Visual Communication Design Major Curriculum

At Champlain, there's no waiting to jump into your design courses. You'll take classes such as Form & Color and The Digital Image in your first year, and you'll continue to develop your design skills as you progress through the curriculum. This gives you the tremendous advantage of gaining hands-on knowledge about your major from the start and will leave you well-prepared for employment upon graduation.

Champlain's study abroad program is built right into the major, so you can spend a semester abroad at Champlain's international campuses in Dublin and Montreal—or anywhere else in the world—during your junior year. You'll work with your faculty advisor to ensure your credits fulfill the requirements for your major.

Visual Communication Design Major Curriculum 2020–2021


First Year

First Semester

Form & Color
(VCD 100)

Introduction to Drawing
(ART 110)

Art History
(ART 120)

Navigating Higher Education in a Global Context
(COR 101)

FYI: Reading, Writing, & ____
(COR 102)

Second Semester

The Digital Image
(VCD 115)

Introduction to Typography
(VCD 201)

Math elective
(MTH XXX)

Navigating Your Information Landscape
(COR 103)

FYI: Making, Doing, & ____
(COR 104)


Second Year

First Semester

Design & Communication
(VCD 200)

Form & Space
(VCD 202) or
Form in Motion
(VCD 203)

Publication Design I
(VCD 205)

Aesthetic Expressions
(COR 220)

Choose a 200-level COR course
(COR 2XX)

Second Semester

Web Design I
(VCD 206)

Visual Creativity & Meaning
(VCD 220)

Intermediate Typography
(VCD 270)

Choose a 200-level COR course
(COR 2XX)

Choose a 200-level COR course
(COR 2XX)

Talk to your Advisor and/or the Office of International Education about possible curriculum adjustments in order to create a semester abroad in your third year.


Third Year

In the third year, students must take COR 310, COR 320, and two COR 330 courses. COR 310 and 320 must be taken together, and the two COR 330 courses must be taken together. Either pair may be taken in either semester.

First Semester

Publication Design II
(VCD 305) or
Web Design II
(VCD 306)

Projects in Graphic Design I
(VCD 300)

Professional Communication Practices
(VCD 250)

Program elective (ART or VCD)

The Global Condition
(COR 310)

Human Rights & Responsibilities
(COR 320)

Second Semester

Advanced Art History
(ART 380)

Program elective (ART or VCD studio)

Natural science w/ lab
(SCI XXX)

Choose a Local Contexts, Global Connections course
(COR 330)

Choose a Local Contexts, Global Connections course
(COR 330)


Fourth Year

First Semester

College Capstone
(CCC 410)

Portfolio Studio II
(VCD 451)

Advanced Typography
(VCD 301)

Program elective (ART or VCD studio)

General elective

Second Semester

Portfolio Studio I
(VCD 450)

Projects in Graphic Design II
(VCD 400)

CCM Internship
(CCM 493) or
Graphic Design Business Practice
(VCD 440)

Program elective (ART or VCD studio)

General elective