Typography II syllabus

tools for the modern creative

• ARTS 081 Type II PDF Syllabus


Students enrolled in ARTS 081 will have the opportunity to apply the principles and concepts introduced in ARTS 079 to more complex typographic problems. Directions involving experimental and theoretical as well as practical and functional applications of type will be explored. Macintosh laptop computer is required. Lab fees apply.


PREREQUISITES – ARTS 079: Typography I or instructor permission



“Typography is what language looks like.”

—Ellen Lupton


“No other design discipline requires so much learning and training as fontography. And by not other aspect can amateurs be so easily distinguished from professionals.

—Dmitry Kirsanov


“Most people think typography is about fonts. Most designers think typography is about fonts. Typography is much more than that. It is expressing language through type—placement, composition—the variables.

—Mark Boulton


“In the fields of Printing & Graphic Design, it is generally agreed that the poet in our midst is the type designer.”

—Noel Martin.


This course builds upon the basic content discussed in Typography I, (letterform, layout, grouping and hierarchy). The primary objective of Typography II relies upon further exploration of these essential fundamentals in solving more complex typographic design problems. Assignments will require the student to visually balance a variety of information as well as develop an increased sensitivity to typographic nuance and subtlety.  They will include both theoretical and practical application. The two main design directions of classic typography as well as new contemporary style will both be explored. With these approaches we will examine and gain an understanding of the function of typography as a visual element within the larger context of graphic communication.


Through lectures, in-class demos, discussions, comprehensive projects and critiques we will explore the function and meaning behind typography including but not limited to: typographic identification, practical issues of setting and using type effectively in multi-page layout, form, grouping, hierarchy, and as a conduit for enhancing meaning and content.


Assignments are geared to applying and exploring the aesthetic possibilities first grounded in theoretical principles; they allow us to focus on meaning, style and functionality as equal collaborators in effective typographic communication. Projects are “intermediate to advanced” in nature and rely upon the student’s skills in multiple levels of design as applied to a systems manner of thinking which builds upon itself through the semester. Conceptual development, verbal articulation of visual solutions, research, production, and visual, verbal and written presentation skills are each essential components of this course.



At this stage in your education it is highly recommended that you own your own computer, applicable software and printer. For this course you will be using the Adobe Creative Suite: InDesign, Illustrator, and as needed, Photoshop.

The facilities here on campus are to augment your needs and help educate you on the implementation of typographic standards especially in the use of InDesign. If you do not own this program, I suggest you purchase it for your

own system.


Readings from a variety of texts and papers will be assigned. Discussion will follow these readings to clarify, pose questions and ensure understanding for the material that relates to the discussion of typography. A written response to the material may frequently be a part of the reading assignment. One exam will be conducted on reading material and other materials from class.



Grid Systems By Kimberly Elam, ISBN: 1568984650

Thinking with Type By Ellen Lupton, ISBN: 1568984480

Geometry of Design By Kimberly Ellam

The Elements of Typographic Style by Robert Bringhurst (third edition)

Hartley and Marks Publishers, 2004

Texts on Type  By Philip B. Meggs & Steven Heller

Typography  By Emil Ruder

Typographic Design: Form and Communication (third edition) By Carter, Day, Meggs

History of Graphic Design By Philip Meggs (latest edition)

Typographic Specimens: The Great Typefaces by Philip Meggs and Rob Carter

Font reference guides and Encyclopedia of Typography supplied through class



Laptop Computer (Macintosh preferred)

Thumb/Flash media drive or other external drive

Cork back steel ruler for cutting: approx. $8.75

No. 1 Xacto knife: approx. $4.50 and pack of #11 blades: approx. $2.20

Rubber Cement: approx. $4.85, Rubber Cement pickup: approx. $1.55 & Rubber Cement Thinner (16 oz):

approx. $8.00

instead of the rubber cement a quality spray mount product may be used such as
3M Super 77: approx. $14.40

Sketchbook or quality loose leaf paper for process work: approx. $11.00

Letramax 100, solid core black professional mounting board (2 sided black) 15×20”: approx. $1.85/sheet, (as needed)



There will be a lab fee of $60 to cover maintenance, printing costs, & upkeep of computer facilities. There will be no refund of this fee if the course is dropped after the drop deadline, third week of the semester.



Upon completion of this course the student should be able to:

  1. Build upon the concepts introduced in Typography I.
  2. Develop an understanding of the language of typography, which includes critical theory, critique, history, technology, and craftsmanship.
  3. Apply and explore the possibilities inherent in the theoretical principles introduced focusing on meaning, aesthetics and functionality in typographic design.
  4. Solve specific design problems that include setting and using type effectively in layout applications, form and counterform issues, hierarchy, type as conduit for meaning and content as well as other issues related to visual problem solving through typographic form.
  5. Developing a refined sense of observation and application to multi-faceted design problems.
  6. Apply grid system to complex multi-page layouts.
  7. Operate within specific graphic design requirements.
  8. Define and employ industry standard graphic design terminology to describe projects.

The objectives will be achieved by:

  1. Completing projects of increasing complexity
  2. In class & homework exercises
  3. Analysis & critique one’s own work & then apply the skill to the work of others
  4. Readings, lectures & discussion of readings
  5. Reports, written exams & quizzes


BFA in Graphic Design Objectives /Learning Outcomes

Your course work will be graded on the below items so make sure you fulfill each with excellence.



The undergraduate degree in graphic design is intended to prepare you, the student, specifically in the common body of knowledge and skills required for entry as a professional graphic designer. You should additionally possess the education necessary to move toward management and/or leadership positions within the field and also be ready for advanced graduate study in the field of graphic design.



Program Learning Objectives Introduced Class Project Fulfilling Learning Objective
Solve communication problems, including the skills

of problem identification, research and information gathering, analysis, generation of alternative solutions, prototyping and user testing, and evaluation of outcomes.


Digital LetterPress

Chief Seattle—booklet

3D Type

Dog Breeds—Brochure

Describe and respond to the audiences and contexts, which communication solutions must address, including recognition of the physical, cognitive, cultural, and social human factors that shape design decisions. Chief Seattle—booklet

3D Type

Dog Breeds—Brochure

Create and develop visual form in response to communication problems, including an understanding of principles of visual organization/ composition, information hierarchy, symbolic representation, typography, aesthetics, and the construction of meaningful messages. Letterform


Digital LetterPress

Chief Seattle—booklet

3D Type

Dog Breeds—Brochure

Understand design-related tools and technology, including their roles in the creation, reproduction, and distribution of visual messages. Relevant tools and technologies include, but are not limited to, drawing, offset printing, photography, and time-based and interactive media (film, video, computer multimedia). Letterform


Digital LetterPress

3D Type


Demonstrate ability to form and defend value judgments about graphic design and to communicate art ideas, concepts, and requirements to professionals and laypersons related to the practice. Letterform

Chief Seattle—booklet

Dog Breeds—Brochure

Identify the major historical achievements, current issues, processes, and directions in the graphic design field as well as in art in general. Letterform


Digital LetterPress

Identify current intercultural and global issues as they relate to visual communication. Apply ethical reasoning to create sustainable, and socially and environmentally responsible design solutions. Chief Seattle—booklet



Students will submit PDF files of all projects completed during this course at the conclusion of the semester

to assess how the learning objectives of the course are being met.




Grades of “Incomplete”: The current university policy concerning incomplete grades will be followed in this course. Incomplete grades are given only in situations where unexpected emergencies prevent a student from completing the course & the remaining work can be completed the next semester. Your instructor is the final authority on whether you qualify for an incomplete. Incomplete work must be finished by the end of the subsequent semester or the “I” will automatically be recorded as an “F” on your transcript.


Below is university policy followed when administering letter grades on projects, papers, & other tasks that do not utilize a point or percentage system.


A:          Minimum 95%
Exceptional, means objectives of the assignment are fully understood as applied to the particular assignment & an intriguing balance exists between clear communication of the message & creativity. The assignment is executed with impeccable craftsmanship, accuracy, & neatness & exists as part of the complete design development of thumbnail, rough, & finished comp; a quality piece of work.
B+        Minimum 87%
B: High, objectives are met & design principles are primarily well understood. May be lacking in overall quality, craftsmanship, clarity, or design development; good overall effort.
B-         Minimum 80%
C+        Minimum 77%
C: Average, the minimum requirements of the assignment have been met but not exceeded. Extra effort & insight into development of the basic assignment are necessary to produce higher quality work.
C-         Minimum 70%


D+       Minimum 67%
D: Below average, there exist problems in completely understanding the concept or objectives of an assignment. Incompleteness in several areas of craftsmanship, design, creativity, clarity, or development is also apparent; see instructor.
F:          60% and Below. Unacceptable, please do assignment over. See instructor immediately for further clarification.


              Areas of evaluation: Professionalism, Process & Realization:

Project grades are the result of three areas of evaluation: Professionalism, Process & Realization. At any time during the semester, you may meet with the instructor for evaluations of current grades or dissatisfactions with a grade that you received on any project & how it may be improved upon.


Professionalism: Your grade in the area of professionalism will focus on issues of attendance, preparation, deadlines, critique participation, personal attitude & articulation – the ability to speak & write clearly about ideas/concepts presented in class. Projects for this course will be assigned similar to the way that professional designers receive “design briefs” detailing the specific requirements for a project. The student will then be expected to document the creative process, which they follow in developing individual design solutions. Successive projects will be assigned for the class, & modified or customized to a certain degree based on the overall understanding of previous assignments.


Process: Faculty rely on classroom observation in evaluating a student’s process in developing a project. It will focus generally on how thoroughly the student pushes visual exploration & concept research through such processes as sketching/thumbnails & creative/thoughtful writing. Students who attend class, make visible their process investigations & are prepared for the scheduled activities/discussions, reveal valuable information about their performance. In the absence of such information, faculty must resort to an unsatisfactory rating in evaluating the student’s process. When handing in an assignment, you may be required to include photocopies of relevant pages from the journal & other process materials in addition to the actual assignment.


Realization: The final evaluation of work (realization) involves more than totaling the grades on individual projects &/or determining that all assignments have been completed. Faculty assess student’s abilities in realizing concepts & controlling the visual elements of communication throughout the semester. This includes such issues as craftsmanship & the improvement & progressive mastery of increasingly complex material are evaluated.



You will each need to turn in to me the final PDF versions of all of your assignments from this semester. You must save the files in the manner described below and label them exactly as described below. These files will used to determine student success in meeting course and program objectives.


  • If you have final designs that are that are scans, JPEG, PSD or other forms of bitmapped design you must first convert the files to RGB and 100 dpi and do a new “Save As” or “Export” to create the PDF. (this specific process may or may not have been an actual assignment in this class, so if you are confused by this in any way please ask for clarification)


  • For digital files that are Adobe Illustrator or other forms of vector design, simply do a new “Save As” or “Export” as a PDF file.


  • For multiple images, or parts (for example a series or design campaign) from the same project. Import your separate files into Acrobat after first saving them as described above. In Acrobat create a multi-page PDF containing all files or pages that belong to the same project. (These are the files that belong to the final presentation of the project only. You do not need to burn copies of developmental files, thumbnails, alternate versions, etc.)


  • Name your files using the following convention:

Your last name, project name, date. (deboer, menu, 4/20/11)



Email: Email is the preferred communication tool. Please check your university email regularly since I may send out important announcements pertaining to the class. When emailing me, please follow standard email conventions including addressing me & signing your communications. I check my email regularly & will try answer your questions within one day (with the exception of weekends or holidays.)


Laptop Usage: You are welcome to bring your own laptop & use it in class. Although it is possible to use different computer platforms, the Apple Macintosh is the industry standard used in the majority of professional design fields & is the platform used in the Visual Arts Department.


All programs in the computer labs are licensed for the machines in the labs only. Students are prohibited from copying programs from the computers in the lab for their personal use. It is not only a violation of University policy; it is a violation of the law.


Cell Phone Usage: Per university policy & classroom etiquette; mobile phones, iPods, etc. must be silenced during all classroom & lab lectures. Those not heeding this rule will be asked to leave the classroom/lab immediately so as to not disrupt the learning environment



Student Requirements & Responsibilities:

  • A minimum of six studio hours in class & three hours outside of class per week.
  • Three-ring binder notebook for lectures, sketches, & for assignment sheets & critiques. This notebook should be brought class & utilized for recording lectures & demonstrations, as well as drawings & sketches.
  • Active participation in all phases of the course, attendance,
    lecture / demonstrations / critiques
  • Materials described in the attached materials list.
  • Projects for this course will be assigned similar to the way that professional designers receive “design briefs” detailing the specific requirements for a project. The student will then be expected to document their creative process, which they follow in developing individual design solutions. Successive projects will be assigned for the class, and modified or customized to a certain degree based on the overall understanding of previous assignments.


Late Work Policy: All projects & exercises are due on the day & time given, always at the beginning of class unless otherwise noted. A late accommodation is given only with the understanding that emergencies & unforeseen circumstances occasionally arise. A late project must be turned in by the following class & will be marked down one letter grade accordingly. A later submission will not be accepted. Missing a scheduled critique or presentation will result in an “F” for that project.


Grades of “Incomplete”: The current university policy concerning incomplete grades will be followed in this course. Incomplete grades are given only in situations where unexpected emergencies prevent a student from completing the course & the remaining work can be completed the next semester. Your instructor is the final authority on whether you qualify for an incomplete. Incomplete work must be finished by the end of the subsequent semester or the “I” will automatically be recorded as an “F” on your transcript.


Group Work Policy: Everyone must take part in a group project. All members of a group will receive the same score; that is, the project is assessed & everyone receives this score. However, that number is only 90% of your grade for this project. The final 10% is individual, & refers to your teamwork. Every person in the group will provide the instructor with a suggested grade for every other member of the group, & the instructor will assign a grade that is informed by those suggestions. Once formed, groups cannot be altered or switched, except for reasons of extended hospitalization.


Expectations & Work Load: The basic structure of this course will revolve around assigned studio problems. There will be time given to lecture & class discussion, practical tutorials, exercises, & assignments. A significant amount of time will be also spent in critique of student work.


It is very important that all students engage themselves in a discourse of the work at h&. In turn I will give each of you conscientious feedback on as much of your work as is possible. All students should be prepared to spend a significant amount of time outside of class time for research, process & final production of assigned projects.


Students are expected to think creatively & critically as well as participate thoughtfully in class. As a good portion of this class is based in critique of student work, it is expected that all students will participate in this dialogue so that we may all benefit from the feedback. All comments are expected to be constructive & honest. It is the group dynamic that will inform & educate our individual projects. Be open to the critique process, as your lack of participation will impact your final grade.


Class Preparation: Students are expected to arrive to class on time & be prepared for work with the requested supplies/materials/assignments. Class preparation is essential to receiving feedback on one’s work. Lack of preparation on a continual basis will affect your final grade. If you happen to miss a class or lecture, please make arrangements with a fellow student who can either take notes for you &/or get the required handouts, etc. While I will be happy to clarify information for students who are confused, I cannot repeat lectures or elaborate project descriptions on an individual basis.


Controversial Content: Since a portion of the course will include studying art/design throughout history, there may be times when some of this art may have nudity in it. If you feel uncomfortable with this, please let me know & we can make accommodations.


Attendance Policy: No more than three absences are allowed per semester. Students are required to make prior arrangements with the instructor whenever possible. Students are expected to be on time & to participate for the duration of the class. The student’s grade will be negatively affected & lowered one full grade point for each absence exceeding the three allowed. So, for example, if you were to earn a B+ & had four absences, your final grade will be C+.


Students should be informed that the allotted absences are to accommodate routine illness, weddings, transportation troubles, etc. Doctor appointments, advisor conferences, trips to supply stores & labs, employment, etc. should not be scheduled to conflict with class. Religious Observances cited in the handbook will be followed.


Tardiness is defined as being fifteen minutes late for class or departing before class has been formally dismissed by the teacher. Three tardies will be counted as one absence. Tardiness that exceeds one hour will be counted as an absence. Each student is responsible for his/her own recorded attendance. If you are late it is your responsibility after that class period to make sure the teacher has you added to the roll.


Honor Code: The University Honor Code is an essential element in academic integrity. It is a violation of the Honor Code to give or receive information from another student during an examination; to use unauthorized sources during an examination; or to submit all or part of someone else’s work or ideas as one’s own. If a student violates the Honor Code, the faculty member may refer the matter to the Office of Student Life. If found guilty, the student may be penalized with failure of the assignment or failure of the course. The student may also be reprimanded or suspended from the University. A complete statement of the Honor Code may be found in the Student Handbook, Tiger Lore. Section 1.1 – 1.3


A violation of the principle includes, but is not limited to: Plagiarism: Intentionally or knowingly presenting the work of another as one’s own (i.e., without proper acknowledgment of the source). The sole exception to the requirement of acknowledging sources is when the ideas, information, etc., is common knowledge. Artists & designers occasionally

work from photographs or other imagery. This is allowed & is sometimes necessary, however the artist’s intent must be clear that the new work was not made to merely duplicate someone else’s artwork in another medium or form & claim it

as one’s own.



Studio space is not to be considered a large dorm room, it is not a hotel, it is not a restaurant or lounge. Studio space is instead, a specialized area to do design work, study design, discuss and evaluate design projects, work on individual projects or as members of small design teams. An overall look of professional organization and sensitivity to design should therefore be reflected in the physical environment of the studio. It should be truly functional and aesthetically interesting workspace.

Your mom, dad, aunt, uncle, maid or butler is not enrolled in class with you. You need to pick up after yourself. 🙂


Guidelines for working in the Studio:

A general concern for safety and health well-being should guide all use of materials, equipment, decisions of design making and general etiquette when working in the studio environment.


Open Studio Hours Policy:

Studio Hours are:

M, T, W, TR 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. (except those studios holding evening classes)

F 8:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Sat & Sun 1:00 to 6:00 p.m.

Plan your schedule so that you will be able to complete your assignments during these hours. If you have exhausted these times & need additional time to finish projects or have extenuating circumstances that keep you from finishing during these scheduled hours you must receive written permission to stay in the studio beyond the normal hours. You must obtain this permission by 5:00 p.m. on the day in question. This written permission will allow you to work until midnight only. No students will be allowed in the building after 12:00 midnight.



If you are a student with a disability, who requires accommodations, please contact Mr. Daniel Nuss, Coordinator of the Office of Services for Students with Disabilities in McCaffrey Center, First Floor, Room 137 and Room 115 for information on how to obtain an Accommodation Request Letter. Contact: SSD@pacific.edu or (209) 946.3221. Then please schedule a meeting with me during office hours or some mutually convenient time to arrange the accommodation(s). These services may include, but are not limited to, extended time for completing exams, alternative testing procedures, note takers, & transportation to & from classes. The Policy Manual can be found at: http://web.pacific.edu/Documents/schooleducation/acrobat/PolicyManualforStudentswithDisabilities.pdf.

 University Writing Center: http://pacificwritingcenter.weebly.com

The University Writing Center is a free resource for student, where a trained writing consultant will work individually with you on anything you are writing (in or out of class), at any point in the writing process from brainstorming to editing.

The Student Writing Center is located on the 2nd floor of the Main Library. Email Melanie at mhash@pacific.edu or call (209) 932-2969 if you have any questions.


Important dates to remember

                 Last Day to Add/Drop Classes:       Friday, January 26, 2018

                                 Withdrawal Deadline:       Thursday, March 29, 2018

                                                  Spring Break:       March 12–16. 2018

                                                     Classes end:       Tuesday, May 1, 2018

                                                     Finals Week       May 3–9, 2018

                                               Final Critique:       Wednesday, May 9, 2018

                                                Commencement       Saturday, May 12, 2018

Attendance is mandatory for the final presentation of projects & critique.



Please retain a copy of your syllabus. It is not only an outline of the course it represents a contract between you, the instructor & the University.


Please return any borrowed books, magazines or other materials, tools, etc. that you may have borrowed from me during the semester.

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