My findings, what are yours?

I am an industrial design student at the university of kansas. I have been looking into other schools as Kansas in general is not the best place to be if your looking into break into design. I stared looking at portfolios in and comparing students who went to KU, and work from other schools. It really seems KU is behind the bar. It is a great program, ID has been there for 40+ years, but the students dont seem to have the skills of other schools. That being said, i was not overly impressed with schools like pratt, or parsons. detroit ccs seemed to have a lot of quality portfolios, as did cranbrook academy of art, art center was good, but not as good as you would think if you looked at these boards for five mintues. Big suprise, I liked a lot of the work from art institiute grads, they all seemed to have a good range of skills and not all uniform. You can tell some schools are mass producing the same designers. Advantage art institues who seems to be all over the county, but they still might not have the teachers some other do. So, has anyone else seen any trends here?

interesting, while i still think it is more person to person than school to school, i see your point on mass production of designers. I think the best schools are the ones that bring out the most varied students. it seems the art institutes are able to do that because they are spread around the county, and they all seem to be small. Interesting how some schools get greats reps and dont really produce.

I can speak from personal experience that CCS is a very good school, and I had a lot of fun there. There is a large automotive focus program there, but what can you expect, it’s in Detroit. They have nice facilities, and even though it’s located in downtown Detroit it’s relatively safe.

My brother ended up going to Cranbrook for his masters degree. They don’t offer undergraduate level programs so a Bachelor’s from there is not possible. It’s also a very good school, located in the Detroit area. It’s a different kind of environment however.

CCS is excellent if you know the right instructor to take and if you don’t mind the inefficient department adminstration.

There are many good instructors. However it seems that many old ones are being replaced with newbies. They usually teach the lower levels( Eg Freshman and sophmore), but I rather be with old school strict folks than young hip inexperienced hot designers.

coroflot by no means represents the talent at ACCD (or any of the other schools really…). You rarely see the killer talent at these schools on these boards because those people already have jobs.

Curriculum may differ from school to school, but the bottom line is everyone learns the same material. I think what most people are reacting to in regards of variations in portfolio is the standards the ID department is enforcing in that school. One school may be more competive and pushing its students for success than the others, therefore, producing more results/styles. Meaning, a particular department may have highter rate of students who finds jobs after graduating.

I do agree this is a person to person case. It could be that one individual excels while the others are merly copycats/clones. So, in the end, while the advantageous student continues to develop after graduating, the rest are stuck with only what they have learned in school.

Don’t be caught up in the art institiute portfolios. These schools are more like vocational schools. Yes the students have great computer/technical skills. They do seem to lack in design theory. Don’t get caught up in the flash, look at the content. Anyone can pick up learn a tool (computer application) Theory is a another story all together.

BTW corefolios are just those who don’t have jobs. I’m willing to bet some of the best students aren’t posted here. Why, because they already have a great job.

This doesn’t mean that there isn’t talent on the board but you will see more middle of the road to weak work since these are the last people to get jobs.

So it takes a special talent to learn design theory? I come from a school that does a lot of design theory and art history. I found it helpful, but not as much as learning the tech. skills that are needed. I even found some of the “theory” to promote not advancing into new areas of design. What was true 10 or 20 years ago is not always true today or in the future. After all, what does the word “theory” really mean? I would much rather see more designers with better skills and more individuality than students who can tell me about what other people have found to be true.
p.s. I hate gastalt.

Actually it’s about balance. An education that is lopsided in either theory or skill will not give you what you need… balance is had to find out there, I went to 2 schools.

Agreed that the best students probably don’t post. Judging by how many Art Center grads are at my company, ACCD grads get jobs pretty fast. Also they’re schools network is pretty tight, they are fantastic at circulating all of their seniors portfolios to top companies and design firms. With a school like that, who needs coroflot? You don’t see that many UC grads on their either.

I think you see a lot of students, who have not graduated, thats the forum right? Students n’ schools? I honestly believe you take what you want, you may have to work a little harder at making yourself seen more, but in the end, hard work will be the thing that pays off, not your alum.

I’ve heard that University of Cincinnati is a really great school, Also…San Jose State University.