Angela Gunder | Color Theory for Non-Designers
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Color Theory for Non-Designers

Color Theory for Non-Designers

The effectiveness of lessons on the technical aspects of design software for non-designers is often negated by the fact that few have had access to basic lessons on design principles. Given that this knowledge is the critical difference between a poor piece and an effective one, this lesson aims to give non-designers a “crash course” in how to use color effectively in their everyday design work. All activities will test the learners on their comprehension of color usage as based on the fundamental principles of color theory, furthering the point that these rules should become the basis for all decisions on how to make use of color for successful design communication. This lesson has been designed for use by faculty and staff members in education (K-12 and Higher Education) as a professional development course. The instruction would be lab-based, with students studying examples as a group with the instructor, and then completing the assessment items individually at the end of instruction.

Working professionals with limited design experience will learn to correctly choose color combinations for use in print and media pieces based on the principles of color theory, integrating those cohesive color palettes into their work.

Instructional Module

The entire instructional module included an instructor guide, student guide, detailed design document, a PowerPoint presentation, a color theory handout for students to use as a job aid, and an online assessment activity.

This instructional model was first run as a part of the NOVASTARTALK 2011 Fall Webinar Series. Feel free to watch the entire recording, covering web tools for education. If you would like to fast-forward to the lesson on color theory, you can skip to the timestamp 51:00 to begin that material. In addition, I have also included links to the instructional aids given to participants, along with the original presentation.

Assessment Activity

Below, you will find a copy of the assessment activity offered to participants at the culmination of the lecture, an online quiz covering applications of color in various scenarios.
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