Master's degree programs in visual communications allow students to perfect their design skills, cultivate leadership abilities, pursue creative activities and conduct visual and theoretical research. These programs train students to present ideas and information in a visual format and help students develop the skills necessary for careers in management, research, or education. Specific focus areas include creative problem solving, collaboration and advanced level design. Most programs take two years of full-time study to complete.
In order to apply, students must hold a bachelor's degree in a related field and submit a portfolio of previous work, letters of recommendation, personal essays, and a statement of intent. Some programs may require students to have three to five years of professional work experience prior to enrollment.
Master's Programs in Visual Communications
The courses within a master's degree program in visual communications educate students in publication design, photography, interactive and visual media, illustration, and graphic design. Course formats include seminars, studio time and independent study. A master's project and thesis combination is usually required for graduation. Although specific titles vary by program, courses typically cover the areas of:
- Color theory and design methods
- Visual communication problem solving and technology
- Conceptual and graphic design
- Portfolio development
Popular Career Options
Many graduates work in upper-level positions in diverse fields such as communication design, planning, strategy and research for design studios and corporations. Other graduates go on to become visual communications teachers at the secondary or postsecondary level.
Continuing education is required for teachers to maintain licensure. The required number of hours and courses varies by state. Continuing education courses focus on new and updated technologies, and they are typically offered through universities, colleges or formal training companies.
By earning a master's degree in visual communications, students develop their artistic media skills so that they can pursue advanced positions in a wide variety of industries.