Digital media professionals direct, plan and design a variety of interactive media, including animations and films. In a bachelor's degree program, students develop the computer graphics and design skills to work in a variety of production and media development positions. A master's degree is needed for a career in academia or as an archivist.
Bachelor of Arts Degree in Digital Media
A bachelor's degree in digital media is the standard for most production and media development jobs. Students gain the necessary skills in computer graphics, media, technology and design for entry-level positions in film production, digital animation, motion graphics or web development. The degree requires an advanced level of Internet and computer proficiency, since many media specialists require above average fluency in Internet and software to design and implement existing new media programs. Typical courses include:
- Digital media and tools
- Narrative game design
- 3D computer graphics
- Graphic design
- Introduction to film
Master of Arts Degree in Digital Media
A master's in digital media provides the training necessary for students interested in academic, administrative and archival positions in art institutions or libraries. Admission to graduate-level digital media degree programs is competitive, and students must possess an undergraduate degree in a related field as well as submit a portfolio of creative work. Programs focus on the development of a final project that students are expected to present at the end of their studies. Depending on individual interests and background, students take seminars, studio and lecture courses that address issues in the field. Courses may include:
- Media theory seminar
- Emerging media
- New media art preservation
- Thesis project
- Graduate seminar in digital media
Popular Career Options
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (www.bls.gov), due to the rise in the demand of motion picture graphics, the best employment prospects for new media and digital media specialists will be in the film industry. Those with a master's degree in new media can also find careers in fields like education, conservation, and web development.
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
Digital media specialists who work as multimedia artists and animators earned a mean annual wage of $70,300 in 2015, reports the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The Bureau stated that jobs for multimedia artists and animators is expected to grow 6 percent from 2014 to 2024.
Professionals in digital media need to constantly improve their knowledge of technology and Internet-related information processing. New media and digital media artists pursue a master's degree to further their aesthetic development in a studio-intensive Master of Fine Arts program. This also allows students to explore more theoretical or academic approaches to problems in digital media.
Bachelor's and master's degree in digital media are available for those interested in learning about computer graphics, media technology, and design. Students receive knowledge of the fundamental skills needed at the bachelor's level, and those who continue on with the master's degree program will work towards completing a final project based on advanced digital media topics.