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Advertising and Design

Entry Level Assessment Blueprint

Specific Competencies and Skills Tested in this Assessment:

Computer Literacy

  • Demonstrate knowledge of computer terminology
  • Identify and operate peripherals and other network devices
  • Demonstrate appropriate knowledge, security, and use of software
  • Apply basic troubleshooting and maintenance skills
  • Demonstrate file management and storage skills
  • Describe procedures involved with importing and exporting
  • Identify legal restrictions



  • Demonstrate knowledge of typographic terminology
  • Identify the anatomy and classification of type
  • Calculate type measurements
  • Identify and use proofreader’s marks
  • Diagnose and solve typography problems (e.g., tracking, kerning, readability, legibility)
  • Manipulate type through character and paragraph formatting
  • Choose and apply appropriate typeface


Digital Literacy and Application

  • Demonstrate knowledge of basic design terminology (e.g., bleed, live area, trim, orientation)
  • Exhibit knowledge of design elements and principles
  • Demonstrate techniques of 2-D design
  • Demonstrate techniques of 3-D design
  • Produce project to client specifications
  • Describe characteristics of design for different media (e.g., logos, magazines)
  • Choose appropriate ideas through the visual stages of layout (e.g., thumbnail, rough, comprehensive)
  • Demonstrate understanding of related math (e.g., proportion, percentages, basic measurements) 
  • Demonstrate ability to solve design problems


Color Theory and Application

  • Identify color theory terminology
  • Demonstrate the use of color to create impact or effect
  • Mix colors to obtain shades, tints, or neutrals
  • Choose and apply appropriate color scheme
  • Identify correct use of RGB and CMYK colors 
  • Identify and utilize Pantone Matching System (PMS)


Drawing and Digital Illustration

  • Identify drawing and digital illustration terminology
  • Identify basic tools and materials (e.g., computer software, pencils, paper)
  • Render drawings to reflect various perspectives (e.g., atmospheric, three point)
  • Utilize different drawing techniques (e.g., line art, continuous tone, stipple, watercolor)
  • Modify illustrations (e.g., size, color, stroke)
  • Identify ways to import, export, and save images (e.g., scanning, digitizing)



  • Identify photography terminology
  • Demonstrate use of cameras and accessories
  • Apply copyright laws pertaining to photographs (e.g., stock photos, clip art, studio portraits)


Production and Printing

  • Identify production/printing terminology
  • Manage fonts for distribution and production using various software and techniques
  • Demonstrate proofing and preflighting (preparing for output)
  • Provide job specifications for printer
  • Demonstrate knowledge of job flow, various printing, and finishing processes
  • Determine what media/medium works best for a project
  • Identify media by common size, weight, number, and finish


Communication and Career Skills

  • Demonstrate personal presentation skills (e.g., speaking, listening, writing)
  • Demonstrate ability to accept and/or give constructive criticism
  • Apply communication skills for marketing (e.g., researching, brainstorming, sales techniques)
  • Exhibit ability to work with clients and as a team member; critique and refine ideas


Work Environment

  • Identify basic tools and equipment
  • Maintain a safe and clean work environment



  • Define multimedia terminology
  • Prepare multimedia presentations


Digital Image Manipulation

  • Identify image terminology (e.g., raster, vector, continuous tone, half tone, line art)
  • Identify and explain various file formats (e.g., .pdf, .jpg, .gif, .eps)
  • Identify appropriate resolution for projects
  • Manipulate images (e.g., restore, color correct, masking)


Written Assessment:

Administration Time: 3 hours

Number of Questions: 200

Areas Covered:

Computer Literacy: 12%

Typography: 13%

Design Literacy and Application: 19%

Color Theory and Application: 11%

Digital Illustration and Drawing: 9%

Photography: 4%

Production and Printing: 12%

Communication and Career Skills: 9%

Work Environment: 3%

Multimedia: 2%

Digital Image Manipulation: 6%


Sample Questions:

The safest way to protect a computer from lightning is to use a

  1. manual shut-off switch
  2. surge protector
  3. power strip
  4. hard drive backup


Equal visual weight in a design is known as

  1. variety
  2. contrast
  3. balance
  4. proximity


Photographs, drawings, charts, and diagrams are all

  1. multimedia
  2. graphics
  3. software
  4. simulations


The proofreader mark ^ indicates

  1. delete
  2. order
  3. number
  4. insert


Consecutive motion of a still image will create

  1. effect
  2. layering
  3. vectors
  4. animation

Performance Assessment:

Administration Time: 2 hours and 45 minutes 

Number of Jobs: 2


Areas Covered:

64% Design:  Computer Comprehensive – Prepare and Print Files

Participant will use the materials and tools provided to create a final computer comprehensive. Steps will include following the specifications provided for the layout.


36% Layout – Comprehensive Redesign 

Participant will convert the provided image to a duotone and follow steps to redesign it into a flyer.


Sample Job:

Layout: Redesign

Maximum Time:   45 minutes

Participant Activity: The participant will convert the provided image to a duotone, add the converted image to the flyer, change the opacity of the newly placed image, rename and save the file, export the file as a print-ready .pdf, print final computer comprehensive, and notify the evaluator when you have completed the job.