California State University, Monterey Bay
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Graduate Program | Courses | Internships | Faculty | Requirements

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This one-year graduate level program is designed for individuals who wish to pursue a career in scientific illustration, as well as for scientists who wish to acquire the skills to illustrate their research.

The Science Illustration Certificate Program affords students an opportunity to learn both traditional and digital techniques used by scientific illustrators, and to prepare for careers in science illustration and related fields. Publication opportunities, exhibitions, and other professional experiences are stressed throughout the academic year. Science media art directors, lawyers for the arts and professional illustrators make special presentations and/or review portfolios. During the last quarter of instruction, students participate in designing and assembling a professional exhibit at the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History, as well as teaming up with UCSC's Science Communication Program to illustrate articles for the online publication Science Notes (1994-2014 archive). After students finish their academic year of course work, they gain additional experience by completing a summer or fall internship with a science magazine, museum, aquarium, university press, zoological or botanical institution, newspaper, or graphic arts studio. Program graduates have found jobs in art direction, freelance illustration, teaching, museum work, field research, and magazine illustration and graphic design.

The Science Illustration Certificate Program requires twelve months of full-time commitment. It comprises a three-term, full-time sequence of studio and field courses, a series of master seminars designed to familiarize students with the business aspects of careers in the field of scientific illustration, followed by a professional internship. The program is unique in requiring not only completion of the course work and preparation of a professional portfolio, but completion of a substantial internship at the year's end. The follow-up internship gives program graduates an important edge both in experience and networking over illustrators who lack such experience.