What's the Employment Outlook for Graphic Design Jobs?

Graphic designers create layouts and images for advertisements, print magazines and websites. Read on to learn about the employment outlook and available opportunities in this highly competitive field. Schools offering Graphic Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Employment Outlook

Employment opportunities for graphic designers are expected to grow by 1% over the 2014-2024 decade, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The projected increase is slower than average and would create 3,600 new jobs. In 2014, 197,540 of these workers were employed in the field.

The BLS notes that some fields will see better growth for graphic designers than others. For example, there will be a 35% decline in the newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishing industry, but a 21% growth was expected in the computer systems design industry. In addition, the Internet has sparked a demand for designers to create content for electronic publications and portable devices.

Important Facts About Graphic Design Jobs

Professional Certification Certification is optional, but may demonstrate competence to employers
Key Skills Creativity, artistic ability, detail oriented, oral and written communication, analytical thinking, decision making
Work Environment Studios; in-office or at home
Similar Occupations Web developer, art director, drafter, desktop publisher

Employment Opportunities

As a graphic designer, you will find employment opportunities in a number of industries, including advertising, publishing and specialized design services, as well as in the growing field of website design, particularly Internet advertising. You can expect a high level of competition for job openings, as many creative and skilled individuals are attracted to this career field.

Experience in website design and animation can increase your chances of employment in jobs involving various interactive technologies. For example, being able to create work for both print and online media can help improve your prospects. Once you have gained 3-5 years of professional experience, advancement opportunities may include promotion to positions like creative director or chief designer, perhaps in a large design firm. You may also choose to open your own consulting firm or freelance design business

Salary Information

The median income for graphic designers was $45,900 in May 2014, as reported by the BLS. The lowest paid 10% of these designers made $27,100 or less a year, while the highest paid 10% earned $80,570 or more annually. Most of these professionals worked for specialized design services; newspaper, periodical, book and directory publishers; and advertising, public relations and related services.

Educational Requirements

You will need at least a bachelor's degree in graphic design for the majority of positions in the field, though earning an associate degree may allow you to find employment as a graphic designer's assistant or junior graphic designer. A bachelor's degree program not only provides technical training in the graphic arts, it also provides you with a well-rounded liberal arts education. You can find schools that have been accredited in art and design through the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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  • University of Florida

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