Graphic Design

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The Graphic Design emphasis blends the artistic and creative side with the technical aspects of graphics production while also including the study and application of design fundamentals.

 The core curriculum within the Department of Graphics and Imaging Technologies (GIT) includes courses common among all of our six emphasis areas. These courses are primarily introductory classes that provide students with the basic information needed to succeed in the graphics industry. Within the core curriculum, there are also two upper-division classes, an internship and a capstone class. 

Graphic Design Emphasis Courses:

  • Web Graphics Software
  • Intro to Packaging Technology
  • Photography
  • Web and Motion Graphics
  • Print File Preparation and Preflighting
  • Printing Technologies
  • Portfolio Management
  • Color Reproduction

Tips for Students Considering Graphic Design

Modern Graphic Design is a challenging and expanding area of expertise. It calls for a mix of highly developed skills and knowledge including design, history, marketing and sociology. Today’s graphic designers work on every aspect of graphics from planning to completed project - for every kind of printed or electronically delivery platform.

The Graphic Design emphasis curriculum at PSU offers you the opportunity to hone your skills and talents with a combination of required and elective classes that can be customized to your particular strengths.

Classes include high level training in design, conventional art skills, software skills, marketing knowledge and professional practice. Each class is equipped with up-to-date hardware and software used every day by the world’s graphic design experts.

Career Paths in Graphic Design

Upon graduation, you will be qualified for a variety of positions across multiple areas of the graphics industry including, but not limited to, entertainment, business, advertising and education. Opportunities are vast. Employers are looking for trained people with current skills, problem solving abilities and design training. If you are creative and motivated individuals with all of these skills to be successful.

Career opportunities for Graphic Design graduates vary and continue to grow as technology advances. Below are a list of positions and places where trained Graphic Design graduates are needed.

Typical Positions/Areas in Graphic Design:

  • Print Design Specialist
  • Layout Artist
  • Advertising Designer
  • Publication Designer
  • In-House Corporate Designer
  • Signage and Outdoor Design and Advertising
  • Photo Software Editor
  • Medical Graphics Specialist
  • Web/Interactive Graphics
  • Packaging Designer
  • Freelance Designer
  • Motion Graphics Designer
  • Social Media Graphics Specialist
  • Direct Mail and Data-Based Marketing Designer

Typical Employers in Graphic Design:

  • Commercial Printing Companies
  • Advertising Agencies
  • In-House Corporate Design Department
  • Design Studios/Consulting Firms
  • Architectural Firms
  • Web Design Businesses
  • Sign Companies
  • Mobile App Developers
  • Motion Graphics Firms

Companies Recruiting PSU Graphic Communications Majors

As the need for Graphic Design specialists expands, so does the range of companies and organizations recruiting Pittsburg State University Graphic Communications Degree graduates. The Department of Graphics and Imaging Technologies emphasizes industry relations for the benefit of our graduates.

 These regional, national and international companies understand the superior quality of a Graphic Communications Degree with an emphasis in Graphic Design from PSU. Industry leaders know that our graduates will have the skills to get the job done right and the creative minds to produce projects that generate profits.

 From small companies to large organizations, many opportunities await you at corporate partners such as these:

  • Boelte-Hall Inc.
  • Pitsco
  • Hallmark
  • Henry Wurst, Inc.
  • Stouse
  • Ward Kraft Inc.
  • Leggett & Platt
  • Names and Numbers
  • Limelight Marketing
  • Bernstein Rein
  • Brighton Agency
  • We Are Alexander

About Graphics and Imaging Technologies Department

The B.S.T. in Graphic Communications is a 120-credit Graphic Communications Degree that can be completed in four years of full-time study. Students are asked to declare one of the following areas of emphasis: Digital Media, Graphic Design, Graphics Management, Print Media, Packaging Graphics, or Web/Interactive Media.

All six areas of emphasis within the Graphic Communications program share a core curriculum, classes necessary for the field of graphic communications. In addition to these classes, each of the six distinct areas have specific emphasis and support courses, to round out the major, as well as elective graphics classes, allowing students to customize their degree.

The curriculum offered by the GIT department is under constant review and is always updated to ensure students get exposure to contemporary changes in this dynamic field.

A message from the Chair (February 22, 2021):

On Friday, February 19, 2021, Pittsburg State University issued a news release titled "University makes recommendations on future of programs". This article was also released by the Morning Sun newspaper. The article provides information on recommendations to the Kansas Board of Regents for continuation and discontinuation of programs at Pittsburg State University.

In the article, a number of programs are listed as being discontinued by the university. The first program listed is Graphic Design. There has been some confusion and concern about this listing and how this affects the current Graphic Design emphasis and the Graphics and Imaging Technologies department (GIT) at PSU.

The Graphic Design program being discontinued is the former Commercial Graphics degree that has not be offered for many years. In 2010, the degree offerings in the GIT department were consolidated from two separate majors into one major with multiple emphasis areas. Students who began under the old Commercial Graphics major were allowed to graduate as a Commercial Graphics major. No new students began this degree after 2011. Now that all students have graduated under the old Commercial Graphics major, this major is being discontinued. The Graphic Design referenced in the article was an internal code used for the Commercial Graphics major and is no longer being used, which is why it is being discontinued.

The current Graphic Design emphasis and all emphasis areas and degree offerings in the Graphics and Imaging Technologies department are strong, vital parts of the total degree offerings at PSU and have been recommended for continuation by the administration. There is no discussion in any form of reducing, eliminating, or discontinuing the current degree offerings within the Graphics and Imaging Technologies department.

The GIT department serves over 150 majors and 70 minors with a 95% placement rate for our graduates. The GIT faculty are dedicated to developing new courses and curriculum to provide relevant educational experiences that meet the needs of the graphics industry. In 2018, the Graphic Communications degree was fully accredited by the Accrediting Council for Collegiate Graphic Communications.

For more information about this article or additional information about the current Graphics and Imaging Technologies degree offerings, please contact Doug Younger, GIT Interim Chair at or at 620-235-4420.


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