Graphic Design College of Design
Undergraduate Program





We're excited to have you in the College of Design and wish you much success as you pursue your undergraduate degree. Being an engaged student means you are purposeful in your learning and strive to learn as much as you can from each opportunity. Learning is not limited to the classroom. There are opportunities throughout campus to help you learn more about your interests, skills, values, and identity. To get off to a great start in the College, we recommend that you get involved, plan for your graduation, and see your advisor.

Get Involved




There are many ways to get involved, stay connected, and support the college and University after graduation. One is bound to suit your interests and availability. Engagement opportunities help you build on your academic knowledge through experiences outside of the classroom, with your campus and your broader community. From a professional perspective, you can learn more about your career interests in a real-world context, and enhance your understanding of your own goals and strengths.

Start or get involved with a student organization. Use the Engage! Search to discover ways to get involved at the University of Minnesota and in the Twin Cities community. Visit Student Unions and Activities to learn about how to register your student group. Benefits include funding opportunities Student Activities Grants and event planning assistance. You may submit your event to the U of M Events Calendar by emailing or contact Lucy Reile.
*Note: To find upcoming events, visit the calendar.

Join a volunteer or service organization:

Volunteer opportunities
Service learning and public engagement
Mentor Connection - Applications open in August for session beginning November
College to Career - Host a tour or review a portfolio
Alumni Society Board - Enhance the student experience
Serve as a career contact - Share career info with students as requested
Goldstein Museum of Design - join, volunteer, or donate
Community Service-Learning Center - Advising about volunteer opportunities, Community Engagement Scholars Program, and information about academic service-learning courses
Mentoring programs
Multicultural programs

Need help choosing engagement opportunities? You can:

Contact your college advising office
Talk to a career counselor
Contact the Office for Student Engagement at
Attend a College of Design event
*Note: For more events go to the U Events calendar or Alumni Association Events calendar.





Portfolio review is a way to evaluate a student's design ability and knowledge of design concepts based on work from the foundation-level courses. Portfolio review assures that students have acquired an understanding of essential design knowledge and are prepared to move on to more advanced coursework. Students typically go through portfolio review in their 3rd semester of the Pre-Graphic Design program. Students must pass portfolio review in order to continue on with their coursework and complete the degree. Students begin with courses in fundamental aspects of visual studies. Below are the five foundation courses that you must complete prior to participating in portfolio review.

You will receive permission numbers for 2-3 courses for your first semester on the program:

Des 1101W: Introduction to Design Thinking
Des 2101: Design and Visual Presentation
GDes 1311 Foundations: Drawing and Design in Two and Three Dimensions *
GDes 1312 Foundations: Color and Design in Two and Three Dimensions *
GDes 1315 Foundations: The Graphic Studio
*Students are NOT to take these two courses at the same time.


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portfolio review image


Plan For Your Graduation






Use Graduation Planner to make your customized plan, and work with your academic adviser to ensure that you are on track to graduate on time. Your APAS report divides your liberal education requirements, major requirements, and electives into requirement blocks. Within each block is a set of sub-requirements. Next to each sub-requirement you will see a symbol indicating whether that requirement is complete, incomplete or currently in progress.

Students admitted to the University Honors Program (UHP) must fulfill UHP requirements, in addition to degree program requirements. Honors courses used to fulfill degree program requirements will also fulfill UHP requirements. Current departmental honors course offerings are listed here.

As an undergraduate, if you do not enroll for classes in a given term (excluding summer) and you do not have an approved leave of absence, you enrollment will be discontinued. If you wish to resume coursework here, you will need to apply for readmission. However, you must meet the admission requirements for the undergraduate major to be readmitted. And if the major has limited space, you may have to go through a competitive admission process, which is held once a year. Each situation is different, depending upon space in the major and your academic record, and is reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
*Note: For more information, contact Agnes Chagani at 612-624-3635 or



See Your Adviser




If you need more time, call Student Services in 12 McNeal Hall (612-624-1717) to schedule an appointment with your adviser.

Contact Your Undergraduate Academic Adviser for…

Academic program planning and registration questions like:



Visit an adviser

Brief review of current semester class schedule
Petition process discussions
Follow-up signatures for academic forms (after initial advising appointment)
Short Q & A
Drop-in hours


Contact Information

College of Design

Saint Paul Offices

32 McNeal Hall, 1985 Buford Ave, St. Paul, MN 55108

P: 612-626-9068 | F: 612-625-1922

[directions and maps]

Minneapolis Offices

101 Rapson Hall, 89 Church St SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455

P: 612-626-9068 | F: 612-625-7525

[directions and maps]