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Hello. I've been lurking here for a while trying to soak in all the valuable information you guys have been posting. I'm still curious as to where I should go to school.. and I'm hoping some of you guys could help me with some advice.
I am currently taking classes at a community college in Houston,TX... and just this past semester, I finally found the right path for me - graphic design. I was thinking that I should just get my associates and look for jobs from there.. but after doing more research online and asking questions.... I'm now thinking that it would be best for me to go to a 4 year school and get a BFA. I just don't think I'm getting all the information I need to be a successful graphic designer with just an aas. So....
How hard is it to transfer into an art and design school from a community college? What do schools do you rank high in the Graphic Design area? which rank low? Why? If you transferred, was it hard to transfer your credits? What are your opinions on RISD? Tyler school of art?
It's too late for me now to apply for this fall, I know. So I plan on researching schools and applying for fall of 2006 - in the mean time I'm still planning on taking a few classes at my community college. Do you think it would be wise to get an associates degree before I transfer? Does it matter? Is it hard to transfer into a school for the spring semester?
lol. Sorry, this post is all over the place.... I'll stop with the questions for now.. lol.. I would very much appreciate any feedback. thank you in advance!
Okay, let's see...
I took 13 classes at my local community college and all transferred to the Art school of my choice (Savannah College of Art & Design). Of course, I knew what major I wanted at SCAD and took core and low level art classes to match that.
Some things you need to know about transfers:
- An associates degree takes a couple years off at a university, usually no questions asked. At a private art school, an associates degree doesn't mean as much--they will pick and choose what classes you took that they think are applicable to their curriculum.
- Some schools will accept a certain class, others won't. They will ask for a catalog from your community college and will attempt to assess whether or not the classes you took were at the same level as theirs. If they think a class you took sounds too easy, they won't transfer it. In some classes, they will ask for a portfolio to prove that you have the skills for a class to transfer. Schools should allow you to contest a decision by providing class syllabi and portfolios. I had my Drawing 2 class commuted to a Drawing 1, but I presented a portfolio to prove that I didn't need the extra class and it was accepted.
- You can transfer in at any semester or quarter. The only disadvantage to that is the lack of freshman/sophmore level classes (you'll find you need pre-reqs to take a class...but they won't be offered at any time other than fall). This *shouldn't* be a problem if you've already gotten your core and low level art classes out of the way.
Keep taking community courses in the meantime!! Take obvious classes like Drawing 1, Painting 1, Life Drawing, a basic math, science, composition, an elective history, etc. so that you'll be relatively certain they'll transfer. Even if you are accepted to a fine art college, take as many community classes as you can at the cheaper rate. Hell, you can dual enroll at a community college near the art school of your choice. It saves you SO MUCH money.
Hello Mirana - Thanks so very much for your reply! Yea, I just started taking classes that are related to graphic design here at my community college.. i took drawing I and taking drawing II this fall. and I've pretty much have taken all the core classes. and yeah, i definitely plan to work on my portfolio to show what all i can do and have some pieces to the classes that might not transfer. thanks again for your thoughts. and scad? how do you like it there? what is your major?
Take as many general education classes as you can... these are the ones that transfer as real classes and not as electives. Don't take any classes that aren't at least 101 level or above... most 100 level and below courses are considered remedial courses and won't transfer. Find out what your schools of choice require for general education classes... you will find that a standard AA degree does not cover them all. Most universities today have general education requirements right up through your senior year now... they continue to add more.
As for graphic design, that's one area where a BFA is likely to be required. Most schools don't offer AA degrees in graphic design anymore, just BFAs.
Art type classes are a grey area... they are not always accepted by the school you enter, they may require a portfolio review in order for you to test out of them. In the grand scheme of things, taking more art classes is not a negative, don't test yourself out of too much, the whole point is to beef up your portfolio, not break the land speed record for getting a degree.
State where you live (region-wise), this may help us direct you to some schools to look at. Also state whether you can afford to go to school on your own dollar or require financial aid. Community colleges are dirt cheap compared to art schools... even a university can be cheaper than an art school... depends on whether it is a state school or a private one. Right now an art school will run you anywhere from 80K-120K for a Bachelors degree... and that's just for tuition.
hello pmiles, thanks for replying.
yeah I've already taken most of my general courses (i've been out of high school since 2001 lol - trying to find the right major), and i know it's prob going to take another 4 years or so for me to get a bfa in graphic design, and i'm willing to commit myself to that. so, the classes i'm planning on taking at the community college here, will, like you said, just help me improve my portfolio.
i live in houston, texas - lived here all my life.. and i'm ready to break free from here.. lol so, i'm willing to travel to any city to get into the school that is right for me. i just started doing research on art and design schools this summer, and can't wait to attend one of the national portfolio days so i can get some feedback from schools and stuff - i would rather go and visit the campuses myself but i don't have enough money to be flying around the united states.. :|
i'm thinking that i'll probably will be paying for school by scholarships, financial aid, student loans, and a little help from my parents. also, with money i'll have in my savings account (not much now.. but i plan to work my butt off to save as much money as i can)
I know in texas they have programs at UT (University of Texas) and Texas State University (formally Southwest Texas University) - as well as Art Insitutes in Houston and Dallas - I've heard bad reviews about the Art Insitutes (except the one in Chicago) so I plan to stay away from them... And as for UT and TSU - I don't think I will mesh well with San Marcos.. and I'm still looking into the art program at UT.
I'm also looking into these schools : RISD, Tyler School of Art, SVA, CalArts.. and some others...
Right now, RISD is at the top of my list.. my dream school... *sigh* Does anyone here go there? Care to share your experience?
Where do you go/went to school? What is/was your major? Thanks for helping!
If you've already gotten all of your core and some of your low level art courses out of the way then you will only need 3 or even 2 yrs more in school (provided everything transfers). You certainly won't spend 4.
I go to SCAD for Sequential (Comic) Art. Graphic Design is the largest major at my school. You have to be VERY good at it because there is a ton of competition. For some kids this is a great thing as it makes them better artists. For others, it's too stressful. :/
I know 3 or so graphic design students personally, but none of them went to SCAD. All of them went to a community or university. If you can find a good program at a univ. you should put it higher on your list than a private art school. Universities are SO MUCH CHEAPER. If you can get just as good an education, DO IT. It's a waste to spend (as pmiles said) 80k on a degree you could have paid 20-30k for.
Also, there is something to be said about going to a school close to home. If you can stand your parents a bit longer (provided you do still live with them), living at home saves you a ton of money and makes it so you don't have to work and go to school at the same time. you'll have plently of time and career opportunities to move out later. Just a thought. ^_^
very true about the costs of universities vs private art schools. i just want to find the best school for me first and then figure out the money issues. but i understand why that should definitely be factored in when deciding. thoughts of taking out a loan scares the bee-geezus out of me. lol... so yeah, i guess i should do a little more research on the schools in my state before really settling on the private art schools i already have in mind. thank you guys so much for your input!
So what if some or most of your credits don't transfer over to the new place at all. The education that you got from those classes is still mega-valuable. It's always been about YOUR journey and what you can get out of life and not neccesarily about the school you go to.
Check out the Registrars at the schools you want to attend. Ask them which credits will transfer over. Ultimately it's their call as to which general studies classes they will accept. It's usually the department's descretion as to which studio classes they'll accept. Sometimes you might have to provide a seperate portfolio to prove your competancy in a particular subject matter (Lord knows I've looked at a few already!).
Good luck and congrats on moving forward with your art career.
yeah i'll be sure to make sure what classes will transfer and such. thanks storyboard dave
No problem at all. I always say go straight to the source and ask them... and if you can, get them to initial it or at least give you something in writing that it's okay to transfer those credits over.Originally Posted by kim421
I nearly got sunk ages ago when I took a certain level academic class that the Registrar said afterwards it wouldn't transfer. Fortunately I had the catalog that listed the classes I had taken along with HER initials alongside of them. If it wasn't for me keeping some sort of back up- I might've been hosed there.
So I guess keeping accurate paperwork is key in transferring over credits as well. Good luck.