Jul 19, 2018  
2014-2015 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog 
2014-2015 UMass Dartmouth Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Web and Interaction Design

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The 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Web and Interaction Design prepares art and design professionals and educators for a career change or specialty change within their field. The program emphasizes usability (how people read, navigate, and interact with web-based information), accessibility (web standards, HTML, CSS) and findability. Other topics covered include: web typography, visual design, the web as a social medium, content development and presentation. The program enhances candidate’s current knowledge of art and design and challenges them to develop problem solving skills, technical proficiencies, personal aesthetics, and a dedication to designing usable, accessible, findable web sites.

Candidates earn 12 credits over two semesters, attending classes eight Saturdays each semester. The courses blend face-to-face and online instruction, providing candidates a low-residency program without sacrificing personal attention. The program is limited to 16 candidates per year.

The Graduate Certificate program is designed to

  • Enhance a candidate’s current knowledge of art and design with concepts, theories, and practices associated with web and Interaction development;
  • Accommodate a candidate’s work schedule by keeping residency requirements low (eight Saturdays each semester for two semesters);
  • Prepare a candidate for a career change or specialty change within their field.

The specific program goals include

  • Developing a comprehension of the foundations of web & Interaction design
  • Identifying the purpose of each class project as a communication/social medium, as well as the needs of each project’s audience
  • Designing for people: focusing on usability, accessibility and findability
  • Developing/improving visual design, typography & aesthetic skills
  • Prototyping, troubleshooting, and resolving problems
  • Structuring content through implementation of the HTML syntax
  • Describing visual presentation through the use of CSS elements and selectors
  • Demonstrating the ability to produce web standard (HTML & CSS) based design


Required Courses

ART 555 Information Architecture (3 cr, Fall)

Introduction to the founding principles and methodologies that encompass Information Architecture. This course emphasizes the visualization and management of content through the deployment of both static and dynamic digital media with intent for a wide range of contexts and audiences.

ART 556 Typographic Web Design (3 cr, Fall)

Brings typographic thinking to web design, providing students the opportunity to apply typographic lessons (from choosing a font to designing a complex layout with type) in HTML and CSS, two essential tools for today’s web designer. Students learn typography and HTML/CSS simultaneously, thus reinforcing the importance of sensitive web typography, while providing them the necessary skills to create it.

ART 557 Designing User Experiences (6 cr, Spring)

Defining principles for developing effective and memorable user experiences. Through this course students engage in processes and methodologies that aim to enrich web and Interaction media for both the content designer/developer and the end user. Studies in advanced webpage structure and presentation, content management systems, the application of video, animation, audio and images are core components of this course.

Application to the Program

To be considered for the program, an applicant must have at least a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher learning; if the degree is not in a Visual Arts-related field, the applicant must have completed at least 15 credits in the visual arts.

Applicants lacking 15 credits of visual art-related courses from an accredited institution may, at the program’s discretion, be considered for admission if there is demonstrable evidence of related professional experience and/or portfolio-based evidence of facility with visual art fundamentals (color, form, texture, emphasis, composition, and so on). In some cases, applicants may be required to take visual arts courses concurrently with the certificate.

All applicants are required to submit an application that includes:

  1. Current official transcript(s) from colleges or universities attended.
  2. An essay stating personal and academic objectives, as well as creative/career interests and experience.
  3. A digital portfolio containing 10 examples of personal or professional work - https://umassd.slideroom.com
  4. A current resume

Please note:  Letters of recommendation are welcome but not required for application.

Download and complete the application to the Graduate Certificate Program (pdf).

Application Deadline

August 1 for Fall Enrollment.

Tuition and Fees

Calculate the tuition and fees for the Graduate Certificate Program in Web and Interaction Design based on six (6) graduate-level credits per semester through the College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA). All fees listed are per credit or per three-credits except for the registration fee (which is per semester). http://www.umassd.edu/pce/registration/tuition.cfm

Materials/Equipment and Software Requirements

Media Lab access will grant the student the following

  • Computer access
  • Access to a webpage editor (e.g., Adobe Dreamweaver, TextEdit, TextWrangler)
  • Design and image editing tools (e.g., Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Illustrator)
  • Web Browsers (e.g., Safari, Firefox, Opera) and internet access
  • Access to an FTP application (e.g., Transmit)

Campus Production (Non-supplied materials/equipment and software)

  • Equivalent setup to that of the Media Lab including: a computer, access to the internet, web browsers, webpage editor (a list of recommended editors will be provided), design and image editing software, FTP application
  • Candidates will be required to purchase and maintain both a domain name and hosting server throughout the duration of the certificate. Candidates will be provided a list of recommended webpage editors and FTP applications.

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