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Visual Communication Arts (VCA)

VCA 100 -  Materials and Techniques  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course introduces students to commercial drawing techniques with an emphasis on perspective, pencil, pen & ink, marker, water color and gouache when illustrating a variety of different products and illustration formats. Creative media experimentation is encouraged through the assignments. Group 2 course. Critical Thinking - Direct.

VCA 125 -  Typography I  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course serves as an introduction to typographic history, letterforms, mechanics, terminology and usage. Students will complete projects that lead them to an understanding of the fundamental and technical aspects of this abstract art including font selection and typesetting. As part of this course students will also learn the basics of Adobe InDesign. Desktop publishing software used to create single and multi-page files, format text using style sheets, manage color, import and create graphics and tables and prepare files for print production. The Adobe Certified Associate Exam for InDesign is included in the cost for this course. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 150

Recommended Prerequisites: Intermediate keyboarding skills, intermediate to advanced understanding of vector drawing, desktop publishing software and the Macintosh system.

VCA 126 -  Typography II  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This class serves as continuation to typography history, trends, display faces, and grids with an emphasis on book typography, binding, and structuring methods. Students will complete projects that lead them to an understanding of intermediate typography, current typographic trends and comparative analysis of typefaces that relate to the field of Visual Communications as well as printed and electronic media. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 125

Recommended Prerequisites: Intermediate keyboarding skills, intermediate to advanced understanding of vector drawing, desktop publishing software and the Macintosh system.

VCA 127 -  Digital Imaging  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

Students will learn Adobe Photoshop, a bitmap manipulation tool used to create images for both print and the web. Students will learn how to incorporate color, use layers, create special effects, use filters, and use a variety of selection techniques for proper image editing. Students will also learn the basics of using a digital camera and scanner as well as color management, how to restore damaged images, automate tasks, and how to prepare files for print. The Abode Certified Associate Exam for Photoshop is included in the cost for this course. Group 2 course. Critical Thinking - Direct.

Recommended Prerequisites: CIT 100, Basic keyboarding skills highly recommended. Use of the Macintosh or Windows operating system highly recommended.

VCA 146 -  Interactive Animation  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course's focus will be on creation of animation using both traditional methods and Adobe Animate software. Students will learn the basics of animation and storytelling, file management and organization, as well as interactive navigation. Students will also learn how to incorporate sound and video in projects and learn how to prepare their files for use on the Web. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 127, VCA 150

Recommended Prerequisites: VCA 125

VCA 147 -  Web Design I  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course will focus on creative website design including site planning, interactive navigation, web fonts, information design theory, file management, and user experience (UX). Students will learn industry best practices and develop a basic process by which any web design challenge should be approached. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 127, VCA 150

Recommended Prerequisites: VCA 125

VCA 150 -  Digital Graphics Design I  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course covers the basics of using Adobe Illustrator to create vector objects and layouts for print and interactive environments. Students will learn how to create and manipulate shapes, work with type, color, gradients, fills and strokes. Students will learn how to work with spot and process colors, create die lines for packaging and other basic design principles. Students will also learn to prep files for print and choose the correct color space for various applications. The Adobe Certified Associate Exam for Illustrator is included in the cost for this course. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct.

Recommended Prerequisites: CIT 100, Recommended competencies: Basic keyboarding skills highly recommended. Use of the Macintosh or Windows operating system highly recommended.

VCA 200 -  Visual Communications II  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

Through this course you will gain insight and an introduction to the theory of graphic design through practice in researching, brainstorming, creative problem solving, comping, design brief writing and production of print and digitally driven graphics projects like: logo marks, identity developments, posters, collateral and greeting cards. Students embrace print and digital pre-production techniques and receiving constructive criticism of work and practice. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 125

Recommended Prerequisites: ENG 112

Corequisites: VCA 220

VCA 220 -  Visual Communications III  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

Through this course, you will gain insight and introduction to the theory of advertising design and art direction through practice in researching, brainstorming, marketing, creative problem solving, copywriting and editorial planning of print and digital advertising, advertising campaigns, television storyboards and product branding. Traditional and digital best practices will be explored as students work on campaign voice and receiving/giving constructive criticism using industry terminology. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 125

Recommended Prerequisites: ENG 112

Corequisites: VCA 200

VCA 225 -  Visual Communications Studio  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

By the end of this course, students will have participated in two hands-on "real world" design projects in which you will act as copywriter, art director, designer, filmmaker, photographer or illustrator. Service learning projects are for various regional not-for-profit clients. You will learn all aspects of pre-press work, digital workflow, production, and printing via field trips to area service providers and professionals while also learning to work with clients and the self-driven responsibilities of teamwork. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct, Degree Req:Cultural Persp/Div.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 200 and VCA 220 or instructor permission.

VCA 230 -  Visual Communications V  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

In this course you will excel in setting occupational/educational aspirations and offering/receiving constructive criticism of your work. You will design and produce a body of work for your portfolio, tailored to your individual goals, be it in Illustration, Graphic Design, Motion Graphics or Art Direction. Progressive Visual Communications theory and practice will also be studied through projects in packaging design, point-of-purchase displays, info-graphics, mobile app development and more. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 200, VCA 220 or instructor permission.

VCA 235 -  Visual Comm Portfolio  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

Students explore various methods of preparing professional portfolios, as well as the packaging and marketing of their portfolio works in preparation for further education and/or job interviews related to their career goals in visual communications. Along with the portfolio, each student prepares a resume, digital portfolio, and considers other self-promotional pieces to complete his/her portfolio package. The emphasis of this course is that each student compiles a professional looking and complete portfolio package based on his/her occupational and educational goals. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 200, VCA 220

VCA 246 -  Interactive Animation II  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course will focus on the advanced exploration of interactive navigation, animation and storytelling that is created for and exists on the web. Advanced Design theory, greater interactivity, file architecture, web loading, hosting and uploading for Animate and more exposure to Motion software will emphasis creative and narrative language. Students should be self-motivated, this advanced section involves independent projects. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 146

Recommended Prerequisites: Intermediate to advanced understanding of bitmap or vector drawing, typography and the Macintosh platform.

VCA 247 -  Web Design II  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course will focus on advanced creative website development and design including site planning, interactive navigation, information design theory, file management, and user experience (UX). Students will explore app design and real-world web projects to deepen their understanding of interactive information design. Students should be self motivated since this advanced course involves independent projects. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Degree Req:Cultural Persp/Div.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 147

VCA 250 -  Time Based Media  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

A multisensory, theory driven exposure and exploration of time-based visual communication environments. The role of typography, image, sound, space, luminosity and narrative are assessed and used to create sequences of film and moving image. Students are exposed to tools, theories, aesthetics and techniques used in film editing with Final Cut Pro X, Motion and Digital HD film cameras like Blackmagic and GoPro. Course includes Apple Certification and the Apple FCPx End User Exam. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct, Degree Req:Cultural Persp/Div.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 127

Recommended Prerequisites: VCA 125

VCA 252 -  Time Based Media II  

Credit Hours: 3, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

A multisensory, theory driven continuation and exploration of time-based visual communication environments. The role of motion graphics, sound design, promo films and narrative are assessed and used to create more advanced sequences of moving image. Students are exposed to advanced tools, theories, aesthetics and techniques used in film editing medium using Final Cut Pro X 10.1 and Motion. Students should be self-motivated, this advanced section involves independent projects. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct, Degree Req:Cultural Persp/Div.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 250

VCA 290 -  Visual Comm Internship  

Credit Hours: 4, Contact Hours: 4

Division: Humanities

This course is the capstone for the AAS degree in Creative Management Art Direction. This internship provides on-the-job experience for the student who wishes to pursue a career in visual communications. Customized to meet the learning needs of the student and the job requirements of the sponsoring firms, students spend 180 hours in paid or non-paid, supervised on-the-job training experiences. In addition students participate in bi-weekly reports and weekly online methodology discussion boards with the instructor/peers. Students must apply one month prior to the semester they wish to complete class. Group 2 course. Communications - Direct, Critical Thinking - Direct, Degree Req:Cultural Persp/Div.

Required Prerequisites: Students must have completed all VCA courses with a minimum 2.5 GPA and departmental approval.

Recommended Prerequisites: The student should possess good written, graphic and oral communication skills, and have a portfolio of work/resume to show employers.

VCA 293 -  Visual Comm Study Abroad  

Credit Hours: 1, Contact Hours: 1

Division: Humanities

In this class, students are provided the opportunity to travel to a specified destination affiliated with the corresponding visual communications non-trip course. This course will serve to integrate the student learning experience and provide a sense of cultural perspective, diversity and regional awareness. The course is an opportunity for students to explore other areas around the world while applying discipline-specific course content. For a more specific course description, please review the course description of the associated non-trip course. Group 2 course.

Required Prerequisites: VCA 100, or VCA 230