A degree in the field of educational media design can prepare graduates to develop materials for educators. Some professionals in this field include illustrators, educational computer game designers, and instructional coordinators. It may be possible to begin a career as an illustrator with a high school diploma, but a bachelor's degree is required to be a computer game designer, and instructional coordinators must have a master's degree.
Educational media design degree programs prepare graduates to design, create and organize the materials used by educators. Typically offered at the master's level, educational media design programs are related to similarly-named programs, such as educational communication and technology. Educational media design students learn how to use video, graphics, interactive media and text to create instructional materials for use in the classroom and other environments. Required classes might include data analysis, human-computer interaction, interactive media, curriculum construction and computer programming.
|Career||Illustrator||Educational Computer Game Designer||Instructional Coordinator|
|Required Education||High school diploma or equivalent||Bachelor's degree||Master's degree|
|Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)*||3% fine artists||6% for all multimedia artists & animators||7%|
|Median Salary (2015)*||$46,460 for all fine artists||$63,970 for all multimedia artists & animators||$62,270|
Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
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- General Instructional Media Design
Educational media design graduates design, create and organize teaching and training materials for use in the classroom or elsewhere. With a degree in educational media design, you might work as an illustrator, educational game designer or instructional coordinator, among other possibilities.
Illustrators use a variety of visual media, including painting, pencil drawings and computer drawing programs, to create images and graphics for books, websites and more. Illustrators who work for educational design companies or textbook publishers add illustrations to instructional tests, create drawings for educational video games, generate cover art and paint or draw other images for a variety of instructional media.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted a 3% increase in jobs for all fine artists, including illustrators, from 2014 to 2024 (www.bls.gov). According to the BLS, the median salary for fine artists, including illustrators, was $46,460 as of May 2015.
Educational Computer Game Designer
Educational game designers work with a team of illustrators, programmers and junior designers to create games for use by students. Designers are responsible for generating ideas and creating the overall story and dynamics of a game, after which they coordinate the efforts of other workers to bring the vision to life. This is a highly skilled position that generally requires significant prior experience as a programmer, illustrator or related worker.
The BLS predicted 6% job growth for multimedia artists and animators, a group which includes game designers, from 2014 to 2024. Compensation for this type of work varies significantly, depending on the role played in the design process. Multimedia artists had a median salary of $63,970 as of May 2015.
Instructional coordinators design curricula for public and private schools, selecting texts and other media to be used by teachers. They collect and tabulate feedback and test data to determine the strengths and weaknesses of curricula and materials, using this information to alter or adjust curriculum design. Instructional coordinators generally also have experience as educators. In addition to designing curricula, instructional coordinators train teachers, oversee the introduction of new educational technologies and sometimes design course materials themselves.
The BLS reported that instructional coordinators are expected to see job growth of 7% from 2014 to 2024. These professionals earned a median income of $62,270 per year as of May 2015.
As technology evolves, educational materials have expanded to include videos and computer games and other forms of media. Educational media design is a field that involves the creation of materials that can be used in education; professionals in this field include instructional coordinators, educational computer game designers, and illustrators. While job growth is expected to be slow for illustrators from 2014 to 2024, the job growth for educational computer game designers and instructional coordinators will be as fast as average through 2024.