Graphic design is a creative field that involves putting together text, symbols, images, and other forms of visual art to get a message across. Graphic designers can set up page layouts, make logos and product illustrations, and make new images that will be used to promote a product or send a message to consumers with the help of software programs and other advanced technology.
Most graphic designers have formal training, whether it’s a vocational certificate, an undergraduate degree, or a graduate degree. The least amount of schooling you can get is a vocational certificate, but it is one of the fastest and cheapest ways to finish your training and get a job.
Certificate in Graphic Design and Digital Imaging
The Graphic Design and Digital Imaging Certificate is a specialized program that teaches students the basics of design and the technical skills they need to turn their plans into multimedia masterpieces. As the field of graphic design changes, future designers, especially those still in school, are expected to know both print design and interactive design for websites, DVDs, mobile apps, and other media.
In addition to learning the basics of design, students in this program will also learn about web development, desktop publishing, multimedia design, and other advanced topics. Having this mix of skills will help you when looking for general graphic design jobs and jobs in a specific field.
The graphic design and digital imaging certificate program can take anywhere from six months to two years to finish, depending on how many classes you take and how fast you complete them. Students often take courses like “Introduction to Graphic Design,” “Fundamentals of Typography,” “Desktop Publishing,” “Digital Imaging and Photography,” and “Fundamentals of Typography.” Before they graduate, students may also have to take electives, capstone courses, and portfolio seminars.
Certificate in Graphic Design and Desktop Publishing
Suppose you want to combine your interests in interactive graphic design with professional printing. In that case, a graphic design certificate program focusing on desktop publishing might be the ideal option for you. This specialization certificate teaches basic design ideas and skills, especially in visual arts and page layout. When the program is over, students will have both the technical knowledge and the skills they need to make eye-catching designs independently and as a team while working to tight deadlines. This certificate program is short and cheap, and it can prepare you well for a job as a designer or publisher at the entry-level.
The graphic design and desktop publishing certificate program can take anywhere from six months to a year to course, depending on how many classes you take and how fast you go. Students will likely take drawing, advertising, publication design, computer illustration, and digital imaging classes during this program. Some programs might have different core courses or electives that are more interesting to you. The school gives online students access to their classes, lectures, assignments, and grades through a “learning management system.”
Certificate in Graphic and Web Design
The graphic and web design certificate teaches students everything they need to know to get started in this exciting field. Students will learn how to use different software tools and computer technologies to make designs for print and multimedia through interactive lessons and online labs. This program also helps students get ready for the tasks and problems that graphic and web designers face every day on the job. If you want to get into this hard but fun design field, you’ll need some formal training. The graphic designing and web designing certificate is a great alternative to undergraduate degrees, taking longer and costing more.
Depending on the program or school, most online graphic and web design certificates take between six months and a year to finish. Some of the most common courses in this program are graphic design principles, typography, layout, digital imaging with Adobe Photoshop, typographic systems, introduction to web design, WordPress, etc. Like most studio disciplines, this online program requires students to finish various design projects and use portfolio modules or courses to make changes to work they have already done.
What’s Next for Certificate Holders in Graphic Design?
Graduates of online certificate programs in graphic design will be qualified for several entry-level jobs in graphic design and related fields. Most people who get a certificate in graphic design start in lower-level positions, hoping to move up to a managerial or supervisory role after a few years. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that the number of graphic designers working in the country will grow by 1% by 2024. Graphic designers can make good money depending on their employer, location, level of education, and amount of experience. As of May 2014, a graphic designer made an average of $50,670 per year.
Even though it is possible to get a job in graphic design with just a vocational certificate, some employers prefer to hire people with an associate degree in graphic design or the next highest option, a bachelor’s degree in graphic design. If this is you, it might be a good idea to get a college degree after obtaining a certificate to learn more, gain more skills, and improve your chances of getting a job.