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Graphic Design Diploma

Next program start dates:
Tuesday, September 7, 2021
Monday, October 4, 2021
Apply Online
Creativity Lives Here
Students build on their creativity to bring projects to life using industry-standard software
Interactive Learning
Relaxed learning environment for students to easily understand course material
Turn Skills Into a Career
Students turn their skills and knowledge into a portfolio they can use to get a job quickly

Graphic Design Diploma


53 Weeks


Calgary Campus




Morning Evening Weekend

Graphic Design Diploma

Program Overview

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Graphic Design Diploma Summary

The Graphic Design Diploma Program at ABM College allows students an opportunity to explore their creative and visual communication skills in a digital world. Students will gain a thorough understanding of fundamental graphic design principles, how to design digitally using Adobe Creative Suite (including PhotoShop, InDesign, Illustrator and more) to create their own portfolios to present to potential employers. Students finish off with a 4-week practicum placement at the end of the course to add work experience to their resume.

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Graphic Design Diploma Description

The ABM College Graphic Design Diploma Program teaches students how to professionally design for a broad range of applications and career opportunities. Students receive extensive training on industry-standard design software, combining the latest digital techniques with standard art principles to provide the essential knowledge and skills required to begin designing and building professional graphics.

Students will receive a solid foundation in core design areas such as composition and layout, typography, colour and drawing, as well as photography and business integration — preparing them for a variety of industry experiences. Students also receive a practicum placement to incorporate their knowledge and skills within a professional setting and to help add work experience to their portfolios.

Career Opportunities

  • Graphic Designer
  • Production / Layout Artist
  • Multimedia Designer
  • Illustrator / Animator
  • Art Director
  • Multimedia Content Creator

Salary Range

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Admission Requirements

Standard Admission

1. Alberta High School Diploma with English 30-1 and passing grade of 65% or higher, verified by transcript, or non-Alberta equivalent. OR 2. General Equivalency Diploma(GED). 3. Successful interview with school admin. 4. Canadian Level Benchmark of 5 is required if students' first language is not English; SLE Language Evaluation Test.

Mature Admission

1. Must be at least 18 years old(BC residents must be 19 years of age). 2. Successful results on Wonderlic Test with a passing score of 20. 3. Successful interview with school admin 4. Canadian Level Benchmark of 5 is required if students' first language is not English; SLE Language Evaluation Test.

Detailed Requirements

The Graphic Design course, also online, trains students to begin designing and building professional graphics that meet industry standards.
Get Detailed Admission Requirements

Great course selection. They offer morning, evening and weekend class which makes it convenient for everyone.

Edna Haro

Course Components

1. Fundamentals of Graphic Design

Course Description: This course introduces students to the fundamentals of graphic design and its application for print and web. Students discover that design is a complex process that involves research and analysis, concept development, evaluation, refinement, and execution.

2. Fundamentals of Composition & Layout

Course Description: Layout and composition are the building blocks of graphic design. The goal of this module is to give students skills that will allow them to work with visual contrasts, cropping, hierarchy, and direction in single images and complex compositions.

3. Shape & Colour Theory

Course Description: Students learn about visual contrast, colour, rhythm, and pattern in design. They also learn the process involved in making an abstract design from shapes, and how to use that element to create a repeating pattern design. Students explore the various aspects of colour and identify many ways of integrating colour for effective design layouts.

4. Fundamentals of Typography

Course Description: This course teaches students about typography and its significance within graphic design in the development of type. Students learn about the terms and measurements that form the basis of typographic vocabulary, and deconstruct fonts to show the working components.

5. Drawing

Course Description: This module introduces the student to the basic principles of drawing. Students learn basic knowledge in drawing, fundamental concepts and techniques, and practice their drawing using charcoal, pencil and conte.

6. Photography

Course Description: This course is an introduction to photography from a graphic design perspective. Students will learn how to capture still image, video and sound for various environments, including print and online.

7. Adobe Photoshop 1

Course Description: Students examine the essential capabilities and creative applications of Adobe Photoshop CC, from correcting colour and print to retouching portraits, navigation, resolution, cropping, selecting, printing, and making web graphics.

8. Adobe Photoshop 2

Course Description: As a continuation of Adobe Photoshop 1, this module covers advanced compositing techniques, including painting with the mixer brush, adding a background, matching colour schemes across images, and blending multiple pictures to create a panorama. Students also learn how to apply layer styles, use layer effects, add adjustment layers, and various blending modes.

9. Adobe Illustrator

Course Description: Students create and design scalable computer graphics with Adobe illustrator including core drawing and shape tools, transformation and reshaping features, text manipulation, and the pen tool. The module prepares the students to create simple vector graphics, educate them about best practices to enhance workflow, and train them on how to integrate and manipulate colour and type in designs and to prepare documents for output to print, web, and video.

10. Adobe InDesign

Course Description: Students discover the essential capabilities and creative application of InDesign. Students will create a series of projects using different available tools and techniques including single and multiple pages, drop-down menus and panels, column set up, selection tools, layers, colour from different libraries, paragraph and character styles, picture frames, text wraps around images, links and more.

11. Digital Darkroom

Course Description: Students explore the fundamentals of working with digital images acquired from capture, with a focus on the image optimization process within Adobe Photoshop CC. Students learn how to produce a high-quality image that can be reproduced for multiple purposes. The objective of this module is to prepare students to effectively process camera RAW files with Photoshop CC RAW processing interface, process jpg files using a non-destructive workflow, work with the appropriate file format depending on content and usage, maximize the tonal range and correct a colour cast in a digital image, work with layers, layer blending modes and layer styles, perform non-destructive image retouching, crop, rotate, and resize images to meet specific requirements, and export files for both web use and print production.

12. Integrating Business & Graphic Design

Course Description: This module aims to educate students on why designers do more than simply design things, and how graphic design and business are very much integrated disciplines.

13. Portfolio Design

Course Description: Students learn how to create a good portfolio that effectively showcases their work and abilities. Students can then use this portfolio to present to potential employers.

14. Practicum

Course Description: Students will gain practical and hands-on experience to apply the knowledge and skills learned in class to real-world experiences in a professional capacity during a four-week practicum placement.

Optional - Business Communication

Course Description: This course helps students explore and understand the role of communication in professional business settings. Attention is given to workplace culture, interpersonal and team communication, technology, professional presentations, research, meetings, and professional writing grounded in communication and business theory.

Optional - Resume Writing & Professional Skills

Course Description: Students work with a professional career counsellor to develop and optimize a professional resume to put forward for employers. Additional support in job searching, interview techniques, and other career transition skills are offered to ensure students have the best possible work prospects.

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