Individuals who want a career in visual communications may pursue careers as photojournalists, media editors or film producers. Students who complete an undergraduate degree can move on to graduate or master's degree programs. Students may specialize in interactive media, publication design, photography, or video. They must also submit a professional portfolio. To enroll, students must have a high school diploma or GED.
Bachelor of Science Visual Communications
Throughout the program, students individually and collaboratively complete projects in various media and maintain a portfolio of their work for final submission. They will attend common courses such as:
- Visual communications skills
- Art history
- Web design
- Digital imaging
- 3-D design
Popular Career Options
Graduates have a broad understanding of communication techniques and trends, along with specialized skills in their specialized area of interest. Job titles will vary depending on a student's concentration, but may include:
- Media editor
- Film producer
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Based on information provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), while employment for all photographers is expected to grow 3% between 2014 and 2024, jobs for newspaper publishing photographers was projected to decline 41%. Although the demand for print images in the news industry continues to decrease, the decreased cost of digital cameras has lowered the barrier to entry into this field. (www.bls.gov). Film producers and directors, however, should see 9% employment growth as public demand for movies increases.
In May 2015, the BLS reported that photographers working for newspaper or periodical publishers earned an average annual salary of $45,310. Editors earned an average annual salary of $64,910, while those in radio and television broadcasting earning $57,930 in 2015. Producers in the motion picture and video industries were paid an average yearly salary of $105,550 in 2015, according to the BLS.
Graduates of the bachelor's program can continue to increase their level of expertise within visual communications at the graduate level, most commonly through a Master of Fine Arts program. In the master's program, students can develop their conceptual skills and experiment with media through studio courses, seminars and independent studies.
Students in a Bachelor of Science in Visual Communications program will complete projects, a portfolio, and courses including art history, web design, and digital imaging. This prepares students for a career in photography, film, editing, and producing.