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Process and Skills Course: Online or On-site, what is the difference?

Online crit and discussion via VoiceThread, photo collage by Sarah Jane Jaramillo, Fall 2011

It might seem surprising at first but there is no critical difference between the online and the on-site Process and Skills classes. Both classes follow a similar syllabus and students work on the same projects.

Online Process and Skills class is an intensive hands on class where students learn essential graphic design skills through a series of assignments ranging from making photo collages, binding books to creating a promotional package for a museum exhibition. It is not a computer course, cameras, xerox, markers and scissors are some of the tools we use.

The main difference between this online and on-site class is the mode of communication. Online, the classroom is virtual and all communication happens through the internet. Each week, a lecture is posted to support the work in progress. It presents examples of work of important international designers and directly addresses the subject of the week: poster design, photography, book design, 3D design, museum identity, etc. Lectures are concise and illustrated with slide shows, sound tracks, magazine articles
and films.

Critics and feedback are an important part of the class to help students develop their projects and learn about the design process. Using ‘VoiceThread’ as the online platform for exchange, each student presents their design projects weekly and discusses them with the group by writing or recording comments. Through this practice, students get to know each other and their professor, share questions and research.

Online Process and Skills is a great opportunity to dive into graphic design from any location in the world and in your own time!

Jeanne Verdoux, Teaching online and on-site Process and Skills, Spring 2012

Sketches for conceptual bottle project, Daphne Lo, FAll11

Final conceptual bottles, Danielle Letarte, Fall11


4 Comments so far. Comments are closed.
  1. Danielle,

    I was also in this course and only have great things to say about it. Voicethread really does make you feel as though you are sitting in the classroom with your peers and the instructor. Even though I never met my classmates in person, I definitely feel like I know them and their design styles after a semester critiquing work and sharing ideas. This class was incredibly hands-on and challenging, which was wonderful. I highly recommend this online course to those who are considering trying it out – you won’t be disappointed.

  2. Sarah Jane,

    I really enjoyed this class especially as an online course. As a graphic design class, I was expecting a lot of needed computer skills, and was glad to learn that everything was hands on. I especially enjoyed the assignments, each were diverse but each processes were skills that can be used together. Communicating with the professor and students was easy, and voicethread helped a lot.

  3. Katarzyna Gruda,

    Jeanne, thank you for posting and for doing such a great job.

    Daphne, I am glad that you enjoyed the class. Thank you for you feedback.

  4. Daphne,

    I was in this online-class and I enjoyed it very much! Many of my friends asked me if it was even possible to learn anything through an online course b/c I didn’t physically interact with my prof and classmates. I told them it wasn’t really a big deal b/c Voicethread allowed us to see others’ work and even comment directly – either through type or a recorded message. It’s an easy to learn and fast-working site, so you get results right away!