Course Descriptions

MFA in Collaborative Design

Course Descriptions

JBU's Master of Fine Arts in Collaborative Design requires 60 hours of coursework.

Faith & Practice (3 credit hours)
Focuses on the relationship between one’s faith, visual communication, and how to integrate their faith into their work within visual communication without compromising their values. Students will be required to take this class during their first year as an MFA student.

History of Design (3 credit hours)
A survey of key movements, trends, people, and innovations in the history of advertising and design. Students view work, read histories, and study concepts from the world of design, in hopes of gaining an appreciative understanding of the foundational artistic images and ideas that have been both a response to and an influence upon the culture at large. This analysis of historical commercial art will solidify students' own creative foundations for success in numerous professional fields-web design, advertising, industrial, product design, and graphic design.

Global Collaboration Strategies (3 credit hours)
Global Collaboration Strategies will focus on developing collaboration skills and the understanding of human-centered design practices at the local, national, and international level. Students will gain better understanding of the need for clear communication, trust, empathy, and relational development within a collaboration mindset. While developing creative problem-solving, collaboration and design thinking skills, students will learn to understand and develop leadership skills needed within the global arena. The class will help students research and develop international partnerships with non-profits and/or ministries. The partnerships will lead to the work the students will be doing for their thesis projects. This class is a 2-week time-intensive class offered during the first-year’s required summer residency. Prerequisite: ART 7113.

Self-Designed Study (24 credit hours)
Students will work on self-directed projects focusing on their area of interest within Visual Communication Design, Design Research, and Collaboration Design. Students will collaborate with other students, faculty, and/or organizations to develop bodies of work related to their research and specialty focus.

Seminars in Methods (3 credit hours)
Structured as three seminars taught by guest experts within the specific topic areas. The first two seminars focus on research and writing. Since many MFA students will move into an academic career, therefore this class will help students understand the academic environment and good pedagogical practices.

Thesis Preparation (3 credit hours)
Designed to give students the opportunity to research and develop their written thesis. The course will help students learn how to effectively research, write critically, develop, and structure their thesis.

Electives (3 credit hours)
Students are required to take a minimum of three hours of electives, which will aid them in their specialty or research focus.

Thesis Development (6 credit hours)
Allows students the time and opportunity to develop their visual thesis (project) which will be displayed in the JBU student art gallery, and online.

Internship/Partnership (6 credit hours)
Students are required to take six credit hours of international internships or missions internship. The students may join one of the undergraduate major-specific summer studies trips as an Art Director, or they may find a visual communication internship with a global ministry or non-profit partner.

Design Research (3 credit hours)
The course will focus on the research method specifically needed to understand and solve human-centered design problems. Students will learn different research techniques, how to interpret the research, and then how to utilize the research to solve complex problems. The understanding of design research is necessary to be successful at design thinking and collaborative design.

Design Thinking Methods (3 credit hours)
Through the study of Design Thinking Methods, students will cultivate creative thinking, innovation, and problem-solving skills. Students will research and collaborate on complicated human-centered design problems to develop the skills needed to begin the process of solving complex problems and challenges. Students will study methods developed by Design Thinking and Design Research companies and learn to integrate those methods into their design arsenal. Prerequisites: ART 7013 and ART 7023.

Global Leadership and Ethics (3 credit hours)
An exploration of how cross-cultural and global perspectives highlight competitive advantage through diversity. Application of universal standards of leadership and ethics in multiple organizational settings. Students must take this course or BUS 7033 as their first course in any Graduate Business Program.


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