Online Media Production Degree Program Information

Dec 03, 2019

Get info about online programs in media production. Read about program requirements, course topics and degree levels, and check out career and continuing education options.

Essential Information

Bachelor's and master's degree programs in media production can be completed online. Majors in this field of study include digital design, multimedia design and media studies. Online bachelor's degree programs take about four years to complete and are offered in a fully online format. Online master's degree programs provide students with more in-depth knowledge into the field and require a bachelor's degree for admission.

Master's degree programs may be offered in both online and hybrid formats and include a thesis requirement. Within both the master's and bachelor's degree programs, students can choose to concentrate their studies in a specialty area, like animation or film. Depending on the school, specialty software and additional equipment, like a scanner, printer and digital camera may be required for both undergraduate and graduate programs.

Bachelor's Degree in Media Production

Students earning a degree in media production learn to design and create everything from digital illustrations to Web-based video. The courses cover topics in multimedia production, Web design and graphic communications. Throughout the course of study, students create portfolio-quality projects they can use to show potential employers. The degree may also go by other titles such as digital design or multimedia design.

Information and Requirements

A media production degree program can be done entirely online, and colleges often allow students to select a concentration within the program, such as animation, game design or Web development. While students are advised to fully investigate the equipment and software requirements prior to enrollment, they should have at least a computer with ample hard drive space and memory. Students also must have a headset and speakers for their computer, high-speed Internet connection, a flatbed scanner, a printer and a digital camera. Additional software may be required for certain courses and may be included in the cost of tuition.

List of Common Media Production Courses

The bachelor's degree program blends liberal arts education with an understanding of developing and creating multimedia. Major courses are heavy on design and original project work uses industry software.

Computer Illustration

The course is a combination of art, technology and communication through illustration. Students gain knowledge about the aesthetics of design and the creative process. They also learn to use multiple software programs to create their work.

Multimedia Design

Design for multimedia is an advanced course that integrates a variety media, such as animation, graphics and video into one project. Students use professional software to produce their work while refining their technical and creative skills.

Storyboard Development

In this course, students learn to plan their projects from start to finish. They are taught various film techniques including transitions and sequencing in video and multimedia.

Master's Degree in Media Studies

Media studies intersects media theory and technical skills to create digital content. Most graduate programs allow students to tailor their degree with specializations in animation or media research. Those interested in media studies may also find the degree under titles such as digital media within a communications program. Applicants must hold a bachelor's degree to begin their graduate work.

Information and Requirements

Students can expect to devote approximately one academic year to complete a master's degree in media studies. Schools that offer the degree through distance education tend to give students the freedom to cover the lecture materials at their own pace, but require completion of assignments at a given time. The degree can be done entirely remotely. Lectures are completed online during a scheduled class time or through downloaded video or audio recordings.

Students should have the proper computer equipment and a high-speed Internet connection to perform their work. It's also advisable for students to have a printer, scanner and digital camera. Depending on the degree program, certain software may need to be purchased to perform the coursework. Applicants must check the program specifications before enrolling.

List of Common Topics

At the graduate level, students take a combination of core courses and electives that allow them to specialize in this field. The courses build a foundation of knowledge that helps the students complete either a thesis or final project.

Media Studies

This course focuses on the origins of modern media and lays the foundation for student projects and research. Students also explore the impact of media on society.

Multimedia Concepts

Intermediate design for the Web is explored through this course. Students learn to master digital design using advanced software and applications that allow them to complete a functional, multi-page website or multimedia presentation.

Design Theory

Students explore the design process from concept to finished product. They gain an understanding of the creative and aesthetic components of their work. They also develop an appreciation for branding, audience impact and design as a form of communication.

Career Information

As of May 2018, multimedia artists and animators averaged an annual salary of $78,230, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics ( Workers find employment in a wide range of industries from advertising and communications to film and television.

Media production work can be available with advertising agencies, magazine publications and production houses. Because graduates with a master's degree have advanced knowledge and skills, they can often find supervisory or management positions.

Both bachelor's and master's programs in media production are available online and allow students to select a specialization, like animation or media research. Students will develop a portfolio of their projects and designs through these online programs, and they may need to acquire a scanner, digital camera and/or certain software to participate.

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