Once you have decided that you would like to become a graphic designer, you need to get a college education. Without a Bachelor's Degree in graphic design, you may find it difficult to start a graphic design career. Finding the graphic design school that is right for you can be difficult, because there are a lot of graphic design schools to choose from.
Some graphic design schools offer certificate programs rather than degree programs. These graphic design schools can be great if you need a quick education. However, many graphic design firms look for graphic design resumes that list education from prominent graphic design schools, colleges, or universities. Therefore, these graphic design schools are not likely to be your best option.
Most colleges and universities now offer graphic design schools or graphic design programs. Community colleges will be less likely to be considered as graphic design schools. Rather than picking a college or university by location or cost, you should research graphic design schools in your area by requesting graphic design degree program information and course catalogs. These materials can then be compared so that you can choose the graphic design schools most likely to help you succeed as a graphic designer.
You can also research graphic design schools in your area through professional associations, your local chamber of commerce, and the better business bureau. These resources can help you gain a better understanding of the differences between the different graphic design schools. There are also a lot of websites available online that offer free peer and alumni reviews of graphic design schools, giving you an inside look at what the various graphic design schools in your area have to offer.
Another option for those wishing to enter a career as a graphic designer is online colleges, universities, and graphic design schools. American InterContinental University Online (AIU) and Kaplan University are two of the most prominent and widely known online graphic design schools. Online graphic design schools have the advantage of flexibility in scheduling which can be great for parents or working adults. However, it is important to understand that degrees earned from online graphic design schools are often viewed as being lower quality degrees than those earned from brick and mortar graphic design schools.
Additionally, online graphic design schools are not for everyone. If you learn better by seeing, writing, reading, and doing, then online graphic design schools may be a good choice for you. However, if you are learn better by listening, hands on instruction, and over the shoulder instruction, you are better off attending brick and mortar graphic design schools. Most often, brick and mortar graphic design schools are best. But in situations where going back to school is a difficult decision, and time and scheduling are an issue, the flexibility available with online graphic design schools can be quite beneficial, and is often the only reason some people are able to go back to school at all.
Overall, the decision of graphic design schools is up to you. The best advice is to do your homework, research all options, and work with your high school guidance counselors, instructors, and your parents to help you choose the graphic design schools that will be the best fit for you and your future career as a graphic designer.
Honestly though, without a graphic design degree, it seems that as long as you have a great portfolio, resume, and references, then you'll be able to shine somewhere!