Best Online Schools for Bachelor in Graphic Design Degree Programs for 2018

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Graphic Design is a fast emerging field, in which there is a huge range of systems, styles, and abilities. These professionals are able to work in various environments such as design, marketing, communications, and more, as they have a broad understanding of communicating a message using creativity and art. Students in any one of these twenty outstanding online schools will receive challenging and rewarding coursework that will prepare them to step into the world of graphic design.

Methodology:

  • All information is cited from the unbiased, independent NCES.gov’s College Navigator
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PENN STATE WORLD CAMPUS

Program Standouts:
Penn State World Campus has been recognized repeatedly as one of the strongest purveyors of online programs in America for many years. In this Bachelor of Design in Digital Multimedia Design students learn to adapt the design process to solve contemporary, real-world design issues.

Campus Location: University Park, PA

Accreditation: Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 58.1%

Retention Rate: 53%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended. TOEFL scores are required from students who use English as a second language.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Basic Photography for Communications
  • Digital Multimedia Design Foundations
  • Design Thinking and Creativity

Degree Outcomes:
This degree program prepares graduates for a variety of creative industries including technology, media, product design, and marketing. Alumni have learned to discover, define, develop and deliver compelling design using information technology and communication.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE PENN STATE WORLD CAMPUS ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Full Sail University is a very popular and thesuccessful online school that offers a Bachelor in Graphic Design that is considered the best of its kind according to numerous journalistic resources. The objective of the degree is to provide a comprehensive understanding of the field of design—from print publishing to interface design and more.

Campus Location: Winter Park, FL

Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges; Commission for Independent Education

Retention Rate: 69%

Acceptance Rate: 100%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and a copy of a government-issued photo ID. TOEFL scores from students who use English as a second language. Applicants must also complete an admission interview and a technology orientation and assessment.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Design and Art Theory
  • Psychology of Play
  • Project and Portfolio I and II

Degree Outcomes:
Throughout their coursework, students hone real-world skills such as media integration, advertising, and branding. Graduates can apply artistic talents to modern design tools, technology, and production processes. Integrated career development modules strengthen students’ professional skills to prepare them for a competitive job market.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE FULL SAIL UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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SOUTHERN NEW HAMPSHIRE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Southern New Hampshire University is another of the country’s most outstanding online schools that has been widely recognized for its Bachelor in Graphic Design. The curriculum offers two exciting and unique concentrations that allow students to focus their coursework in an area of their choosing, while still receiving a strong foundational education in graphic design.

Campus Location: Hooksett, NH

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges; Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

Retention Rate: 68%

Acceptance Rate: 84.2%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application and official high school or GED transcripts. Admissions representatives will contact individual applicants for further information.

Program Options:

  • General Design Track
  • Media Arts Track

Degree Outcomes:
This coursework is well-suited to many different individuals, despite their career goals. Whether students plan on entering into a fast paced agency, a design firm, or independent graphic design, this curriculum will prepare them for the rigors of the field.

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LIBERTY UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Yet another of America’s most excellent and prestigious online schools, Liberty University is an evangelical Christian university that offers an online Bachelor in Graphic Design in which courses are constructed to train students in 2D and 3D design publication design, digital photography, and many more exciting areas of the discipline.

Campus Location: Lynchburg, VA

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools; Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs

Retention Rate: 69%

Acceptance Rate: 20.2%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any accredited undergraduate institutions attended, and a completed High School Self-Certification form.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • History of Art
  • Graphic Design
  • Digital Imaging

Degree Outcomes:
Courses equip students with the tools and skills to enter the professional workforce in a craft that requires passion and talent. Some potential career paths with a graphic design degree from Liberty University include: art director, copy editing, corporate team building, editing publications, web development, and multimedia/animation.

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INDEPENDENCE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
This online school offers a Bachelor in Graphic Arts program that teaches students the skills needed to get their messages across in print and electronic media. The program works through the use of type, illustration, photography, animation, and various other techniques to help students master graphic design concepts.

Campus Location: Salt Lake City, UT

Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges

Acceptance Rate: 100%

Retention Rate: 84%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and financial aid documentation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Advanced Package Design
  • Internet Commerce
  • Animation Scripting

Degree Outcomes:
This degree program prepares graduates for employment positions such as freelance designer and entry-level employment in advertising agencies, in-house production departments, and more! Graduates have a command over numerous techniques and skills related to the field of graphic design.

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ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Arizona State University is one of the finest online schools in America that supplies distance education students with an tremendous number of degree programs, including this Bachelor in Graphic Information Technology. The coursework provides students with a creative, technological, and managerial understanding of graphic information and content creation.

Campus Location: Tempe, AZ

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 83%

Retention Rate: 81%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts representing an exemplary GPA/score, SAT and/or ACT scores, and financial aid documentation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Digital Illustration in Publishing
  • Understanding the Enterprise
  • Humanities, Arts and Design, and Global Awareness

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from ASU’s online graphic design program have gone on to become animators, art directors, film editors, graphic artists, graphic designers, and bring press technicians, some of whom make more than $80,000 per year! Alumni have a command over crucial techniques in web development and interactive technologies, computer illustration, digital publishing, and much more!

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THE ART INSTITUTE OF PITTSBURGH

Program Standouts:
This online Bachelor in Graphic & Web Design from The Art Institute of Pittsburgh will guide students through the fundamentals of visual communications in both disciplines. The curriculum offers two areas of concentration that can also be focused in print or interactive media. Coursework is lead by experienced faculty members who bring worlds of knowledge to the online classroom.

Campus Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Acceptance Rate: 39%

Retention Rate: unavailable

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and a personal essay. Applicants must also complete an interview with an admissions professional.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Graphic Design
  • Web Design

Degree Outcomes:
Students are provided with one-on-one mentoring and real-world experiences that prepare them for a challenging job market. Graduates exit the program as creative warriors, and their stories of success range all varieties of titles and environments in the field of graphic design.

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BELLEVUE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Bellevue University is a popular online school that has received glowing recognition for their distance education degrees. The goal of the Bachelor in Graphic Design is to communicate a specific message to a specific audience. Coursework involves focus and hands-on practice in print design and web design alike.

Campus Location: Bellevue, NE

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools; International Assembly for Collegiate Business Education

Acceptance Rate: unavailable

Retention Rate: 63%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, and official high school or GED transcripts.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Fundamentals of Print Design
  • Interactivity Basics
  • History of Contemporary Graphic Design

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from this bachelor’s degree program have the potential to work in numerous different industries, such as marketing, communications, advertising, or in product packaging design. Students exiting this curriculum will have the skill to utilize the critical thinking process and effectively develop prominent portfolios.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BELLEVUE UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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BERKELEY COLLEGE

Program Standouts:
Berkeley College is a popular, yet challenging, online school that has been recognized several times for its Bachelor in Graphic Design degree program. The coursework emphasizes numerous areas of the discipline, and exposes students to the problem-solving process using a broad range of traditional, digital, and emerging media.

Campus Location: New York, NY

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Acceptance Rate: 91.1%

Retention Rate: 58%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, and official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Digital Photography and Imaging
  • User Interface and Interactive Design
  • Motion Graphics and Animation

Degree Outcomes:
The strong foundation in graphic design practice, as well as students’ skills developed through hands-on learning projects are not looked over by potential employers. Students are able to network with peers, colleagues, mentors, and faculty members to establish a strong base upon which to rely throughout their professional careers.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BERKELEY COLLEGE ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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SAVANNAH COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN

Program Standouts:
This prestigious college is extremely well-known for it’s superb degrees in the field of art and design, and offers two distinctive opportunities for online bachelor’s degree in graphic design—the B.A. in Visual Communication with a Concentration in Graphic Design, and a B.F.A. in Graphic Design. Each degree includes various differing foundational coursework, but are equally as impressive

Campus Location: Savannah, GA

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 69%

Retention Rate: 85%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended. Applicants must also contact an admissions representative and may be required to submit additional documentation.

Program Options:

  • Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communication—Graphic Design
  • Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design

Degree Outcomes:
Earning a degree from SCAD gives graduates a fantastic reputation as well as a generous array of skills and resources to apply to their future careers as artists and designers. Alumni have gone on to become graphic designers, brand designers, mobile app designers, exhibit and environmental specialists, and more, at corporations such as Disney and Google!

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE SAVANNAH COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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ROCKY MOUNTAIN COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN

Program Standouts:
This online school offers a well-received online BFA in Graphic Design that utilizes a multi-faceted approach and comes from a wide array of sources. Students in the program explore the humanities, graphic design techniques, design methodologies, and research facets of the discipline, giving them a comprehensive understanding.

Campus Location: Lakewood, CO

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 100%

Retention Rate: 72%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and financial aid documentation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Design: Elements and Principles
  • Design Lab
  • Introduction to Animated Storytelling

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design online bachelor program have gone on to become creative directors, digital project managers, web designers, production art managers, and communications managers. With a graphic design degree from RMCAD, individuals are equipped to launch a successful career in a variety of design fields.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ROCKY MOUNTAIN COLLEGE OF ART AND DESIGN ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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CALIFORNIA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
California Baptist University is a well-respected online school that offers numerous excellent online programs, including this Bachelor in Graphic Design and Digital Media. This degree is ideal for those who desire a career in graphic design or learn how to integrate graphic design and visual marketing to improve their skills-set.

Campus Location: Riverside, CA

Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges

Retention Rate: 83%

Acceptance Rate: 79.7%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school transcripts representing a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher, SAT and/or ACT scores, and a personal essay.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Fundamental Design
  • History of Graphic Design
  • Intermediate Image

Degree Outcomes:
Upon completion of this challenging and rewarding coursework, individuals are positioned to advance in their existing careers, transition to new ones, and reach professional goals of great heights. The curriculum is focused specifically around design and web design, giving alumni particularly strong skills in these areas.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE CALIFORNIA BAPTIST UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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HODGES UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
This online school offers a Bachelor in Digital Design and Graphics that prepares students for the emerging field of digital design including print, packaging, identity, environmental, interactive, and 3-D design. Coursework is focused heavily on the principles and practical applications of modern day.

Campus Location: Naples, FL

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 94%

Retention Rate: 52%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, financial aid documentation, an admissions essay, and a copy of a valid form of ID. Applicants must also complete an interview with an admissions representative.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Project Management
  • Multimedia Portfolio
  • 3D Modeling and Animation

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from Hodges’ design program have gone on to work in the advertising and entertainment industries, as well as in areas such as corporate in-house design, computer aided drafting, real estate, packaging design, public relations, and more! Alumni are a part of a large network of colleagues, peers, and faculty members that drastically enhances their hire-ability.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE HODGES UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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ACADEMY OF ART UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
According to their impressive website, the Academy of Art University’s online Bachelor in Graphic Design “embraces the entire range of visual communication.” The program provides a robust curriculum of conceptual problem solving, innovation, critical thinking, and formal design.

Campus Location: San Fransisco, CA

Accreditation: Western Association of Schools and Colleges; National Association of Schools of Art and Design

Acceptance Rate: 100%

Retention Rate: 76%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, and official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended. An art portfolio is not required, but highly recommended.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Design Technology: Digital Publishing Tools
  • Strategies for Branding
  • Typography I-IV

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates of this fine program have a strong command over typography, print and editorial design, branding and identity, information design, and packaging. In this way they are highly valued by potential employers, and have the skills and understanding to gain employment in many different areas of graphic design.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE ACADEMY OF ART UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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CALIFORNIA COLLEGE SAN DIEGO

Program Standouts:
This online school offers a Bachelor in Graphic Arts that is designed to add to working knowledge of design with training in techniques and the psychology of visual communication. The curriculum also offers concentration in Information Design that emphasizes the communication of information.

Campus Location: San Diego, CA

Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges

Acceptance Rate: 34.4%

Retention Rate: 76%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and financial aid documentation. Applicants must also contact an admissions consultant.

Program Options:

  • Graphic Design
  • Information Design

Degree Outcomes:
The objectives of this online program is to help students gain skills according to the needs of current employers. Graduates have an in-depth understanding of tools and techniques that professional designers use on the job. The curriculum prepares individuals for entry-to-mid-level positions.

LEARN MORE ABOUT CALIFORNIA UNIVERSITY SAN DIEGO ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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MIDWAY UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Midway University offers an online Bachelor in Marketing Communication – Graphic Design through which students learn design for multiple uses and across various platforms. Students can also modify their coursework with an addition specialization to influence their understanding of either area.

Campus Location: Midway, KY

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 58.2%

Retention Rate: 78%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended, SAT and/or ACT scores, and financial aid documentation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Digital Storytelling
  • Digital Animation
  • Writing for Marketing Communications

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from this program have gone on to work in corporate communication integrate marketing management, advertising, brand management, public relations, and creative design management. Their understanding of both marketing and graphic design gives them a unique perspective into the field, which massively benefits their future positions of employment.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE MIDWAY UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR DEGREE PROGRAM

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SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
At Southeastern University, online Design and Communication undergrads receive the knowledge needed to creatively communicate, whether through graphic design, writing, or measuring success with analytics. The curriculum focuses on graphic and web design, digital media, analytics, and communications.

Campus Location: Lakeland, FL

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools

Acceptance Rate: 43.9%

Retention Rate: 67%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any colleges or universities attended, a biographical essay, a personal reference form, and SAT and/or ACT scores.

Program Options:

  • International Photojournalism
  • Magazine Design and Production
  • Digital Marketing and Analytics

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from Southeastern demonstrate high-levels of ability in research and writing, and have an in-depth understanding of the foundational concepts of the field of communication. Individuals entering the workforce exhibit proficiency in the knowledge and application of digital design software of all kinds.

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LESLEY UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Students in the online Bachelor in Design for User Experience from Lesley University engage in hands-on projects and solve real problems for real people and make design that inspire and influence the world! The program has a strong foundation in graphic design principles and the human experience at the center of the design process.

Campus Location: Cambridge, MA

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges

Acceptance Rate: 71.5%

Retention Rate: 78%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any colleges or universities attended, SAT and/or ACT scores, a personal essay, a digital portfolio, and letters of recommendation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Design Thinking and Research
  • Information Architecture
  • Web Development

Degree Outcomes:
Individuals exiting this bachelor’s degree have gone on to become art directors, environment designers, graphic designers, technical artists, software developers, and much more! With the hands-on knowledge and experience gained in this program, graduates have a huge command over the future careers in a competitive field.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE LESLEY UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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UPPER IOWA UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:
Upper Iowa Universe has been ranked one of the strongest purveyors of distance education by reputable resources such as the U.S. News and World Report. The Graphic Design Major is a portfolio-driven curricula, during which students formulate unique responses to design problems and create original work in every course!

Campus Location: Fayette, IA

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools; Society for Human Resource management

Retention Rate: 67%

Acceptance Rate: 69.9%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, official high school or GED transcripts as well as those from any undergraduate institutions attended, and SAT or ACT scores.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Digital Photography
  • Publication Design
  • Digital Animation

Degree Outcomes:
Graduates from this program have gone on to become art directors, creative directors, film and video editors, graphic designers, marketing managers, multimedia artists/animators and more. Students establish a strong network of peers, colleagues, instructors, and professionals during this degree, which drastically improves their positions as graphic designers.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UPPER IOWA UNIVERSITY ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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STEVENS-HENAGER COLLEGE

Program Standouts:
This online school offers a Bachelor in Graphic Arts that prepares students to plan, analyze, and create visual solutions for a diverse selection of clients’ communication needs. Students learn to get messages across in print, electronic, and film media using a variety of methods.

Campus Location: West Haven, UT

Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges

Acceptance Rate: 100%

Retention Rate: 81%

Admission Requirements:
Applicants must submit a completed online application, the nonrefundable application fee, official high school or GED transcripts, and financial aid documentation.

Sampling of Coursework:

  • Information Design
  • Internet Commerce
  • Package Design

Degree Outcomes:
Through a combination of theoretical study and a mastery of in-studio visual communication methods, students gain an incredibly strong grasp on using color, type, illustration, photography, animation, and various print and layout techniques that are sure to get them the careers and work environments for which they long.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE STEVENS-HENAGER COLLEGE ONLINE BACHELOR’S DEGREE PROGRAM

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