The competitive field of Design requires practitioners who are intellectually curious, inventive, dedicated, critical, collaborative, and proactive life-long learners. Our students meet that need by developing as strategists, problem-identifiers, problem-solvers, and business partners.

Students in Design and Visual Communication are required to have a laptop computer for their coursework by the first week of class, beginning with ART 221 and for all subsequent courses in Design and Visual Communication. Visit uwm.edu/arts/apply/laptop/ for more information.

Requirements

University Core45
First Year Program15
Art & Design Core15
BFA Degree Requirements21
Area of Concentration34
Total Credits130

University Core

The minimum number of credits required to complete the Bachelor of Arts is 120; the minimum number of credits required to complete the Bachelor of Fine Arts is 130. Students who need background preparation courses in math, English, foreign language, and chemistry may need additional credits.

General Education Requirements 1
Compentencies 1
English Parts A & B 2
Math Parts A & B 2
Foreign Language 2
Distribution Requirements 1
ARTHIST 101Ancient and Medieval Art and Architecture (counts as Humanities GER)3
ARTHIST 102Renaissance to Modern Art and Architecture (counts as Humanities GER)3
Social Science6
Natural Science (1 course with lab)6
Cultural Diversity 2
Electives
Advanced ARTHIST course6
Select 3 arts areas outside Art and Design9
Select 3 credits in an arts area3
Select 9 credits outside Peck School of the Arts9
Total Credits45

First Year Program

2.5 cumulative GPA required:
ART 101Drawing I3
ART 106Art Survey3
ART 1082D Concepts3
ART 1093D Concepts3
ART 118Digital Arts: Culture, Theory, Practice3
Total Credits15

Art & Design Core

200 Level Studio Electives 1
Select 3-6 credits of the following:3-6
Drawing II 2
Color Studio
Introduction to Digital Studio: A/V Strategies 3
Introduction to Design 4
Introduction to Digital Filmmaking
Introduction to Typography
Dynamic Typography
Design Workshop:
Fiber Workshop:
Introduction to Painting
Painting and Drawing Workshop:
Introduction to Photography 5
Sculpture Workshop:
Design for Digital Fabrication
Jewelry and Metalsmithing Workshop:
Ceramics Workshop:
Introduction to Print and Narrative Forms
Printmaking Workshop:
Select 3-6 credits of the following:3-6
Introduction to Fibers
Introduction to Sculpture
Introduction to Jewelry and Metalsmithing
Introduction to Ceramics
Critical Thinking
ART 309Issues in Contemporary Art:3
ART 509Art & Design Seminar:3
Total Credits15

Degree Requirements

Art & Design Electives
Select 21 credits (15 credits must be 300-level and above studio courses)21
Total Credits21

Design and Visual Communication Concentration

After admission into Design and Visual Communication, students must:

  1. Complete ART 321 and ART 323 with a grade of B- or better to enroll in ART 421 and ART 423.
  2. Complete ART 421 and ART 422 with a grade of B- or better to enroll in ART 529.
  3. Complete ART 529 as Senior Capstone Experience concurrently with ART 606.
  4. Complete ART 324 and either ART 325 or ART 424. These required courses are not part of the core sequence, and may be taken any time after prerequisites are met.
  5. Complete two of the six following courses (6 credits): ART 423, ART 426, ART 524ART 526, ART 528, or either ART 325 or ART 424 not taken in point 4.
  6. Complete 9 credits of Design and Visual Communication Expanded Studies (ES) all outside the Peck School of the Arts. See your advisor in the Peck School of the Arts Student Services Office for an updated list of recommended courses.

Students may petition to substitute for some or all of the DVC Expanded Studies courses. Likely candidates would be students with a high GPA who have tested out of freshman English; double majors; and students with a keen and credible interest in another area of study. Petitions to substitute for courses will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis by Design faculty and will be subject to an appeals process.

Required Courses

Design and Visual Communication Introductory
ART 221Introduction to Design (credit from Art & Design core)3
ART 124Design Survey3
ART 223Introduction to Typography3
Design and Visual Communication Core
Required Core Sequence
ART 321Design and Visual Communication I3
ART 323Typography II3
ART 421Design and Visual Communication II3
ART 422Design Methodologies: Process, Communication & Theory3
Required Interaction Design Courses
ART 324Web Design3
ART 424Topics in Web, Interaction and Screen Design: (subtitle)3
or ART 325 Web Design II
Required Core Choices
Select two of the following:6
Web Design II (whichever course is not taken in Required Interaction Design Courses)
Topics in Web, Interaction and Screen Design:
Experimental Typography
Motion Graphics
Advanced Design Workshop: (subtitle)
Professional Practice in Design:
Research in Universal Design and Fabrication (subtitle)
Print Production and Presentation Techniques
Design and Visual Communication Capstone
ART 529Design & Visual Communication III: Capstone & Exhibition (Senior Capstone)3
ART 606BFA Exhibition in Design1
Total Credits34

Art BFA in Design and Visual Communication – Recommended Curriculum

Plan of Study Grid
Year 1
FallCredits
(Includes OWC-A and QL-A Requirements) Students must be aware of the prerequisites for the 200-level course they wish to take in the second semester of the First Year and enroll in the appropriate First Year Program courses in fall  
ART 101 Drawing I 3
ART 106 Art Survey 3
ART 108 2D Concepts 3
University Core 1 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits15
Spring
ART 109 3D Concepts 3
ART 118 Digital Arts: Culture, Theory, Practice 3
200-level studio in Art 3
University Core 1 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits15
Year 2
Fall
Students are reminded that admission to the Art & Design Program requires completion of the 36-credit Art-Intended requirements and that all First Year Program courses must be completed in the first 45 credits (usually in fall semester of sophomore year). Portfolio review for students in Design and Visual Communication is held in spring semester only. Portfolio review guidelines are available from the area. 2  
ART 221 Introduction to Design 3
ART 124 Design Survey 3
Art & Design Elective 3
ARTHIST 101 Ancient and Medieval Art and Architecture 3 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits15
Spring
ART 223 Introduction to Typography (Counts as 2D 200 level) 3
Art & Design Elective 3
ART 309 Issues in Contemporary Art: 3
ART 324 Web Design 3
ARTHIST 102 Renaissance to Modern Art and Architecture 3 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits18
Year 3
Fall
ART 321 Design and Visual Communication I 3
ART 424
Topics in Web, Interaction and Screen Design: (subtitle)
or Web Design II
3
Art & Design Elective 3
Advanced Art History choice 3 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits15
Spring
ART 323 Typography II 3
DVC Required Core Choice 3
ART 509 Art & Design Seminar: (subtitle) 3
Art & Design Elective 3
Advanced Art History choice 3 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits18
Year 4
Fall
ART 421 Design and Visual Communication II 3
ART 422 Design Methodologies: Process, Communication & Theory 3
DVC Required Core Choice 3
Art & Design Elective 3
Art & Design Elective 3
University Core 1 3
 Credits18
Spring
ART 529 Design & Visual Communication III: Capstone & Exhibition 3
Art & Design Elective 3
Art & Design Elective 3
University Core 1 3
University Core 1 3
ART 606 BFA Exhibition in Design 1
 Credits16
 Total Credits130

Art & Design Undergraduate Admission Requirements

To be admitted in good standing, applicants (incoming freshmen and transfer students) must meet general University requirements. After being admitted to UWM and indicating Art as your chosen major, no further steps are required for acceptance into the Department of Art & Design.

Art & Design Undergraduate Incoming and Transfer Student Scholarship Portfolio Submissions

Applicants to the Art & Design program (including Art Education) are strongly encouraged to submit a portfolio of artworks and additional supporting materials, as described below, for review by the Art & Design Scholarship Committee:

  1. Art & Design Incoming Portfolio Scholarship Application Form. Complete the online form here.
  2. Portfolio of artworks. Provide 8 – 10 examples of artwork from the past two years. If including drawings, we recommend at least three from observation (not from photographs). Identify each image by media, size, and year of completion in a separate document. JPEG files at 2000 px max preferred. 
  3. As a part of the online application you will provide a personal statement that relates to your interest in Art & Design and how your work at Peck School of the Arts will help you achieve your career goals.

Art & Design awards Incoming Scholarships based on this incoming portfolio. Admitted students interested in applying for scholarship aid should do so by December 15 for priority consideration. Portfolios will be accepted after this date but may not be considered for scholarships.

General information: art-admission@uwm.edu; https://uwm.edu/arts/art-and-design/.

Advancement to Major

Students accepted into the Art & Design program receive priority registration over non-art majors. To advance to the Art & Design major, students must complete the requirements outlined below:

  1. Complete First Year Program courses (15 credits; see course list below)
  2. Oral and Written Communications Competency Part A (OWC-A)
  3. Quantitative Literacy Competency Part A (QL-A)
  4. A cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher
  5. Students pursuing the Design and Visual Communication BFA have additional requirements: complete ART 124ART 221, and ART 223 with a B- or better; and pass the Design and Visual Communication Portfolio review.
  6. Students should complete the above to advance to major within the first 45 credits.
ART 101Drawing I3
ART 106Art Survey3
ART 1082D Concepts3
ART 1093D Concepts3
ART 118Digital Arts: Culture, Theory, Practice3
Total Credits15

Appeal Process

An appeal process is established for students who do not meet the department's criteria for classification, GPA, and area of concentration enrollment management requirements. The appeal process will provide an opportunity for individual students to request advancement to the art major or enrollment into courses as exceptions to the department's enrollment policies based on defined, pre-determined conditions. All appeals are to be directed to the Undergraduate Advisor or PSOA advisor, who will forward the appeals to the department chair or appropriate appeals committee. The department chair or appeals committee will consult with the First Year Program Director, area head, faculty, advisors, and student if necessary before making a decision.

Advising

Location: Theatre 120
Reception Hours: 9AM-4PM Monday through Friday
(closed on university holidays)
Contact: (414) 229-4763

Academic advising is an important aspect of long-term academic success. At the Peck School of the Arts, we offer professional academic advising in the following undergraduate disciplines: art, dance, film, music, and theatre.

Advisors provide students with individualized advising to assist them in areas such as: degree requirements, major options, course selection, campus resources, college success strategies, graduation assessment, academic policies and procedures, etc. 

For more information on Peck School of the Arts advising, please visit http://uwm.edu/arts/advising/.

Honors in the Major

Honors in the Major is granted to students who have earned a GPA of 3.500 or greater in the major and the academic department's recommendation.

High Honors in the Major is granted to students who have earned a cumulative GPA of 3.500 or greater and the academic department's recommendation.

Departmental Honors are granted to students recommended by their academic department for Honors excellence in performance not reflected in the GPA.

Dean's Honors are granted to students with major achievements in one or more of the arts.

Honors in the Peck School of the Arts

Dean's Honor List

GPA of 3.750 or above, earned on a full-time student's GPA on 12 or more graded credits in a given semester.

Honors College Degree and Honors College Degree with Distinction

Granted to graduating seniors who complete Honors College requirements, as listed in the Honors College section of this site.

Commencement Honors

Students with a cumulative GPA of 3.500 or above, based on a minimum of 40 graded UWM credits earned prior to the final semester, will receive all-university commencement honors and be awarded the traditional gold cord at the December or May Honors Convocation. Please note that for honors calculation, the GPA is not rounded and is truncated at the third decimal (e.g., 3.499).

Final Honors

Earned on a minimum of 60 graded UWM credits: Cum Laude - 3.500 or above; Magna Cum Laude - 3.650 or above; Summa Cum Laude - 3.800 or above.