Skip to main content Skip to site navigation Skip to contact information
College of Arts and Sciences
Digital Design

Digital Design

The Digital Design program is an intensive program that balances the discipline of design, artistic exploration, and social responsibility within the rich tradition of the liberal arts environment. Through a focus on content-driven work, students learn visual problem solving and acquire communication skills informed by critical theory and the history of digital art and design. The curriculum includes typography, digital imaging, graphic design, and digital media for print, for the web, for animation, for video, for interactive graphics, and for sound. The program focuses on the creative process of art and design from concept to production. At the advanced level, students have the opportunity to combine theory and practice through readings and discussions, research, in-depth critiques, exhibitions, internships, and hands-on workshops within a technologically sophisticated studio environment.


Students interested in taking the preliminary courses leading up to the review for acceptance into the Digital Design Major (DIDS) should declare Digital Design Candidacy (DIDS.CAND) as a preparatory major.  During this stage students will fulfill the prerequisite courses in preparation for the mid–career Portfolio Review to gain acceptance into the Digital Design Major.DIGTIAL DESIGN MAJOR (DIDS) Students wishing to advance to the Digital Design major (DIDS) are required to undergo the Portfolio Review process towards the end of their sophomore year.  Transfer students are invited to submit an equivalent portfolio at the same time or before the start of their junior year.


The Portfolio Review reflects the program’s philosophies of both excellence and sustainability: A mid-career Portfolio Review accurately mirrors the competitive nature of the digital design field and in so doing will encourage students to strive towards excellence.  Additionally, the review will limit the number of students who will advance from Digital Design Candidacy status to the major in Digital Design, thereby keeping class sizes at a sustainable level while also fostering a cohort experience for those students going through the program.
The Portfolio Review takes place towards the end of the sophomore year.  Portfolios must be submitted prior to the beginning of the Spring Quarter Academic Advising period (see portfolio description.)  Students who are not advanced to the Digital Design major should consult with their advisor regarding options for declaring a different major.  Students may apply a second time in the case they are not accepted upon their first review.


GPA Requirements:

Student has earned a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher and a GPA of 3.00 or higher for the required DIDS prerequisite courses:

  • ART-100 Design & Color
  • ART-120 Drawing I
  • ARTD-270 Typography
  • ARTD-271 Digital Imaging
  • ARTD-272  Digital Media I: Print 
Portfolio Requirements:

Submission of 3 examples from each of the courses listed in the sequence above (15 digital images total).  Each work should be identified by course number, title, size, medium, date.

Written Components:

Submission of an application form, including a 1,000 - 1,500 word essay answering the following questions:
1. What interests you about the field of Digital Design?
2. How do you see the discipline of Digital Design contributing to the creation of a more just and humane world?
3. How do you envision yourself in five years?

News and Events

Zachary Burns (BFA photo '13) received 2016 GAP funding for Candid, a series of images taken from the point of view of the cans that he has collected. find out more here.

Meet Seattle University Visual Artist in Residence Dawn Cerny here.

McMillen Assistantships Support Student Artists: Designed for student artists majoring in digital design, photography, and studio art, the Robert B. McMillen Foundation grant supports paid assistantships for students to work with professional artists. Read the article and watch the video here.

Student Profile: Heidi Franz '17, participated in her first bicycle race while studying abroad in Austria. A year later she received the women's overall national title in cycling for Division 2 schools. Although she enjoys bicycling and competing, Heidi Franz is focused on her documentary photography. Read the article here.

Alumni Profile: Lindsey Wasson '13, Staff Photographer, Seattle Times. Read the article here.

Professor Naomi Kasumi discusses her art installation at Soji-ji Temple. Read the article and watch the video here.