Academic Catalog


Foothill College Course Outline of Record

Foothill College Course Outline of Record
Heading Value
Effective Term: Summer 2023
Units: 4
Hours: 3 lecture, 3 laboratory per week (72 total per quarter)
Advisory: PHOT 4B or instructor's permission.
Degree & Credit Status: Degree-Applicable Credit Course
Foothill GE: Non-GE
Transferable: CSU
Grade Type: Letter Grade (Request for Pass/No Pass)
Repeatability: Not Repeatable

Student Learning Outcomes

  • A successful student will create a portfolio of 10-15 photographic images and present them in a professional manner and discuss what their portfolio in light of their career/photographic goals. (This course is offered every two years. Next time: 2015)
  • A successful student will demonstrate participation in the building of community and contribute to others growth and progress as well as demonstrating the open minded acceptance of feedback and assistance. This course is offered every two years. Next time: 2013)


Professional practices course for the organization and assembly of a photographic portfolio from concept to final presentation. This intensive advanced course requires building of a group of photographic works that function both individually and as a group. Goal setting for the vocational and transfer students and packaging work for school, job, and exhibition applications will be a priority. Concerns include how to build a portfolio and organize images that communicate clearly, how to utilize technical execution for effective communication, and techniques for giving and receiving feedback to further photographic projects.

Course Objectives

The student will be able to:

  1. Assemble a portfolio demonstrating a proficiency in the techniques of photography and effective communications, which will meet the student's career goals
  2. Discuss and evaluate work with instructor and peers
  3. Present a portfolio in a competent and professional manner, all photographs appropriately prepared for exhibitions and applications as directed by the instructor
  4. Be familiar with and evaluate the work of other artists working in similar manners, through books, exhibitions, and websites, with special attention to work from diverse cultures and backgrounds

Course Content

  1. Orientation and introduction to portfolio preparation
    1. Aesthetic scope and content of the proposed portfolio project
    2. Developing ideas, images, and final pieces, from concept to completion
    3. Quantitative and technical specifications of the portfolio project
  2. Goal setting
    1. Use of portfolio in application process
    2. Proper organization and presentation to meet goals
    3. Beginning of development of written support material for applications and exhibitions
    4. Review of field of photography and identify opportunities with attached skills and requirements
    5. Review case studies of role-model photographers, their portfolios, and career pathways
  3. Discussion and development of project
    1. Readings on photographic concepts, including vocabulary, meaning of images, and historic context of photographic expression
    2. Visits to exhibition and study of books relevant to student projects
  4. Class discussion of images, goals, process of portfolio building
    1. Class critique with goals of expanding each student's vocabulary and skill in discussing images and sensitivity to images
    2. Guidance in sensitizing student to the importance of input from diverse cultures and backgrounds in enriching the aesthetic content of a project in the arts
  5. Concept development
    1. Reading in the field of photography
    2. Journal of portfolio development process
    3. Visits to exhibition and/or review of books on photography
    4. Paper/presentation on artist who inspires
  6. Technical skills
    1. Review and expansion of appropriate technical skills to realize the portfolio
    2. Practice and work for excellence in all final pieces
  7. The finished portfolio
    1. Presentation techniques both traditional and non-traditional
    2. Preparation for exhibition and presentation of portfolio

Lab Content

Lab hours consist of one or more of the following options:

  1. Students will work in the traditional or digital lab on images for portfolio and/or exhibition
  2. Student will meet one-on-one or in small groups with instructor for feedback
  3. Students will have discussions on trends in the field and on promotional techniques
  4. Students will prepare promotional materials for own and group events; plan and implement events
  5. Students will attend exhibitions (both independently and as a class). Students will then write summaries based on their exhibit attendance
  6. Students will conduct and informational interview with a role model in the field of photography and share results with class

Special Facilities and/or Equipment

1. For students working in traditional media, a photographic laboratory equipped for color and black & white printing, and for finishing photographs.
2. For students working in electronic media, a computer lab equipped with computer, scanner, printer, and related software.
3. Space to assemble and organize the student portfolio during open labs and/or as arranged by the student with other instructors. Exhibition wall space, a room suitable for slide projection, and/or a room suitable for computer screen display, as dictated by particular portfolio needs.
4. When taught via Foothill Global Access, on-going access to computer with email software and hardware; email address.

Method(s) of Evaluation

Methods of Evaluation may include but are not limited to the following:

Completed portfolio
Participation in class discussions and critiques
Presentation on artist
Completion of readings and journal

Method(s) of Instruction

Methods of Instruction may include but are not limited to the following:

Lecture presentations and classroom discussion of all aspects of building a portfolio from goal setting to final presentation
Critique and discussion of photographs
Presentation by students about a photographer followed by in-class discussion and evaluation

Representative Text(s) and Other Materials

Articles assembled into a course reader by the instructor, available electronically or hard copy.

Types and/or Examples of Required Reading, Writing, and Outside of Class Assignments

  1. Reading assignments from course reader and journals in the field
  2. Gallery/museum reports
  3. Review of handouts and support materials
  4. Review of websites about photographers and photographic organizations