows environment. Students learn to create, modify, and deliver electronic presentations. They learn to create slides containing text, tables, charts, diagrams, and graphics. Students practice customizing slides and finalizing presentations, and then learn to print and deliver slide shows.

The Microsoft PowerPoint Level 2 course teaches students intermediate- to advanced-level concepts and features of the Microsoft PowerPoint application. In this course, students learn to customize PowerPoint and create professional presentations by building upon the basic skills learned in the PowerPoint – Level 1 course. They learn to work with slide masters, design templates, and incorporate multimedia effects such as animation, sound, and motion clips into their presentations. Students also learn to apply good design principles, use color effectively, use features that enhance collaboration with others, and deliver online (Web) presentations.

In the Microsoft Outlook Level 1 course, students will learn how to use both the e-mail program and the personal information manager components of Microsoft Outlook. The skills learned in this course will help students use Microsoft Outlook effectively both at work and in your personal life.

The Internet Fundamentals course explores the various components of the Internet using Microsoft Internet Explorer. Students are oriented to common procedures used to maximize successful use of the Internet and all its features. They learn how to customize the Internet Explorer browser, and examine the Web, e-mail, blogs, discussion groups, social media, chatting, multimedia and other web technologies.
In the Personal Computer Fundamentals for Technical Users course, students learn about the components and basic operation of the personal computer. The content in this course is both conceptual and practical, and is intended to provide students with a working knowledge of computing. Students explore hardware troubleshooting, file management, multimedia options, and browsing the Internet. This course will also help students assess and decide what type of computer is appropriate for their needs.
The Introduction to Keyboarding course is designed for individuals who have no formal training in keyboarding. The objective is to teach students the skill of keyboarding – essential to the learning of other computer applications and workplace skills. The course begins with an overview of the basics of computer use. Students learn about the components of the computer and keyboard, as well as the seating, posture, and hand positioning necessary for efficient keyboarding.
The Keyboard Skill Building Level 1 course is designed for individuals who have basic keyboard proficiency, and wish to increase speed and dexterity. Each lesson increases key recognition and builds confidence using the keyboard, while improving speed and accuracy. Speed achieved depends on personal dexterity and time spent on practice lessons. Students who are not already familiar with the TypingTrainer software program are introduced to it. Typing Trainer helps students learn and improve skills using a variety of methods: graphical keyboard drills, speed drills, alphabet drills, word, phrase and sentence drills, and keyboarding Self-Tests. Upon completion of this course, students are expected to keyboard at minimum 25 words per minute.

This course will teach students the fundamentals of customer service, and help them to develop core competencies for providing excellent customer service. Students learn the definition of customer service, who their customers are, and how to be customer service oriented through description and examples. They learn tips for managing time and stress, communicating effectively with customers, and managing customer relationships. The course highlights being prepared, and dealing professionally with customer conflicts and complaints. It identifies common pitfalls and explains how to avoid making them. It also emphasizes the importance of gathering and responding to customer feedback, and maintaining a professional image.

This course covers the basic concepts and most commonly used features and functions of Windows 10. The course will walk you through performing basic operations such as opening applications, using Help and shutting down the computer. Additionally, you will learn to set up user accounts, create and use custom keyboard shortcuts, personalize and organize the working space, and use the Action Centre. The course will also provide you with a hands-on experience on how to connect, use and update devices, use File Explorer to manage files and folders, as well as navigate the internet using various browsers, including Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge.

The Project Management Fundamentals Level 1 course combined with Level 2 is designed to provide you with a fundamental knowledge of the essentials of project management and to provide you with the requisite hours and knowledge for writing the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM ) examination. Upon completion of the Level 1 course, you will have a ® general understanding of the project management framework and all of the processes associated with the initiating and planning stages of managing a project.

Job Search and Résumé Writing provides students with both traditional and innovative job-search techniques and résumé writing skills required to gain employment in today’s competitive marketplace. The course combines theoretical, how-to information with hands-on practical applications. Students are required to draw on their own experiences to identify work preferences, accomplishments, technical and transferable skills, and to research, organize, and analyze information; and to apply their knowledge in a series of job search preparation and implementation tasks.
The course is designed to improve the student’s learning experience and prepare him or her for personal and professional growth and success. The focus is on increasing the student’s self-discipline and self-esteem. The positive concepts taught in this course are intended to unleash the student’s potential for growth and creativity, resulting in personal and professional development. Humor and practical examples are used to target the primary concerns of adult students. In addition, written exercises, activities, and audiotapes provide understanding, acceptance, and reinforcement of the program material.