PrintED Competencies

Advanced Digital File Preperation

A. File Systems and File Management

  1. Read and interpret production information on job docket/ticket.
  2. Describe the use of digital photography in image capture and digital imaging.
  3. Describe the strengths and weaknesses of Tagged Image File Format (TIFF), Encapsulated PostScript (EPS), Joint Photographic Experts Group (JPEG), Portable Document Format (PDF), PDF/X-1a, and PDF/X-3 in a PostScript environment.
  4. Describe the differences between Type 1, TrueType, and OpenType font formats.
  5. Analyze and perform font management activities.
  6. Demonstrate an understanding of PostScript and why it is necessary in digital prepress.
  7. Identify, describe, and demonstrate a digital network.
  8. List the advantages and disadvantages of different storage media such as Compact Disc (CD), Digital Video or Versatile Disk (DVD), and flash devices.
  9. List the uses and capabilities of storage devices, including network servers, for digital files.
  10. Demonstrate proper file compression utility for file storage or transfer.
  11. Demonstrate the proper use of a backup utility to create backups using appropriate media.
  12. Demonstrate the proper use of backup utility software to restore files to the hard drive.
  13. Describe and identify common digital asset management software applications.
  14. Demonstrate and apply basic troubleshooting procedures for software applications and hardware issues.
  15. Demonstrate the proper procedures to calibrate a color monitor.
  16. Describe the differences between densitometry and spectrophotometry, and when you use each.
  17. Demonstrate knowledge and application of Specifications for Web Offset Publications (SWOP), Standard Network Access Protocol (SNAP), General Requirements for Applications in Commercial Offset Lithography (GRACol), Flexographic Image Reproduction Specifications and Tolerances (FIRST), and Direct Digital Output Specifications for Offset and Gravure Printing.
  18. Define color management and describe its application in color reproduction.
  19. Explain Extensible Markup Language (XML) and its use in the printing industry.

B. Digital File Composition

  1. Translate files from Windows to Mac format and Mac format to Windows.
  2. Demonstrate and perform Pixels per Inch (PPI)/sizing calculations for desktop scanner.
  3. Use Optical Character Recognition (OCR) software to capture printed text.
  4. Produce a grayscale image using a desktop scanner.
  5. Scan a continuous tone color original (analog color negative or slide film, watercolor, oil painting or color print) and convert to black-and-white.
  6. Use a photo manipulation program to perform basic color correction.
  7. Use a photo manipulation program to perform image cloning.
  8. Perform unsharp masking (USM) on an image.
  9. Perform contrast adjustments (tone reproduction) on a color image.
  10. Perform color balance adjustments (gray balance) on a color image.
  11. Create a logo based on a scanned template.
  12. Create a logo design and integrate the design into a three-panel fold design.
  13. Create a curved or special effects type using a computer graphics software application.
  14. Analyze and perform conversion of bitmap art to vector art.
  15. Demonstrate knowledge of Pixels per Inch (PPI), Lines per Inch (LPI), and Dots per Inch (DPI) relationships by changing factors. Describe the results on output.
  16. Create a job that incorporates digital trapping.
  17. Create and produce a multicolor job that includes scans, text, and spot color artwork using the PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM® (PMS).
  18. Convert a job from readers’ spreads to printers’ spreads using digital imposition software.
  19. Follow instructions to produce, modify or output files according to customer-supplied, and/or industry standard criteria.
  20. Produce a PDF file appropriate for screen, digital printing, and press.
  21. Using the appropriate software, create a PDF/X-1a and PDF/X-3 file.
  22. Adjust an image for printing on a variety of substrates (coated vs. uncoated paper).
  23. Demonstrate rescreening functions and demonstrate knowledge of screen angles.
  24. Demonstrate limitations of Red~Green~Blue (RGB) to Cyan~Magenta~Yellow~Key/blacK (CMYK) conversions.
  25. Explain and demonstrate Undercolor Removal (UCR) and Gray Component Replacement (GCR) settings.
  26. List the advantages and disadvantages of UCR and GCR.
  27. Define color management and describe its application in color reproduction.
  28. Explain and demonstrate the creation of International Color Consortium (ICC) color profiles.
  29. Effectively convert an RGB image to CMYK using ICC profiles.

C. Digital File Output

  1. List the capabilities and functions of digital printers.
  2. List the capabilities and function of an imagesetter.
  3. List the capabilities and functions of a platesetter.
  4. List the advantages and disadvantages of various color proofing systems, both hard and soft.
  5. Describe and demonstrate the current systems/techniques/imposition software for outputting files computer-to-plate.
  6. Describe how to calibrate an imagesetter and/or platesetter.
  7. Describe how film and/or plate processor variations affect final output.
  8. Calibrate and perform quality control checks on the film and/or plate processor.
  9. Describe and demonstrate proper plate exposure for quality control.
  10. Perform preflight/file repair procedures using native files and PDF files.
  11. Explain the basic principle of tone values increase (TVI) and its impact on printed materials.

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