Graphic Arts Associate's Degree Program

Associate's degree programs in graphic arts teach students the technical and artistic skills needed for careers in fields like web design, publishing, graphic design or advertising. This article will teach you about the courses in a graphics arts associate's degree program, as well as career options for graduates. Schools offering Graphic Design degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Is a Graphic Arts Associate's Degree Program?

A graphic arts associate's degree program is designed to give you a background in designing digital art, web graphics, illustrations and other digital designs. Programs may be concentrated in an area such as advertising production management or graphic arts technology. Degree paths may be designed as a terminal program, which means they would prepare you for a career rather than for transfer to a 4-year institution. In a graphic arts program, you could be introduced to a several applications of digital media, such as desktop publishing, broadcast graphics or web design. Graphic arts is a discipline most often found through on-campus programs at the associate's degree level; for-profit schools might provide online options, but they are few and far between.

Program FormatMost are on campus, few online
Course OfferingsInformation design, 3-D design, color theory, logo design
Skills LearnedDigital media, image alteration, web design, graphic design
Career OptionsWeb design, illustration, tech support

What Courses Could I Take?

In your 2-year pursuit of an associate's in graphic arts, you will encounter core and professional class divisions. The core requirement may include basic that everyone will take, such as English, social sciences and math. The professional component, along with some electives, should make up the rest. Professional studies course may include:

  • Color theory
  • Illustration
  • 3-D design
  • Color scheme management
  • Information design
  • Graphic and layout design
  • PhotoShop
  • Identity design
  • Logo designing

What Skills Could I Learn?

You may learn how to create, manipulate and display digital artwork. This may include altering photographic images, designing graphics and creating digital media. You may also learn layout principles and functions that could be used in the creation of webpages, magazines and newspapers. Programs may necessitate that you develop a portfolio. To possible employers, this will showcase your skill level as well as your practical applications of design principles and theories.

What Could I Do After I Graduate?

You might find an entry-level job in web design, illustration or graphic arts technical support. But, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, if you stop your education at just the associate's degree level, you may be limited to assisting senior graphic designers or artists. If you want to further develop your skills and career-specific eligibility, you may want to consider transferring to a 4-year university where you can complete a bachelor's degree in graphic design.

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:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Ferris State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Michigan: Big Rapids
  • Dunwoody College of Technology

    Campus Locations:

    • Minnesota: Minneapolis
  • Oklahoma State University

    Campus Locations:

    • Oklahoma: Okmulgee
  • Milwaukee Area Technical College

    Campus Locations:

    • Wisconsin: Milwaukee
  • Waukesha County Technical College

    Campus Locations:

    • Wisconsin: Pewaukee
  • Waubonsee Community College

    Campus Locations:

    • Illinois: Sugar Grove
  • Walla Walla University

    Campus Locations:

    • Washington: College Place
  • Virginia Intermont College

    Campus Locations:

    • Virginia: Bristol
  • Tyler Junior College

    Campus Locations:

    • Texas: Tyler
  • Tribeca Flashpoint Media Arts Academy

    Campus Locations:

    • Illinois: Chicago