Visual Communication

 Richard Merritt (program director)

Visual Communication at Luther College is an interdisciplinary program comprised of faculty in Visual and Performing Arts (VPA), Communication Studies, Computer Science, Data Science, Management, and English. In short, visual communication is concerned with modes of production and distribution, as well as interpretation of codes, messages, and systems.

The Visual Communication major provides our students with a theoretical and practical framework necessary to create, understand, and critically engage media. This major is designed for students interested in career preparation for graphic design, web design, media production, and other pertinent fields.

Required for a major: 11 courses including VC 150, ART 206, COMS 133, CS 130, and ENG 211; three courses including one course from each area: COMS (COMS 234 or COMS 258), ART (ART 207 or ART 218), CS/DS (CS 150 or DS 120); three additional courses chosen from approved electives courses, including two courses at the 300 level. No more than two courses counting for another major or minor may be applied to the Visual Communication major. Writing requirement completed with ENG 211.

Approved Elective Courses: Students must take a minimum of three courses. Approved courses are listed below. Additional courses, including special topics, internships/experiential learning or study away courses of appropriate content, may be approved by the visual communication director.

ART 205, ART 231, ART 306, ART 307, ART 318, ARTH 364, COMS 250, COMS 335/WGST 335, COMS 358, CS 160, DS 320, ENG 231, ENG 232, MGT 351, MGT 364, MGT 368, and SOC 290.

Required for a minor: Six courses including VC 150, ART 206, COMS 133, and CS 130; two courses chosen from approved electives courses.

View program learning goals for an explanation of learning outcomes in Visual Communication. 

Visual Communication Courses

VC 150 Introducation to Visual Communication

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts

This course introduces students to key concepts required to navigate a world increasingly dominated by visual experience. In conjunction with providing tools for encountering this continually evolving world, students are introduced to the fundamentals of the digital tools used in the creation of graphics, visual persuasion, color, imaging, design thinking and ethics. Current trends and issues will also be substantively addressed in an environment that introduces student to the intersectional nature of the major.

VC 490 Senior Project

  • 2 hours

In this capstone course students critically examine how complex visual communication strategies are conceptualized and deployed. This course also examines topical issues surrounding this expansive field. Students will apply principles and methods of visual media production as well as conduct research and analysis of critical dilemmas in Visual Communication. Students pursuing multiple majors are encouraged to discover ways that this capstone course intersects with their other disciplinary pursuits.