Why the Department of Communication, Media & Design Arts?

The Department of Communication, Media & Design Arts offers a strategic and creative curriculum to prepare students for careers in diverse fields including print and digital design, journalism, PR & advertising, film & media production, and studio art.

Students pursue their studies in one of several majors: a Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art or Art History; a Bachelor of Arts in Communication; and a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design–our BFA is the only program of its kind among private liberal arts universities in the Northwest.

Why PLU?

At Pacific Lutheran University you will be challenged to achieve at the peak of your ability, given support to meet that challenge and, as a result, find success both in college and in your chosen career. You will receive individual attention and be challenged to explore beyond the textbooks, to seek life’s purpose. You will be prepared to lead and to make a difference in the world. This is the PLU experience.


The communication curriculum at PLU balances communication theory with practical application. All communication students take a core sequence of courses before breaking off into disciplines for further study.

Application outside of the classroom is integral to students’ development. All of our students complete at least one internship at organizations of their choice and many students complete more than one.

With knowledge of communication comes responsibility. Students learn ethical standards of their practice and how they interact with local and global communities, culture, and the academic field.


The game is constantly changing. Modes of communication are rapidly evolving and emerging. A solid foundation of media skills, in design or analysis, is crucial to adapt with constantly changing media. Developing marketable skills and knowledge domains are necessary to be a professional communicator, whether words, visuals, or videos is your chosen medium.

Design Arts

The Design Arts majors at PLU stress individualized development in the use of mind and hand.

A CMDA student interested in art is able to chart their own path through a variety of artistic styles and media. Our students use methods ranging from a ten thousand-year-old technique to make pots to cutting-edge and industry standard technology to generate high-tech computer images. Art history and theory courses engage students in critical analysis of major artistic movements from the prehistoric to contemporary world. Classes are small. Students receive individualized attention from professors and peers, and are able to focus their concentration.


Learn about the degrees we offer and credit requirements.


Read course descriptions for our major & minor classes.

University Gallery

Explore our season of art and learn more about art on campus.

Book Arts

Our printing and book arts collection is unique to the Northwest!

Book Arts
Art Alumni

Meet some of our talented alumni and review their portfolios.