Undergraduate Advising for Design

Why is advising important? 

Proper enrollment is critically important to a student's time in college (every class is an investment), but enrollment advice is only part of what an advisor can do to help.

Advisors are guides to help students navigate the wealth of resources and opportunities at the University of Kansas. They are advocates for students in need, and they are liaisons between students and the institutions that serve them. Most importantly, advisors help students identify their ambitions and, from time to time, mentor them to effectively pursue those ambitions.

In addition to Zac Shields, the professional advisor for Design students, faculty in KU Design are also available in these capacities, because we know that it takes a village to train some of the best Designers around!

What are my responsibilities as a student?

The Department of Design works tirelessly to support our students. That said, we believe that students do best when they take personal ownership of their education! Design students should keep the following general rules in mind:


Design students should plan to meet with Zac Shields, the professional advisor for Design students, or a faculty advisor at least once per semester to discuss the current semester and plan for the next!


General Availability:

Zac is available by appointment Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays each week between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Students should schedule an appointment (recommended duration in parentheses) to discuss any of the following:

  • Next-Semester Enrollment (30 minutes)
  • Prospective Interest in Studying Design (30 minutes)
  • Graduation Checks (30 minutes)
  • Probation Action Plans (60 minutes)
  • Financial Aid Appeals (60 minutes)

For other questions, Zac is available by appointment or on a drop-in basis! Zac's drop-in hours are Mondays and Fridays each week from 8 a.m. - 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Students are also welcome to call Zac at 785-864-2959 with questions and concerns, just as they would with an email or in-person drop-in. They should include their name and KUID number with their question(s)!

Appointment Options:

Zac is available to meet by appointment with students either in person (Marvin Hall room 200) or over the phone (785-864-2959) - whichever is best for them!

How to Set Up an Appointment:

Students are welcome to set up an appointment in any of these ways:

  1. Select a time on Zac's online calendar (recommended for current Design students).
  2. Email ZacShields@ku.edu and include a few days and general times in the next two weeks that work well for them.
  3. Call Zac at 785-864-2959 and state their name, KUID number (if they're a KU student), and a few days and general times in the next two weeks that work well for them.

Students are welcome to meet with Zac Shields, the professional advisor for Design students, regardless of their year in school, admission status at KU, or admission status for KU Design.

Undergraduate Admissions

Admission requirements and application processes are outlined on our department website. Specific requirements for each group are linked below:

Incoming Freshmen: http://design.ku.edu/admission-requirements

Transfer Students: http://design.ku.edu/transfer

International Students: http://design.ku.edu/international-students

Current KU Students: http://design.ku.edu/current-ku-students

Students Seeking Readmission and Non-Degree Seeking Students: https://design.ku.edu/readmits-and-nondegree-seekers

Questions?

Questions regarding undergraduate admissions for the Department of Design should be directed to design@ku.edu.

Undergraduate

Requirements for Graduation

Degrees from the Department of Design and the School of Architecture, Design and Planning are conferred on candidates who have satisfactorily completed the necessary course requirements.

Students must complete the total hours required for the degree; 45 credit hours must be in junior/senior-level courses, numbered 300 and above. At least 30 hours must be in residence to receive a degree from the department and KU. Only 3 hours of activity and/or performance work will count toward the degree.

English

At least 9 hours of English composition and literature are required of all design students, consisting of:

ENGL 101Composition3
ENGL 102Critical Reading and Writing3
Select one of the following:3
Topics in Reading and Writing: _____
Introduction to Fiction
Introduction to Poetry
Introduction to the Drama

Some areas require additional course work in English. Students must enroll continuously in ENGL 101 or ENGL 102 , as appropriate, until completed. When the requirement is reduced, due to an ACT/SAT score or an AP exemption, students must substitute these hours in liberal arts electives.

Remedial Courses

Remedial courses listed in the catalog and Schedule of Classes are numbered below 100. Such courses include, but are not limited to, MATH 2 . If such courses are required for a student they will have to pass the course(s), however, the remedial course(s) do not count toward graduation in design and may not be counted as distribution courses.

First-Year Preparation: Basic Design Studies

A minimum of 9 hours in Basic Design Studies courses is required before a student may enter a major program in the sophomore year. The 9 hours are composed of Design Thinking and Making I and II and Drawing for Design (BDS) studios. These specified prerequisites must be completed before enrollment in advanced design studio courses.

The typical first year enrollment below should be followed for two semesters, unless specific requirements for a degree program are different (16 hours each semester):

Basic Design Studies (6)
BDS 101Design Thinking and Making3
BDS 102Design Thinking and Making II3
Drawing for Design (3)
BDS 103Drawing for Design3
Studio (3)
Elective3
Hallmark Symposium (2)
ADS 320Hallmark Symposium Series2
English (6)
ENGL 101Composition3
ENGL 102Critical Reading and Writing3
History of art (6)
HA 100Introduction to Western Art History3
History of art elective3
Liberal arts (6)
Required electives6

KU Core & Liberal Arts Requirements

All design majors must take at least the following courses in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences:

ENGL 101Composition (GE21)3
ENGL 102Critical Reading and Writing (GE21)3
Select one of the following:3
Topics in Reading and Writing: _____ (GE11)
Introduction to Fiction (GE11)
Introduction to Poetry (GE11)
Introduction to the Drama (GE11)
ENGL to be determined by the area3
Arts & Humanities course - HA prefered (GE3H)3
Social Sciences courses (GE3S)3
Natural Science courses (GE3N)3
FIN 101Personal Finance (GE12)3
or MATH 101 College Algebra
COMS 130Speaker-Audience Communication (GE22)3
or JOUR 150 Stand and Deliver
or COMS 132 Speaker-Audience Communication for the Professional Schools
SOC 104Elements of Sociology (GE41)3
Social Responsibility & Ethics (GE5)3
History of art:
HA 100/300Introduction to Western Art History (GE42)3
ADS 340History and Philosophy of Design3
Additional hours of art history 6

Concentration-specific CLAS requirements are listed with the course work in more detail.

Programs

The Department of Design offers the B.F.A. in design with concentrations in

  • Environmental Design,
  • Illustration and Animation,
  • Industrial Design,
  • Photo Media, and
  • Visual Communication Design.

All program requirements are 124 credit hours and normally can typically be completed in 8 semesters (4 years).

Concentrations

Illustration and Animation

The Illustration & Animation program prepares students to develop and refine methodologies in image making while acquiring an effective use of visual language, and problem solving skills. Technical skills and techniques, as well as a refined understanding of composition, color and value are developed through the introduction and exploration of traditional and contemporary media. Business and legal issues of the industry are addressed that prepare students for numerous professional options that include print media, book publishing, motion graphics, entertainment, gallery installation, fashion, toys and games, and surface design.

The number of students admitted in the fall is based on resources (space and number of faculty members).

First-year  Checkpoint / Entrance to the Second Year Studios

Beyond first-year studies there is a maximum of 20 seats available for degree-seeking Illustration & Animation majors each year. There are typically two students vying for every one available position. In order to arrive at an impartial means of entry, all first year students declaring Illustration & Animation as their major are ranked according to their cumulative GPA. The first 18 students on the list are allowed first opportunity to enroll in ILLU 305 (Image Making), the first of the two-part second-year foundational sequence. Enrollment for ILLU 305 is done ONLY during the Spring Advising & Enrollment period (for the following Fall term) and entry into the course is based solely on cumulative GPA standings. In order to qualify, students must have successfully completed BDS 101 and 103 (or their equivalents) and be enrolled in (or have completed) BDS 102 and ILLU 205 (or their equivalent) at the time of Spring Advising and Enrollment. Students will also enroll in VISC 201 (Visual Communication).

Note: ILLU 205 Drawing Media for Illustration should be taken in the spring semester of the freshman year.

A total of 124 credit hours is required for the degree, including 67 hours in art and design courses, as follows:

Foundation (9)
BDS 101Design Thinking and Making3
BDS 102Design Thinking and Making II3
BDS 103Drawing for Design3
or ART 101 Drawing I
Studio Requirements (12)
VISC 201Visual Communication Design3
PHMD Elective3
DRWG 213Life Drawing I3
PNTG 263Painting I3
Major Studies (36) 1
ILLU 205Drawing Media for Illustration3
ILLU 305Image Making3
ILLU 315Introduction to Illustration3
ILLU 405Drawing Media for Illustration II3
ILLU 410Fundamentals of Animation4
ILLU 415Illustration Concepts3
ILLU 425Concept Art3
ILLU 435Sequential and Narrative Illustration4
ILLU 510Animation (or Visual Art Elective (300+))3
ILLU 445Advanced Concept Art3
ILLU 535Promotion and Marketing for Illustration4
Professional Studies (10)
ADS 320Hallmark Symposium Series (1 credit hour, 4 semesters)4
Select two from the following:6
Intra Design Problems: _____
Internship Credit
Topics in Design: _____
Portfolio
ART 300 & 500: Special Topic in VA
Study Abroad: _____ (and ADS 533 Study Abroad Documentation)
KU Core & Liberal Arts (57)
English: Basic requirements9
COMS 130Speaker-Audience Communication3
or JOUR 150 Stand and Deliver
or COMS 132 Speaker-Audience Communication for the Professional Schools
Arts & Humanities course (GE3H) This requirement should be fulfilled by an HA elective.3
Natural Sciences course (GE3N)3
FIN 101Personal Finance (GE12)3
or MATH 101 College Algebra
Social Sciences course (GE3S)3
SOC 104Elements of Sociology (or other GE41 course)3
Social Responsibility & Ethics (GE5)3
History of Art/Architecture/Design:
HA 100/300Introduction to Western Art History3
ADS 340History and Philosophy of Design3
HA electives3
Academic concentration (9 hours at the 300+ level, no Design or Visual Art)9
General electives9
 
1

To enroll in Illustration and Animation courses in this category, students must pass a review and go through checkpoints. For more information, refer to the undergraduate degree and review requirements on the Design website.

Industrial Design

Graduates of KU’s Industrial Design program are particularly attractive to potential employers because of our well rounded and rigorous curriculum. Our students find career opportunities in a wide variety of disciplines including product design, furniture design, exhibit design, package design, human factors, design research and product planning. The variety of products and systems that fall within the potential scope of an industrial designer's work is extremely broad. Examples range from household appliances to aircraft interiors and from furniture to major electronics equipment, transportation vehicles, and myriad other product areas.

First-year  Checkpoint / Entrance to the Second Year Studios

Beyond first-year studies there is a maximum of 22 seats available for degree-seeking Industrial Design majors each year. There are typically two students vying for every one available position. In order to arrive at an impartial means of entry, all first year students declaring Industrial Design as their major are ranked according to their cumulative GPA. The first 20 students on the list are allowed first opportunity to enroll in INDD 284 (Intro Industrial Design Studio), the first of the two-part second-year foundational sequence. Enrollment for INDD 284 is done ONLY during the Spring Advising & Enrollment period (for the following Fall term) and entry into the course is based solely on cumulative GPA standings. In order to qualify, students must have successfully completed BDS 101 and 103 (or their equivalents) and be enrolled in (or have completed) BDS 102 and INDD 212 (or their equivalent) at the time of Spring Advising and Enrollment. 

A total of 124 hours is required for the degree, including 67 hours in design, as follows:

Foundation (9)
BDS 101Design Thinking and Making3
BDS 102Design Thinking and Making II3
BDS 103Drawing for Design3
Studio Requirements (15)
VISC 201Visual Communication Design3
INDD 508Materials and Processes3
INDD 510Human Factors in Design3
INDD 512Methods in Design3
Elective studio in Design, Architecture, or Visual Art3
Major Studies (33) 1
INDD 212Drawing for Industrial Design3
INDD 284Basic Industrial Design Studio3
INDD 302Intermediate Industrial Design Studio3
INDD 378Problems in Industrial Design: _____9
INDD 446Advanced Industrial Design Studio3
INDD 448Professional Industrial Design Studio Practices3
INDD 555Portfolio3
INDD 580Senior Industrial Design Studio3
INDD 581Senior Industrial Design Studio II3
Professional Studies (10)
ADS 320Hallmark Symposium Series (1 credit hour, 4 semesters)4
Select two from the following:6
Intra Design Problems: _____
Internship Credit
Topics in Design: _____
INDD Elective
Study Abroad: _____ (and ADS 533 Study Abroad Documentation)
KU Core & Liberal Arts (57)
English: Basic requirements9
Arts & Humanities Course (GE3H) This course should be fulfilled by an HA elective.3
COMS 130Speaker-Audience Communication (GE22)3
or JOUR 150 Stand and Deliver
or COMS 132 Speaker-Audience Communication for the Professional Schools
Natural Sciences course (GE3N)3
FIN 101Personal Finance (GE12)3
or MATH 101 College Algebra
Social Sciences course (GE3S)3
SOC 104Elements of Sociology (or other GE41 course)3
Social Responsibility & Ethics (GE5)3
History of Art/Architecture/Design:
HA 100/300Introduction to Western Art History3
ADS 340History and Philosophy of Design3
HA electives3
Academic concentration (9 hours at the 300+ level, no Design or Visual Art)9
General electives 9
1

To enroll in Industrial Design courses in this category, students must pass a review and go through checkpoints. For more information, refer to the undergraduate degree and review requirements on the Design website.

Photography

The Photography program at the University of Kansas is dedicated to evaluating and redefining the medium of photography. Through in-depth instruction, students develop a diverse technical skillset, becoming proficient in both analog and digital practices. The program encourages a strong work ethic, and places emphasis on visual literacy. Graduates of the Photography program at the University of Kansas leave with exceptional visual communication skills, fully prepared to successfully engage in a wide range of possible careers in lens‐based media.

The number of students admitted in the fall is based on resources (space and number of faculty members).

First-year  Checkpoint / Entrance to the Second Year Studios

Beyond first-year studies there is a maximum of 20 seats available for degree-seeking Photography majors each year. There are typically two students vying for every one available position. In order to arrive at an impartial means of entry, all first year students declaring Photography as their major are ranked according to their cumulative GPA. The first 18 students on the list are allowed first opportunity to enroll in PHMD 201 (Photography I), the first of the two-part second-year foundational sequence. Enrollment for PHMD 201 is done ONLY during the Spring Advising & Enrollment period (for the following Fall term) and entry into the course is based solely on cumulative GPA standings. In order to qualify, students must have successfully completed BDS 101 and 103 (or their equivalents) and be enrolled in (or have completed) BDS 102 and PHMD 101 (or their equivalent) at the time of Spring Advising and Enrollment.

A total of 124 hours is required for the degree, including 67 hours in Design, as follows:

Foundation (9)
BDS 101Design Thinking and Making3
BDS 102Design Thinking and Making II3
BDS 103Drawing for Design3
Studio Requirements (15)
VISC 201Visual Communication Design3
4 studio elective courses in Design, Architecture, or Visual Art12
Major Studies (33) 1
PHMD 101Fundamentals of Photography3
PHMD 201Photography I4
PHMD 202Photography II4
PHMD 210Understanding Photographs3
PHMD 402Photo Media Seminar3
PHMD 500Portfolio4
4 additional PHMD courses 300+ 12
Professional Studies (10)
ADS 320Hallmark Symposium Series (1 credit hour, 4 semesters)4
Select two from the following:6
Intra Design Problems: _____
Internship Credit
Topics in Design: _____
Special Topics in Photo Media: _____
Study Abroad: _____ (and ADS 533 Study Abroad Documentation)
KU Core & Liberal Arts (57)
English: Basic requirements9
COMS 130Speaker-Audience Communication (GE22)3
or JOUR 150 Stand and Deliver
or COMS 132 Speaker-Audience Communication for the Professional Schools
Arts & Humanities course (GE3H) This course should be fulfilled by a HA elective.3
Natural Sciences course (GE3N)3
FIN 101Personal Finance (GE12)3
or MATH 101 College Algebra
Social Sciences course (GE3S)3
SOC 104Elements of Sociology (or other GE41 course)3
Social Responsibility & Ethics (GE5)3
History of Art/Architecture/Design:
HA 100/300Introduction to Western Art History3
ADS 340History and Philosophy of Design3
HA 580History of Photography3
Academic concentration (9 hours at the 300+ level, no Design or Visual Art)9
General electives9
 
1

To enroll in Photo Media courses in this category, students must pass a review and go through checkpoints. For more information, refer to the undergraduate degree and review requirements on the Design website.

Visual Communication Design

Visual Communication Designers shape the information that everybody sees, uses and experiences. The Visual Communication Design program at KU prepares students for current professional demands and provides students with the fundamental design thinking, making and process skills required to build a rewarding career and facilitate life-long learning. Career options for visual communication designers include a wide range of areas such as traditional print media, magazine and book design, corporate marketing communications, branding, packaging design, exhibition and environmental design, motion graphic design, website design, interface design and more.

The number of students admitted in the fall is based on resources (space and number of faculty members).

First-year  Checkpoint / Entrance to the Second Year Studios

Beyond first-year studies there is a maximum of 40 seats available for degree-seeking Visual Communication Design majors each year. There are typically two students vying for every one available position. In order to arrive at an impartial means of entry, all first year students declaring Visual Communication as their major are ranked according to their cumulative GPA. The first 36 students on the list are allowed first opportunity to enroll in VISC 202 (Elements of Typography) and VISC 204 (Principles of Visual Communication), the first of the two-part second-year sequence. Enrollment for VISC 202 & 204 is done ONLY during the Spring Advising & Enrollment period (for the following Fall term) and entry into the course is based solely on cumulative GPA standings. In order to qualify, students must have successfully completed BDS 101 and 103 (or their equivalents) and be enrolled in (or have completed) BDS 102 at the time of Spring Advising and Enrollment.

Visual Communication Design Track

A total of 124 credit hours is required for the degree, including 67 hours in design courses, as follows:

Foundation (9)
BDS 101Design Thinking and Making3
BDS 102Design Thinking and Making II3
BDS 103Drawing for Design3
Studio Requirements (15)
ILLU 205Drawing Media for Illustration (or Drawing Elective)3
PHMD 101Fundamentals of Photography (or Photo Media elective)3
3 studio elective courses in Design, Architecture, or Visual Art9
Major Studies (33) 1
VISC 202Elements of Typography3
VISC 204Principles of Visual Communication3
VISC 302Typographic Systems3
VISC 304Designing Understanding3
VISC 402Designer as Author3
VISC 404Designing for Social Interactions3
VISC 414Publication and Editorial4
VISC 520Designing for Change4
VISC 525Senior Problems4
VISC 530Portfolio3
Professional Studies (10)
ADS 320Hallmark Symposium Series (1 credit hour, 4 semesters)4
Select two from the following:6
Intra Design Problems: _____
Internship Credit
Topics in Design: _____
Study Abroad: _____ (and ADS 533 Study Abroad Documentation)
KU Core & Liberal Arts (57)
English: Basic requirements9
Arts & Humanities course (GE3H) This course should be fulfilled by an HA elective.3
COMS 130Speaker-Audience Communication (GE22)3
or JOUR 150 Stand and Deliver
or COMS 132 Speaker-Audience Communication for the Professional Schools
Natural Sciences course (GE3N)3
FIN 101Personal Finance (GE12)3
or MATH 101 College Algebra
Social Sciences course (GE3S)3
SOC 104Elements of Sociology (or other GE41 course)3
Social Responsibility & Ethics (GE5)3
History of Art/Architecture/Design:
HA 100/300Introduction to Western Art History3
ADS 340History and Philosophy of Design3
HA electives3
Academic concentration (9 hours at the 300+ level, no Design or Visual Art)9
General electives9
 
1

To enroll in Visual Communication courses in this category, students must pass a review and go through checkpoints. For more information, refer to the undergraduate degree and review requirements on the Design website.