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
*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 third 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 may 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.


Plan For Your Graduation






Use the four-year plan that corresponds to your admission term along with your APAS report to plan out your courses. We strongly recommend that you consult your academic advisor to ensure that you are making timely progress toward completing your degree.

In order to graduate with Latin Honors, students in the University Honors Program (UHP) fulfill Honors Experiences in addition to their degree requirements. Honors courses may be used to fulfill both sets of requirements.

While the University expects you to maintain active student status by enrolling each fall and spring term, there are circumstances that may require you to take time off from your studies. In such cases, is it essential that you consult your academic advisor regarding your options.



See Your Advisor




Your College of Design academic advisor is available to help you navigate your degree program and your undergraduate experience. We recommend you connect with your advisor on a regular basis throughout your academic career.


Contact Information

Undergraduate Student Services
12 McNeal Hall, 1985 Buford Ave., St. Paul, MN 55108
107 Rapson Hall, 89 Church Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
P: 612-624-1717 | E:

General Information
P: 612-626-9068 | E: