Graphic Communications

Skill Assessments are Crucial to Validate Performance For the Graphic Communications Industry

Frank Kanonik , Printing Industry Expert

Frank Kanonik , Printing Industry Expert

There are thousands of students enrolled in programs preparing them to enter the printing and graphic communications workforce. For graphic communications industry instructors and employers, there is no better way to ensure that new hires have required skills than with industry-driven skill competencies and assessments.

We at Intellective Solutions are proud to be the developer of the competencies and assessments used by the Graphic Arts Education and Research Foundation (GAERF) and SkillsUSA. Joe Rickard and Frank Kanonik led the efforts to create and develop the industry resources. They worked with education and industry subject matter experts to ensure the competencies and assessments are current, valid and relevant to today’s printing industry.

Patty Duncan, Program Manager of the SkillsUSA Work Force Ready System recently said, “I am impressed with Intellective Solutions professionalism and as well as their expertise in graphic communications. They have developed outstanding and timely industry standards and assessments that will benefit all those who use them”

GAERF has available through PrintED, a national accreditation program that is based on industry standards for graphic communications courses of study at the secondary and post-secondary levels. Their Graphic Communication Skill Standards (GCSC) are six sets of skill competencies and corresponding assessments that are used by instructors to validate their curricula, and also by employers to confirm a potential candidate’s capabilities.

There are 6 topics that are covered by the GCSC competencies, and are available for free download at

·        Digital File Preparation and Output

·        Digital Production Printing

·        Graphic Design

·        Introduction to Graphic Communications

·        Offset Press Operations/Bindery & Finishing

·        Screen Printing

The GCSC assessments are available through GAERF and SkillsUSA, and test technical skills and knowledge using an online, graphic rich format. The assessments correspond to the six GCSC competencies. Ordering information can be found at Immediate grading and feedback is provided.

With rapidly changing technology, digital integration and new business models, having up to date and printing industry driven standards and assessments are critical for our industry to ensure a steady stream of great employees. These standards and assessments support that requirement.