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

Tinley Park: 18670 Graphic Drive Tinley Park, IL 60477

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

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

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

Philadelphia: 1622 Chestnut Street Philadelphia, PA 19103

Novi: 28125 Cabot Drive Suite 120 Novi, MI 48377

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

Sunnyvale: 1120 Kifer Road Sunnyvale, CA 94086

Denver: 1200 Lincoln Street Denver, CO 80203

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

Chicago: 350 N. Orleans Street Chicago, IL 60654

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

Phoenix: 2233 West Dunlap Avenue Phoenix, AZ 85021

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

North Hollywood: 5250 Lankershim Boulevard North Hollywood, CA 91601

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

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

Houston: 10740 North Gessner Drive, Suite 190 Houston, TX 77064

Overland Park: 8208 Melrose Drive Overland Park, KS 66214

Dallas: Two North Park East Dallas, TX 75231

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

Minneapolis: 15 South 9th Street Minneapolis, MN 55402

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

Jacksonville: 8775 Baypine Road Jacksonville, FL 32256

Pittsburgh: 420 Boulevard of the Allies Pittsburgh, PA 15219

San Francisco: 1170 Market Street San Francisco, CA 94102

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Seattle: 2323 Elliott Avenue Seattle, WA 98121

Charleston: 24 North Market Street Charleston, SC 29401

Henderson: 2350 Corporate Circle Henderson, NV 89074

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

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

Brookline: 10 Brookline Place West Brookline, MA 02445

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

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

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

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

Career-focused education for real‐world results.

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

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Chicago: Chicago, IL

New York: 180 Madison Ave. Suite 900 New York, NY 10016

Tampa: 3030 North Rocky Point Drive West Suite 100 Tampa, FL 33607

Philadelphia: 1800 JFK Blvd Suite 104 Philadelphia, PA 19103

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

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

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

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

Orlando: 4000 Millenia Blvd. Orlando, FL 32839

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

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

Memphis: 6401 Poplar Ave Suite 600 Memphis, TN 38119

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

Houston: 11125 Equity Drive Houston, TX 77041

Fremont: 6600 Dumbarton Circle Fremont, CA 94555

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

Indianapolis: 9100 Keystone Crossing Suite 300 Indianapolis, IN 46240

Oakland: 505 14th St. Oakland, CA 94612

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Colton: 1090 E Washington St Colton, CA 92324

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

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

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

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

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

Kansas City: 11224 Holmes Rd. Kansas City, MO 64131

Pomona: 901 Corporate Center Dr. Pomona, CA 91768

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Columbus: 1350 Alum Creek Drive Columbus, OH 43209

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

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

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

Hollywood: 14700 Caribbean Way Hollywood, FL 33027

Independence: 6000 Lombardo Center Suite 200 Independence, OH 44131

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

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

Bakersfield: 3000 Ming Ave. Bakersfield, CA 93304

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

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

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

Alpharetta: 2555 Northwinds Pkwy. Alpharetta, GA 30009

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

Addison: 1221 North Swift Road Addison, IL 60101

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

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

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

Austin: 11044 Research Blvd Suite B100 Austin, TX 78759

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

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

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

Arlington: 2405 Crystal City Dr. Arlington, VA 22202

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

Stockbridge: 675 Southcrest Parkway Stockbridge, GA 30281

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

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

Phoenix: 2149 W. Dunlap Phoenix, AZ 85021

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

Irving: 4800 Regent Blvd. Irving, TX 75063

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

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

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

Albuquerque: 5100 Masthead Street NE Albuquerque, NM 87109

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

Knoxville: 10208 Technology Drive Knoxville, TN 37932

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

Duluth: 10700 Abbotts Bridge Road Duluth, GA 30097

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

Henderson: 168 N Gibson Road Henderson, NV 89014

Richmond: 300 Gateway Centre Parkway Richmond, VA 23235

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

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

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

Dayton: 3325 Stop 8 Road Dayton, OH 45414

Lathrop: 16916 South Harlan Road Lathrop, CA 95330

Swartz Creek: 6359 Miller Road Swartz Creek, MI 48473

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

Spokane: North 1050 Argonne Road Spokane, WA 99212

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

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

Woburn: 10 Forbes Road Woburn, MA 01801

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

Webster: 1001 Magnolia Ave. Webster, TX 77598

Canton: 1905 S Haggerty Rd Canton, MI 48188

Salem: 2159 Apperson Drive Salem, VA 24153

Liverpool: 235 Greenfield Parkway Liverpool, NY 13088

Bessemer: 6270 Park South Drive Bessemer, AL 35022

Norfolk: 863 Glenrock Road Norfolk, VA 23502

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

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

Nashville: 2845 Elm Hill Pike Nashville, TN 37214

Murray: 920 West LeVoy Drive Murray, UT 84123

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

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

Seattle: 12720 Gateway Drive Seattle, WA 98168

Norwood: 333 Providence Highway Norwood, MA 02062

Portland: 9500 NE Cascades Parkway Portland, OR 97220

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

Everett: 1615 75th Street SW Everett, WA 98203

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

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

Youngstown: 1030 North Meridian Road Youngstown, OH 44509

Kennesaw: 1000 Cobb Place Boulevard NW Kennesaw, GA 30144

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

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

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

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

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

Cordova: 7260 Goodlett Farms Parkway Cordova, TN 38016

Clovis: 362 N. Clovis Avenue Clovis, CA 93612

Hilliard: 3781 Park Mill Run Drive Hilliard, OH 43026

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

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

Old Forge: 1000 Meade Street Old Forge, PA 18518

Tucson: 1455 West River Road Tucson, AZ 85704

Arnold: 1930 Meyer Drury Drive Arnold, MO 63010

Omaha: 9814 M Street Omaha, NE 68127

Greenfield: 6300 W. Layton Avenue Greenfield, WI 53220

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

Pittsburgh: 10 Parkway Center Pittsburgh, PA 15220

Albany: 13 Airline Drive Albany, NY 12205

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

Arlington: 551 Ryan Plaza Drive Arlington, TX 76011

Louisville: 10509 Timberwood Circle Louisville, KY 40223

Saint Paul: 2042 Wooddale Drive Saint Paul, MN 55125

Eden Prairie: 8911 Columbine Road Eden Prairie, MN 55347

Richardson: 2101 Waterview Parkway Richardson, TX 75080

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Chicago: 1 North State Street, Suite 1000 Chicago, IL 60602

Calumet City: 80 River Oaks Center Drive, Suite 111 Calumet City, IL 60409

Los Angeles: 3250 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 400 Los Angeles, CA 90010

Denver: 7350 North Broadway, Suite 1200 Denver, CO 80221

Upland: 20 West 7th Street Upland, CA 91786

Atlanta: 2309 Parklake Drive NE Atlanta, GA 30345

Arlington: 4420 North Fairfax Drive Arlington, VA 22203

Aurora: 350 Blackhawk St. Aurora, CO 80011

Anaheim: 1551 S. Douglass Road Anaheim, CA 92806

Annandale: 7619 Little River Turnpike, Suite 500 Annandale, VA 22003

Torrance: 19700 South Vermont Avenue #100 Suite 100 Torrance, CA 90502

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

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Campus Locations :

Erie: 5757 West 26th Street Erie, PA 16506

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American Fork: 1261 South 820 East American Fork, UT 84003

Provo: 1450 W 820 N Provo, UT 84601

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Los Angeles: 6363 West Sunset Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90028

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