Graphic Art Certification and Certificate Program Information

A graphic arts certificate provides introductory training in printing, design, photography and computer software programs. Discover common coursework taught in these programs, as well as continuing education opportunities and employment information.

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Essential Information

Students in a graphic arts certificate program learn to combine artistic sensibilities with technical knowledge to produce a portfolio of work. Technical know-how is important in the field of graphic design, and students enrolled in graphic arts certificate programs are introduced to relevant computer programs, such as Dreamweaver, Adobe Illustrator and Adobe Photoshop. Voluntary certification in different Adobe programs is available. Certificate programs typically take one year to complete and applicants will need a high school diploma or GED. Some community colleges and universities may require the ACT or the SAT or some type of placement test scores to be submitted.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Advertising and Commercial Design
  • Commercial Photography
  • Fashion Design
  • General Visual Communications Design
  • Graphic Design
  • Illustration and Drawing
  • Industrial Design
  • Interior Design and Decorating

Certificate in Graphic Arts

The coursework for a graphic arts certificate program introduces students to core concepts in graphic design. Training in graphic arts software programs such as Adobe Photoshop and Adobe In Design is also included. Other common courses include:

  • Design of web pages
  • Typography
  • Digital photography
  • Color theory
  • Features of flash animation
  • Print and design

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the projected employment of graphic designers is expected to increase by about 1% from 2014-2024, with a median annual salary of $46,900 as of May 2015.

Continuing Education Requirements

Students who have completed a graphic arts certificate program can continue their studies and complete an associate's degree program. Students who have completed the certificate program are allowed to enter into the associate's degree program based on certain criteria, such as a strong GPA and a portfolio to show admissions representatives.

A certificate program in graphic design can be completed in just one year, and can help prepare students to be graphic designers. Some students may elect to pursue an associate's degree to improve their job prospects.

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