A graphic designer communicates a message through visual means, including typography and images. The key goal of a graphic designer is to convey meaning in a clear and memorable way. Graphic designers develop layouts for production of magazines and other publications, create advertisements and packaging, devise logos for businesses, and can even design the look and feel of websites. If you want to utilize your creative talent by becoming a graphic designer, a degree or certificate from a graphic design school could be a useful tool to assist you in pursuing your career.
Graphic Design School Overview
Graphic designers work visually, organizing print and computer media into a pleasing yet meaningful layout. They take in cultural and social factors and combine those with the needs of the client to deliver an aesthetically pleasing message.
There are several levels of degrees offered by graphic design schools, including an associate’s degree, which typically takes two years to complete, and a bachelor’s degree, which is generally four years. If you would like to enter the workforce quickly, there are also certification programs, which offer career-focused curriculums over a shorter period of time.
Most entry-level graphic design positions will require at least a bachelor’s degree in graphic design, but there are many large firms where you could get your foot in the door with a certificate or associate’s degree as an assistant, and then continue your education while working.
There are approximately 300 secondary institutions accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design. The curriculum at graphic design schools will teach students both basic and advanced design concepts, as well as the latest design software. A portfolio project is a requirement in most programs, and an internship is usually encouraged. Typical classes when enrolled in graphic design school are typography, graphics for the web, principles of color, principles of design, creating computer graphics, 3D animation, studio art, printing techniques, and desktop publishing.
Graphic Design Job Forecast
For graphic design school graduates, the field of graphic design is multi-faceted, covering a wide range of mediums. Although the industry can be competitive, it is also diverse in its applications, from desktop publishing to advertising. Good communication and problem solving skills are critical in this fast-paced career, and being well-educated and current with the latest software advances could assist you in staying ahead of the game in terms of your desirability to potential employers.
Also, as publications move away from print to online mediums, graphic designers who are able to combine their graphic design skills with web design and programming experience will have better luck finding a job. Those with knowledge of marketing and business may be positioned well to develop advertising strategies and fill management positions, and so you might eventually consider going onto an MBA program to improve your chance for career advancement.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic design jobs are expected to grow by 13% through 2018. The BLS also reported that the median annual salary for graphic designers in 2008 was $42,400, with 10 percent earning more than $74,660. Entry-level designers earned a median salary of $35,00, whereas, design directors earned $95,000 annually.
Campus and Online Graphic Design Schools
If you are a creative and design-oriented individual with a competitive edge, then put your artistic talents to work by enrolling in a graphic design school. Whether you’re interested in a full-time or part-time program or one with an accelerated curriculum, there are a variety of campus and online graphic design schools that can meet your needs. Check out the schools on our site, and request for more information today!