When you’re in the market for a Graphic Design Associate Degree, there are many different career paths to choose from. You can choose a trade school or start your own program from scratch. It’s important to have some idea of the type of profession you want before you begin to research the options.
Graphic design is the most widely used in industry today. There are various levels of design that are relevant for certain professions. So let’s take a look at what career paths are available to graphic designers.
A career as a graphic designer doesn’t necessarily require a Bachelor’s degree. It can start with just a certificate or Associate’s Degree. However, if you don’t have the right career goals and you’re not sure how to go about pursuing one, consider enrolling in a program to enhance your skills.
This is also true for those students who attend art school. Many graduates find jobs as graphic designers in advertising agencies or in the sales department. Some people begin with just a certificate or as an Associate in the field and then go on to further their education.
If you want to be a full-time graphic designer, you’ll need to pursue a Bachelor’s degree. For most, this is the norm. However, it is possible to obtain an Associate’s Degree in graphic design and be a full-time employee.
While there are many programs available, there are four schools that offer a comprehensive Associate’s Degree in Graphic Design. They are Art Institute of Atlanta, Polytechnic University of Denver, Online Associates of Nova Southeastern University and San Diego State University. The National Federation of Independent Business offers an Associate’s in Advertising and Graphic Design, and other accredited schools offer design certificates or diploma programs. These programs may be available online or from classroom-based programs.
Of course, it depends on what type of training you want and the goals you have for your future that will help determine the employment opportunities you find. The following are examples of the different types of graphic design degrees offered.
Illustration and Conceptual Design are the basic program that students must complete before they can graduate. Students should be familiar with concepts of illustration and sketching. This will enable them to work with pencil and paper or computer programs and gain the ability to reproduce images in a realistic and artistic manner. Students should be able to understand the importance of proper lighting and how to make use of color to produce the best visual effect.
Then comes a more specific type of graphic design, namely Animation and Interactive Design. Animation and Interactive Design students can create advertisements, comics, animations, large format graphics, websites, video games, theatrical productions, television, and computer games. If you have an interest in any of these subjects, you can take an Animation and Interactive Design program.
In the last few years, 3D computer graphics have been increasing in popularity, and so are Graphic Design programs. Students who want to be graphic designers with a focus on technology can get a Computer-Based Designer Certificate or Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design. They’ll learn computer graphics and how to manipulate computer programs, and learn about the technologies that enable interactive images.
Web and Multimedia Design focus on the use of technology in the production of visual media and web graphics. This involves using design and multimedia tools to convey information and to inspire ideas and suggestions into clients. These students should understand how to create pictures and animations and can use various programs to produce useful designs. These types of students will also want to get involved in research, and on computer animation.
Whatever your goals are for graphic design, you can find a program that best suits your needs. It may be necessary to choose between an Associate’s or a Bachelor’s degree because of your skills, goals and ambitions. It will all depend on the type of designer you are, your interests and the level of knowledge you have.