Chevron Left
Back to Fundamentals of Graphic Design

Learner Reviews & Feedback for Fundamentals of Graphic Design by California Institute of the Arts

15,031 ratings
3,898 reviews

About the Course

Graphic Design is all around us! Words and pictures—the building blocks of graphic design—are the elements that carry the majority of the content in both the digital world and the printed world. As graphic design becomes more visible and prevalent in our lives, graphic design as a practice becomes more important in our culture. Through visual examples, this course will teach you the fundamental principles of graphic design: imagemaking, typography, composition, working with color and shape... foundational skills that are common in all areas of graphic design practice. I don't just want you to watch a video of someone talking about design, I want you to MAKE design! If you want to be a designer you have to be a maker and a communicator, so this course will offer you lots of opportunities to get your hands dirty with exercises and with more practical projects. At the end of this course you will have learned how to explore and investigate visual representation through a range of image-making techniques; understand basic principles of working with shape, color and pattern; been exposed to the language and skills of typography; and understand and have applied the principles of composition and visual contrast. If you complete the course, along with its optional (but highly recommended) briefs, you will have a core set of graphic design skills that you can apply to your own projects, or to more deeply investigate a specialized area of graphic design. To succeed in this course you will need access to a computer. You can complete this course without one but it will be tougher. Access to, and a beginner's level knowledge of Adobe Creative Suite programs, such as Illustrator, Photoshop and InDesign will help you, especially if you want to complete the optional briefs....

Top reviews


Sep 5, 2021

I had a lot of fun in this course. I learnt some extra bits of information related to graphic design and I think it's a great start for beginners as well as good practice for intermediate and experts!


Jul 13, 2020

Excellent course to learn and refresh about fundamentals of design....It applies to all spheres of MULTIMEDIA..Highly recommended... As a suggestion course and notes should be available in PDF format.

Filter by:

501 - 525 of 3,874 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design


Apr 13, 2021

He disfrutado de este curso, me sorprende la forma tan practica en que dejan claros los conceptos y permite que se aprenda claramente. Me ha gustado mucho y estoy feliz de poder seguir con los cursos siguientes.

By emmanuel c

Apr 19, 2022

very challenging and really efficient, made me realize more about the basics of graphic designs and art as a whole with respect to communicating with other viewers while maintaining a sense of my own creativity

By Kirubel T

Mar 14, 2022

I​ had no prior experience to graphics design whatsoever. And this course has thought me the very basics. This course was really easy for me as a beginner and was very helpful. I hope to finish all the courses.


Mar 7, 2022

It was a great experience to begin to discover the field of graphic design throughout this humble course. I gain much knowledge about the fundamental aspect og graphic design by practicing via program projects.

By Paulus L

Nov 8, 2021

E​xcellent. It's just as simple as that, learning the fundamental things in order to start developing an eye for design. Short but very intense videos, with the perfect amount of information and easy to follow.

By Kumari R

Oct 16, 2020

I really impressed and learnt more things about graphic designs and also learnt the difference between shape, form, direction, color and many more. Thank you Coursera for giving me knowledge of graphic designs.

By Abdelrhman H

Nov 1, 2018

Great course, its really very useful, although I have started learning graphic design for more than year, but I learned here what I didn't learn at any other platform, greetings to all the team work, thank you.

By Lily

Mar 25, 2017

really amazing, before I did not know designing can be this tough and demanding. creativeness matters. and you should really try and practice. this course is far more better than the rest of the specialization!

By Miki A

Dec 20, 2020

This course works! I've done it twice, with 2 years in between, and it's amazing to see the progress. I find the quality of the assignments to be very high, especially if someone cares to do the optional ones.

By sanaa A

Jun 29, 2020

I was enjoying taking this course I have learned a lot and I am planing to take more courses in design.

Thanks everyone worked on providing this and thanks for amazing information content is excellent.


By Calandra

Mar 9, 2016

This is an excellent course for anyone interested in learning the fundamentals of graphic design. Wonderful! The information and hands-on activities bring to point the information discussed and lessons taught.

By Alinas O

Nov 5, 2020

Love this head start can't wait to explore and see all that is offered from this experience loving the idea and chance starting from the bottom and going way up past the sky and clowds I hope I am so blessed

By Simmy S

Apr 22, 2020

The assignments were apt and really interesting to work on, the instructor was amazing. He had so much knowledge on the subject in such depth. I am planning to take further courses in this specialization too!

By Carolina G

Apr 11, 2020

Art is a broad and complex subject, but in this program you will see the main ideas to start your path to design. Very specific, complete, clear and well organized. Meets expectations!!!!!! Thank you!!!! 100%

By Angelo M

Feb 25, 2020

very fun, I hope to do more courses, here in the future, I'm actually gonna complete the gd specialization by CalArts, and sorry for being so slow on completing it, I've had exams with my art academy, thanks!

By Paola O

Apr 21, 2018

I am just missing an experience designer feedback but I understand it is not possible.

I think is a perfect introduction and if you worked on the optional assignment you can really push yourself to learn more.

By Gail W

Mar 14, 2017

Very well designed and delivered course. Great fundamentals and fresh application exercises. Valued the realistic briefs, the creative practice and feedback giving/receiving in the course. Heartily recommend

By Miqdam S

Mar 16, 2021

One thing I really liked about this course that the student kept engaged with practice assignments as they go along the course. Very good learning experience... would definitely take the rest of the courses.

By Heylin L L

Aug 2, 2020

Un curso excelente, aprendí muchísimo, gracias a Coursera y al Instituto CALARTS por la oportunidad de estudio brindada y por supuesto gracias al profesor Michael Worthington por el conocimiento transmitido.

By Giselle R A

Oct 30, 2019

Fue divertido y aprendí mucho experimentando cada semana, totalmente recomendado. En ocasiones creemos que sabemos cosas, pero cuando aprendes el por qué de esas cosas es cuando realmente sabemos sobre ellas

By Saleeha S

Jun 23, 2021

I thoroughly enjoyed exploring and completing this course. I learnt about being creative with my skills and techniques and discovered that it isnt always about perfection or at making your work look perfect

By Ar. S D

May 26, 2020

Waat a journey it was! Michael is a prolific teacher and educator. Amazingly explained, very clever and creative presentations. I enjoyed at its core. Thank you so much for making this course. Lots of Love.

By Efren A

Dec 27, 2018

This is a GREAT course, as simple as that. It is exactly the perfect first step into the world of graphic design, which is at least what I needed. Thank you so much for putting together such a great help!!!

By Arwa A

Jan 13, 2018

Everything is really amazing, from the first week to last. i wish i had more time to complete the optional assignments.

if there is one thing.. i think the last required assignment was too simple.

Thank you.

By Indra L V

Jan 5, 2017

Este curso me ha ayudado a desarrollar mis habilidades en diseño gráfico. La brecha del idioma no ha sido una limitante y me ayudó a descubrir que me encanta el diseño gráfico. Agradezco a los instructores.