GRDSN 109: History of Graphic Design
Course Syllabus

Course Outline

June Roys, Instructor

Phone: 509-533-3425
Office: Applied Visual Arts- Bldg. 19, Rm. 221

Mailing Address: MS 3190
3410 W Fort George Wright Dr
Spokane, WA 99224-5288


A minimum Reading Compass score of 80 or Reading Asset score of 40.

Course Description:

This course focuses on major design movements as they relate to visual communication. Beginning with the invention of writing and continuing to present day key ideas, social/political/cultural developments and technologies are examined. Through observations and comparisons the course illustrates the relationships between various design disciplines. This course requires reading, research, writing and presentation of exploring visual communications role in society and popular culture.

Required Textbook:

Graphic Design History: A Critical Guide, by Johanna Drucker and Emily McVarish (2nd Edition)

Activities include but are not limited to:

Lectures, exercises, research, and exams. Exercises are graded on a "complete" or "incomplete" basis. All exercises must be completed to receive a final grade for the quarter. There will be a quiz each week on the reading and lecture material. At the completion of this course, students will be able to identify historical influences and apply meaning to various contemporary design disciplines.

Exercises: Each week you are required to find a "contemporary" piece of advertising or graphic design that relates to the chapter. This "screen shot" should be posted on the AVA Server in GRDSN_109AA/Temp (Note: In order to receive a final grade all exercises need to be complete by the last class session.)

Weekly Quizzes: Quizzes will be administered each Friday on Canvas.

  • Week One: Chapters 1, 2 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Two: Chapters 3, 4 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Three: Chapters 5, 6 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Four: Chapters 7, 8 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Five: Chapter 9, 10 (Large Chapter) (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Six: Chapters 11,13 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Seven: Chapters 14,15 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Eight: Chapters 16, 18 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Nine: Chapters 19, 20 (Quiz, points TBD)
  • Week Ten: Chapter 23, 24 (Quiz, points TBD)

Chapters we will not be able to cover: 10, 12, 17, 21, 22.


There are 11 quizzes.

4.0 = 100-91%

3.5 = 90-86%

3.0 = 85-80%

2.5 = 79-76%

2.0 = 75-70%

1.5 = 69-66%

1.0 = 65-60%

0.0 = 59% and below

Attendance: Attendance is critical to your success. Quiz questions will come from the textbook, videos and the lectures.

Attendance is equivalant to on the job training. Attendance is crucial to your progress and will be taken at the beginning of every class. The attendance policy is as follows:

More than 8 absences = 0.0
(This equates to missing more than 2 weeks of lecture class time)

Two late attendances = one absence

Student Holidays for Reasons of Faith or Conscience (SSB 5173)
SCC/SFCC students are entitled to two days of excused absences per academic year for reasons of faith or conscience or for organized activities conducted under the auspices of a religious organization.  Students’ grades will not be adversely impacted by authorized absences under this policy, although students in courses with required community clinical and /or practicum experiences must fulfill these requirements to meet the licensure requirements of the program. All absences under this policy must be submitted to the Chief Academic Officer in writing at least two weeks prior to the desired absence, containing a precise explanation of how the requested holiday is related to a reason of faith, conscience or an organized activity conducted by a religious organization.  If deemed in alignment with the policy, the student will receive a document with date(s) of the approved absences (must be full days).  The student is solely responsible for ensuring the documentation authorizing the absence is provided to each of the instructors whose classes or assignments are affected by the absence.  The instructor(s) will determine, within two days after receiving the notification, what adjustments, if any, will need to be made for the student to make up assignments or tests missed during the absence(s), and the instructor may require that the student submit the assignment or take the test before or after the regularly scheduled date.  If the student fails to notify the instructor of an authorized absence under this policy, the instructor is not obligated to make accommodations.

Be prepared: Read and study the chapters. Participate in class discussions.

Note: This course syllabus is only for the quarter listed above and appropriate changes may be made by the faculty. Also, future syllabi for this course may be different.



Revised 4/6/2015

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