Graphic Design Education and You -- Part II
The Rest of the Story
In part one of Graphic Design Education and You we discussed the importance of receiving the best education possible in order to qualify for jobs in the graphics industry.
In the conclusion of this two part series we will go over the different types of graphic design degrees available, what the minimum education requirements are for graphic design positions, and the job market outlook for graphic designers.
Different Strokes for Different Folks
Entry level graphic design positions usually require a bachelor's degree. Degree programs in graphic design or fine arts can be taken at a variety of venues such as universities, colleges, graphic design schools, design centers, and online colleges.
If you already have a bachelor's degree in another discipline or want to explore the field of graphic design without committing to a four-year program, you can earn a graphic design associate's degree or certificate at 2-year community colleges, 3-year professional schools, and some graphic design colleges.
Graduates who obtain an associate's degree or certificate in graphic design may qualify for positions as assistants to graphic designers. These jobs will be primarily geared towards the technical aspects of prep work for design projects or related tasks.
The Soft Skills
There are basic requirements for any job you apply to. "Hard skills" are the occupational abilities and talents you posses that allow you to do the tasks necessary in your field of expertise.
"Soft skills" are social and personality traits that are important in working with other people and other attributes regarding your overall temperament and character in the workplace.
The desirable soft skills employers look for in graphic designer candidates are traits such as good communication skills, attention to detail, teamwork, creativity, problem solving abilities, and the capacity to work well under pressure.
The Job Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics jobs for graphic designers are expected to grow approximately 7-13% during 2008-2018. There will be heavy competition for available positions. Graphic designers who have experience in Website design and animation will have the best chances to qualify.
The BLS states that the mean annual wage (May 2009) for graphic designers was $47,820.