Computer Graphic Design—Print Degree (CGD)

This program provides students with the visual design, communication, and computer graphic skills necessary to obtain an entry-level position in this field or to continue their education at a four-year college or university. For those already employed, they can enroll in this career program to upgrade their skills for potential advancement. You will learn basic and advanced techniques for creating effective promotional and collateral pieces, publications, packaging design, corporate identity and digital artwork through the use of state-of-the-art computer technology and the latest graphic design software. In addition to learning page layout software, design theory and techniques, and preparing design work for print, you’ll learn advanced computer skills, such as digital imaging, electronic illustration, and web design. The most current graphic and web design software is used in the CGD program. This includes: the Adobe Creative Suite 4 (Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Acrobat, Dreamweaver and Flash), QuarkXPress 8.0, and the latest web browsers (Internet Explorer, Safari, Firefox, and Opera).


Suggested Course Order





CGD101 Design Theory


Prerequisites: ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placement; CGD104 (or co-requisite)
Note: CGD101 should be taken in the fall                             
CGD104 Digital Imaging 


Prerequisites:Basic computer skills; ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placementNote:  CGD104 should be taken in the fall
CGD109  or CIS 127 Introduction to Web MediaComputer Technologies


CGD Prerequisites: Basic computer skills; FYE101, RDG098, or placementCIS Prerequisites: ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placement
ART263 Drawing I


ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placement

English Composition I


ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placement
CGD105 Electronic Illustration


Prerequisite:CGD101 or permission of division deanNote: CGD105 should be taken in the spring
CGD235 Typography in Visual Communication


Prerequisites:CGD101, 104, or permission of division deanNote: CGD235 should be taken in the spring
CGD240 Creative Web Design I   


Prerequisites: CGD109 or CIS127 (grade C or better) or permission of division deanNote: CGD240 should be taken in the spring
ART251 Two-Dimensional Design


ENG098, FYE101, RDG098, or placement; ART263 (strongly recommended)

English Composition II


CGD102 Publication Design


Prerequisites:CGD101, 104, 105, 235Note: CGD102 should be taken in the fall
CGD204 Advanced Digital Imaging 


Prerequisite:CGD104 or permission of division deanNote: CGD204 should be taken in the fall



ENG098, FYE101, MAT092, RDG098, or placement
Health Elective


  Electives: BIO101, BIO103, BIO112, BIO230, CHC101, CHC102, CHC108, CHC220, EXS102, EXS201, PER126, PER127, PER130
CGD241 Creative Web Design II


CGD240 (grade C or better) or permission of division dean
MAT126 Topics in Mathematics (or higher)


MAT096 or placement
CGD103 Print Production for Designers


Prerequisites:CGD101, 104, 105, 235Note: CGD103 should be taken in the spring.
CGD106 Portfolio Preparation 


Prerequisites:CGD101, 102, 104, 105, 204, 235, 240Co-requisite: CGD103

Note: CGD106 should be taken in the spring

CGD Professional Elective**


Electives: See Professional Electives listed to the right
Social Science Elective


Science Elective


Electives: BIO, BTC, CHE, EAS, EGM, NRD, PHY
                                                  Total: 62/64 credits

Campus/format: A majority of this program can be completed during the day at the Gardner Campus.

Transfer options: Transfer agreements exist with Charter Oak State College and the University of Phoenix. Students are encouraged to continue their education in areas such as electronic media, marketing, or communications.

Visit MWCC’s transfer services website:

3 Plus ONE eligible–go to:

Special requirements: CGD students should either have a computer at home with Internet access and the Adobe Creative Suite or be able to spend time outside of class in the Graphic Design computer labs where Internet access and the Creative Adobe Suite are provided. A grade of C or better is recommended for students taking CGD courses. Students should follow suggested course sequence since most courses are not offered out of sequence. Technical standards must be met with or without accommodations.

Career options: Graphic designers may be employed by advertising agencies, design firms, marketing departments, commercial art, reproduction firms, or printing and publishing companies. Also, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, many graphic designers are self-employed.

Earning potential: $30,600 to $53,310.

**CGD Professional Electives for Print Majors:
ART***    Any higher level ART beyond ART251 & 263
BUS125    Communication for Business and Industry
CIS109    Programming in Basic
CIS120    Microcomputer Applications
CGD110    Introduction to Animation
CGD112    Communication in Multimedia Design
CGD205    Digital Photo Art
CGD225    Advanced Electronic Illustration
CGD242    Interactive Web Design
CGD244    Designing for E-Commerce
MGT110    Small Business Management
MKT241    Advertising
PHO115    Digital Photography
THE113    Speech

Program Competencies for CGD, CGDC

Upon graduation from this program, students shall have demonstrated the ability to:

Exhibit a solid understanding of the fundamentals of design, including the elements and principles of design and typography as they are applied to the development of effective communication pieces for both print and web design. Students will have an understanding of the concepts of copyrights and intellectual property.
Possess a working knowledge of the design process especially how it relates to: audience definition, research, analysis, and concept development; the production of thumbnail sketches, rough drafts, and the preparation of final comprehensive print layouts and websites.
Transform digital images into new pieces of art through the use of Adobe Photoshop with emphasis on the creation of high-quality graphics for print and the web.
Create complex electronic illustrations and single page layouts with a solid understanding of the complex functions of Adobe Illustrator.
Have a solid working knowledge of the fundamentals of building websites using HTML, XHTML, CSS and Dreamweaver in code view, with the ability to design structurally as well as aesthetically.
Exhibit the ability to work with advanced graphic design principles, grids, typography, and advanced layout techniques while utilizing QuarkXPress and Adobe InDesign.
Possess a working knowledge of print capabilities, the printing process, and understanding pre-press techniques.
Prepare for the job market with career planning, skill assessment, resume writing, and interviewing, as well as compile a professional-quality portfolio for entering the job market or for transferring to a four-year program.
Manage and development client-based visual communication pieces with the use of effective design and layout while meeting strict deadlines.

Technical Standards* for CGDC, CGD, CGWC, and CGW

Students entering these programs must be able to demonstrate the ability to:

Comprehend textbook material at the 11th grade level.
Communicate and assimilate information either in spoken, printed, signed, or
computer voice format.
Gather, analyze, and draw conclusions from data.
Write at a college level as evidenced by completion of ENG098 or placement
into ENG101.
Read and proof printed text from a computer screen, with or without corrective adaptive devices.
Exhibit social skills appropriate to professional interactions.
Perceive, interpret, and use graphic images in their entirety from a computer screen.
Perceive and use computer screen RGB colors.
Learn to operate a computer with sufficient manual dexterity to manipulate peripherals such as keyboard, mouse, and graphics tablets.
Be physically capable to work at a computer for a minimum of several hours.