Bachelor's degree programs in computer graphics train students in the use of specialized visual design programs and techniques. Coursework in computer graphics programs may cover animation and visual design, web design, computer animation and graphics. Internship opportunities are often available to students, and a senior thesis project is usually a requirement for graduation. Online bachelor's programs in computer graphics are widely available
Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Computer Graphics
At the least, applicants must possess a high school diploma or GED. Academic transcripts and SAT or ACT test scores may also need to be submitted. Additionally, fine arts programs might request a portfolio review that includes drawings and computer artwork.
Once admitted, students learn hands-on technical skills in computer courses and develop creativity and artistic skills in a variety of studio courses. Common courses include:
- Digital illustration
- Computer animation
- Computer graphics development
- Digital publishing
- 2-D and 3-D design
Popular Career Options
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, graphic designers with varied experience and skills, including Internet media design and animation proficiency, should have the better job opportunities in the field (www.bls.gov). Computer graphics artists may pursue careers in a variety of industries, since clients have widely varying needs. Some example job titles a graduate might attain are:
- Internet advertisement designer
- Online newspaper graphics designer
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
From 2014-2024, graphic designers were predicted to experience a 1% employment growth, while multimedia artists and animators could expect a 6% increase in jobs. In 2015, graphic designers earned an annual median salary of $46,900, while multimedia artists and animators earned a median wage of $63,970, the BLS reported.
Since new technology is always developing, computer graphics artists and related workers need to keep up-to-date with new hardware, software and techniques throughout their careers. Formal education in graphic design is also available at the master's degree level and could be obtained at a number of accredited universities nationwide. Coursework may focus on concept development, artistic critique or character animation.
Students with a high school diploma or GED who are interested in pursuing a career as a graphics designer or multimedia artist should consider applying to a Bachelor of Fine Arts program in computer graphics. These programs' studio courses teach students to use a variety of publishing and animation software.