Designing Branding and Logos

I.     Course Prefix/Number: ART 244

       Course Name: Designing Branding and Logos

       Credits: 3 (0 lecture; 6 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

ART 224 or consent of instructor.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course provides an examination of the role of graphic design in brand identity, logo design, and brand marketing. Topics include current design strategies for developing integrated digital branding solutions and practical application by hands-on experience in designing, application, and presentation of a company identity, logo, and brand program.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. Identify the fundamental properties of successful logos.
  2. Develop practical applications of the stages of the professional logo design process.
  3. Describe how a visual concept for a logo design is developed and honed.
  4. Complete a finalized and approved comprehensive logo design and an identity package, utilizing all phases of the design process.
  5. Apply conceptual design skills to develop branding strategies.
  6. Identify brand identity ideals and apply them to the design.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Identity and Branding Introduction
    1. What is a Logo?
    2. Different types of logo identity terms
    3. History of the logo
    4. Case studies of successful logos
    5. What is a Brand, and what is Branding?
    6. Case studies of Identity design and branding
  2. Logo design Phase 1: Research and Investigation
    1. Research client, competition, and relevant industry
    2. Conduct a client Creative Brief or Project Scope
    3. Evaluate the research and needs to establish a direction
    4. Originate a checklist of logo and identity requirements
  3. Logo design Phase 2: Concept and Design
    1. Review client’s needs, requirements, and direction
    2. Conduct effective logo brainstorming and a creative logo identity evolution
    3. Explore multiple variations and themes with thumbnail sketches
    4. Select best sketches and develop tighter compositions
    5. Prepare final composition of logo variations for presentation
  4. Logo design Phase 3: Approval and Finalization
    1. Schedule meeting with client to present logo variations approval
    2. How to present the logo effectively and handle client feedback
    3. Complete the final logo for approval and sign-off.
    4. Complete additional logo “exclusive use” variations
    5. Develop comprehensive rules and regulations for logo use, for the Graphics Standards Manual
  5. Logo design Phase 4: Creating Touchpoints
    1. Develop a Graphics Standards Manual for new identity usage
    2. Design new stationary (business card, letterhead, envelope)
    3. Design new business forms (bills, invoices, badges, notepads, etc.)
    4. Design new PR/IR forms (news release, press kit, etc.)
    5. Design new HR/Facilities items (employee handbook, signage, etc.)
    6. Website update
    7. Update all Marketing and Sales pieces as necessary
  6. Defining your Brand
    1. What is a brand, and what is brand identity?
    2. Current branding trends
    3. Understanding today’s branding challenges
    4. How do you develop a brand strategic marketing plan?
    5. Who and what are stakeholders?
    6. Brand strategy and who develops it?
    7. Understanding Brand Positioning and Identity Ideals
    8. Evaluation and use of your brand identity elements
  7. Promoting and building your Brand (Branding)
    1. What is the company mission?
    2. What is your brand strategy? (the how, what, where, when and to whom you plan on communicating and delivering on your brand messages).
    3. What is your brand equity, or the “added value” you bring to your customers?
    4. What are the benefits and features of your products and services?
    5. What do your customers and prospects already think of your company?
    6. What qualities do you want your customers to associate with your company?
    7. Originate a brand positioning statement
    8. Creating a Brand Persona
    9. Telling your story through branding
    10. Get your employees engaged in your brand
  8. Brand Integrity and continuance
    1. Sustainability, and how companies continually rethink their value proposition
    2. Using social media to stay current and remain in-touch in the global community
    3. Strategic brand licensing and private labeling to build brand proposition and solve customer needs

VII.  Methods of Instruction

This course will be taught using a combination of lecture, demonstration, presentation and hands-on studio time in the lab.
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Attend and participate in classes and lab sessions.
  2. Complete assigned projects by due date.
  3. Complete exercises used in class.
  4. Participate in critiques as scheduled with completed work.
  5. Final Critique.

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Suggested textbook to cover logo design, branding, and professional practices, such as: Logo Design Workbook: A Hands One Guide to Creating Logos, by Noreen Morioka, Terry Stone, Sean Adams: Rockport Publishers; or other relevant text.

USB jump (or Flash) drive to backup class files and assignments.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

The final grade will be based on understanding and demonstration of key principles and course objectives. Grading and evaluation will be based on work, projects, assignments, process, critique, participation, and other items at the instructor’s discretion.  

Completion of projects and participation in critique are required. Course instructors will base grades and evaluation on specified elements and percentage weights.

XI.   Other Course Information

Please note:
Some of the activities, lectures and assignments in this class may include imagery that is controversial, uncomfortable, shocking, has nudity, and personally unpopular to one's beliefs. If a student objects to this practice, he/she is encouraged to discuss with the instructor early in the semester alternative ways of completing course requirements.

Lab hours will be posted, and open lab time will be available to the student.

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.