At The New England School of Art & Design at Suffolk University (NESADSU) students explore their talents and abilities while learning to communicate visually. The NESADSU educational experience offers the instruction, resources and facilities they need to become successful working professionals.
Irrespective of major, all NESADSU students must:
The Foundation Program is not a degree program but a prerequisite for entry into BFA major coursework in Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Illustration, and Interior Design. The Program is designed to provide extensive knowledge of the basic language, tools, and techniques of visual thinking and communication. Foundation courses teach the principles of visual organization in both two and three dimensions, and in color theory and drawing. Students also learn perceptual acuity, conceptual understanding, and technical facility at a fundamental level. They become familiar with the major historical achievements in the history of art, and exhibit their work during in-class critiques and in an end-of-the-year exhibition.
Fine Arts majors must be able to create visually astute and culturally responsive bodies of work, and employ core tools common to the arts to invent a visual language that is personal, professional, and far-reaching. They must be adept in professional practices including museum and exhibition standards, visual culture, aesthetic assessment, creative thinking, and education. They must be prepared to work as artists, and to maintain discipline and focus while learning to articulate complex ideas visually and verbally.
Graphic Design students must be able to solve communication problems. They must be able to identify a problem; research, gather, and analyze information about it; generate multiple creative solutions; and evaluate outcomes. They must learn to identify and respond to their audience, recognizing the physical, cultural, and social factors that shape design decisions; understand visual organization, information hierarchy, symbolic representation, typography, aesthetics, and the construction of meaningful images; understand the use of tools and technologies, including but not limited to the computer, printing processes, and photography; and understand the role of sustainability in the design process. Students must also understand design history as well as basic business practices, including the organization of design projects and working productively as a member of a team. Multidisciplinary/cross-platform (web, digital, and print) communication problems, environmental graphic design projects, infographics, branding, and projects that require an advanced level of visual literacy have begun to figure more prominently in syllabi. Most importantly, we teach students to imbue their design solutions with strong concepts and to communicate to an ever-expanding and multi-cultural global market.
Illustration majors must be visually literate; develop a solid understanding and application of the visual principles that underpin the effective communication of ideas; and engage in narrative storytelling through the image, without reliance on text. They must recognize the importance of appropriate visual syntax and the application of design principles and color theory. It is important that students develop efficient work habits, self-discipline, and time-management skills. Professional success is dependent on an intelligent, deliberative, research-based approach to visual problem solving—the ability to be creative given particular parameters, a particular audience, and time constraints. Students must develop a preliminary process that allows for the exploration of alternative solutions and the input of an art director or creative collaborator. They must be able to find or produce the visual reference (including the use of lighting equipment, figure models, props, and photography) necessary to create convincing invented imagery. Students should have a functional understanding of human anatomy, linear perspective, atmospheric perspective, light logic, and shadow plotting. The development of strong observational drawing skill, particularly figurative, is essential. Students must produce works that demonstrate effective use of iconography, visual metaphor and visual allusion, implied narrative and sequential narrative, expressive atmosphere, and dramatic staging. Every student should be technically competent in the use of traditional and digital drawing and painting media, and proficient in the use of at least one. All students should have a functional knowledge of print and online reproduction technology. Students should be able to participate in a process of objective critique, and be capable of articulating a coherent analysis of visual art and design. Illustration majors should have an awareness of the role of the illustrator and the essential nature, function, and impact of illustration in society, both contemporary and historical. Students should be familiar with a variety of illustration genres including literary, editorial, advertising, technical, institutional, and product (novelty merchandise), as well as comps and concept art. They should also be familiar with the nature of related creative professions for which Illustration is ideal training (animation, for instance), as well as closely related professional fields such as graphic design. Students must also understand U.S. copyright law to avoid infringement on the rights of other artists (including photographers), and must know how to preserve and protect the right to their own intellectual property. Ultimately, graduating seniors should be capable of producing impactful, relevant, original, authentic images with a practical application.
Interior Design students must have a foundation in the fundamentals of art and design; theories of design, sustainable design, and human behavior; and discipline-related history. They must be able to understand and apply the knowledge, skills, processes, and theories of interior design, communicating effectively at all stages (including oral and written communication and the use of the computer). Students must develop the attitudes, traits, and values of professional responsibility, accountability, and effectiveness. They must learn to design within the context of building systems, using appropriate materials and products, and apply the laws, codes, regulations, standards, and practices that protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Students must also gain a foundation in business and professional practice. Students will apply this knowledge to a wide range of interior design problems, including but not limited to socially conscious design, furniture design, lighting design, human-centered design, and environmental and sustainable design. Program goals include the fostering of creativity and innovation through abstract thinking; the development of critical, analytical, and strategic thinking; the encouragement of a global, socially conscious, and sustainable design perspective; the encouragement of technical expertise and flexibility in the use of industry tools; and the fostering of interdisciplinary collaboration.
As a Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA) accredited first-professional program in Interior Design, the Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) program at NESADSU has adopted the following specific learning objectives as stated by CIDA:
For the 2012 – 13 academic year, the MAID (Master of Arts in Interior Design) Program formally changed its name to the Master of Arts in Interior Architecture (MAIA) Program. Students, faculty, administration and alumni have welcomed the name change, as the term “Interior Architecture” more accurately reflects our curriculum and represents the future of the design industry. The change has been accepted by Program and Departmental accreditors CIDA (Council for Interior Design Accreditation) and NASAD (National Associations of Schools of Art and Design).
The mission of the Program is to enable students from diverse undergraduate disciplines to earn a first professional degree. The Program is designed to prepare students to advance the creative interests of the field, and to contribute to the intellectual and technical developments of the discipline.
Specifically, the curriculum is structured to provide a knowledge base in the fine, technical, and liberal arts within a global and sustainable framework of design thinking. Students apply that knowledge to a wide range of projects, including but not limited to:
Interior Architecture graduates will encounter a diverse range of environmental and sustainable issues in their careers. The Program helps them develop the tools necessary to solve problems creatively, responsibly, and technically.
The Program has adopted the following CIDA-specific learning objectives:
An additional, departmental-specific objective:
Assessment measures for this degree program will include those focused on student learning objectives and outcomes and the effect on the commonwealth of individuals to be able to understand, analyze, synthesize, evaluate, and apply topics in the study of interior architecture.
Graduates with a MFA in Interior Architecture will have met the following learning objectives:
Students will understand, analyze, synthesize, evaluate, and apply design theory as related to interior architecture topics.
Students will have the ability to apply, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate research and ask creative questions from a sound theoretical and practical (applied) perspective.
Students will develop proficiency in the ability to communicate effectively through both the written word and the visual statement.
Students will possess the creative skills and research skills to make a significant contribution to the research and application of the study of interior architecture.
Students will comprehend, apply, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate interior architecture topics as related to the individual student’s research interest (area of inquiry), and as applied to the thesis project.
Measures of success of the MFA Program include the following: