These days, with a large part of our week spent on the internet or watching TV, the role of the graphic designer is more relevant than ever.
Visual concepts and messages influence us more than we maybe realize—whether it’s an advertisement on a city bus or a well-designed website or a infographic in a news story, graphic designers have the ability to inspire and inform, all with the simple tools of color, text, and image.
By harnessing just a few basic concepts and technical skills, graphic designers can communicate big ideas that effect hundreds, maybe thousands, of people every day. Their skill set can be utilized in just about any industry, too, from health care to entertainment to education.
What kind of online graphic design degree should you get?
While many graphic design students choose no concentration, some choose to specialize in web design or 3D modeling. These specializations both help prepare students for careers working with online content.
Web design specialists learn about the aesthetic principles used in designing content online, whether for mobile devices or desktop computers. Web design programs will include coursework in multiplatform design, interactive web animations, and other technologies specific to the web. These programs will still provide the same grounding in basic graphic design skills as any other degree in graphic design.
A degree in 3D modeling will also provide a basic grounding in graphic design, but will look more closely at the ways in which 3D models can be used to enhance graphical content. These programs introduce principles used in animation, character animation, and the tools and programs animators use to create models.
Top 10 Best Online Graphic Design Degrees
|1||Midway University||Midway, KY|
|2||California Baptist University||Riverside, CA|
|3||Bellevue University||Bellevue, NE|
|4||Full Sail University||Winter Park, FL|
|5||University of Massachusetts-Lowell||Lowell, MA|
|6||University of Maryland-University College||Aelphi, MD|
|7||Liberty University||Lynchburg, VA|
|8||Southeastern University||Lakeland, FL|
|9||Southern New Hampshire University||Manchester, NH|
|10||Lesley University||Cambridge, MA|
How much money can you earn with an online bachelor’s in graphic design degree?
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic designers made about $50,000 per year in 2018. Web developers made nearly $70,000 per year in 2018, but these jobs require some technical expertise that not all graphic design programs will provide. If you want the salary increase that comes with working in web development instead of graphic design, consider supplementing your studies with some computer science or information technology coursework.
Growth in the graphic design field has not been as aggressive as that of other technology-related fields. Graphic design job openings are projected to grow by 4 percent through 2026.
What can you do with an online bachelor’s in graphic design degree?
Common jobs for graphic design graduates include graphic designer, web developer, and multimedia artist.
- Graphic Designer – Graphic designers create the visual content used in magazines, brochures, websites, and other publications. They usually work in public relations, advertising, or other similar organizations, though many choose self-employment.
- Web Developer – Web developers create both the visual and functional content in an organization’s website. Web developers will need an understanding of HTML and related web languages in addition to graphic design skills in order to implement their designs.
- Multimedia Artist – Multimedia artists and animators create visual effects and other content for television, video games, and other media. They may create two-dimensional or three-dimensional content. Their creations include scenery, character models, and special effects.
What are the requirements for an online bachelor’s in graphic design degree?
The application requirements for most online graphic design bachelor’s programs are minimal compared to other bachelor’s degree programs. These programs do not request many common items, such as letters of recommendation or standardized test scores.
- Proof of high school completion – Applicants to online bachelor’s programs must submit proof that they completed high school with transcripts. A GED will also suffice.
- Transcripts from other colleges – Students who already have college credits from prior degree programs must submit transcripts.
- Application fee – Most online degree programs will require an application fee. These will generally be less than $100.
What are the best online bachelor’s in graphic design?
If you’re interested in getting a high-quality bachelor’s degree in graphic design without straining your pocketbook, use these rankings to narrow down your options. These rankings account for three key factors:
- Academic quality – All degree programs have highly-qualified faculty and solid opportunities for student engagement.
- Value – The cost of a degree and its potential return on investment figures into how highly a school ranks.
- Student satisfaction – Students in these programs tend to stick with them until graduation, rather than transferring to other schools.
See our rankings methodology page.
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