PCAD Student studying in his room

BA in Design Thinking

This four-year degree prepares you to become a strategic leader and design thinker in arts industries

When you complete the BA DTH degree, you will have obtained broad knowledge, practice, and experience in art-making; developed skills in visual, aural, and written communication; explored problems and tested solutions in a collaborative learning environment. 

In consultation with the faculty and the Office of the Registrar, in the second semester of your first year, you’ll declare your studio area of concentration. You may select: Animation & Game Art, Data Visualization, Fine Art, Graphic Design, Illustration, Live Experience Design & Production, and Photography & Video.

Degree requirements

You’ll need to complete 120 credit hours in these courses… 

  • 6 credits in Design Thinking
  • 21 credits in studio area #1
  • 21 credits in studio area #2
  • 18 credits in Foundation Year studio courses
  • 6 credits in the Communication Distribution Area during the foundation year
  • 3 credits in the Communication Distribution Area after the foundation year
  • 3 credits in the Art History Distribution Area during the foundation year
  • 18 credits in the Liberal Arts Distribution Area
  • 24 credits in electives, general studio electives, or lecture courses

In addition, you’ll need to complete these requirements…

  • Successfully complete and document an internship.
  • Earn a cumulative 2.0 grade-point average at the conclusion of your course work
  • Submit a digital file of 8-10 samples of work from your final portfolio
  • Satisfy all financial obligations to the college
PCAD students critique in Fine Art

course goals

When you successfully complete the program, you’ll be able to:

  • Demonstrate the ability to use, at an advanced proficiency level, a range of studio and computer-based media and processes.
  • Formulate and develop a personal creative direction that results in artwork that is a union of concept, form, medium, and craft.
  • Formulate and apply critical and contextual analysis to your work and the work of others, while demonstrating an understanding of the visual arts and the relevancy of your work in the context of historic and contemporary art and the broader global culture.
  • Demonstrate deliberate and effective communication through informed and influential visual and verbal language.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of collaborative problem-solving, human-centered design, and the evolution of work from concept to prototype.

career opportunities

With a BA DTH degree you will have numerous career opportunities, including working at community-based art organizations, media companies, web or advertising agencies, and as a creative assistant, social media assistant, scenic artist, and design assistant.

who should enroll

The program is designed for a wide range of individuals. College experience is not a prerequisite for this program, but a fondness for working with data and visual design is essential. High school and college graduates, veterans, professionals, and entrepreneurs will be among those who bring their diverse perspectives to the program.

How to register

Enrolling in this program is simple, just fill out an application. 

If you have any questions, please contact Bonnie Kern, our Admissions Transfer & Outreach Coordinator, at 717.396.7833 ext 1014 or email bkern@pcad.edu.

Make your creative life, a way of life

Make your creative life,
a way of life

Submit An Application

Even if you’re still deciding on a school, start an application or submit your portfolio. Let us get to know you without any commitment.