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Digital Media Schools in Boston, MA with Degree Descriptions

Those hoping to study digital media in the Boston, MA, area are in luck: there are 14 schools that offer degree programs in the field. To find out which one is right for you, read about the admission and program requirements for three colleges located within five miles of the city center.

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Digital Media Degrees in Boston

Students interested in digital media programs in the greater Boston area can enroll in programs that cover various skills, from graphic arts to animation to digital communication. Depending on the focus of a particular program, it can prepare learners for careers in advertising, corporate communications, interactive media and/or digital production. This article shines a spotlight on the programs and coursework at three institutions. Also included is a table of school stats, including tuition and fees, as well as information on other area colleges.

  • Bunker Hill Community College, a 2-year institution located less than two miles from downtown Boston, has an associate's degree program in visual and media arts with tracks in graphic arts, interactive design and media communication.
  • The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), a 4-year school, offers a bachelor's program in writing with a digital media concentration. Located about two miles from downtown, it's situated just over the river from Boston in Cambridge, MA.
  • The third option is Northeastern University, which is about three miles from central Boston. The school offers a professional master's degree program and a post-baccalaureate certificate program in digital media.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Multimedia and Digital Communication

Comparison of Schools

The table below displays additional information on the profiled schools, including details on enrollment figures, acceptance rates, graduation rates and more. Use it to help you make a more informed decision about your education.

Bunker Hill Community College Massachusetts Institute of Technology Northeastern University
School Type 2-year, public 4-year, private not-for-profit 4-year, private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2014) 14,253* 11,319* 19,798*
Campus Setting Large city Midsized city Large city
Tuition & Fees (2015-2016) $3,576 in-state; $8,520 out-of-state (undergraduate)* $46,704 (undergraduate)* $21,801 (graduate)*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Any Form of Aid (2013-2014) 71%* 89%* N/A
Acceptance Rate (2014) N/A - open admissions* 8%* N/A
Retention Rate (2014) 67% (full-time students)* 99% (full-time students)* N/A
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (2014) 11%* 91%* N/A

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

Bunker Hill Community College

Bunker Hill Community College is situated in historic Charlestown near downtown Boston. The school's Visual and Media Arts Department has an associate's program through which students can select from tracks in graphic design, interactive design and media communication.

Associate in Science in Visual and Media Arts

Students in this associate's program can select an emphasis in graphic design, interactive design or media communication, based on career goals. The graphic design track is especially for those interested in learning digital art design and production skills, while the interactive design track prepares students for working in online and interactive design environments. Both concentrations include 64-credits of coursework, which may include classes in 2-D and 3-D design, drawing, Photoshop, InDesign and Illustrator. The 61-credit track in media communication trains students in digital media production and management. It incorporates classes in video production, audio technology, video post-production, DVD authoring and project planning, among other areas. All three options require an internship.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is located in Cambridge, about two miles from Boston. The school offers a bachelor's program with a digital media major through its Comparative Media Studies/Writing Department.

Bachelor of Science in Writing

The Bachelor of Science in Writing program allows students to select a major in digital media. The core program focuses on writing and trains students for careers developing computer games, websites and other forms of interactive media. Students who select the digital media major take courses in the digital world, Web-based media and non-linear narrative, to name a few. To graduate, students must earn 180 credits and complete science and laboratory requirements.

Northeastern University

Northeastern University is a private non-profit institution in Boston. The professional studies division offers a master's program with six concentration options, as well as a digital media certificate program with five possible specializations.

Master of Professional Studies in Digital Media

This 49-50-quarter-credit master's program is intended for individuals who already possess professional experience in an area such as marketing, gaming, animation, design, programming and/or video production. Students are trained to use digital information, narrative and moving images to enhance communication methods. Available concentration areas include digital media management, interactive design, 3-D animation, digital photography, game design and digital video. Some of the required core courses are visual communication, programming, digital storytelling, creativity through information technology and sound design. Students also complete a thesis.

Graduate Certificate in Digital Media

Students with a bachelor's degree might consider a post-baccalaureate certificate program in digital media. Certificates range from 18-22 credits in length, and specialization areas include 3-D animation, game design, digital video, interactive design and digital photography. The animation program focuses on 3-D modeling and compositing, while the game design program emphasizes programming and digital storytelling. The digital video program covers lighting, editing and content delivery, and the program in interactive design trains students in interfacing and prototyping for the Web and other screen-based media. Students in the digital photography program learn to manage, edit and manipulate still images. If certificate students decide they want to pursue the master's degree, the courses will translate to the digital media program.

Other Schools

In addition to the three profiled schools, there are additional educational institutions offering digital media programs in the Boston area. Emerson College is a 4-year, private non-profit college located in Boston that has a non-credit certificate program in digital media production. Through five consecutive courses, students can learn about the creation and production of digital art, animation and Web-based portfolio development, among other areas.

At Merrimack College in North Andover, which is about 22 miles from Boston, students can pursue a bachelor's program with a major in digital design. The program covers using traditional art techniques, such as drawing, painting and photography to design websites, create 3-D animations and contribute to print publications. Situated roughly 15 miles away from Boston in Danvers, MA, North Shore Community College has an Associate of Science program in graphic design and integrated media, offered through its Digital Graphic Design Department. The program emphasizes the use of graphic design in marketing and promotional communications.

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