If you are interested in a career in graphic design, getting an online bachelor's degree can help you reach your goals. Online programs are often less expensive and more flexible than their on-campus counterparts, but if you are looking for an online program, there are some things you make sure you consider.
Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design
The National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) is the main accrediting body for art-based degrees in the United States. Ensuring your program is accredited by NASAD will give your degree more prestige, give you more options for financial aid, and make it easier to transfer credits if you switch programs in the future.
Practicum, Internship, Thesis, or Final Project
Each program has different requirements for graduation, and many require either a practicum, internship, thesis, or final project. Each of these requirements allows you to test the skills you've learned in a more realistic environment. However, they each act in a different way. While a final project and thesis are usually academic projects, practicums and internships are work-related projects that give you real-world experience. You should decide which of these types of projects work best for your situation and choose a program that offers your ideal final project. Alternatively, you can choose a program that allows you to choose which type of final semester you want when the time comes.
Required Computer Programs
A lot of graphic design is completed on computers. If you are taking an online program, you will need a computer that can handle these programs, and you may have to pay to purchase a license for the programs your school uses. Because of this investment, it is important to make sure you choose an online program that focuses on the computer programs you plan to use in your professional life. This allows you to get comfortable with your computer setup and begin buying an appropriate catalogue of professional design programs.
Graphic design is a varied field. For the best chance of success, it is helpful to choose a concentration. Some examples include marketing design, sustainable design, web design or illustration. If you don't know what area you want to concentrate in, you should pick a program that offers multiple concentrations so you can take classes in each area before making a decision.
Studying graphic design can lead to a lucrative career. However, it's important to choose the best program for your education in order to be a competitive designer. For more information about choosing an online program, reach out to a local college, like Sessions College for Professional Design.