Welcome to ‘Course Design Matters


Welcome to the “‘Course Design Matters.”  This the collaborative blog authored by students in ART 335, a course on “Origins & Designs of Design”  (Fall 2016 at UMBC).  This site will serve as a place for us to share selected writings from class; to investigate ideas, events, and experiences both from our assigned readings, as well as those found beyond the classroom; to make connections between the historical periods & styles we are studying and our own work and experiences; to think through issues arising from the course; and to share resources.  Our Blackboard site is still the primary hub for internal communication and for assignment submissions.  This site is a supplement to that work.

For those students To sign up for a WordPress account, check out this quick start guide.

Check back soon for updates and posts!

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Typography & The Gutenberg Bible

The history of graphic design begins with typography.  In our first sessions, we will trace the evolution of typeset from the fifteenth century to the Victorian Age.  We will examine the shift from orality to print and highlight the origins and development of the movable type system and what is perhaps the most iconic work in the age of the printed word, The Gutenberg Bible.

To prepare for these first sessions and the description of Johannes Gutenberg’s work and the activities related to the letterpress and its printers, students are expected to watch the following video, the BBC production The Machine that Made Us, starring Stephen Fry.


McGrady, Patrick, Stephen Fry, and Jeremy Irving. 2008. The machine that made us. New York: Filmakers Library.