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

4.8
stars
13,622 ratings
3,514 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

CS
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.

GA
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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151 - 175 of 3,471 Reviews for Fundamentals of Graphic Design

By Ellen H

Apr 19, 2020

I learned a lot about the basics of graphic design. In undergrad, I never took a graphic design course but now as a graphic designer for 5 years, I was hoping to learn the academic side of graphic design that I never got. This course was a great back-to-basics class that taught me valuable approaches and information about the different components of successful design.

By Adeeb A

Jun 14, 2020

It's really a great initiative on behalf of both COURSERA and CALART. Thanks a ton for facilitating such a wonderful learning opportunity for us!

About Required assignments to be evaluated by peers, my suggestion is there should be a system for appeal by the CALART moderators in case some peers unjustly or out of ignorance give a poor grade to his or her fellow peers.

By Igor L

Apr 26, 2016

Ive really enjoyed this course, in fact ive never painted before. So i glad i start, i was a little bit shy to post my work for classmates review, but i understood that its only begin of Graphic Design, so i will learn a lot of interesting things and i have to work hard for that. Thanks to teachers, wish you all the best.

Want continue my graphic design education.

By Attilio P

Mar 16, 2021

Very interesting course indeed. I needed it as a prerequisite for the UI/UX specialization. It might not have been fundamental for it, but I am definitely glad that I decided to go through this graphic design course and complete it. It gave me lots of hints and understanding behind image composition, that I could reuse many underlying ideas also for photography.

By SALLY Y Y L

Jan 19, 2016

I love this course so much, and I have learnt a lot of skills, techniques and knowledge about Graphic Design. Though some of the assignments are optional, I guess is to reduce the workload of the learners, I strongly emphasize learners to try all of them since the results won't affect the overall performance. It is a good introduction course for Graphic Design.

By Mia H

May 4, 2021

A great overview of information. Well presented and easy to understand. You get out of the assignments, what you put into them. I would suggest completing all of them, even if they're not required. You learn a lot by "doing". This is a great course for people new to Graphic Design and also for those who just want refresh their basic skills. Highly recommended.

By Carla B

Oct 4, 2016

This was a great intro course. I had no previous experience to graphic design and it was something that has always caught my attention. This course is perfect for giving you the basics and really getting you to start designing. I was always intimidated by it and now I feel compelled to continue taking any related coursework as well as to keep creating designs!

By Oleksandr T

Dec 20, 2016

Great course for beginners to get the basics of graphic design as well as for specialist to refresh these basics. The great advantage of the course is practical assignments that are all connected, so that in the end you will use material from previous assignments in your final one. I would make all those optional assignments obligatory, though. Great course!

By Chana M H

May 28, 2018

I enjoyed the course. This style of learning with peer feedback works well for me. I am a paper crafter and my main goal is to learn more about graphic design to enhance my ability to produce better projects. I get the sense that this specialization will provide me with the tools I need to grow in my hobby and maybe make a little money along the way.

By Matt A

Feb 10, 2016

I found this course extremely engaging and interesting. The fundamentals are basic but that's what the outline states. It's good for beginners or graphic designers who need a refresher on the basics. You can execute the course at your own pace, following the timeline or completing assignments and lectures ahead of time. I'd highly recommend this course.

By Vivek R

Apr 20, 2016

Brilliant Course. It gives you a good theoretical understanding of modern graphic design. At the same time, it also gives you ample opportunity to make graphic design through its multiple peer reviewed assignments. Personally, I came out with some of my best poster works during this course as it pushed me to experiment beyond what I had done till then.

By alexpazsoldan

Feb 15, 2016

Better than most courses why? because you are forced to create things a feature i have not seen in many MOOC's. Yes there is the ocassional programming assignment (mostly consisting of prewritten code and clear rules) in which you get to create something but that is not really creating something new. That's what you are stimulated to do in this course.

By Rashmi P

Apr 8, 2021

Great course! Learned so much about Graphic Design Fundamentals. There are helpful videos to understand different topics that are discussed. Short course but packed with lots of information. Assignments that are in the course are very helpful for application of your knowledge. I recommend this course to anyone who want to know what is Graphic Design.

By Marissa P

Jul 28, 2020

This is a great opportunity to refresh and re-learn the basics of Graphic Design. It opens up the way to study further and take more lessons as it encourages the designer to explore the many aspects of a growing idea. Thank you for this free online class even during these trying times where people need to be socially distant and staying safe at home.

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 Juan S G R

Apr 17, 2016

This course is the best option to know or review all the graphic design essentials and how to combine them to make a good piece of communication art. I really recommend this course in which you will find an excellent structured program to learn from the basic concepts all the way through the very pillars of the graphic design thinking and creation.

By Muhammad I

May 24, 2020

This course was a mind-changing for me. Before this course, I was just a copy cat and tried to make the design what others are doing. It urged me to think differently and make my own unique style and workflow. It's a wow for me. Especially, the typography which I have come across for the first time. It is really the fundamentals of graphic design.

By Johanna H

Apr 27, 2016

It's a great course to start the Coursera Specialization for Graphic Design giving you a basic understanding of the principles. Depending on your own motivation, it is time consuming or not. In my opinion, it's a great course, I learned a lot and am waiting for the next one - Typography - to hopefully be able and complete the whole specialization.

By George E B J

Jan 14, 2016

Great course, awesome professor! The course is great for all, even people who currently work in graphic design. I especially recommend this course for those of us who either have no formal training/education or those of us who have been in the business so long that a refresher course just adds value to what we already accomplish on a daily basis.

By Lori S

Feb 8, 2019

Before this course I was a bit afraid of graphic design, but this course broke it down into parts I could understand. It became less scary and more of a game of playing with shapes and text. I feel like I got a glimpse into the language of graphic design and started to learn it. Hopefully I will grow further as I continue to take the courses.

By Kristina G

Feb 24, 2020

Nice course to learn basics. The main part of the course is a practice which is great! If you want to learn something for real then be ready to spend enough time completing tasks. In general, I spent 2-3 hours on each task (there are about 2 tasks per week) and I am happy to have real results :) After the course I feel motivated to learn more.

By Niladri S J

Sep 10, 2019

Though I had a few basic ideas about graphic design fundamentals, this course helped me go through some organized lessons on those fundamental concepts and some more that were completely new to me. Also, the course engaged me a lot, especially through the practice exercises. And now I can concentrate on a structured approach to graphic design.

By Carmela

May 7, 2020

Definitely learned the fundamentals and foundation of graphic design. I came into this course with a degree in B.A. and experience in digital art. But I knew I did not learn the proper foundations and rules of graphic design. This course was indeed informative and helpful in fulfilling that gap in my knowledge. Highly recommend this course!

By David U

Mar 7, 2016

I had a great time doing this course. Professor Worthington covers the theory in an interesting and useful way. The lectures are short and sweet. The best part of the course is the 9 creative assignments (2 compulsory and 7 optional, but recommended) that really force you to expand your technical skill set and get out of your comfort zone.

By Daniele T

Sep 15, 2016

I really enjoyed this course, I like how It is organized, I like the teacher too, I think that makes a big difference. Many times this course surprised me with things I believed obvious or things I didn't know at all. I would recommend this course to everyone interested in this subject. Thank you CalARTS and Coursera for this opportunity!