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The Best 10 Online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design in 2021

March 15, 2021 | Staff Writers

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Graphic Design is an exciting field that spans several industries and careers. Graphic design can be a creative endeavor requiring a keen eye and a knack for technical, detailed work. Graphic designers work in several industries helping with marketing, advertising, museum display, and art direction. A degree in Graphic Design is the perfect way to express yourself creatively while still working in a lucrative and rewarding corporate industry.

What is an Online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design?

An online Bachelor’s in Graphic design is a comprehensive degree program that often focuses on the many aspects of graphic design, including the software and technology necessary to create designs and principles surrounding communications and the full lifecycle of a design from creation to implementation. Many Graphic Design programs will offer students hands-on experience to create a portfolio that can be used for future interviews. These projects may be individual or collaborative, allowing for plenty of shared creativity and ideas.

What Are the Benefits?

In today’s world, graphic designers are in high demand. They possess a skill that can help companies better brand themselves and market to their audience. Graphic designers often have a flair for creativity coupled with critical thinking skills, which allow them to make the most out of their design, reaching the widest audience possible. Graphic designers can work in several different career aspects, and their skills often translate well to other industries.

What is the Outlook and Salary?

Unfortunately, because so many students have enrolled in Graphic Design programs, there is currently a lack of demand for graphic designers. The overall demand and job growth forecast is down 4%. There are several different careers a graphic designer can take, ranging from print advertisement to advertising and marketing. Students who earn a Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design can expect to make about $52,000 per year on average.

We understand that you have a big decision to make when choosing a school to earn your Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design. It can be hard to sort through the many schools, differentiating the programs from one another. To help students make an informed decision about their academic career, we have put together a top school list to earn an online degree in Graphic Design.

The Best 10 Online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design

1. Hodges University – Naples, Florida (16 Points)

The online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design program at Hodges University allows students to pursue a degree focused on graphic design and digital design. This allows students to creatively express themselves and share their artistic ability on a local, regional, or global scale. The program is comprehensive and certified through the American Digital Design Association, making it a trusted program for students to enroll.

Through several varied course offerings, students will have the opportunity to learn about digital animation, graphic design, and web design, which can set students up for rewarding and exciting careers. Students will learn to work with many different software programs including AutoCAD, Adobe Creative Cloud, and AutoDesk to refine their artistic skills. This curriculum gives students the necessary core courses to build a strong graphic design foundation and gives students plenty of electives to choose from, allowing students to shape their own academic path toward their interests and career goals.

  • Tuition: $595 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, High School Transcripts, ACT or SAT Test Scores, Minimum GPA Requirement

2. Midway University – Midway, Kentucky (15 Points)

Located in Midway, Kentucky, Midway University offers an online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design. This degree focuses on how This degree focuses on business applications and how creative graphic design principles can be applied. Students learn to apply graphic design to businesses that need help with marketing or branding. Graphic design at Midway University has a marketing concentration that can be incredibly valuable for students wishing to pursue a corporate degree in marketing. Students can choose to earn their Bachelor’s degree in an accelerated 8- week module or take the courses at a traditional pace on campus.

Students who graduate with a Bachelor’s degree in graphic design often have rewarding careers that allow them to succeed while still finding a creative outlet. Students commonly find careers in graphic design firms, marketing firms, commercial print companies, and advertising agencies.

  • Tuition: $1,035 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, ACT or SAT Test Scores

3. Franklin University – Columbus, Ohio (14 Points)

Franklin University offers a competitive and comprehensive Interactive Media Bachelor’s degree, which is designed to allow students to learn about both the creative and technical aspects of graphic design. This degree applies to several different careers, such as video game design and web design. This course curriculum is unique because it focuses on the entire design cycle, from creation to implementation, giving students a full understanding of the necessary cycle to make dreams a reality.

Franklin University’s program offers project-based credit, which gives students the chance to work in a hands-on field, gaining industry experience. This is also an accelerated program that awards up to 24 hours of technical credit. To earn an online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design, students must complete 120 credits for this program.

  • Tuition: $399 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, Placement Tests, Financial Aid if Necessary

3. Bellevue University – Bellevue, Nebraska (14 Points)

The Graphic Design degree from Bellevue University focuses on the many creative aspects of graphic design. This program will focus on visualizing a concept, using color and shape to convey a concept or message, and creatively displaying your work as a web design or print advertising. This approach gives students a well-rounded understanding of graphic design and how it can apply to businesses.

Upon graduation, students will have a working portfolio to take to potential employers. Additionally, students will learn the necessary technology and software required to work in graphic design. They will fully understand the language used, conceptual process, and critical thinking necessary to create a compelling and memorable graphic design. This is an entirely online course that allows students plenty of freedom and flexibility when scheduling courses.

  • Tuition: $327 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Degree or GED, High School Transcripts, Minimum Grade Requirement

5. Rocky Mountain College – Billings, Montana (13 Points)

Rocky Mountain College offers a creative, comprehensive, and competitive curriculum for students wishing to earn their Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design. This is a well-rounded curriculum that sets students up for success in the corporate world. Students will learn about typography, digital design, presentation, and the ability to create visual storytelling. Students will work through various design software programs, so they have an understanding of the commonly used programs in the corporate world.

With 123 total credits required for graduation, students take a range of courses that cover art history, communication design, liberal arts, foundations, and studio electives. This allows students to custom create their own programs to follow their interests and career goals.

  • Tuition: $1,231 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, ACT or SAT Test Scores, High School Transcripts, Minimum High School GPA of 2.5, Personal Essay, Two Letters of Recommendation

6. Southeastern University – Lakeland, Florida (12 Points)

The fully online Bachelor’s degree in Graphic Design offered by Southeastern University allows students to earn a Bachelor’s degree in a field that is custom created to their interests and goals. Students can choose from a concentration of graphic and web design, digital media, or analytics and communications related to graphic design. While courses certainly include the necessary technical skills to create comprehensive graphic design, this school also focuses on art history in various mediums to help convey the various roles graphic design can play.

The entire program for this degree is 123 credits and can be completed entirely online. This makes the degree a perfect option for students who require a flexible class schedule to accommodate full-time careers.

  • Tuition: $1,109 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Diploma or GED, SAT or ACT Test Scores, High School Transcripts, Christian Character Reference Form, Essay

7. Upper Iowa University – Fayette, Iowa (8 Points)

The Graphic Design degree offered from Upper Iowa University is desirable to prospective students. Upon graduation, students will have a complete portfolio featuring their work completed in Adobe Creative Cloud to show potential employers. Further, students can begin their hands-on design work their first year as a freshman and continue working on projects throughout their academic careers. Many of the faculty and staff have real-world experience, which can help mold and guide students to pursue a successful career following graduation.

This degree is also available as a minor and is often paired with other online degrees such as marketing. The full course catalog gives plenty of variety to students, so it is possible to choose elective courses that best align with students’ interests and career goals.

  • Tuition: $1,320 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, ACT or SAT Test Scores

7. Liberty University – Lynchburg, Virginia (8 Points)

The Graphic Design program offered at Liberty University focuses on students’ ability to communicate effectively with appropriate typography and imagery. This will allow students to convey a message or brand with creative design and technical creativity. The program focuses on graphic design as it pertains to marketing and advertisement. Students will focus on creating web design, videos, and interactive advertisements to better connect with customers.

This is a Christian school that focuses on Christian morals and teachings. The coursework is 100% online and is divided into 8-week courses. Students who already have some education can transfer up to 75% of their credits to Liberty University, allowing for even faster graduation.

  • Tuition: $947 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, SAT or ACT Test Scores, Personal Essay

9. Arizona State University – Tempe, Arizona (6 Points)

Arizona State University offers a completely online Bachelor’s degree for students wishing to pursue a Graphic Design career. This degree has many lower-level classes intended to give students the foundation needed to understand the technical aspects of graphic design. This will teach design principles through lecture and theory. Upper-level courses will focus on hands-on design, working together in collaborative and creative teams.

Students who earn a degree in Graphic Design go on to work in exciting and interesting fields such as publication design, web design, broadcast and TV design, and also advertising and marketing design. This degree is set up for students to continue their studies at the graduate level, leading to careers as an educator or design consultant.

  • Tuition: $1,226 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, Minimum 3.0 GPA, ACT or SAT Test Scores, Minimum General Course Requirements

10. California Baptist University – Riverside, California (4 Points)

The Graphic Design Bachelor’s degree from California Baptist University is a comprehensive and well-rounded degree program designed to teach students a range of theory and practice related to graphic design. Students will have coursework immersed in communication, creativity, time management, typology, and technology. To complete the Graphic Design major, students must complete 48 credits of Graphic Design coursework.

The California Baptist University program is intended to set students up for success in the corporate world. Many students who graduate go on to work in web design, marketing, advertising, or freelance artists.

  • Tuition: $1,453 per credit
  • Application Requirements: Application, Application Fee, High School Transcripts, 3-5 Paragraph Personal Essay

Methodology

We have put together our list of the best online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design to help you better navigate the never-ending flow of options when it comes to school. To order our list, we have implemented a cumulative scoring system based on two scoring metrics. The first metric is the cost of tuition on a per-credit basis. If a school listed their tuition as a yearly amount, the cost was dividing into 2, assuming 2 semesters, and further divided by 12, assuming an average of 12 credits per semester. In all cases, out of state tuition was used. The school with the lowest tuition cost per credit was given the most amount of points and the most favorable ranking.

The second scoring metric we used was the overall enrollment size. We assumed that schools with fewer students could dedicate more resources and time to individual students, creating a better learning environment. Therefore, schools with a small enrollment size were given the most amount of points. The score from the tuition metric and the enrollment metric were totaled together to give one cumulative score. The highest amount of points was awarded the top place on our list of the best online Bachelor’s in Graphic Design.

If your school is featured on our list, we would love to hear from you. We understand that requirements and information about a degree program are constantly changing. If something listed on our website is out of date, just let us know, and we are happy to change the information. We always want to give our students the best, most up-to-date information regarding the various schools and what they offer.

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