At which campus can I study this program?
This degree represents an interdisciplinary approach to emerging technologies and the arts and design disciplines of the College of Arts and Architecture incorporating architecture, landscape architecture, graphic design, music, photography, theatre design, and visual arts. The IDS degree begins with a foundation in arts and design [ART 110, ART 111] a two semester sequence of linked studio practice and theory courses that cover fundamental ideas and skills in the arts and design disciplines such as drawing, color theory, and 2-d, 3-d, and 4-d design within the context of art and design history and theory. The IDS program builds on this foundational core utilizing selected courses from across the College of Arts and Architecture. These courses range from digital fabrication to sound design and composition in music, theatre, and art, to digitally-based art explorations, to digital photography, to the exploration of virtual architectural and built environment spaces, to digital art and design theory and criticism, to internet exhibitions and publishing. Concurrent with these courses, students progress through the series of IDS studio courses (AA 110, AA 210,AA 310, AA 410 and AA 411) in which they will develop ways of learning that will enable them to understand how to work within collaborative professional environments. This will prepare students to meet the varying challenges they will face within client-based arts and design professions.
What is Interdisciplinary Digital Studio?
Interdisciplinary Digital Studio uses digital arts technologies in studio-lab settings to challenge young artists and designers to expand their ideas as they explore new languages of visual expression and communication. Following familiar studio ways of thinking and making traditionally associated with practices such as mixing pigments in painting, or shaping clay in ceramics, digital artists manipulate computer software through coding to expand the potential for creating new forms of image making. In an electronic environment, the single work of art may be replaced by multiple copies that are cloned and reworked using a range of image-making systems. Digital artworks may be exhibited in a variety of forms, such as digital prints, computer printouts, or other hard copy formats of any scale where each translation offers different interpretations. Digital art may also be encountered through networks, interactive games, simulations, or as immersive environments that require active participation by a viewer.
You Might Like This Program If...
Your curiosity and creativity is stimulated by thinking visually in computer languages and graphic communication, and you are inspired by the thought that a digital device is a flexible and adaptive ‘studio’ space where you come up with your best ideas. You will plan and apply your creative design skills in a climate of invention and collaboration in interdisciplinary projects that explore changing visual technologies in art and design.
Incoming First Year Students
Incoming first year students must apply to Penn State. Students who are accepted to IDS through the undergraduate admissions application will be admitted to the School of Visual Arts pre-major (AAART). Students will submit a portfolio for entrance to IDS (B.DES) major at the end of their 2nd semester.
Change of Major/Change of Campus Students
Change of major/Change of Campus students must have a cumulative GPA of 2.00 or above and are required to submit a portfolio to enter the AAART pre-major. Portfolios to enter pre-major are submitted through Slideroom and are reviewed on a rolling basis. Portfolios should include 10-12 images of the applicant’s work and a statement (500-word max) to describe one of the artworks. Students will submit a portfolio for entrance to IDS (B.DES) major at the end of their 2nd semester in AAART.
Transfer students must apply for undergraduate admissions to Penn State. Undergraduate applications for admission to Penn State must be complete and submitted before uploading the required portfolio for entry to AAART pre-major. Portfolios are submitted through Slideroom and are reviewed on a rolling basis and should include 10-12 images of the applicant’s work and a statement (500-word max) to describe one of the artworks. Students will submit a portfolio for entrance to IDS (B.DES) major at the end of their 2nd semester in AAART.
For the Bachelor of Design degree in Interdisciplinary Digital Studio, a minimum of 121 credits is required:
|Requirements for the Major||82|
Up to 9 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes up to 6 credits of GA courses and 3 credits of GN courses.
Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.
The keystone symbol appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.
Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)
- Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
- Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits
- Arts (GA): 6 credits
- Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
- Humanities (GH): 6 credits
- Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 6 credits
- Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits
Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)
- Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits
University Degree Requirements
First Year Engagement
All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.
Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.
First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.
6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements
- United States Cultures: 3 credits
- International Cultures: 3 credits
Writing Across the Curriculum
3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.
Total Minimum Credits
A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.
Quality of Work
Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.
Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition
The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.
Requirements for the Major
A grade of C or better is required for all courses in the major. To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn at least a C grade in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.
|Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better|
|AA 106||Interdisciplinary Digital Studio (IDS) Seminar II||3|
|ART 11||First-Year Seminar- School of Visual Arts||1|
|ART 110||Ideas as Visual Images||3|
|ART 111||Ideas as Objects||3|
|ART 211Y||Introduction to Digital Art and Design Criticism||3|
|ART 476||History and Theory of Digital Art||3|
|Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better|
|Select 40 credits of the following: 2||40|
|Digital Design Media|
|Introduction to Web Design|
|New Media Printmaking|
|Introduction to Graphic Design|
|Graphic Design Studio I|
|The Science of Music|
|Fundamentals of Digital Audio|
|Geodesign: Geospatial Technology for Design|
|Technology in Music|
|Electronic Music Composition|
|Introduction to Photography|
|Photo Studio I|
|Photo Studio II|
|Digital Photography in the Studio|
|Introduction to Sound Design|
|Sound Recording Techniques|
|Supporting Courses and Related Areas|
|Supporting Courses and Related Areas: Require a grade of C or better|
|Select 6 credits of the following:||6|
|Seminar in Contemporary Art|
|A Chronological Survey of Photography|
or PHOTO 201
|A Chronological Survey of Photography|
|The History of Photography|
|History of Electroacoustic Music|
- Demonstrate skills in visual thinking, computer programming, and graphic communication fostered in a climate of invention and collaboration by exploring digital media in studies of technology, theory, and culture;
- Apply diverse notions of creativity in the development and application of design practices through testing, prototyping, and applying original ideas to computational projects in a variety of digital media;
- Demonstrate an ability to produce convincing visual design applied to code-based animations, interactive applications and games.
- Participate in class discussions and critiques that demonstrate critical awareness of new media/digital arts discourse and practices;
- Develop the technical capabilities and creative dispositions to successfully pursue career pathways in multimedia digital art and design;
- Participate in a community of discourse using skills in reading, analyzing, and discussing material about new media theory and practice, leading to constructive criticism of projects and presentations of peers.
The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.
Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.
School of Visual Arts Advising Coordinator
211 Patterson Building
University Park, PA 16802
Suggested Academic Plan
The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2019-20 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition (Note: the archive only contain suggested academic plans beginning with the 2018-19 edition of the Undergraduate Bulletin).
University Park Campus
The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.
|AA 105*||3||AA 106*||3|
|ART 11*||1||ART 111*||3|
|ART 110*||3||Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3|
|ENGL 15, 15A, or 30‡||3||General Education Course (IL)||3|
|General Education Course||3||General Education Course||3|
|General Education Course||3|
|AA 110*||3||AA 210*||3|
|ART 211 (W; US)*||3||Additional Course for Major (GA, see list)*† 1||3|
|CAS 100A, 100B, or 100C‡||3||General Education Course||3|
|Additional Course for Major (GA, see list)*† 1||3||General Education Course||3|
|Supporting Course for Major (see list)*2||3||General Education Course||3|
|ENGL 202A, 202B, or 202C‡||3||AA 310*||3|
|Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3||Additional Course for Major, 400-level (see list)*1||3|
|Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3||Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3|
|General Education Course||3||Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3|
|Supporting Course for Major, history of the arts (see list)*2||3||General Education Course||3|
|AA 410*||4||AA 411*||4|
|ART 476*||3||Additional Course for Major, 400-level (see list)*1||3|
|Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||4||Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3|
|Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3||Additional Course for Major (see list)*1||3|
|General Education Course||3|
|Total Credits 121|
Course requires a grade of C or better for the major
Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education
Course is an Entrance to Major requirement
Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement
ADDITIONAL COURSES (40 credits)
-Select 40 credits from ARCH 481(3), ART 101 GA(3), ART 201(3), ART 202(3), ART 203(3), ART 217(3), ART 314(4), ART 315(4), ART 316(4), ART 317(4), ART 318(4), ART 319(4), ART 343(4), ART 415(4), ART 416(4), ART 417(4), ART 419(4), GD 100 GA(3), GD 200(3), INART 50 GN(3), INART 258A GA(3), LARCH 450(3), MUSIC 455(1-3), MUSIC 458(3), PHOTO 100 GA(3), PHOTO 200(3), PHOTO 300(4), PHOTO 400(4), PHOTO 402(4), PHOTO 403(4), THEA 285(3), THEA 484(3) (Sem: 3-8)
SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS (6 credits)
University Requirements and General Education Notes:
US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).
W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.
GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.
Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.
All incoming Schreyer Honors College first-year students at University Park will take ENGL/CAS 137 in the fall semester and ENGL/CAS 138 in the spring semester. These courses carry the GWS designation and replace both ENGL 30 and CAS 100. Each course is 3 credits.
The iDS program explores and applies digital arts technologies to challenge your curiosity and creativity by expanding how you might think in a digital studio space as you develop new languages of visual expression and communication. Skills in visual thinking, computer programming, graphic communication, and interactive systems are core competencies that have universal application in multiple places of learning, culture, business, entertainment, and industry and are highly prized capabilities. Our goal is to meet your technical, creative, and intellectual needs to ensure you have multiple career options to pursue in creative fields and within the cultural economy.
In the iDS program, we foster a climate of creative intervention, collaboration, and critique, but you provide the motivation. A sequence of ‘spine’ courses anchors the curriculum around essential learning in integrating digital art processes in 2-D, 3-D, and 4-D art and design. However, these courses are envelopes of processes and practices that are animated by you and the ideas that excite you. iDS faculty are professional artists and cultural commentators who work in digital media in varied forms to help mentor and guide you in portfolio and project development, internship options, and how to gain access to collaborative opportunities throughout campus.
Opportunities for Graduate Studies
Creative and critical independence is a hallmark of professional practice and the iDS capstone project is modeled as a bridging experience for entry into the profession, or as a sample of self-directed learning encountered in graduate school. Professional opportunities open to you as an iDS graduate include all areas of new imaging technologies, such as web-based design and communications, entertainment arts, marketing, 3-D modeling and animation, interface design, video and motion graphics, interactive media, and game development. You too will have the capacity to join the many graduates that are practicing digital artists and designers in multiple fields, or have continued on to advanced degrees.