Professional Practices – ARTS 492

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 07/28/2020

Course Description

Professional Practices is a senior-level course to aid the student in their upcoming transfers from classroom to the professional world. Topics and issues related to professional practices for professional artist and designers are covered in this course. There is a strong focus on the production of a professional presentation of the student’s creative work for purpose of employment and business opportunities. (Formerly COMS 492)


(ARTS 222 and ARTS 223 and ARTS 352 and ARTS 342 and ARTS 371) or (ARTS 311 and ARTS 321 and ARTS 330 and ARTS 361 and ARTS 420 and ARTS 430)


Most college graduates entering the field of art and graphic design work for employers such as advertising agencies, design groups, art galleries, or museums, at least at first. To be competitive with other job applicants and increase the likelihood of landing jobs, graduates will need well-honed job-seeking skills. For example, they will need to determine their areas of interest, talent, and expertise; to know where to look to find jobs in these arenas; and to market them well.

As part of this effort, they must have self-promotional materials ready, such as a resume, cover letter, and a presentation of their work. Another part of this effort is “doing well” during interviews. While there are many factors at play during interviews, applicants who are familiar with professional practices and issues in the creative industry will have an edge on the competition.

Graduates also need to be prepared for not only the discrepancy between secular and Christian values in the workplace but also for possible conflicts of conscience as specific jobs are assigned. Christians in the creative arts are greatly needed to help offset the predominantly humanistic and liberal perspective of much of today’s media.

Measurable Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Discuss the topics and issues involved regarding professional practices in art and/or graphic design as outlined in the course description.
  2. Create a resume and customize cover letters.
  3. Establish and maintain a professional portfolio in the current industry-standard formats, an up-to-date resume, and other pertinent materials as needed.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in Module/Week 1.

Discussion Board Forums (2)

Discussion boards are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to provide a thread in response to the provided prompt for each forum. Each thread must be at least 300 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 2 other classmates’ threads. Each reply must be at least 250 words.

Portfolio (8)

The student will create a professional Portfolio. This will be completed in 8 different submissions over the duration of the course. The student may choose to create a print or digital Portfolio, but he/she must keep in mind the time constraints. The final Portfolio submission will be at the end of the course.

Blogs (5)

For each Blog, the student will compose a work/draft post that contains an appropriate selection of images, scanned work sketches, or other preliminary design drafts to give a clear idea of what the design portion of his/her finished project will look like. The student must support his/her work/draft post with a 200–300-word explanation of the goals and intents of the images used for the project. The student must then compose a 100–200-word critique/comment response to the work/draft posts of 2 of his/her classmates. In each critique/comment response, specifically address the effectiveness of elements used in the original post and whether or not the classmate has supported the goals of the draft as presented. Also, include constructive comments for any suggested changes. The student must clearly articulate a specific direction for change in his/her comments and recommendations (e.g., do not simply say, “This part is weak”).

Presentation Topic Quizzes (8)

Each quiz will cover the Reading & Study material for the assigned module/week. Each quiz will be open-notes, contain 10 multiple-choice and true/false questions, and have a 15-minute time limit.

Reading Content Quizzes (8)

Each quiz will cover the Reading & Study material for the assigned module/week. Each quiz will be open-notes, contain 10 multiple-choice, multiple and true/false questions, and have a 15-minute time limit.