Formal education can make you more valuable to employers than someone self-taught. It can also help you build a network of like-minded people.
For example, a known for its engineering program but also has an impressive arts program. Their Graphic Design program focuses on the intersection of art and commerce.
You’ll Learn the Basics
Whether you want to work in print, digital, or 3D design, attending a graphic design school will equip you with the skills and knowledge needed for the industry and what programs are used for graphic design. You’ll learn everything from the basics to advanced techniques. This includes learning color theory, typography, and other essential elements to produce eye-catching designs.
During your time at graphic design school, you’ll also learn about the field’s history, how to approach different projects, and the importance of branding and advertising. Additionally, you’ll be able to develop a portfolio of your work to help you get a job after graduation.
You’ll find graphic design programs at various institutions, including art schools, large public universities, tech schools, and colleges. While some schools are more concerned with the lofty side of the field and its theoretical applications, others focus on preparing students for their careers. They believe in “poetic pragmatism” and teach students to combine their artistic vision with practical skills.
Other schools,, are known for their interdisciplinary curriculums that combine old and new media. They believe artistic vision should complement practical skills and encourage students to experiment with various techniques.
You’ll Get a Head Start
Graphic design is a highly creative profession but requires technical skills. Formal education in this field will give you a leg up when seeking entry-level jobs. Getting an undergraduate degree in the subject can also prepare you for further studies in this field, leading to a higher salary and more growth opportunities.
A quality graphic design school will offer a variety of courses that focus on specific areas of the industry, such as website visual design, studio art, computerized design, and printing techniques. Other coursework may include graphic design theory, user experience (UX) methods, and research/portfolio development. Many programs will also offer a broad liberal arts curriculum, which can be helpful for students seeking future careers in different fields.
The top graphic design schools will have an impressive list of alumni and faculty with name recognition, consistently high rankings, and a distinct focus on their program areas. It counts such famous alums as actors among its graduates.
Both offer a wide range of degrees and have a reputation for being cutting-edge in their approach to the field.
You’ll Be More Marketable
Graphic designers need a combination of artistic sensibility and technical skills to be successful. While it’s possible to break into the field without a formal education, you’ll likely have a more challenging time finding a job and earning as much money as you would with one.
A suitable graphic design program will give you the tools you need to succeed in your career, including a strong portfolio of work that demonstrates your ability. It’ll also help you connect with industry professionals and other students.
If you want to be as marketable as possible, consider pursuing a bachelor’s degree in graphic design or communications design. These programs are available at art schools and as departments within more prominent universities. You can even find them at some technical schools.
Bachelor’s degrees take four or five years to complete if you attend school full-time. They’ll usually offer a Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA), though the specific name depends on the school.
You can also pursue a master’s degree in graphic design. These graduate-level programs take one to two years of full-time study and focus on deepening your expertise in a specific field. You’ll find these programs at art schools, large public universities, and some tech schools. Whether you focus on branding, package design, environmental design, UI/UX, or textiles, you’ll find the right degree to help you reach your career goals.
You’ll Be More Creative
Even if you have a natural talent for creating beautiful and creative designs, attending a graphic design school will help sharpen your skills. It will teach you the theory behind different aspects of design, like composition, typography, color, and scale. It will also provide you with the technical skills required for designing software programs.
A degree from a specialized graphic design school will also help you understand the business side of design, which is essential for success in this career. You will learn how to interpret a client’s creative brief, create realistic timelines, and manage client expectations and communications. You will also develop your ability to critique and incorporate client feedback until they are satisfied with the final product.
In addition to developing your artistic sensibilities, you can connect with other graphic designers who share the same interests as you. This will help you establish a network you can leverage as your career progresses. You will also be able to network with industry giants through internship opportunities and by participating in professional-level exhibitions and competitions.
There are many prestigious graphic design schools to consider. However, you will want to weigh the benefits of each carefully. For example, a strong alum network and is known for its internship program. The school also hosts professional-level exhibitions and sends compilations of graduating student work to industry giants.