Impacts of Graphic Design Development on Teaching Graphic Design in the Arab World

Impacts of Graphic Design Development on Teaching Graphic Design in the Arab World

I don’t firmly believe that the Arabic library contains sufficient books dealing analytically with Graphic Design that could support the Arabic universities, with specialized art academies, and could be utilized as special curriculum within the teaching plans of these academies. The Arabic library is condensed with other artistic methodological books in addition to some translated books which discuss the basics of design, advertisement, and other topics that fall within the framework of advertisement.

The fact is that there is a short understanding of the comprehensive concept of Graphic Design. This concept is not sufficiently represented by advertisement and publicity or printing design because such specialization per se received little attention before the advent of computer to the Arab World and the return of unspecialized cadres living in the European countries and USA, who brought with them the sophisticated technology and transferred it to us without defining its actual identity, academically and vocationally.

With the start of teaching this specialization, dependence in determining the study plan was basically on the academic staff entrusted to teach such specialization. Some were distant from the roots of this specialization and others considered that any person with a specialization in art or architecture can play the role of planner. But, after a careful review of the total study plans in most Arabic universities, we realized how unbalanced and, sometimes, insufficient such attempts were; they have no identified identity; half of them were fine arts and the others tackled one part of Graphic Design but of no grass root.

Any method for teaching Graphic Design has to bear in its priorities the promotion of creativity factor and concentrate on the techniques and demonstration methods and their correlation with skill to enable the student of this specialization to benefit from this study- this should also include, but not limited to, studying related knowledge such as Graphic Design history and its theories to allow the students to apply what they learn to develop their own means of creativity and invention.

It is necessary to take into consideration the needs of new students in Graphic Design and students who are expected to graduate by defining a systematic plan capable of gradually refining design students to enable them to acquire expertise and techniques.

First levels students need to be introduced to Graphic Design history, manual skills, and design principles and techniques through the computer in order to develop their capabilities in designing and creating advertisement campaigns or integrated projects that include logos, posters, Internet homepages and other materials, any graphic designer will need.

High level students need to be introduced to the approaches that can develop their technical and intellectual skills as well as develop the innovation status through carrying out series of integral projects in presenting their works entirely and collectively. These approaches should be able to grant student enough space of positions sets they can apply for through a group of specialties that fall under the umbrella of Graphic Design. All of this will not be materialized without provision of studios and labs qualified to perform the role required in addition to cadres qualified technically and knowledgeably to realize the goals of Graphic Design. Graphic Design syllabus relies, in its execution, on the practical principle as well as on the theoretical one. Further, it mentally qualifies and trains the student to face the changes and the techniques of time as well as empowers him to deal with what is to come as the extract of developed fields of knowledge related to Graphic Design taking into consideration the necessity of linking it with the classical approach that is linked with cadres that need to be qualified in order to be able to keep pace with the latest techniques of information and knowledge.

As a fact, when we talk about Graphic Design, we should pay considerable attention to widening the base of Graphic Design that exceeds the limits of typing which is the result of its development and to reach various resources of visual communication, as television, computers and internet which enable us to get better view of the resources made by other people in different parts of the world. This will definitely help us to be more creative, innovative, and more able analyze and assess, and, that of course, requires a good deal of curiosity which can be enhanced and triggered by the size of acquired information in form and substance.

Methods of teaching can rely on multiple factors, such as increasing the need and curiosity of the student to learn, expand his knowledge, self- confidence and be more self-motivated in order to overcome what is new through applying intellectual practices, keeping pace with science and utilizing it to trigger his imagination and increase his meditation and search for new mechanisms and methods of work. Therefore, triggering the challenges in a student is inevitable; this can be supported with mechanisms that enable him to find solutions to problems he may encounter through the use of special techniques and knowledge pertaining to his specialization. However, this will not be enough to enable the student to use his manual skills, design programs and its techniques, if he is not qualified to know when and how to handle an idea and when it is able to realize to target.

From the above mentioned, any academic approach we think of as a base to be used to teach graphic design should take the following into consideration:

1- Implementing Graphic Design education in professional practice.
2- Development of different Graphic Design media due to their direct correlation with technology.
3- Design and critic theories.
4- Importance of designer’s material cognition.
5- Designer’s language and its theory as well as his ability to talk.
6- Designer’s decent visual eloquence.
7- Designer’s education in art, design sciences, society, literature, technology, sciences and industry.
8- Knowledge of the theories of communication and transfer of information.
9- Management of programming, computer science and the science of management and marketing.

The focus should be directed towards the personal design of each student and toward the various methods that boost his design abilities beyond the single design problem as well as toward successful and appropriate self motivating and development. Further, critical thinking practices and search and development of concepts and contents of analysis, editing and technical execution need to be developed through going over the special skills expected in designing all Graphic Design media as they are considered unique communication media.

– How can we contribute to Graphic Design development?

Before answering this question, it is necessary to emphasize the important role of the teaching curriculum or the teaching plan, the size of information presented through it, the methods and means approved to apply it, its resources, its relationship with information revolution that shorten time and distance as well as the positive and negative role of this revolution through emphasizing the methods of teaching the curriculum that depend on integral expertise, the purpose of which is knowledge and refining it.

We should emphasize the necessity of matching Graphic Design teaching plan and its coherence with time and its development, its relationship with the latest audio-visual technologies in addition to the information management, which forms the basis of the designer role through the ability of graphic design teaching curriculum and its philosophy to comprehend the challenges of time (the time of information and technology) so as to enable the student to comprehend time product with its information in an effective way and to be active in developing his portrayal impression of information in order to direct it in a form harmonious with the language of time.
This needs a set of books that focus on the following topics:

–¬†History of Graphic Design:

This book should present a survey of the main events and accomplishments that led to the evolution and development of Graphic Design so as the student can track the ceaseless search to clarify the ideas beginning with (pictograph), the symbolic picture drawn on the walls of caves, and ending with the latest of graphic designs. Suck knowledge will help the students to be acquainted with cases of innovation and innovators in addition to knowing the depth of technology that formed communication media revolution in Graphic Design.

–¬†Graphic Design¬†fundamentals and factors.

These books should present the definition and analysis and comparison of all design fundamentals and factors. They should emphasize design fundamentals and factors with regard to forming and their manual skills through the use of technical tools and methods, the ways, procedures and presenting the work of Graphic Design in a professional way so as to identify the ways of creating high quality works that persist through Graphic Design programs for each later specialized course.

–¬†Programs of publishing and design

Such books should present the definition and analysis of all programs specialized in design and editing which the designer will has to use to acquire the required skills to be used in other courses that would assist him when entering the world of contemporary markets. An indication should be made not only to its tools and uses but also to its software infrastructure. Among these programs:

Adobe PHOTOSHOP
Adobe ILLUSTRATOR
Corel DRAW
Desktop of PUBLISHER
Quark Xpress
Front PAGE
Macromedia Flash