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

16,127 ratings

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


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.


May 9, 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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526 - 550 of 4,134 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design

By Sherisse M A S

Jun 23, 2020

Taking this course further enhanced my appreciation and understanding towards graphic design. Learning the fundamentals helped fortify my skills in promoting products or events through the use of information design.

By Letícia S

Feb 13, 2020

Despite it is a fundamentals course, it is very complete and very didactic. It teaches you the basic things inside image making and design, although it is necessary to have basic knowledge on adobe suites. Loved it!

By Alma Y A O

Mar 7, 2019

It's a very comprehensive course on the fundamentals of Graphic Design such as composition, image making, etc. It has very interesting exercises, the videos are well recorded, dynamic and full of useful information.

By Felippe L N

Jan 23, 2017

That was a very good introductory course for someone with no background as me. Its a 5-star rating course, however, I would like to see some more practical classes as for example, doing a project for a firm.


By Gerard

Feb 8, 2016

Excellent course! As a graphic designer with over 10 years of experience this course took me back to the basics and re-ignited my passion for Graphic Design. Truly great and well put together course, very inspiring.


Nov 16, 2021

This was a very interesting class especially for non designers, who wish to enter the graphic design world. I would definitely recommend it to everyone who works in Marketing and want to become a graphic designer.

By Lilia M N

Oct 6, 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 Naufal Z

Jun 15, 2020

A worthwhile course to pick up as it teaches you the very basics of what captures the human eye. Would recommend this for those with pure interest and even for those who wants to delve further into graphic design.

By Gohar

Jun 15, 2017

The course was productive, interesting and professional. The only thing which I would like to be added next the cooperation between peers and the course leader, and how then we can develop our skills.

Best Regards.

By blithe t

May 18, 2020

This was very informative and practical! The videos are not too short and too long. Just enough for me to process the concept being introduced. I also had ample time to put them into application. It was engaging!

By Aleksandar J

Apr 22, 2019

I have learned a lot through this course. Tutorials are very detailed and instructive. Community was helpful in ratings and feedback on my projects for this course. I would highly recommend this course to anyone!

By Tia C

Feb 29, 2016

Professor Worthington is very thorough and the information in this course is not only interesting and accurate, it is useful! I absolutely loved the course and was extremely excited upon receiving my Certificate!


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

Excellent. 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 Elene

Feb 18, 2023

It was amazing to learn about graphic design fundamentals with CalArts. Very interesting, detailed and creative. Thank you for this opportunity. Really looking forward to learn more with CalArts and Coursera.

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