Schools With Graphic Design Majors – Whether you want to stay close to home, save money, or choose an Ivy-League superstar, you should be able to find a great school for your particular situation.
Using the criteria below, we have created an updated list of the 50 best graphic design schools in the United States.
Schools With Graphic Design Majors
Don’t get too attached to a particular college order. Instead, narrow your search to a few schools on this list and explore further. The right school for you is the school that best suits your needs, location and budget.
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Due to our varying criteria, this list does not include the top fifty schools in chronological order (ie school #4 is not necessarily better than school #44 on the list).
Attending Penn University is a notable achievement in itself as the school has such a rich history that it was literally founded by Benjamin Franklin himself. But that doesn’t mean Penn doesn’t have much else to offer artists; far away from here.
In addition to the interdisciplinary field of visual arts and the integrated field of design, the university also offers a two-year master’s program. Each of these programs offers interaction and critique with professional artists and designers, and the university hosts many extracurricular activities for artists and designers each year. The courses themselves are impressive.
You’ll learn how to use a wide range of cameras, scanners and digital compositing software in the Mixed Media Animation class, before learning how to create stunning freehand, computer and environmental animation. You will design multi-page publications and work with clients and manufacturers to create your own graphic designs. There’s a lot to offer here, as you’d expect from a university like Penn.
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This university, run by The School of Art + Art History, also offers attractive courses for graphic designers. You can earn a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design by learning art history, 2-D, 3-D and even 4-D drawing techniques and the tools and techniques needed to become a professional graphic designer.
Students begin by learning the basics of art history and the methods used in design. Digital image analysis techniques are also taught as well as professional typography so that students will be ready to create their own original typeface in their works.
A lot of time is spent in the studio during the course, so students can sharpen their skills by using forms, spaces, compositions and other art techniques taught in the course. There is one major drawback though – students are expected to have their own computer system to run the graphic design software needed for classes. This means that the university is not a suitable option for students without the ability to purchase their own equipment as it will not be provided.
Boston University offers a Certificate, BFA, and MFA in Graphic Design. The program takes an interesting approach to graphic design, where the creative process is more important than the final product. In the program, students will learn to manage form, medium, context in their work and adapt their projects to the audience.
School Of Industrial And Graphic Design
What sets Boston University apart, however, is its facilities. Students share a fully equipped common workspace, computer lab and even printing facilities. Graphics tools are especially useful for graphic design students as they enable etching, screen printing, typography, bookmaking and digital printing. There’s even a darkroom, visual library and designated areas for welding, pottery and woodworking. Boston University even allows students to work with the factory, 3D laser cutting and robotics.
So it is not too bold to say that if there is something a student wants to make, he has materials and equipment in this school.
Finally, Boston University offers help finding a job as a graphic designer. They partner with several local businesses and design firms so students can actually find work. Finally, for those who take the chance, there is study abroad in Italy.
Carnegie Mellon University makes this list once again, and for good reason. This university actually has design degrees at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels, which most design schools do not. They take a community-based approach to this education; Students are expected to collaborate with other students from various other disciplines and backgrounds. It is also one of the few design programs that emphasizes sustainability in its courses.
Graphic Design Jobs
So you can be sure that whatever you create in your studies, you won’t leave too big of a carbon footprint. As for the program itself, the BA is highly personalised, allowing you to choose from several different types of design that will become your specialty.
Graphic designers should choose the “Communications” path. This will teach you everything you need to know about graphic design and how to tell a story with it. Graduates from this discipline have even been responsible for creating works such as the Starbucks logo.
If you want to try to earn a master’s degree, the Master of Arts program is ideal for teaching you the basics of design, creating digital and physical prototypes, using graphic design software and other hands-on activities. And of course the PhD program is the most intense of all. There are plenty of options here for graphic designers; just expect to work a lot with others thanks to their interdisciplinary teaching method.
The Graphic Design + Multimedia program at the University of Miami is a great option for someone interested in graphic design as it teaches you how to use your design in many different mediums and even learn a little humanities. With this program, you will wear many hats; you will be able to try your hand as a designer and creative director.
The World’s 50 Greatest Graphic Design Schools
The university has a graphic studio, two separate drawing rooms and a computer lab. Graphic design is a very leadership position, so you’ll learn how to pitch your ideas to media people and big companies, and there are lots of seminars with guest artists and designers.
Essentially, what this program offers is an in-depth look at both how to become a graphic designer and how to distribute your work to a variety of industries, from logos to book covers to even posters.
For those who want to learn how to communicate their ideas and stories visually, the Rhode Island School of Design has an excellent program for graphic designers, both BFA and MFA. The BFA is a 4-year program designed to help students build their own design processes while learning a variety of design methods, communication and problem-solving skills.
In the first year, students learn visual principles that make their artwork stand out, even in a sea of art. This means understanding shape, font, image and color. They then move on to even more advanced techniques, including communication theory and information design, before culminating in their final year where they are shown exactly how to put what they have learned into practice.
Design Degrees And Careers
When it comes to hardware, Rhode Island School of Design students can use special equipment for bookbinding, papermaking, and screen printing, as well as the software needed to make digital prints. The best part is that the assignments students get will help build a portfolio of book covers, magazines, shows, film art and more. That way, when a student graduates, their resume will be more than a little impressive.
The history of this school is great. Students who have participated in graphic design have an 85% success rate and have found work in their field. Even more impressive is that the median salary for first-year graduates is $51,300 per year. These numbers alone show why this program is worth it, but why is it so effective?
Rochester’s graphic design program involves putting your artistic talents to work. Their BFA program includes students studying typography, branding, motion graphics, space-specific design, packaging, and publishing.
Projects will often be directly linked to local or even international companies, allowing students to gain a very real experience of graphic design work. As mentioned in previous chapters, Rochester has a proven track record of helping students get into paid fellowships where they can be paid to work full-time with industry professionals and potentially land a real job upon graduation.
Best Graphic Design Schools In The U.s
You don’t go out with a paper but with experience. Ironically, that’s what they say graphic design is all about; creating not only products but also experiences.
Whether it’s spatial design, publishing, stickers, or user interfaces, the Maryland Institute of Maryland’s graphic design department is with you. Theory, practical skills and history are a big part of their courses, so students can develop their own creativity by learning what has worked in the past and why.
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