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Online Colleges for Graphics & Multimedia

Article Sources

Sources:

  1. Annapurna International School of Film & Media, Master's in Graphic and Multimedia Design, 2013, http://www.aisfm.edu.in/academics/masters-programs/masters-in-graphic-multimedia-design
  2. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition," Art Directors, August 31, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/arts-and-design/art-directors.htm#tab-1
  3. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition," Graphic Designers, March 29, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Arts-and-Design/Graphic-designers.htm#tab-1
  4. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition," Graphic Designers, March 29, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Arts-and-Design/Graphic-designers.htm#tab-1
  5. Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, "Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-2013 Edition," Multimedia Artists and Animators, March 29, 2012, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/arts-and-design/multimedia-artists-and-animators.htm#tab-1
  6. Fremont College, Online Multimedia Design Program, Associate Degree, 2013, http://www.fremont.edu/programs/college-of-multimedia-design/multimedia-design/
  7. Southern New Hampshire University, Graphic Design and Media Arts, B.A., http://www.snhu.edu/2249.asp
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Multimedia is a blanket term used to describe the use of computers to combine text, sound, and/or motion video and animated images into one finished product. Individuals who work in a multimedia career use their technical skills to create graphics and animation using computer software programs. A career in multimedia could span a wide range of industries, including web marketing, filmmaking, television, education, advertising, or software design. Online multimedia degree programs can prepare students to develop their own movies, visual effects or games, using specific software programs as well as their own highly developed technical skills.

Multimedia professionals often collaborate with a team of other animators and artists. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, they may research upcoming projects, develop story boards to map out scenes, and make changes based on feedback from directors, head animators, or clients (BLS.gov/ooh, 2012). According to the BLS, multimedia artists and animators often pursue a bachelor's degree in computer graphics, fine art, animation, or a related field. However, it is not uncommon for multimedia artists and animators to gain employment without any formal education, as long as they have a good portfolio of work. Although some job growth is predicted in this industry, the BLS reports heavy competition for employment in this field due to an overall increase in interest.

Online Degree Programs in Multimedia and Graphic Design 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, individuals in graphics and multimedia use their skills and expertise to create animation, art and visual effects for movies, television, video games, and other media (BLS.gov/ooh, 2012). As a multimedia major, you may study topics such as web design, graphic design, content development, marketing, advertising, and freelance design. Online graphics and multimedia classes will teach you to hone your skills in the latest software applications as well, with a focus on emerging technologies that will be an integral part of the graphics and multimedia field in the coming years. Earning your online multimedia degree will set you apart from your peers and prepare you to pursue your passion, as you create the visual concepts that captivate consumers. See online IT colleges for more career and degree options.

As a multimedia major, you'll be able to choose the level of education you pursue. According to the BLS, a formal education or online multimedia degree may not be a requirement for employment. However, many employers do prefer to hire individuals who have received formal training and earned a degree in the field (BLS.gov/ooh, 2012). In addition to a formal education, the BLS reports that students need a variety of personal traits and job skills to succeed, including artistic ability, computer skills, creativity, interpersonal skills, and physical stamina (BLS.gov/ooh, 2012).

Online Associates in Multimedia and Graphic Design 

If you're interested in entering the field of graphics and multimedia as quickly as possible, you may want to consider earning an online associate degree. Associate degree students are generally required to take introductory courses in graphics and multimedia. Some of the topics covered include video editing, web design, visual communication and marketing.

This table provides an in-depth look at concepts students could study in online graphics and multimedia classes as they work toward an associate degree:

Digital Imaging

Gain an introduction to digital imaging techniques, concepts and principles. Students will learn how to harness innovative digital imaging technologies.

Digital Illustration

Learn the proper usage of software programs as you work on projects and create illustrations of their own.

Design Concepts

Gain an overview of popular design concepts, including design principles, color theory, and conceptualization strategies.

Branding and Marketing

Study how consumers respond to common marketing practices.

Web Development

Learn web development basics. Students will learn how to create their own webpages.

*Fremont College, Online Multimedia Design Program, Associate Degree

Online Bachelor's in Multimedia and Graphic Design

Students who take online multimedia and graphics classes in pursuit of a bachelor's degree can gain an in-depth understanding of information technology, advertising, marketing and design concepts. Topics covered include language and media arts, digital photography, desktop publishing and typography.

This table provides an in-depth look at concepts students will study in online graphics and multimedia classes as they work toward a bachelor's degree:

Advanced Digital Imaging

Take a hands-on approach to computer graphics software and its application.

Color Theory

Examine modern color theory, touching on topics such as balance, emphasis, proportion, and rhythm.

Graphic Design for the Web

Gain an overview of graphic design theory as it relates to web design.

Media Arts

Gain an overview of media arts concepts and visual media literacy.

History of Design

Examine the various design phases that have taken place throughout history and how they relate to modern design.

*Southern New Hampshire University, Graphic Design and Media Arts, B.A.

Online Master's in Multimedia and Graphic Design 

If you're interested in pursuing an advanced online multimedia degree, you may want to consider earning your master's degree. Top colleges for graphics and multimedia students offer the opportunity to study a variety of advanced concepts within the realm of multimedia and graphic design. Topics covered include typography, graphic design, advanced digital media, art direction, and design theory.

This table provides an in-depth look at concepts students will study in online graphics and multimedia classes as they work toward a master's degree:

Design Theory

Gain an overview of modern design theory and how it relates to historical theories of art and design.

Digital and Multimedia

Learn to take their artistic ability to the next level while studying 2D and 3D design and film production.

Art Direction

Study leadership roles in the field of multimedia and graphics.

Packaging Design

Combine multimedia and graphics concepts with marketing and learn to create product packaging that is visually appealing to consumers.

Filmmaking

Study filmmaking fundamentals and learn to create and edit films.

*Annapurna International School of Film & Media, Master's in Graphic and Multimedia Design

Graphics & Multimedia Career Information

According to the BLS, employment for multimedia artists and animators is expected to increase 8 percent from 2010 to 2020. The BLS also projects that employment will increase 13 percent for graphic designers and 9 percent for art directors from 2010 to 2020. Due to the strong technical skills and expertise required for a multimedia career, some employers in this field may require employees to have a bachelor's degree. Therefore, students interested in a multimedia career should research online multimedia degree programs in order to find a program that meets their needs.

The median annual wage for multimedia artists and animators was $61,370 nationally in 2012, with the top 10 percent earning $113,470 and the bottom 10 percent earning $34,860, according to the latest multimedia salary data from the BLS. Industries employing the most multimedia artists and animators in include motion picture and video industries, computer systems design and related services, software publishers, advertising, public relations and related services, and specialized design services. In addition to employing the highest number of multimedia artists and animators, the motion picture and video industry also reported the highest concentration of employment and the highest pay in terms of annual mean wage.

The states with the highest level of employment for multimedia artists and animators were California, New York, Washington, Texas and Illinois in 2012. The states that paid multimedia artists and animators the most, on average, were California, New York, District of Columbia, Washington, and New Mexico. Within those states, certain metropolitan areas reported especially high employment for multimedia artists and animators. Among the highest include the Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale, CA Metropolitan Division, Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, WA Metropolitan Division, New York-White Plains-Wayne, NY-NJ Metropolitan Division, San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City, CA Metropolitan Division, Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT, and Chicago-Joliet-Naperville, IL Metropolitan Division.

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