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Essential Objectives

Course Syllabus

Revision Date: 10-Jan-23

Spring 2023 | ART-1350-VO01 - Typography

Online Class

Online courses take place 100% online via Canvas, without required in-person or Zoom meetings.

Location: Online
Credits: 3 (45 hours)
Day/Times: Meets online
Semester Dates: 01-24-2023 to 05-08-2023
Last day to drop without a grade: 02-12-2023 - Refund Policy
Last day to withdraw (W grade): 03-26-2023 - Refund Policy
This course has started, please contact the offering academic center about registration


Pamela Heywood
View Faculty Credentials
View Faculty Statement
Hiring Coordinator for this course: Dana Lee

General Education Requirements

This section meets the following VSC General Education Requirement(s) for Catalog Year 21-22 and later:
Arts & Aesthetics
  1. Many degree programs have specific general education recommendations. In order to avoid taking unnecessary classes, please consult with additional resources like your program evaluation, your academic program catalog year page, and your academic advisor.
  2. Courses may only be used to meet one General Education Requirement.

Course Description

Students will learn the practical and critical thinking skills necessary for working with type and will learn why typographical skills are fundamental to design projects. The history of basic typefaces will be explored as well as their expressive potential to communicate. Assignments in both traditional studio work and digital technology will teach basic skills through the use and manipulation of typefaces in practical applications such as posters, logos, and advertisements.

Essential Objectives

1. Survey the history and development of letter forms, type and printing.
2. Analyze how letters are constructed and alphabets designed in order to gain a basic understanding of the character of each letter and of an alphabet.
3. Analyze the major classes of typefaces; understand how they differ and why these differences dictate their uses.
4. Analyze the size, spacing, and color adjustments available to a designer and how to determine and use the "readability" of a typeface.
5. Describe how meaning, and expression of that meaning, determine the selection of type for typical graphic design projects.
6. Examine, discuss, and critique historical and current typographical works in their cultural and social contexts.
7. Design and complete individual projects.
8. Display finished works in a professional manner.

Required Technology

More information on general computer and internet recommendations is available on the CCV IT Support page. https://support.ccv.edu/general/computer-recommendations/

Please see CCV's Digital Equity Statement (pg. 45) to learn more about CCV's commitment to supporting all students access the technology they need to successfully finish their courses.

Required Textbooks and Resources

This course only uses free Open Educational Resources (OER) and/or library materials. For details, see the Canvas Site for this class.


Classes will consist of readings, tutorials, videos, weekly discussions, student presentations and self, group and individual critiques. Weekly and extended, multi-part projects will be completed throughout the semester, evaluated at regular intervals, and will culminate in a professional presentation.

You will present all phases of development and final designs. Your assignments will generally be due Mondays by midnight (unless otherwise noted). All work will be displayed and presented in a well thought out, professional manner. These presentations will show growth and developed skills and technique in all areas covered in class.

Concept sketches and mid-project drafts will be turned in and analyzed. Classmates and I will offer feedback as a guide to help you complete each project. You will received a letter grade for sketches and drafts as well as finished designs. You will also be graded on participation in discussion forums based on meeting at least the minimum requirements, as well as the quality of your comments.

Evaluation Criteria

All assignments and discussions must be completed and on time. Most assignments will be due under the Canvas Assignment Module by Mondays at midnight. Discussions will be visited multiple times a week, once to post you work and personal thoughts by Mondays at midnight, then again at least once more to comment and give feedback to your classmates.

Assignments are worth 100 points. Discussions are worth 50 points, 25 for posting your work and writing about your process and experience and 25 points for the quality of comments, critique and feedback. Plan on spending at least 8 - 10 hours a week on assignments. This amount of time is necessary to see development.

Presentations of extended projects, including all phases of development and final designs are required. All work will be displayed and presented in a well thought out, professional manner following all specifications. These presentations will illustrate growth and developed skill and technique in all areas covered in class.

Art and design is very subjective. I do not grade based on whether or not I like a design. Grades are based on:

  1. Effort, progression, quality, and completion of extended projects
  2. Timeliness, content, and craftsmanship of all phases of all assignments
  3. Completing weekly exercises/assignments based on guidelines and specifications
  4. Presentations of extended projects
  5. Active participation in all aspects of the cours

Grading Criteria

CCV Letter Grades as outlined in the Evaluation System Policy are assigned according to the following chart:

A Less than 9893
A-Less than 9390
B+Less than 9088
B Less than 8883
B-Less than 8380
C+Less than 8078
C Less than 7873
C-Less than 7370
D+Less than 7068
D Less than 6863
D-Less than 6360
FLess than 60 
NPLess than 600

Weekly Schedule

Week/ModuleTopic  Readings  Assignments


History of Typography


History of Typography Video
History of Typography Slide Lecture
What is Typography
Typography Glossary


Drawing Letterforms



Font Personality


Definition of Font Psychology and How to Use it
What Different Types of Fonts Mean and How to Use Them


Font Personality



Graphic Design Process
Expressive Typography


Learn How to Hand Draw Lettering Using Your Pencil and Adobe Illustrator Video
Hand Lettering Tutorial
Adobe Illustrator Tutorials


Thumbnails Sketching
Expressive Typography Part 1 of 2



Expressive Typography Part 2


10 Women Type Designers


Expressive Typography Part 2 of 2



Typographic Hierarchy


InDesign Tutorials
Typographic Hierarchy
Typographic Hierarchy in Web Design


Menu Design Part 1 of 2



Menu Design continued


Menu Design Psycology


Menu Design Part 2 of 2



Designing with a Grid


How to Break the Grid


Type Specimen Booklet Part 1 of 3



Type Specimen Booklet Continued


Type Specimen Booklet Part 2 of 3



Type Specimen Booklet Continued


Typography in Film


Type Specimen Booklet Part 3 of 3



Informational Poster Series


Informational Poster Series Part 1 of 3



Informational Poster Series Continued


Poster Design Process Videos


Informational Poster Series Part 2 of 3



Informational Poster Series Continued


Informational Poster Series Part 3 of 3



Font Design


Font Design Tips
How to Create Your Own Font


Font Design Part 1 of 2



Font Design Continued


Font Design Part 2 of 2



Final Portfolio


Final Portfolio


Attendance Policy

Regular attendance and participation in classes are essential for success in and are completion requirements for courses at CCV. A student's failure to meet attendance requirements as specified in course descriptions will normally result in a non-satisfactory grade.

  • In general, missing more than 20% of a course due to absences, lateness or early departures may jeopardize a student's ability to earn a satisfactory final grade.
  • Attending an on-ground or synchronous course means a student appeared in the live classroom for at least a meaningful portion of a given class meeting. Attending an online course means a student posted a discussion forum response, completed a quiz or attempted some other academically required activity. Simply viewing a course item or module does not count as attendance.
  • Meeting the minimum attendance requirement for a course does not mean a student has satisfied the academic requirements for participation, which require students to go above and beyond simply attending a portion of the class. Faculty members will individually determine what constitutes participation in each course they teach and explain in their course descriptions how participation factors into a student's final grade.

Participation Expectations

To earn full participation points for the week, students should:

Read the assigned material and demonstrate an understanding of those resources in your assignments and posts. Readings and resources should be cited using APA format.

Post an original response to the weekly prompt(s) before Monday at midnight (11:59 PM) and a minimum of two responses to classmates before Friday at midnight (11:59 PM). You are welcome to post early and/or more frequently, as your schedule allows, but you will not receive full credit if you do not meet these minimum requirements and/or deadlines.

Posts should be substantive and demonstrate college-level writing. A substantive post is well-developed, a minimum 150 words, and references the reading or another appropriate source. A substantive post is NOT one or two sentences of general statements or unsupported opinion.

You will each be creating original graphic design work, which will be submitted for grading. Weekly, we will have critiques in discussion forums. The critiques are one of the most important parts of the class, it's when you can gain the best information about how your work can evolve and grow. The critiques will help you see where your strengths lie, and what areas you need to work on.

For those of you who aren’t used to being critiqued or offering critiques, or for anyone else who would like a refresher, below are some guidelines to help you participate in the critique comfortably and productively.

  1. Each week there will be readings and resources that will help you develop your typography vocabulary. During critiques I will be looking for you to discuss each others work using some of that vocabulary, and speaking in a well thought out, intelligent manner.
  2. All the comments should be in the form of "constructive criticism" with the intention of helping refine and improve your design projects.
  3. The objective is to provide feedback that will help each student improve his, her or their work.
  4. Remember that you will also be receiving feedback. Don't say anything in such a way or with a tone that you would not appreciate someone saying to you.
  5. Read the following excerpt fromArt Talk: A Way to Talk and Write About Art, by Suzanne Rexford-Winston. Our critiques should mainly focus on Analysis, and sometimes on Interpretation.

Description (Fact)

This focuses on the question: "What do I see?"
This is where you record exactly what you see. Look carefully and pay attention to details. Don't imagine anything or draw and conclusions. List the things that you see in the work.

Analysis (Fact)

This focuses on the question: "How is the work organized?"

Here you talk about how the designer uses the elements of design (line, value, texture, color, shape, form, space) and the principles of design (unity, balance, pattern, movement, rhythm) to create a certain mood, or to make a statement, or to just create something of interest to look at.

Interpretation (Opinion)

This focuses on the question: "What is happening in the work?" "What does the design make me think of?"

Rely on your intuition! You can now focus on the meaning. Ask yourself the questions above or other questions you may have. And then write a short interpretation of the work.

Judgment (Opinion)

This focuses on the question: "What do I think about the work?"

This is all about you. On what basis have you decided that you like, or appreciate, or understand, or relate to the work? Do you dislike the work, and if so, what are the reasons for that?

Missing & Late Work Policy

Late assignments can be submitted up to one week past the deadline. You will lose 10% each day that an assignment is late. After a week, it will no longer be accepted for credit.

Late work is not accepted in the discussion forum. Timely interaction with classmates is an essential part of online discussions and cannot be made up after the fact. Extensions will be granted only in extenuating circumstances. If a lengthy medical problem or other emergent personal issue will result in missing weekly discussions and/or assignments, please contact me as soon as possible.

Students who know that they will not have course access for any given week should make arrangements with their instructor to complete assignments and participation requirements prior to the absence.

Accessibility Services for Students with Disabilities:

CCV strives to mitigate barriers to course access for students with documented disabilities. To request accommodations, please
  1. Provide disability documentation to the Accessibility Coordinator at your academic center. https://ccv.edu/discover-resources/students-with-disabilities/
  2. Request an appointment to meet with accessibility coordinator to discuss your request and create an accommodation plan.
  3. Once created, students will share the accommodation plan with faculty. Please note, faculty cannot make disability accommodations outside of this process.

Academic Integrity

CCV has a commitment to honesty and excellence in academic work and expects the same from all students. Academic dishonesty, or cheating, can occur whenever you present -as your own work- something that you did not do. You can also be guilty of cheating if you help someone else cheat. Being unaware of what constitutes academic dishonesty (such as knowing what plagiarism is) does not absolve a student of the responsibility to be honest in his/her academic work. Academic dishonesty is taken very seriously and may lead to dismissal from the College.