Chicago is a fantastic place to study graphic design. Aside from being the largest city in Illinois, it’s also a hotbed of culture, fine arts, music, and history. What better place to kick off your education and career in the graphic design industry? Taking a graphic design class at a Chicago institution may be your best learning decision to date. Let’s see why.
Why Take a Chicago Graphic Design Class
If you’re in the Chicago area, exploring educational opportunities at an art school might be easier than you think. If you love web design, creating layouts, using Adobe Photoshop, and other aspects of visual communication, you should look further into your class options.
Salary Prospects for Those With a Graphic Design Degree
If you want to examine the benefits of taking a graphic design course in Chicago, look no further than your salary options. If you decide to pursue a career in graphic arts, it could pay off, literally.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the median annual wage for a graphic designer in Illinois is $58,490. Additionally, graphic designers located specifically in the Chicago-Naperville-Elgin metropolitan area have an even higher median salary, at $61,320. This is significantly higher than in many other major cities like Miami, Philadelphia, or Dallas.
The highest-paying jobs in the graphic design field can be found at consulting firms, advertising agencies, and other high-profile businesses.
Most of these generous salaries will be available to you once you have received an associate degree or Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design.
A Wide Selection of Schools and Programs
If you want to learn to create graphic design masterpieces, Chicago has all the opportunities you could dream of.
If you’re the type of learner who prefers the unique feel of a college campus, there are great universities dotting the entire Chicago metropolitan area.
Some that are known for graphic design study include the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Judson University, North Central College, and DePaul University. These schools all offer substantial online undergraduate degrees. They also provide resources like career services and alumni networks.
These are just a few of the great on-campus graphic design programs available in Chicago.
However, if you’re not excited about a four-year education with steep tuition rates, there are other options. You may want to pursue a certificate program from the comfort of your own home. Work on your designs at any hour of the day, while attending a live instructor-led online course, completing asynchronous coursework, or one-off graphic design training.
You can also pursue illustrator training in courses tailored to specific software like Adobe InDesign, Adobe Illustrator, and Adobe Photoshop. Both introductory courses and more advanced training are available.
These are just some of the types of graphic design classes and courses in Chicago that can help you earn a certificate. These programs and classes are helpful if you prefer to focus on one aspect of design at a time.
Chicago graphic design classes offer valuable training for future careers in the industry.
The Best Graphic Design Classes in Chicago
Now that you’re a little more familiar with the financial benefits and diverse learning options in graphic design, let’s crack into our course guide.
Specialized Graphic Design Courses in Chicago
These courses in Chicago include introductory and certificate programs.
General Assembly’s Online Visual Design Course
General Assembly is a great online learning institution that focuses on equipping people with relevant and timely skills. It offers many courses and bootcamps, including a popular visual design course for beginners, in which students will learn how to create digital products using Photoshop and other design software.
School of the Art Institute of Chicago – Certificate Program
A great art school in its own right, SAIC offers a collection of certificate programs for students and professionals.
These certificate programs aim to enrich students’ knowledge of print media and design for various industries. Students will take an introductory course in graphic design, followed by studio courses and electives. The four studio courses consist of 30 hours each. Entering the SAIC certificate program instead of its four-year path can save you a ton on tuition, too.
Bachelor’s Degree Programs
Now, we’ll look at some of the best degree programs in graphic design at Chicago colleges and universities. Let’s find out exactly what you’ll learn at these schools.
Columbia College Chicago
Columbia College Chicago, located on South Michigan Avenue near Grant Park, offers a Graphic Design bachelor of arts and bachelor of fine arts. It has been ranked as the #8 most innovative school in the country.
This school has many resources for undergrads, including an expansive network of successful alumni.
Below are some examples of courses offered at Columbia College Chicago.
- Typography for Graphic Design
- Web Design
- Foundation Skill: Color Theory
- Introduction to Visual Culture
- Drawing I
- Color Management
Academy of Art
The Academy of Art is a well-known and celebrated Chicago art institution. Students enrolled in the bachelor of fine arts program will learn how to create powerful projects for clients and specific demographics.
Students in the bachelor’s degree program will also learn how to harness useful design techniques.
The program also focuses on teaching students how to use helpful design software like Adobe Photoshop and Adobe InDesign.
Undergrads will also get unfettered access to an impressive collection of books, guides, and art prints for reference.
Below are some of the most notable classes at the Academy of Art.
- Typography I
- Web Design I
- Corporate Branding Design
- Project Management
Final Thoughts on Graphic Design Classes in Chicago
All you need to do now is to select which education option works best for you. Are you more inclined to enroll in a prestigious art school? Or are you interested in perfecting your skills in a certificate program? Either way, visual communication is a highly valued skill in the digital age.
So, whichever educational path you choose, enrolling in a graphic design class in Chicago is an excellent investment in your future.