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

6,203 ratings
1,494 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


Aug 21, 2018

Very interesting, I liked the format. Easy to follow, nice excercises. It's actually good to cover the basics of design, even if you are not an absolute beginner, and especially if you are self taught


May 10, 2018

An ok course for beginners. A bit too basic for someone who has already had experience in design, but is great anyway cause it breaks things back down to the simplest parts to help you remember roots.

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151 - 175 of 1,454 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design

By Matthew B

Sep 21, 2016

Perfect for beginning and intermediate graphic designers. The explanations of concepts and exercises are quite useful and makes the foundations of graphic design clear and accessible. Highly recommended.

By Lilia M N

Oct 06, 2016

In my opinion, this course help me to see regular items in different ways. Also, it open for me "world of design" it is something new for me.

I liked this course because it is simple, i can learn in different time.

By Ansh W

May 21, 2018

I had one of the best learniing experiences ever!

By Anastasia O

Apr 28, 2018

Very informative and exciting.


Jun 19, 2017

very very important for everyone.

By Xue Z

Jul 27, 2017

Good fundamental course, very practical. All the assignments are true hands-on work. Arouse the interest of graphic design.

By Henning S

Jul 12, 2017

Really great introduction to Graphic Design and I love the encouragement throughout the course to play and have fun while designing.

By Dries N

Jun 22, 2017

Good balance between theory and practice. I've learned a lot about composition, color use etc

By Stephanie M

Jul 03, 2017

This was a very interactive course. I loved that it combined practical applications of the coursework with peer graded assignments. The process of both receiving and providing feedback to classmates is very helpful in improving your work throughout the course.

By Trinity C

Apr 01, 2017

Fantastic course, gives a concise yet specific survey of all the basic graphic design skills you will need, presented in such an interesting and fun manner and at the perfect pace for beginners and more skilled designers alike. Thank you to Dr. Worthington and CalArts for creating this course and making it available to students worldwide who aren't able to relocate to Southern California just yet.

By Lorenzo F

Jun 24, 2017

Amazing course! it gives you insights if u're starter as well as some creative input if you're already into this field. Looking forward to continue with other courses in this specialization!

Lectures and lecturers are very clear. The material is very fluent and if you pay attention you don't even have to watch it more than once!

Good job!

By Emma J

Oct 04, 2017

Excellent course to learn the fundamentals. Highly recommend it.

By Olli V

Nov 30, 2017

Thank you for an awesome course Michael! You've really made learning into an engaging and practical experience. I thoroughly enjoyed this course and learned a lot by way of pushing myself to learn new skills with digital image-making and processes. You're an excellent teacher. I thoroughly recommend this course to anyone interested in graphic design.

By Maria L G A

May 29, 2017

Really good course. I love it.

By enjy s

Oct 13, 2017

i really got new experience and information from that track

By Jennifer H

May 16, 2017

I very much enjoyed this course. I feel like I got alot out of the student reviews and the instruction was very well done. I can't imagine feeling like one had accomplished this course without doing all the recommended exercises, so I strongly urge any participant to do them all. I will be taking all the classes in this program.

By Mikaell C e O

Apr 27, 2017

Great way to start on the design world.

By Maged E S

Apr 02, 2017

i love it!

By XiangYi J

May 30, 2017

this course provide some fundamentals to improve your skills

By Sara H A

Jun 23, 2017

I find this course really helpful!! I didn't know anything about graphic design. I rolled into this course for no exact reason but I absolutely loved it! It is so good! I 100% recommend people trying this course whether you are a beginner or a pro!


Jul 09, 2017

Good course learn a lot.

By Winnie W

Jun 30, 2017


By Larie G

Jun 19, 2018

I loved the course. It was great. Looking forward to taking more.

By baobao

Apr 30, 2017

Great!It's amazing!

By Dasha Y

Aug 07, 2017

This course was extremely interesting and useful! I found out lots of things, which I will definitely use in my design-activity.