Objectives & Grading


  • To provide a historical overview of the field of Typography
  • To recognize and articulate the fundamentals of Typography (anatomy, typeface selection, typesetting)
  • To hone formal and technical skills through lectures, assignments and critique
  • To develop skills in conceptualizing and developing effective materials through the use of typography

Required Text: Mastering Type by Denise Bosler

Software: InDesign (CC is the optimal version, but you can use earlier versions if you remember to save down (IDML) your class work.

There will be lectures and discussions, lab assignments, critiques, assigned homework, handouts, and required reading (research). Plan to spend at least 6 hours a week outside of class on assignments. If you do not have access to a computer with the required software at home, please check with the school’s computer lab schedule to make sure you can take advantage of the school computers. This class requires color printouts. If you do not have access to a color printer, please make sure you have the funds in your budget to go to a service bureau. Grades are dependent on the quality of assigned projects.

In addition to project driven assignments, you will be required to participate in class critiques and discussions. A great deal of information and practice is going to be covered in fifteen weeks. It is the students’ responsibility to turn work in on time and fully participate in class. It is not the focus of this class to teach how to use the computer or software, it is assumed that you already know how to use a computer and a basic working knowledge of InDesign.

Students are expected to be present, prepared and on time every week. As with a design studio, class attendance and participation are crucial in this hands-on class.

Two unexcused absences will result in a drop of grade (for example from an A to a B, from a B to a C). Four unexcused absences will result in automatic F. Late arrival or early departure (15 minutes or more) is the equivalent of half of an absence.


This is an assignment and exercise driven class. You are expected to be present, to participate in a positive and constructive manner, and to produce thoughtful and creative work.

It is the student’s responsibility to turn in work on time (assignments ready at the start of class), to make up any missed assignments, and to catch up with the class in the event of an absence. Projects are to be printed before class begins in order to receive credit. Assignments that are not presented on the final due date will be penalized by 50% of the total points possible. Late work may be shown during the final week for partial credit.

No designer works in a vacuum, part of this class is devoted to honing your listening and verbal communication skills. Critique is a major part of the class and punctual attendance is necessary in order to participate. Students who are chronically late or absent will miss a significant portion of the content and required exercises/quizzes of the class. Attendance will be recorded by the submission of In class exercises and quizzes. Disruptive behavior that affects the class negatively will not be tolerated.

Assignments and projects will be graded on concept, creative solutions, execution and presentation. Your final grades will be calculated by the following: Midterms/Finals (20%), in class exercises/Quizzes (20%), Assignments (60%).

To earn an A: All assignments, exercises, and tests are outstanding. Projects are presented when due and are revised per critique. The work shows a development and understanding of the principles discussed in class. The work is presented in a professional manner. The student displays an enthusiasm towards the class and participates fully and constructively in critiques. An exceptional performance.

B: All assignments, exercises, and tests are completed in a thorough manner. An understanding of the principles and lessons covered in class are evident. The student participates in critiques and discussions. A better than average performance.

C: An average performance. All assignments, exercises and tests have been completed in a satisfactory manner that shows a basic understanding of the concepts presented in class.

D*: Many class assignments and homework have not been completed. Marginal comprehension of the course objectives and very little or negative participation on behalf of the student as exemplified by test and quiz scores. A below-average performance.

F*: Student has not completed one half of the course work. This student doesn’t participate or has a negative attitude and shows no interest. It means not enough work and/or effort to pass the class.


* Students must receive a C or better grade for this class to count towards major’s requirements.


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