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Graphic Communications is the industry that creates, develops, produces and distributes both print and digital products or services incorporating words and images to inform, market and promote. Once called Graphic Arts, the field has grown to include design, photography, printing, publishing, packaging, digital imaging, and digital media. Graphic Communications is one of the largest manufacturing industries in the United States, with thousands of companies employing nearly a million people in a variety of challenging technical, creative, and professional occupations. UW-Stout’s Bachelor of Science Degree program in Graphic Communications prepares graduates to be professional leaders, managers and innovators who can deal with graphics workflows, business issues and production efficiency as well as design, imaging processes and graphics-reproduction technology.
The major covers all phases of the graphics process and prepares graduates for a wide variety of positions across the entire industry. Through intensive hands-on learning experiences in a laboratory environment, the program addresses the skills and understanding necessary for student success in the global media marketplace. A strong emphasis is placed on the application of theory and laboratory experience to solve real-world problems. This program prepares leaders to respond aggressively to the needs of the marketplace; to apply research and theory to the development of marketable media products and services using efficient processes; and to lead in the development of projects with an awareness of the realities of the manufacturing process, cost, environment and needs of the customer and society. The technology utilized by students includes software, equipment and workflow systems that produce print and digital media products for publishing, packaging, display and signage, marketing and promotion, and other markets. The growth area of omni-channel, cross-media marketing and promotion is emphasized in the program. Cross-media campaigns often include printed direct mail, email blasts, response web microsites, social media integration and may utilize mobile technology to trigger related online content. These projects are often data-driven to produce personalized content for each recipient, making them more relevant and effective.
Graphic Communications students complete an industrial work experience (co-op) from three to eight months in length to gain practical experience before they graduate, bridging the gap from the academic classrooms and laboratories of the university to the world of work.
A related professional student organization complements the classroom and laboratory experiences encountered by Graphic Communications students. The Stout Typographical Society (STS) runs a graphics-production business-designing and printing projects for the campus and community. Members apply what they’ve learned in the classroom to produce real projects and to develop leadership skills by managing club operations. Each spring STS members take a three-day field trip to visit graphics companies in the region, to observe a wide variety of operations and to network with industry professionals.
The variety of opportunities in Graphic Communications is attractive to many students. Those interested in art and design, graphics software, business, marketing, technology, graphic arts and communication are encouraged to explore this major. UW-Stout’s Graphic Communications graduates are in high demand due to the broad scope of the program-all aspects of graphics, from design to delivery.
The Bachelor of Science degree program in Graphic Communications is accredited by the Accrediting Council for Collegiate Graphic Communications (ACCGC), an independent body dedicated to the improvement and recognition of collegiate-level curricula in graphic communication.
Bachelor of Science Degree
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