Adobe InDesign: Intro to Adobe InDesign

Course Duration: 24 hours (3 days)

Prerequisites: Art degree or a basic understanding of layout software basics is helpful.

Overview: This Adobe Indesign course focuses on the uses of Adobe InDesign CS classic ‘high-end’ tool for desktop publishing in the Windows and Macintosh environments and for document layout and design. If you want to learn about desktop publishing and produce high-quality documents with great control over the placement of text and graphics on the page, then Adobe InDesign is the tool for you. Participants have the opportunity to learn how to integrate text, graphics, and photographs to create a variety of professional quality finished documents for practical and business use. Learn to use Adobe InDesign CS to create graphics-intensive print documents and to really take your design skills to the next level.

Instructional Methods: Each class period will consist primarily of lectures, demonstrations, and critiques. Lessons will be given on a main screen projector, and class sizes will be small, usually under four students. After the demonstration, students will be required to work on in-class assignments that will reiterate the day’s lesson plan. Course notes will be provided as reference, however, students should be drafting their own, in-depth notes for a better grasp on the software. Homework is not assigned, but practice makes perfect. This is a very hands-on course with the computer and Adobe InDesign CS software.

Recommended Reading: “InDesign CS3 for Macintosh and Windows (a Visual Quickstart Guide)” – by Sandee Cohen


  • Document and column set up for a variety of publications.
  • Use of rulers, guides, and snap-to guides.
  • Format type including styles, sizes, leading, tracking, kerning.
  • Use the edit menu: Cutting, Copying, and Pasting.
  • Multiple pasting, editing stories, and spell checking.
  • Format paragraphs, moving/resizing text blocks, leading adjustment etc.
  • Place graphics, resizing graphics, and text wraps.
  • Set up templates and style palettes.
  • Group/align objects and multiple pasting with “Step and Repeat” functions.
  • Graphic formats, links, and resolutions.
  • Color, color libraries and color separation.
  • Bi-fold brochures and other custom layouts.
  • Rotation tool, drop caps, page numbering, and insertion of special symbols.
  • Styles and creating a custom style palette, use of templates.
  • Print solutions and PPD’s and PDF’s.
  • Principles of design.

Discussion (Includes But Not Limited To)

  • Getting to know tools, panels, and workspaces.
  • Learning how to navigate and zoom in a document.
  • Working with layers for efficiency and organization.
  • Setting up master pages in a document.
  • Building automatic page numbering and sections.
  • Creating text and graphics placeholder frames.
  • Placing text and graphics on document pages.
  • Understanding text and graphics frames.
  • Grouping and transforming frames.
  • Formatting text using paragraph and character styles.
  • Flowing, threading, and spell-checking text in text frames.
  • Adding color: swatches, gradients and tints.
  • Frequently-used shortcuts and techniques.