Overview

The Interactive Design program with a Graphic Design major is your gateway to a tech-focused career in design. This comprehensive program equips you with the skills needed to bring your creative ideas to life while meeting business needs and solving complex challenges.

In this program, you will: 

  • develop expertise in graphic design, illustration, and visual storytelling using master foundational design principles and tools
  • cultivate creativity and critical thinking to tackle design challenges
  • harness data to inform your designs while staying current with industry, media trends and user preferences
  • become proficient in project management and how to optimize your workflow for efficient design execution
  • learn to collaborate effectively, emphasizing user-centric design for impactful products
  • tailor designs to specific audiences, driven by user experience and behaviour, interactivity and preferences
  • develop a portfolio that showcases your skills with client-ready projects that demonstrate applied design concepts
  • create print and graphic design master layouts, with composition and visual hierarchy for diverse print media
  • create captivating designs with effective use of typography, colour theory, and visual elements that will help you develop your unique design philosophy
  • carry out hands-on packaging projects and learn digital press and bindery equipment skills.

Our program will help you to realize your goals as a graphic designer in an innovative and tech-driven field. Prepare for success in this ever-evolving design industry as you bring your career vision to life.

Graphic designers tend to be innovative, methodical and social.

You need:

  • discretion in dealing with client information and industry secrets
  • creativity
  • self-discipline
  • drawing ability and visual sense
  • attention to detail
  • analytical thinking
  • communication skills
  • time-management and organizational skills
  • marketing skills
  • resilience
  • to be very comfortable using computers.

You should enjoy synthesizing information and finding innovative ways to present ideas, taking a methodical approach to your work, consulting with people, learning from constructive criticism and navigating multiple deadlines.

The opportunity to advance your education by transferring into this program or gain credit for previous postsecondary courses may be available.

There may also be opportunities to further your education once you graduate.

Learn more about program and institution transfer options.

You can participate in an optional work term after your first year.

You’ll also complete in a capstone project in your second year, where you’ll investigate issues across many different subject areas or domains of knowledge, connect with community issues or problems, and create a solution.

Upon successful completion of this program, you’ll be awarded a SAIT Interactive Design diploma with a major in Graphic Design.

Download program info

Careers and opportunities

Our graduates may work in the following occupations. Some careers require additional experience and education. 

Associated National Occupational Classification (NOC) codes: 52120, 52111, 10022, 11202, 21233.

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Career counselling and support

Unsure which career path is for you? SAIT offers career planning services to help you decide your future.

You can also get started by taking our online career finder quiz, which can help you narrow down your search based on your current skills and interests.

Finally, you can also head to Alberta alis for various tools and resources, including additional quizzes and labour market information to help you narrow down a career path.

Services and workshops

Courses

The Interactive Design – Graphic Design diploma requires 60 credits (19 courses) to complete.

The program spans two years, with two semesters each year.

View classes by semester

Interactive design core

Course Credits

This course is designed to develop technical writing and presentation skills to ensure workplace readiness. Students will learn how to evaluate communication situations, analyze documents, assess research sources and develop organizational skills to apply in their work. They will learn about and practice designing, formatting and writing a range of professional documents. Students will also develop confidence (through practice) in the development and delivery of effective and engaging presentations.

3

Building on previous knowledge in web design and development, learners will apply design and development techniques to responsive designs enabling access for all devices. Advanced web development frameworks will be used along with advanced scripting patterns. Emphasis will be placed on debugging client-side code and incorporating backwards compatibility with considerations for accessible design.

Pre-requisites:
  • CPRG 219
3

After completing this course, students will have the technical and design skills needed to develop a simple web page. Students will understand the basics of computer scripting, and how to use a web scripting language to add functionality to a web page.

3

This course covers media production concepts that include the application of design theory and principles to intermediate projects. Traditional and digital drawing, typography, intermediate layout and intermediate photographic techniques will be explored. Digital production and design tools will be used.

Pre-requisites:
  • DSGN 228
3

In this course, learners will develop the skills and understanding required to create user-centric designs. Learners will be able to identify good User Experience (UX) design in physical and digital mediums and its impact on users. Learners will also be able to describe how UI and UX design methods can be applied towards understanding the end user to create meaningful design solutions.

3

This is an introductory course covering design theory, the production of media, and the use of production hardware and software tools. Learners will become familiar with bitmap and vector graphics, digital photography, typography and print media tools and techniques.

3

In this course learners will explore basic animation theory, motion graphics, and audio and video concepts. Learners will use basic programming scripts to develop basic interactive presentations.

3

This course will focus on media authoring, intermediate audio and video production, as well as motion graphics.

Pre-requisites:
  • MMDA 202
3

The purpose of this course is to introduce you to fundamental skills in critical thinking. You will develop skills in identifying fallacies, evaluating formal arguments, and diagnosing the appropriate form of argumentation in a variety of areas, including science and morality. Your skills in argumentation will be honed both in evaluating others’ arguments and in making your own.p>

Equivalents:
  • PHIL 1011
3

This course will examine industry cases to illustrate how products are disrupting the market. Learners will explore the strategic and dynamic role a product manager plays in evolving a product over its lifecycle. Topics in logistics, planning, team formation, and product finding will also be explored.

3

Graphic design core

Course Credits

In this course we will investigate the creation and manipulation of digital images by computer. The course will consist of theoretical material introducing the mathematics of images and imaging, as well as computer laboratory exercises designed to introduce methods of real-world data manipulation. Topics will include representation of two-dimensional data, time and frequency domain representations, filtering and enhancement, the Fourier transform, convolution, interpolation, colour images, and techniques for animation.

Pre-requisites:
  • DSGN 221
3

The course is designed to provide an in-depth, practical, and up-to-date look at all major aspects of digital marketing, including selling products and services online, search engine optimization, social media marketing, and executing pay per click advertising.

Pre-requisites:
  • DSGN 304
3

Building on previous visual design concepts, this course covers the advanced topics in visual design and communications with emphasis on gravity, directionality, priority, tension, dynamic and static design, and negative space. Application of these topics are contextualized within the design industry through the integration of style guides, client presentations, design systems, product roadmaps, and development hand-off.

Pre-requisites:
  • DSGN 221
3

This course is the first of two studio courses that will prepare you to create solutions to real-world industry problems within a design firm context. This course explores the creative design process through a series of composition, abstraction, and design projects. You will be introduced to a design process based on original thinking, in which you will synthesize collected information and draw conclusions based on established premises. The course will also demonstrate how to generate a number of design alternatives, and evaluate and select the most appropriate one.

Pre-requisites:
  • COMM 238
  • CPRG 218
  • DSGN 221
  • DSGN 227
  • MMDA 203
  • PHIL 241
  • PMGT 200
3

This course is the second of two studio courses that will prepare you to create solutions to real-world industry problems within a design firm context. In the second part of Design Studio, students will explore more complex problems and create solutions and prototypes for presentation and iteration. Increasingly complex projects will provide a foundation for the development of a learner portfolio to support the transition into industry.

Pre-requisites:
  • DSGN 306
6

In this course we will investigate the creation and manipulation of digital images by computer. The course will consist of theoretical material introducing the mathematics of images and imaging, as well as computer laboratory exercises designed to introduce methods of real-world data manipulation. Topics will include representation of two-dimensional data, time and frequency domain representations, filtering and enhancement, the Fourier transform, convolution, interpolation, colour images, and techniques for animation.

3

This course will allow learners to study letter forms and understand fundamental typographic principles with an emphasis on the vocabulary of typographic form and its relationship to message/purpose. Additional topics on the translation of typographic design to print will be explored.

3

This course provides an overview of the process of preparing print communication materials for reproduction, from concept to completion. Students are introduced to production workflow models in use today. Through a series of assignments, requires students to prepare and execute press-ready files of a professional standard. Using industry standard software tools students will compile documents that are technically correct according to industry-standard workflow methods. The proper preparation and inclusion of vector and raster files is explored alongside colour synchronization, and colour management across applications.

3

In this capstone course, you will investigate issues across many different subject areas or domains of knowledge, may connect with community issues or problems, and create a solution. Your project should demonstrate the technical and professional skills learned in the program and beyond. You are expected to apply your creativity and problem-solving abilities to a real-world context.

Pre-requisites:

One of the following options:

  • CPNT 300, CPSY 302, CPSY 350, INTP 301, ITSC 300
  • CPRG 303, CPRG 304, CPRG 306, CPRG 307, CPSY 301
  • ITSC 203, ITSC 301, ITSC 304, ITSC 307, ITSC 309
  • FVDO 300, FVDO 302, FVDO 303, FVDO 304, FVDO 308
  • MMDA 300, MMDA 303, MMDA 323, MMDA 324, MMDA 326
3

Course Credits

This cooperative work term course provides the opportunity to apply your classroom learning in a practical workplace setting, as well as gain valuable industry experience. This course is optional.

Pre-requisites:
  • CPRG 218
  • DSGN 221
  • DSGN 227
  • PMGT 200
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Progression

Students must attain a PGPA and/or a CGPA of 2.0 or better in each semester and pass the necessary prerequisite courses to progress through the program. To qualify for graduation, students must pass all courses, attain a CGPA of 2.0 or better and complete course requirements within the prescribed timelines.

Review our grading and progression procedure >

Admission requirements

Applicants educated in Canada

All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency and meet the following requirements or equivalents.

  • at least 50% in Math 30-1 or 60% in Math 30-2 
  • at least 55% in English Language Arts 30-1 or 60% in English Language Arts 30-2.

SAIT accepts high school course equivalents for admission for applicants educated outside Alberta.

All applicants who were educated outside of Canada must demonstrate English Language proficiency and provide proof they meet the program admission requirements with an international document assessment. Find out what educational documents are accepted and assessment options.

SAIT may also accept courses completed at certain international post-secondary institutions.

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Academic Upgrading

Missing an admission requirement for this program? Upgrade your prior education to help you receive admission into one of SAIT's career programs.

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English language proficiency

All applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency prior to admission, including students educated in Canada.

Learn more

Available intakes

Spring 2024

Start dates:

Domestic students: Open
  • Application deadline: Extended
International students: Closed
  • Application deadline: Jan. 22, 2024

Fall 2024

Start dates:

Domestic students: Waitlisted
  • Application deadline: June 28, 2024
International students: Closed
  • Application deadline: May 29, 2024

Winter 2025

Start dates:

Domestic students: Open
  • Application deadline: Oct. 25, 2024
International students: Open
  • Application deadline: Sept. 30, 2024

Costs

2024/25 tuition and fees

The following costs are effective as of July 1, 2024.

Domestic students

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for domestic students is based on the recommended course load per year. 
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 2 $9,630 $1,608 $11,238
2 2 $9,630 $1,608 $11,238
Total cost:
$22,476

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for international students is based on the recommended course load per year. 
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 2 $23,580 $1,608 $25,188
2 2 $23,580 $1,608 $25,188
Total cost:
$50,376

Books and supplies are approximately $2,000 per full-time year.

Find your booklist on the SAIT Bookstore's website. The booklist will be available closer to the program start date.

Can’t find your program or course? The bookstore didn't receive a textbook list. Contact your program directly to determine if they’re still refining course details or if you're in luck; no textbook purchase is required this term.

Computers and laptops

This is a bring-your-own-device program with a custom hardware and software requirement.

For this program, you will need the following:

  • a laptop with an integrated webcam
  • a smartphone with the ability to record audio and video
  • headphones with an integrated microphone.

All computers must meet the following minimum specifications.

Laptop

  • Required
    • MacBook Air with M2 chip
    • 8-Core CPU, 10-Core GPU
    • 8GB Unified Memory
    • 512GB SSD Storage
  • Preferred
    • 14"Apple MacBook Pro with M2 Pro chip.

Note: Some UX designers use software that is only for Mac.

Software

  • Adobe CC Student Subscription
  • Figma (free for education)
  • FileZilla Client
  • Chrome
  • Visual Studio Code
  • MS Office (included in your program)

2023/24 tuition and fees

The following costs are effective until June 30, 2023. 

Domestic students

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for domestic students is based on the recommended course load per year. 
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 2 $9,450 $1,570 $11,020
2 2 $9,450 $1,570 $11,020
Total cost:
$22,040

The estimated total cost of tuition and fees for international students is based on the recommended course load per year. 
Year Number of semesters Tuition fees Additional fees Total per year
1 2 $23,571.60 $1,570 $25,141.60
2 2 $23,571.60 $1,570 $25,141.60
Total cost:
$50,283.20
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Financial aid

Paying for your education may feel overwhelming, but we have resources and programs that can help, including information about payment options, student loans, grants and scholarships.

Learn more

Application process

When applying in the application portal, select Interactive Design. You will be able to select Graphic Design as your major during the application process.

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Begin your application

Apply now using the online application portal. 

Ensure you have a valid Visa or Mastercard to pay the non-refundable application fee of $120 for domestic applicants or $150 for international applicants. 

Apply now

Ready to apply?

Follow our step-by-step guide to submitting a successful application.

Learn how to apply

Communication during admission

Email is the primary source of communication during the selection process. Ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add the sadt.advising@sait.ca domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.

Information sessions

Prepare for a strong start in your chosen program or get the details you need to decide your future path.

Our expert staff and faculty are ready to answer your questions and provide information about the following:

  • What sets SAIT apart
  • An introduction to the program and area of study
  • Admission requirements
  • Future career paths
  • Information on the earning potential and graduate employment rates.

Contact us

School for Advanced Digital Technology Advising

Phone
403.284.8543
Email
sadt.advising@sait.ca

International Student Advising

Phone
403.284.8852
Email
international@sait.ca