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Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA): Visual Communications Degree Overview

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) programs in visual communications typically train students in the processes of design conception, planning, and creation. Graduates can enter careers in design, illustration, and art.

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Essential Information

Students in BFA in Visual Communications programs learn about the functions and objectives of visual communications and are encouraged to develop aesthetic awareness and understandings of symbolic representation. Most visual communications programs assist students in the continued development of their personal portfolios and may provide internship opportunities. Program applicants must hold a high school diploma or GED, and they may be asked to show their artistic ability by submitting a portfolio prior to admission.


Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in Visual Communications

Visual communications coursework helps students develop skills in 2-D and 3-D design forms that include drawing, sculpting and painting. Students also often study cultural and historical concepts of visual communications. Programs may offer courses that address topics such as:

  • Typography
  • Color management
  • Printmaking
  • History of art
  • Interactive design
  • Prototyping

Popular Career Options

Graduates from BFA in Visual Communications programs are prepared for careers in both traditional and digital media. Individuals may pursue positions such as:

  • Graphic designers
  • Illustrators
  • Art directors

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), graphic designers earned median annual of $46,900 in May 2015. The BLS also predicts that there will be little or no change in the employment of graphic designers between 2014 and 2024.

Continuing Education Information

Some individuals may opt to pursue graduate degrees in visual communications or a related fine arts field. These programs continue to develop students' knowledge of design theory while increasing their technical abilities. Master's-level programs encourage students to experiment with their work and develop personal design styles.

Over the course of BFA programs in visual communications, students develop the advanced artistic skills they need for design-related careers. Some graduates choose to pursue more graduate education in order to further improve their skills.

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