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Courses and Workshops

Online Courses

Welcome to Online Courses at Emerson College.

Develop new skills and enrich your life with online courses in Nonprofit Organization, Development, and Communication; Costume and Fashion Rendering; or Graphic Novel Writing and Illustration.

If you’re an adult learner who has access to a computer with high-speed Internet connection and you seek the flexibility and convenience of online courses, experience our classes by following an easy registration and payment process, and preparing to enjoy engaging weekly online presentations, sessions, or discussions.

*Participants must hold a minimum of a high school diploma or GED to enroll in courses, workshops, and programs offered by the Department of Professional Studies and Special Programs.


Fall 2013

CE0351 Introduction to Comic Art
Ten-session course, $650.00
2.50 CEUs
Participants focus on an in-depth survey of the continuing evolution of comic art over the past 100 years. With an emphasis on the influential cartoonists who have mastered the ability to communicate through sequential illustrations, participants learn to see beyond what they expect from a graphic novel, in order to discover new possibilities.

Wednesdays, September 25; October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; November 6, 13, 20; December 4
6:30-9:00 pm

CE0353 Writing the Graphic Novel
Ten-session course, $650.00
2.50 CEUs
This intensive workshop is designed to guide participants through the early stages of writing a graphic novel. By the end of the course, participants are able to create engaging, active characters; develop a coherent narrative around those characters; write a detailed, scene-by-scene outline of their story; and begin scripting with the graphic novel format (page breaks, panel descriptions) in practice.

Thursdays, September 26; October 3, 10, 17, 24, 31; November 7, 14, 21; December 5
6:30-9:00 pm

CE0511 Introduction to Nonprofit Organization, Development, and Communication
Ten-session course, $395.00
1.50 CEUs
This course provides an introduction to the world of nonprofits. Through the course, participants gain a deeper understanding of the nature of philanthropy, various types of nonprofit organizations, funding for nonprofits, governance, board creation, fundraising methods, donor relations and marketing-communication tools. With this information in hand, participants also discuss myriad nonprofit career options.
This course consists of weekly online lectures and videos, available Monday through Wednesday; and discussion Wednesday through Friday. Course begins September 23 and ends December 6.
Hours arranged by instructor

CE0559 Costume and Fashion Rendering with Photoshop
Ten-session course, $475.00
1.75 CEUs
This exciting web course explores various methods to paint costume and fashion sketches using Photoshop. Ten sessions cover basic, intermediate, and advanced applications of Photoshop for use in costume and fashion rendering including how to adjust line drawings, how to choose painting modalities, how to use multiple layers, and how to integrate fabric choices and finishes into design elements. The course features helpful video tutorials and useful resource lists. Participants produce multiple samples to feature in the class final slideshow.

Wednesdays, September 25; October 2, 9, 16, 23, 30; November 6, 13, 20; December 4.
6:00-7:45 pm

Spring 2014

CE0352 Graphic Novel as Literature
Ten-session course, $650.00
2.50 CEUs
This course is an in-depth study of the nature and content of graphic novels. Through discussion, participants examine each author’s approach to storytelling, character development, and the use of images. The reading list represents the various genres of graphic novel (memoir, fantasy, fiction, social criticism, and history) and a variety of authors such as Art Spiegelman, Craig Thompson, Will Eisner, and Marjorie Satrapi.

Wednesdays, February 5, 12, 19, 26; March 12, 19, 26; April 2, 9, 16
6:30-9:00 pm

CE0354 Illustrating the Graphic Novel I
Ten-session course, $650.00
2.50 CEUs
In this intensive workshop, participants progress through the early stages of developing the look to a graphic novel, character designs, and the overall visual style. Participants choose a story or have their own idea of one that they wish to illustrate. By the end of the course, participants are able to develop model sheets for the main characters; find all visual reference necessary (i.e., locales, props); storyboard/block-out four pages of the story. This course is beneficial to writers as well as to artists.

Tuesdays, January 28; February 4, 11, 18, 25; March 11, 18, 25; April 1, 8
6:30-9:00 pm

How to Register

Tuition is due upon registration for all Professional Studies courses and workshops. Tuition is calculated per course and individuals must pay tuition in full prior to participating in the courses of their choice.

Students may incur additional course-related expenses. Such additional expenses are separate from tuition coses and payments.

Head to the Registration and Payment page for more information or download current Registration Information and Form »

Emerson College reserves the right to change any provision of its programs and courses at any time. The College specifically reserves the right to change its tuition rates and any other financial charges. The College also reserves the right to rearrange its courses and class hours, to drop courses for which registration falls below the minimum enrollment, and to change instructor assignments.

What to Expect from an Online Course

  • Online courses require the same amount of time and effort as face-to-face courses.
  • You will need to have basic computer skills: be able to send and receive email, install software, and use web browsers and word processing software.
  • Your online class may or may not have set class "meeting" times. Some classes will allow you to work entirely at your own schedule. However, all classes will have a set ending date, as well as deadlines along the way that you will need to meet.
  • You should be comfortable with trying to solve technical problems on your own, and being open to learning new software. Conversely, you should also be comfortable asking for help if needed!
  • Most communication in online classes will be written. You should be comfortable analyzing and discussing ideas in written college-level English.
  • Each class will have slightly different requirements. For any questions, please contact your professor.

Minimum System Requirements


  • For Windows users: XP or later with a 1.8 GHz processor
  • For Mac users: OS X v10.5 (Leopard) or later with a 1.5GHz processor
  • Memory: 2GB of RAM
  • Screen: 1028 x 768
  • Internet connection: High-speed cable, DSL, or LAN (Note: wireless connections are NOT recommended for viewing streaming video)
  • Headphones or computer speakers


  • PDF reader (e.g. Adobe Acrobat or Preview for Mac)
  • DOC reader (e.g. Microsoft Word)
  • PPT reader (e.g. Microsoft PowerPoint)
  • Adobe Flash Player 10.3 or later
  • Supported browsers: Mozilla Firefox 20+, Apple Safari 5+, Internet Explorer 9+, Google Chrome 25+ (note: some screen sharing functions may not be available in Chrome)

Recommended Additions

  • USB headset (or other microphone)
  • Webcam
  • Access to a printer
  • VLC Media Player

Test your computer’s readiness for online learning: Adobe Meeting Test ».
In case of technical problems, email the Help Desk at Emerson College or call 617-824-8080.