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

14,987 ratings
3,887 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


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.


Aug 20, 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

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651 - 675 of 3,865 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design


Apr 16, 2021

It was a great experience, the course was very interesting and complete, I learned a lot and I've already started using my new knowledge. Thank you very much for this opportunity

By Aigoz A

Mar 25, 2020

Clearly delivered information about the basics of graphic design. A lot of practice works. I am happy that I had the opportunity to learn more about my favorite topic. Thank you!

By Antoniya V

Mar 13, 2018

This course is perfect for beginners in graphic design because it makes you DO things not only to learn about them. You can see different aspects of visual presentation of ideas.

By Deleted A

Jan 23, 2016

A great course, it sparked my interest and built me up, starting from the scratch I now dare to pick a pen or brush and scissors and ductape and be creative! Thank you very much!

By Luiz M

May 15, 2021

Great Course, I didn't know anything of graphic design now I know something and I feel engaged to learn more. The teacher is very nice and easy to understand.

Thank you, CALARTS.

By Malena P

Oct 12, 2020

This course is interesting, well facilitated, brings many opportunities to practice the skills one learns, and encourages participation and further exploration. Congratulations!

By David O

Sep 24, 2020

Soy diseñador, sin embargo aprendí algunos elementos importantes de las artes en el diseño :) Los ejercicios tienen un componente muy creativo de lo esencial para ser diseñador.

By Ummarah S

Sep 19, 2020

i love how smoothly the course went , i had no problem doing this course amid my own busy routine . i learnt new thinks , that can furthur be groomed in to professional skills.

By Jerry A

Sep 10, 2020

This course was really able to expand my knowledge & perspective about Graphic Design at the fundamental level. I highly recommend it for everyone interested in graphic design.


Jul 16, 2020

I have so much fun learning this course at the same time it gives me on point lessons on how to effectively apply all the fundamentals of graphic design. Thank you very much! :)


Jun 28, 2020

This is an indispensable course for people who are interested to explore into the world of graphic design. It is indeed very helpful in my daily teaching as well. Big thank you.


Jun 26, 2020

I learned about image making and basic foundation of Graphic design. Its realy nice and easy to learn by coursera.. Thank you entire team. I loved it. I will Go for Next course.

By Juan F Z R

Mar 6, 2020

Excelente, fue una maravillosa experiencia, siendo un estudiante de Arquitectura, me ha servido muchísimo para comprender un poco más acerca de la composición y el diseño en sí.

By Honey K

Nov 23, 2019

It is a wonderful course where I learned a new dimension of Art which was abstract to be before and now I can use it in my work to make it more pleasing and attractive to people

By Anton D

Feb 26, 2019

This course is well taught and developed. I appreciate that it emphasizes the importance of making graphic design as the only way to learn and develop the artist within. Thanks!

By Sara G A V

May 5, 2021

Gracias por complementar mis estudios con un curso tan bueno y tan abierto a la creatividad. Se lo recomiendo a todos los que se interesen por iniciar en el mundo del diseño :)

By Noman G

Dec 28, 2020

It is really a great course to learn the major concepts and ideas of graphic design. It is recommended to those who want to develop a better understanding of graphic designing

By Maegin M

Aug 4, 2020

Course was easy to follow while still being engaging and interesting. Fantastic course. On a personal note, Michael sounds like my favorite author which helped keep me focused.

By anna n a

Jul 13, 2020

I am thrilled I learned a lot. Very helpful in understanding the fundamentals of graphic designs. I love the assignment, It gives you yo be creative in your own way and style.

By Doğanay Ç

Jul 10, 2020

Since I currently study interior architecture, it helped me to recall my basic skills and learn more about what I missed and improve my current skills. Thank you for everything

By Kimberly M

Apr 13, 2020

This Course is awesome super easy to understand! I'm a beginner and this program really helped so much and opened up my perspective on how to view shapes colors items and text.

By Karlo A C C

Feb 13, 2022

Excellent course. Just what I wanted. Coming from a exact science career and never heard of any of this wasn't a problem in the course. Everything taught was clear and useful.

By Megha S

Aug 11, 2020

I like how the course is structured and gives a holistic view of graphic design. I loved the course and It really helped me in understanding basic things about graphic design.

By Mona A

Apr 27, 2020

I really learned a lot from this course, while also having fun. I'm looking forward to complete the Graphic Design Specialization, and complete more studies in graphic design!