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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Introduction to Typography by California Institute of the Arts

5,314 ratings

About the Course

Typography is the art of manipulating the visual form of language to enrich and control its meaning. It’s an essential area of skill and knowledge for graphic designers. Typography predates modern graphic design by around 500 years; it is rich in rules, conventions, and esoteric terminology—but it remains an exciting space for invention and expression. In this rigorous introductory course, we will study, name, and measure the characteristics of letterforms. We’ll consider the pragmatic concerns involved in selecting and combining type. We’ll peek into the 
rich historical, cultural, and aesthetic histories of familiar typefaces. We’ll discuss time-tested conventions and best practices in setting type, as governed by principles of hierarchy and spatial organization. And we’ll explore the expressive, meaning-making potential of type. Informative lectures will be complemented by a series of three peer-assessed assignments, culminating 
in an opportunity to design a full-scale typographic poster. Please note that this is not a software course; a basic working knowledge of Adobe InDesign or other 
page layout software will be assumed. You will need access to a computer and page layout software, such as InDesign, to complete the assignments....

Top reviews


Apr 12, 2021

This was an excellent course. I learned a whole lot about typography. The videos and assignments were interesting and challenging. I'm happy I was able to complete this course and highly recommend it!


Jul 25, 2020

The course is very interesting and well presented, the assignments are really helpful for the learning process. I would recommend to anyone interested in design, art, web design or just for curiosity.

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26 - 50 of 1,136 Reviews for Introduction to Typography

By Suzanne A V

Nov 8, 2020

This course gave me an in depth understanding of the history, as well as the technical aspects of typography. Typography is something that has been very interesting for me and upon finishing this course, I now have thorough appreciation of the subject. The lessons were presented in short videos with clear and understandable instructions. I like how the required homework progressed as the lessons advanced. These homework greatly helped in facilitating better understanding of Typography. This is an outstanding course and I commend the instructor, Anther Kiley and his team for a job well done.

By Gail W

Apr 3, 2016

Great lectures & examples! Very appreciative of the California Institute of the Arts for creating this course and others.

One additional thing that would have been nice would have been an organised forum for each typeface to see what others had done. I always wanted to find others who were working on my typeface, but the review process was just random and I only came across a couple. I had some communication in a discussion forum, but only with one person. Would have been efficient to have organised forums by typeface & highly educational too!

By Maneesha

May 15, 2020

They say this is a basic course, but this have lot more to learn in short time period. This is rally interesting and every little thing is so valuable. All lectures are in short and sweet manner but with lot of details and explanations. Even the assignments are so interesting with lot of steps to follow, which make easily leading through the course. Thank you for teacher and the all the technical team who made this course so interesting and smooth flow.

By Gabriella P

Dec 13, 2017

This was a great and informative course. I still find a bit of fault in the fact that all assignments are peer-reviewed. It's hard to learn fully that way. While I appreciate that peer reviewing is incredibly important, especially when it comes to art, it would be nice to have instructor input as well. That being said, I understand that the instructors have a great load with their in-college classes.

By Daria D

Sep 18, 2020

The course materials were excellent. It was a challenging and an interesting course.

Why do I remove a star?

The assessment is based almost entirely on peer review. For me it was an opportunity to see other peoples' work. I tried to give the helpful and detailed reviews. I didn't receive the same in return: the reviews I got where one sentence long (one of them was "good job").

I think that the course should include a feedback from the reviewed on the review, and this should be part of the final score. Something along the lines of: "was this review helpful?"

By Regine A

Nov 18, 2020

I got to develop my skills when it comes to typography. I've been struggling to choose a typeface to use in my design but with the help of this course, I somewhat learn to be creative by experimenting with letters. It was a short time but it indeed prepared me to widen my skills in this area of graphic designing.

By Irina V

Nov 22, 2021

The content of the course is informative and easy to understand. The assignments are interesting and can be used for a portfolio. But the assessment system by fellow students is too dependent on the moral qualities of the assessor and, in most cases, is not objective.

By Chloe S

Jan 8, 2021

This is a nice intro, but it is very historically based, and as I'm more of a `maker`, I felt that I would have rather made more, instead of learning about the past of multiple typefaces. I felt a bit unprepared for the last assignment, which required much more composition practice than what had been taught during the class. The last week could use some more studies of the process to create a typographic poster (the same way Fundamentals of Graphic design focused on the iterative process to build a poster, showing all parameters that could be played with). I find that showing the process is more instructive than showing the final piece and studying it. A good course still, but it could be improved !

By Markus R

Apr 21, 2016

Very interesting topic, but even for an introductory course not nearly enough to justify a full 4 week course for € 71!

The first course, Fundamentals of Graphic Design, had more content, more (optional) assignments, and covered Typography, too.

By Rania M S M

Oct 27, 2017

i think some point in the course need more explanation , too much information in little time

i wish that the instructor give his feed back about all the assignments , this will be very helpful and useful , but the course is good and useful

By shubhangi g

Aug 5, 2020

The overall course was nice and helpful. I just feel like the last assignment should have more parts. Like the course should at least one example video on how to design the poster, before giving an assignment on designing a poster.

By Digby D

Dec 13, 2017

The first two weeks' material serve as an unexpectedly good sleep aid. The last two offer a very bare-bones explanation of basic typographic principles. Fine for the absolute beginner.

By Megan W

Apr 30, 2021

Instructions for the assignments weren't great. I made mistakes that I would have caught it I'd had some clarification...and I know I'm not the only one.

By Ramzi O

Sep 8, 2020

Generic, I feel like a lot of this is found on youtube and can be learnt online. its getting a bit old and needs revision for post 2020 market and ideas

By Dax C

Jun 15, 2020

The course itself is great, however, the comments were not helpful, wrong and downright disrespectful, coursera should pay attention to this problem.

By Pajera D

May 27, 2020

If you are beginer, this is suit to you. But if you have experience in graphic design field, this is too easy.

By Carlise T

Mar 31, 2016

It was extremely high level. I would have appreciated more content in the videos.

By Isabelle P

Apr 7, 2022

The content is interesting, but the peer reviews are a deal-breaker. Some students don't read the instructions themselves, and grade you based on their interpretation of the instructions.

By Eugenia R

Mar 17, 2022

Super basic. I know is an introductory course but even so, I would not recommend it to anyone.

By Fatteen B

Dec 31, 2021

too much basic

By Liana B

Aug 27, 2021

As a beginner in typography, I am very happy I took this course. The videos are, alas, short, but the information in them is very concentrated. Also I really liked the speaker of the course, his way of telling the history of typography was very interesting.

Other than that, I found the assignments very logically structured: we are supposed to focus on one font and through its understanding we learn things and then get to make our typography poster in the end.

I loved this course much more than the "fundamentals course'. Glad I took it.

By Max A M

Jan 3, 2021

A really nice course, now I know how to format my text properly. I learned the basics of legibility, how to left-justify my text correctly, secrets to make even a small text legible, how to set correct tracking and leading, line breaks. In addition to that, the course provides reference books for those who want to learn the subject more deeply. As a side note, I would also recommend the instructor to reference some documentary movies about typography like Linotype and Helvetica so students would love the subject even more.


Nov 24, 2021


By Lyndsaye R R

Feb 22, 2021

I really enjoyed how there was so much history incorporated into our understanding of the processes of typography and the typefaces themselves. I felt like I was hanging on everything the instructor said - the information and how it was presented was so valuable. Even if typesetting isn't a facet of design you're interested in, it definitely helps you better understand type and how to incorporate it into design.

By Mathilde O

Nov 24, 2022

Great course to start with typography. I had no previous experience with Adobe Illustrator or Adobe Indesign prior to this course and the various assignements enabled me to practice and gain basic knowledge of the softwares.

Careful however, no software training is given in this course, you need to learn on your own. A list of platforms and learning material is provided to you at the begining of the course.