The Illustration degree program prepares students for positions as 2D or 3D illustrators in design and visualization studios, ad agencies, publishing houses, media studios, or freelance contractors. The Illustration curriculum is based on professional standards in building a marketable portfolio, preparing graduates for a variety of full-time or freelance employment in Visualization, Illustration, and Visual Communication industries. Students have an opportunity to develop or upgrade drawing, rendering, modeling and digital illustration skills. Emphasis is on the creation of illustration for print and digital media, studio skills, conceptual and critical thinking, problem solving, and editorial research projects as they relate to the illustration professional.

Program contact: Learn more

This degree program contains one or more embedded certificates which will be automatically awarded when the certificate requirements are completed. If you do not want to receive the embedded certificate(s), please notify the Office of the Registrar at

Learn more about how certificate credits apply to the related degree.

Other Information

  • Non-degree students may enroll in individual courses with departmental approval.
  • Contact Program Coordinator, Program Manager, or Counselor for additional information

Program Learning Outcomes

This program is designed to prepare students to demonstrate the following learning outcomes:

  1. Apply effective verbal, written and visual communication skills to present a concept, idea, or portfolio to co-workers, clients, and other professionals.
  2. Follow directions, give and receive criticism, and work effectively in a team environment to solve visual communication problems.
  3. Research and assess technical and creative aspects of multiple projects to satisfy client needs and to continually evaluate and improve professional skills and practices.
  4. Apply knowledge of art history, theories, and principles to traditional and digital drawing and design skills for visual communication applications relevant to contemporary applied art markets.
  5. Develop career goals, applying basic business and financial skills, self discipline and motivation, versatility and adaptability, self promotion and communication skills to create a sustainable art business.

Suggested Semester Sequence

Plan of Study Grid
First SemesterCredit Hours
ART-1050 Drawing I 3
VC-1000 Visual Communication Foundation 3
VCIL-1142 Illustration I 3
VCPH-1450 Digital Imaging I 3
Select one of the following: 3
College Composition I
Honors College Composition I
 Credit Hours15
Second Semester
MATH-1190 Algebraic and Quantitative Reasoning (Or Any Approved Ohio Transfer 36 Mathematics course) 1 3
VC-1431 Vector Graphics 3
VCIL-1640 3D Design 3
VCIL-2142 Illustration II 3
Communication Requirements 3
 Credit Hours15
Third Semester
VC-2301 Graphic Design and Illustration 3
VCIL-2040 3D Motion 3
VCIM-2271 2D Animation 3
VCIL-2341 Illustration for Story 3
Arts and Humanities Requirements 3
 Credit Hours15
Fourth Semester
VC-2991 Portfolio Preparation 3
Social and Behavioral Science/Natural Science Requirement 3
Select one of the following: 3
Life Drawing I
Game Design I: Introduction to Game Design
Select one of the following: 3
3D Studio
Illustration Studio
Select one of the following: 3
Art Elective
Visual Communications elective
 Credit Hours15
 Total Credit Hours60

MATH-1100 Mathematical Explorations or MATH-1240 Contemporary Mathematics taken prior to Fall 2024 will be accepted to meet Mathematics requirements for this program.

MATH-1140, MATH-1141, MATH-1200, MATH-1270, and MATH-1280 can no longer count towards fulfilling the college-level mathematics requirement.  These courses were re-classified as developmental mathematics by the state of Ohio in 2016.  Tri-C established a 5-year transitioning window for students who had completed these courses prior to 2016 to apply them towards meeting graduation requirements, which expired in Summer 2021. It is highly recommended to see a counselor to determine the appropriate math required for your current major.