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Graphic Design Schools

Graphic designers convey visual messages, which is why they are sometimes called communications designers. Their work appears in print and digital media such as magazines, brochures and video animation. Using computer software and the skills they can learn in graphic design school, graphic artists select, edit and lay out design elements such as images, text and decorative touches.

Attending a vocational or technical school to study graphic design can provide you with the basic technical training that is typically required to create materials for advertising and marketing or design work necessary to produce publications. As a trained graphic artist, you might focus on a specialty such as developing product packaging, corporate brand design or visuals for webpages used in online sales or marketing promotions.

Specializations for graphic design school students

Educational programs for graphic design careers teach conceptual and technical skills, but you need to have artistic talent to benefit from the training. Once you have learned and put into practice the basic concepts of graphic art, you can decide to specialize in areas such as these:

  • Environmental graphics, including signs and exhibit design
  • Editorial design for annual reports and publications
  • Advertising or promotional design
  • Logo/corporate identity design
  • Interactive Web design

Experienced graphic artists in advertising and marketing organizations may advance to positions as art directors. Some also choose to teach courses in a postsecondary graphic design program.

Certificate and degree programs in graphic design

Technical schools offering training in graphic design may offer some or all of these types of program options to their students:

  • Vocational certificate -- Students typically study the basics of illustration, Adobe Illustrator, graphic design, typography, color theory, logo design and Photoshop
  • Undergraduate certificate -- Similar to vocational certificate coursework plus drawing and design and composition
  • Associate degree -- Approximately two years of full-time training usually covers graphic design courses included in the certificate programs plus English composition, HTML and CSS programming, computer technology, art history, psychology, marketing, business and technical writing, Dreamweaver, layout, packaging, portfolio development and a capstone project
  • BA or BS in Graphic Design -- In addition to courses similar to those in the associate programs, a bachelor's degree in graphic design typically includes courses in motion graphics, digital and multimedia design
  • Master's degree -- Two-year graduate programs in graphic design involve studio work, research, readings and a final project to help experienced designers with a bachelor's degree reach the next career level with their master's degree

Salaries and employment growth projections for design careers

Employment growth for graphic designers is expected to be 7 percent nationwide from 2012 to 2022, a bit slower than average for that of other occupations as projected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS.gov). However, the following states are expected to have the highest growth rates for graphic designers during the same period, according to Projections Central:

  • Utah: 28.3 percent
  • Oregon: 19.4 percent
  • Arizona: 19 percent
  • Washington: 18.6 percent
  • Texas: 17.5 percent

Median salaries nationally for graphic designers as of May 2013 were $44,830 with the top-paying jobs in metropolitan areas like San Francisco and Washington, D.C. The top 10 percent tier made at least $79,260 and the lowest 10 percent made $26,690 or less. The median salary for art directors was $83,000 for the same period. States that currently employ the most graphic designers are California, New York and Florida.

Graphic artists are employed in a great many industries, not just in advertising and marketing agencies. Many medium to large companies have their own marketing departments, and an employee with graphic design skills can be a welcome addition even to a small business. If you are visually creative, willing to work hard to hone your skills and play well with others, you might be pleasantly surprised at how many opportunities there are for trained graphic designers.

Sources:

BA in Graphic Design, American University, http://www.american.edu/cas/graphic-design/BA-DSGN.cfm

Graduate Graphic Design, Otis College of Art and Design, http://www.otis.edu/graduate-graphic-design

Graphic Designers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2013, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/arts-and-design/graphic-designers.htm

Graphic Design Certificate Programs, Sessions College for Professional Design, http://www.sessions.edu/graphic-design

Graphic Design, Undergraduate Programs, Fashion Institute of Technology, http://www.fitnyc.edu/2306.asp

Graphic Designers, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Occupational Employment Statistics, 2013, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes271024.htm

Projections Central, State Occupational Projections, Long-term projections through 2022, http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm

Graphic Design Schools
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Programs : Design & Technical Graphics (BS), Graphic Design (AS), Graphic & Web Design (BFA), and more..

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Tucson: 5099 E. Grant Rd. Suite 100 Tucson, AZ 85712

Seattle: 2323 Elliott Avenue Seattle, WA 98121

North Hollywood: 5250 Lankershim Boulevard North Hollywood, CA 91601

Phoenix: 2233 West Dunlap Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85021

San Bernardino: 674 East Brier Drive San Bernardino, CA 92408

Sunnyvale: 1120 Kifer Road Sunnyvale, CA 94086

San Diego: 7650 Mission Valley Rd San Diego, CA 92108

Santa Monica: 2900 31st Street Santa Monica, CA 90405

Dallas: Two North Park East Dallas, TX 75231

Charlotte: Three LakePointe Plaza 2110 Water Ridge Parkway Charlotte, NC 28217

York: Formerly Bradley Academy for the Visual Arts 1409 Williams Road York, PA 17402

Denver: 1200 Lincoln Street Denver, CO 80203

Miami: 1501 Biscayne Boulevard, Suite 100 Miami, FL 33132

Portland: 1122 N.W. Davis Street Portland, OR 97209

New York: 218-232 West 40th Street New York, NY 10018

Cincinnati: 8845 Governors Hill Drive Suite 100 Cincinnati, OH 45249

Chicago: 350 N. Orleans Street Chicago, IL 60654

Jacksonville: 8775 Baypine Road Jacksonville, FL 32256

San Francisco: 1170 Market Street San Francisco, CA 94102

Indianapolis: 3500 Depauw Blvd., Suite 1010 Indianapolis, IN 46268

San Antonio: 1000 IH - 10 West Suite 106 San Antonio, TX 78230

Sacramento: 2850 Gateway Oaks Drive Suite 100 Sacramento, CA 95833

Troy: 1414 East Maple Road, Suite 150 Troy, MI 48083

Philadelphia: 1622 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19103

Fort Lauderdale: 1799 S.E. 17th Street Fort Lauderdale, FL 33316

Draper: 121 West Election Road Suite 100 Draper, UT 84020

Schaumburg: 1000 N. Plaza Drive, Suite 100 Schaumburg, IL 60173

Pittsburgh: 420 Boulevard of the Allies Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Milwaukee: 320 East Buffalo Street Suite 100 Milwaukee, WI 53202

Durham: 410 Blackwell St. Suite 200 Durham, NC 27701

Overland Park: 8208 Melrose Drive Overland Park, KS 66214

Minneapolis: 15 South 9th Street Minneapolis, MN 55402

Novi: 28125 Cabot Drive Suite 120 Novi, MI 48377

Houston: River Oaks Plaza 4140 Southwest Freeway Houston, TX 77027

Santa Ana: 3601 West Sunflower Avenue Santa Ana, CA 92704

Tinley Park: 18670 Graphic Drive Tinley Park, IL 60477

Austin: 101 W. Louis Henna Blvd. Suite 100 Austin, TX 78728

Virginia Beach: 4500 Main Street Suite 100 Virginia Beach, VA 23462

Decatur: One West Court Square Suite 110 Decatur, GA 30030

Tampa: Parkside at Tampa Bay Park 4401 North Himes Avenue, Suite 150 Tampa, FL 33614

Henderson: 2350 Corporate Circle Henderson, NV 89074

Brookline: 10 Brookline Place West Brookline, MA 02445

Fort Worth: 7000 Calmont Avenue Suite 150 Fort Worth, TX 76116

Charleston: 24 North Market Street Charleston, SC 29401

Atlanta: 6600 Peach Tree Dunwoody Road, NE 100 Embassy Row Atlanta, GA 30328

Arlington: 1820 North Fort Myer Drive Arlington, VA 22209

Nashville: 100 Centerview Dr. Suite 250 Nashville, TN 37214

Sterling: 21000 Atlantic Blvd. Suite 100 Sterling, VA 20166

At Fortis Institute, you may get the skills and training you need to prepare for a career. * Programs vary by location * Please contact each individual campus for accreditation information

Programs : Digital Graphics & Multimedia Design, and more..

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Erie: 5757 West 26th Street Erie, PA 16506

Get hands-on training with Remington College.

Programs : AAA in Digital Graphic Arts, and more..

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Fort Worth: 300 East Loop 820 Fort Worth, TX 76112

Five colleges of study.  One clear focus: Your career success. Earn the respect of employers with a degree you can earn on campus, online or both.

Programs : Associate - Web Graphic Design, Associate - Web Graphic Design, Bachelor's - Multimedia Design and Development, and more..

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Chicago: Chicago, IL

San Jose: 2160 Lundy Ave. Suite 250 San Jose, CA 95131

San Diego: 2655 Camino Del Rio North Suite 201 San Diego, CA 92108

Rego Park: 99-21 Queens Blvd. Rego Park, NY 11374

Nashville: 3343 Perimeter Hill Drive Suite 200 Nashville, TN 37211

Fort Lauderdale: 600 Corporate Dr. Suite 200 Fort Lauderdale, FL 33334

Bakersfield: 3000 Ming Ave. Bakersfield, CA 93304

Fort Worth: City Center Tower II, 301 Commerce Street Suite 2000 Fort Worth, TX 76102

Auburn: 3600 S 344th Way 0 Auburn, WA 98001

Houston: 2000 West Loop South Suite 150 Houston, TX 77027

Manassas: 10432 Balls Ford Road Suite 150 Manassas, VA 20109

Kansas City: 1100 Main St. Suite 118 Kansas City, MO 64105

Duluth: 3505 Koger Blvd. Suite 170 Duluth, GA 30096

Naperville: 2056 Westings Ave. Suite 40 Naperville, IL 60563

Stockbridge: 675 Southcrest Parkway Stockbridge, GA 30281

Gurnee: 1075 Tri-State Pkwy. Ste. 800 Gurnee, IL 60031

Louisville: 10172 Linn Station Rd. Ste. 300 Louisville, KY 40223

Oakland: 505 14th St. Oakland, CA 94612

Arlington: 2405 Crystal City Dr. Arlington, VA 22202

Merrillville: 1000 East 80th Place Ste. 222 Mall Merrillville, IN 46410

Lynnwood: Redstone Corporate Center, 19020 33rd Ave W, Ste Lynnwood, WA 98036

Charlotte: 2015 Ayrsley Town Blvd. Suite 109 Charlotte, NC 28273

Paramus: 35 Plaza Professional Center 81 Rte. 4 W. Ste. 102 Paramus, NJ 07652

Pittsburgh: 210 Sixth Ave. Ste. 200 Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Morrisville: 1600 Perimeter Park Drive Suite 100 Morrisville, NC 27560

Sandy: 9350 S. 150 E. Suite 420 Sandy, UT 84070

Saint Louis: 11830 Westline Industrial Dr. Suite 550 Saint Louis, MO 63146

Austin: 11044 Research Blvd Suite B100 Austin, TX 78759

Sherman Oaks: 15301 Ventura Blvd B-100 Sherman Oaks, CA 91403

Indianapolis: 9100 Keystone Crossing Suite 300 Indianapolis, IN 46240

Cincinnati: 8800 Governor's Hill Drive Cincinnati, OH 45249

Colton: 1090 E Washington St Colton, CA 92324

Fremont: 6600 Dumbarton Circle Fremont, CA 94555

Orlando: 4000 Millenia Blvd. Orlando, FL 32839

Philadelphia: 1800 JFK Blvd Suite 104 Philadelphia, PA 19103

Southfield: 26999 Central Park Blvd. Suite 125 Southfield, MI 48076

Alhambra: 1000 S. Fremont Ave. Alhambra, CA 91803

Pomona: 901 Corporate Center Dr. Pomona, CA 91768

Chesapeake: 1317 Executive Blvd. Suite 100 Chesapeake, VA 23320

Tinley Park: 18624 West Creek Drive Tinley Park, IL 60477

Palmdale: One 39115 Trade Center Dr. Ste. 100 Palmdale, CA 93551

Denver: 1870 W. 122nd Ave. Denver, CO 80234

Minneapolis: 7700 France Ave. S. Ste. 575 Minneapolis, MN 55435

Memphis: 6401 Poplar Ave Suite 600 Memphis, TN 38119

Phoenix: 2149 W. Dunlap Phoenix, AZ 85021

Atlanta: 100 Galleria Parkway SE Suite 100 Atlanta, GA 30339

Tampa: 6700 Lakeview Center Drive Suite 150 Tampa, FL 33619

Colorado Springs: 1175 Kelly Johnson Blvd. Colorado Springs, CO 80920

Jacksonville: 5200 Belfort Road Ste. 175 Jacksonville, FL 32256

Dayton: 3610 Pentagon Blvd. Ste. 100 Dayton, OH 45431

King of Prussia: 150 Allendale Road Suite 3250 King of Prussia, PA 19406

Fort Washington: 1140 Virginia Dr. Fort Washington, PA 19034

Independence: 6000 Lombardo Center Suite 200 Independence, OH 44131

Henderson: 2490 Paseo Verde Parkway Suite 150 Henderson, NV 89074

Mesa: 1201 South Alma School Road Suite 5450 Mesa, AZ 85210

Anaheim: 1900 S. State College Blvd. Suite 150 Anaheim, CA 92806

Oklahoma City: 4013 Northwest Expressway Suite 100 Oklahoma City, OK 73116

Englewood: 6312 S. Fiddlers Green Cr. Suite 150E Englewood, CO 80111

Addison: 1221 North Swift Road Addison, IL 60101

North Brunswick: 630 US Highway One North Brunswick, NJ 08902

Hollywood: 14700 Caribbean Way Hollywood, FL 33027

San Antonio: 1919 NW Loop 410 Suite 150 San Antonio, TX 78213

Milwaukee: 411 E. Wisconsin Ave. Ste 300 Milwaukee, WI 53202

Cherry Hill: 921 Haddonfield Road Ste. D Cherry Hill, NJ 08002

Decatur: One West Court Square Ste 100 Decatur, GA 30030

New York: 180 Madison Ave. New York, NY 10016

Downers Grove: Highland Landmark V 3005 Highland Pkwy. Ste. 100 Downers Grove, IL 60515

Columbus: 1350 Alum Creek Drive Columbus, OH 43209

Elgin: Randall Point 2250 Point Blvd. Suite 250 Elgin, IL 60123

Alpharetta: 2555 Northwinds Pkwy. Alpharetta, GA 30009

Portland: 9755 SW Barnes Road Peterkort Center II Portland, OR 97225

Long Beach: 3880 Kilroy Airport Way Long Beach, CA 90806

Oxnard: 300 E. Esplanade Dr., Suite 100, Oxnard, CA 93036

Irving: 4800 Regent Blvd. Irving, TX 75063

Glendale: 6751 N. Sunset Blvd. Ste. 104 Glendale, AZ 85305

Fresno: 7575 North Fresno St. Suite 575 Fresno, CA 93720

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Helping creative minds bring their ideas to life.

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Pittsburgh: 420 Boulevard of the Allies Pittsburgh, PA 15219

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Cordova: 7260 Goodlett Farms Parkway Cordova, TN 38016

Albuquerque: 5100 Masthead Street NE Albuquerque, NM 87109

Spokane: North 1050 Argonne Road Spokane, WA 99212

Hanover: 7030 Dorsey Road, Suite 100 Hanover, MD 21076

Tucson: 1455 West River Road Tucson, AZ 85704

High Point: 4050 Piedmont Parkway, Suite 110 High Point, NC 27265

Hilliard: 3781 Park Mill Run Drive Hilliard, OH 43026

Henderson: 168 N Gibson Road Henderson, NV 89014

Harrisburg: 449 Eisenhower Blvd., Suite 100 Harrisburg, PA 17111

Philadelphia: 105 South 7th Street, Ste 100 Philadelphia, PA 19106

Canton: 1905 S Haggerty Rd Canton, MI 48188

Woburn: 10 Forbes Road Woburn, MA 01801

Salem: 2159 Apperson Drive Salem, VA 24153

South Bend: 17390 Dugdale Drive, Suite 100 South Bend, IN 46635

Old Forge: 1000 Meade Street Old Forge, PA 18518

Richmond: 300 Gateway Centre Parkway Richmond, VA 23235

Knoxville: 10208 Technology Drive Knoxville, TN 37932

Jacksonville: 7011 A.C. Skinner Parkway, Suite 140 Jacksonville, FL 32256

Norfolk: 863 Glenrock Road Norfolk, VA 23502

Tarentum: 100 Pittsburgh Mills Circle Suite 100 Tarentum, PA 15084

Las Vegas: 2445 Fire Mesa Street - Suite 200 Las Vegas, NV 89128

Portland: 9500 NE Cascades Parkway Portland, OR 97220

Duluth: 10700 Abbotts Bridge Road Duluth, GA 30097

Rancho Cordova: 10863 Gold Center Drive Rancho Cordova, CA 95670

Kansas City: 9150 East 41st Terrace Kansas City, MO 64133

Norwood: 333 Providence Highway Norwood, MA 02062

Murray: 920 West LeVoy Drive Murray, UT 84123

Dearborn: 19855 W. Outer Drive, Suite L10W Dearborn, MI 48124

Baton Rouge: 14141 Airline Highway, Bldg 3 - Suite K Baton Rouge, LA 70817

Troy: 1522 E. Big Beaver Road Troy, MI 48083

Swartz Creek: 6359 Miller Road Swartz Creek, MI 48473

Kennesaw: 1000 Cobb Place Boulevard NW Kennesaw, GA 30144

Lathrop: 16916 South Harlan Road Lathrop, CA 95330

Seattle: 12720 Gateway Drive Seattle, WA 98168

Clovis: 362 N. Clovis Avenue Clovis, CA 93612

Plymouth Meeting: 220 W. Germantown Pike, Suite 100 Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462

Dayton: 3325 Stop 8 Road Dayton, OH 45414

Greenfield: 6300 W. Layton Avenue Greenfield, WI 53220

Marlton: 2 Greentree Center 9000 Lincoln Dr. E, Suite 100 Marlton, NJ 08053

Arnold: 1930 Meyer Drury Drive Arnold, MO 63010

Owings Mills: 11301 Red Run Boulevard Owings Mills, MD 21117

Little Rock: 4520 S. University Avenue Little Rock, AR 72204

Earth City: 3640 Corporate Trail Drive Earth City, MO 63045

Atlanta: Two Crown Center 1745 Phoenix Blvd., Suite 100 Atlanta, GA 30349

Liverpool: 235 Greenfield Parkway Liverpool, NY 13088

Indianapolis: 2525 N. Shadeland Ave., Ste 103 Indianapolis, IN 46219

Everett: 1615 75th Street SW Everett, WA 98203

Youngstown: 1030 North Meridian Road Youngstown, OH 44509

Getzville: 2295 Millersport Highway, P.O. Box 327 Getzville, NY 14068

Arlington Heights: 3800 N. Wilke Road, Suite 100 Arlington Heights, IL 60004

Bessemer: 6270 Park South Drive Bessemer, AL 35022

Huntington: 5183 US Route 60, Building 1, Suite 40 Huntington, WV 25705

Omaha: 9814 M Street Omaha, NE 68127

Columbia: 720 Gracern Road, Suite 120 Columbia, SC 29210

Nashville: 2845 Elm Hill Pike Nashville, TN 37214

Saint Rose: 140 James Drive East Saint Rose, LA 70087

Webster: 1001 Magnolia Ave. Webster, TX 77598

Corona: 4160 Temescal Canyon Road, Suite 100 Corona, CA 92883

Maumee: 1656 Henthorne Blvd. Suite B Maumee, OH 43537

: 9511 Angola Court , IN 46268

Albany: 13 Airline Drive Albany, NY 12205

Pittsburgh: 10 Parkway Center Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Arlington: 551 Ryan Plaza Drive Arlington, TX 76011

Louisville: 10509 Timberwood Circle Louisville, KY 40223

Fort Wayne: 2810 Dupont Commerce Court Fort Wayne, IN 46825

Richardson: 2101 Waterview Parkway Richardson, TX 75080

Eden Prairie: 8911 Columbine Road Eden Prairie, MN 55347

Saint Paul: 2042 Wooddale Drive Saint Paul, MN 55125

Learning at Full Sail University has always centered around interaction and the exchange of ideas. Our online curriculum fully embraces this philosophy.

Programs : Graphic Design, Bachelor of Science (Online), Web Design and Development, Bachelor of Science (Online), Game Design, Bachelor of Science (Online), and more..

Campus Locations :

: , AL

Sanford-Brown can help prepare you for a rewarding career in health and dental care, business, paralegal, criminal justice, Design & Media Arts or information technology.

Programs : Associate of Applied Science in Graphic Design, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design, Associate of Applied Science in Web Design and Development, and more..

Campus Locations :

San Antonio: 4511 Horizon Hill Blvd. San Antonio, TX 78229

Seattle: 625 Andover Park West Seattle, WA 98188

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