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What Degree Do I Need To Be A Graphic Designer?

Author : Aparna

Updated On : May 2, 2023


Summary: What academic qualification is required to become a graphic designer? The article answers - What degree do I need to be a Graphic Designer?

Have you ever seen a website or commercial that caught your attention? If so, you have seen graphic design in action! Graphic design produces visual material in print, digital, and multimedia formats that effectively convey information.

Developing an aesthetically beautiful and comprehensible design entails mixing text, graphics, colours, and other components.

Because it is so fundamental to communication, branding, and marketing, graphic design is a significant discipline.

It assists companies and organizations in spreading their message and creating a distinctive brand identity. It would be challenging to distinguish one brand from another and convey the desired message to the audience without graphic design.

Let's explore - What Degree Do I Need To Be A Graphic Designer?

What Degree Do I Need To Be A Graphic Designer?

Let's now discuss education. Why does graphic design education matter in India?

Here are some of the causes:

  • To get familiar with the fundamentals of graphic design.
  • To see design software firsthand.
  • To create a powerful portfolio.
  • To keep abreast of the most recent design trends and technologies.

Do you intend to work in graphic design? Have you thought about the many educational options accessible in India?

Check: How to Become a Graphic Designer after 12th?

What is Graphic Design and its Types?

The practice and art of visual communication is known as graphic design. Typography, pictures, colour, and other design components visually represent a concept, statement, or item.

Graphic design comes in various forms, each with a particular emphasis and goal. Some of the most typical varieties are listed below:

  • Branding design: Designing a brand's visual identity, including its logo, colours, and typography, is known as branding. Making the brand recognizable and memorable is the aim.
  • Marketing design: Creating images for advertisements, brochures, and other marketing materials falls under this category. The objective is to outline the benefits of a good or service to potential customers.
  • Web design: It is the process of developing a website's overall design, navigation, and graphics. The objective is to provide visitors with a straightforward and aesthetically attractive experience.
  • User interface (UI) design: The development of digital user interfaces for websites, programs, and mobile applications is the main focus of this. The goal is to offer a user interface that is both visually appealing and straightforward.
  • Print design: This entails producing visual content for printed materials like books, posters, and magazines. The objective is to convey a message via printed materials effectively.
  • Motion graphics design: This is the process of developing animated graphics and images for video, cinema, and other digital media. The objective is to use movement and animation to convey a message.

Fun fact: Did you know that the term "graphic design" was first coined by William Addison Dwiggins in 1922? He was an American type designer and book designer credited with coining the term to describe the process of designing for print media.

Which kind of graphic design most appeals to you, then? Are building user interfaces or developing brand identities something you're interested in? Do you like to go further into the field of motion graphics? There are many options!

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NID Online Coaching

Educational Requirements for Graphic Designers in India

There are various educational routes you may pursue if graphic design is something you're interested in studying in India.

In India, the following are the most typical educational routes taken by aspirant graphic designers:

Bachelor's degree programs in Graphic Design: These three- to four-year degree programs provide a thorough education in graphic design. Usually, they discuss design history, software expertise, and design concepts. The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design and the Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) in Graphic Design are two common bachelor's degree programs in India.

Diploma and certificate courses in Graphic Design: These are shorter, more concentrated programs that teach students in certain field facets, such as software proficiency or design concepts. They are often less expensive than bachelor's degree programs and may be finished in a few months to a year. The Advanced Diploma in Graphic Design and the Certificate Course in Graphic Design are two common diploma and certificate programs in graphic design in India.

Check: Is graphic designing a good career in India?

Online courses in Graphic Design: These courses allow you to learn at your own speed and may be taken at any time. They provide flexibility for working people and are often cheaper than conventional degree programs. 

One thing to remember is that your job ambitions and personal circumstances will influence your educational route. A bachelor's degree may be required for certain vocations, while a diploma or certificate may be enough for others.

And now for a joke (unintended): Did you hear about the graphic designer who got lost in the woods? He spent hours trying to find his way back but couldn't because he couldn't decide which way looked better!

Even with all the humour, pursuing a graphic design education can be a joyful and enjoyable experience. So, which educational path are you thinking of taking? Do you like the flexibility of online learning over the organized approach of a bachelor's degree program?

"Good design is all about making other designers feel like idiots because that idea wasn’t theirs." – Frank Chimero, Designer & Author

NIFT Mock Tests

NIFT Mock Tests

Bachelor's Degree Programs in Graphic Design

There are several types of Bachelor's degree programs in Graphic Design offered in India, including:

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Graphic Design:

This is a 4-year undergraduate degree program that focuses on the artistic aspects of graphic design. It includes courses in drawing, painting, and other fine arts disciplines, as well as courses in design software and principles.

Bachelor of Design (B.Des.) in Graphic Design: 

This is a 4-year undergraduate degree program that focuses on the technical and conceptual aspects of graphic design. It includes design principles, typography, branding, and user experience design courses.

Check: How To Learn Graphic Design At Home?

Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Graphic Design: 

This is a 2-year postgraduate degree program that provides advanced training in graphic design. It is a research-focused program that allows students to develop their skills in a specific area of graphic design.

Master of Design (M.Des.) in Graphic Design:

This is a 2-year postgraduate degree program that focuses on the practical and theoretical aspects of graphic design. It includes courses in design research, design thinking, and design management.

Both programs offer a comprehensive education in graphic design and prepare students for various careers. Here's an overview of the curriculum for these programs and the skills that students will learn:

  • Design research: Students will learn how to research to inform their design decisions and understand user needs.
  • Design thinking: Students will learn to apply design thinking to solve complex problems and create innovative solutions.
  • Design management: Students will learn how to manage design projects and teams and work with clients and stakeholders.
  • Specialization: Students can specialize in a particular area of graphic design, such as branding, web design, or motion graphics.

Check: Is Graphic Design a Good Career

Some universities and colleges that offer Bachelor's degree programs in Graphic Design in India include:

  • National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad
  • Srishti School of Art, Design, and Technology, Bangalore
  • Pearl Academy, Delhi/NCR, Mumbai, and Jaipur
  • Symbiosis Institute of Design, Pune
  • Lovely Professional University, Jalandhar

These programs can be a great choice for students who are passionate about graphic design and want to develop their skills and knowledge. So, which program interests you the most?

According to a report by the National Institute of Design (NID), India currently needs more than 62,000 designers for the country's industrial, graphic, communication, packaging, and other such industries, out of which only 7000 are qualified designers.

Check: What are Graphic Design Courses?

Diploma and Certificate Courses in Graphic Design

Diploma and certificate courses may be an excellent method to develop specialized abilities in graphic design. Following are a few advantages of taking these courses:

  • They are more readily available to a larger variety of individuals since they are often shorter and less expensive than degree programs.
  • They instruct certain graphic design techniques or topics, letting you concentrate on the material you're interested in learning.
  • They may assist you in creating a body of work to present to prospective employers or clients.

Now, let's take a look at some of the best institutes in India that offer diploma and certificate courses in graphic design:

Institute Courses Offered Duration
Arena Animation Graphic Design, Digital Communication Design 12 months, 24 months
MAAC (Maya Academy of Advanced Cinematics) Graphic and Web Design, Advanced Program in Digital Media and Design 12 months, 24 months
WLCI School of Design Diploma in Graphic Design, Professional Certificate in Graphic Design 12 months, 6 months
National Institute of Design (NID) Graphic Design Foundation Program, Certificate Program in Graphic Design 12 weeks, 6 months
Shillington College Graphic Design Course 3 months

These are just a few examples of institutes offering diploma and certificate courses in graphic design in India. Researching and comparing programs is important to find the one that best suits your needs and goals.

According to Payscale, the average salary of a graphic designer in India is INR 3,20,000 per year and can go up to INR 12,00,000 or above.

Check: How to become a Graphic Designer 2023?

Online Courses in Graphic Design

For prospective graphic designers who like to study at their own speed and on their own time, online courses in graphic design might be a good alternative. The following are some advantages of attending online courses:

  • A larger spectrum of individuals may access them since they are often less expensive than conventional degree programs or in-person courses.
  • You may study from top teachers all around the globe since they can be taken from anywhere with an internet connection.
  • They often provide a broad selection of specializations and themes, enabling you to concentrate on what you want to study.

They allow you to develop a body of work and pick up priceless experiences.

Let's now examine some of the top online courses and resources that are accessible in India for budding graphic designers:

Platform Courses Offered Topics Covered
Skillshare Introduction to Graphic Design, Adobe Photoshop Basics, Branding, Typography Design principles, software skills, branding, typography
Udemy Logo Design, Branding, User Experience Design Design theory, branding, user experience design
Coursera Typography, Web Design, Design Fundamentals Typography, web design, design principles
LinkedIn Learning Colour Theory, Layout, Design Software Colour theory, layout, design software

These are just a few examples of the many online courses and resources available for aspiring graphic designers in India. Researching and comparing courses is important to find the one that best suits your needs and goals. So, which online course interests you the most? Are you excited to learn from top instructors and build your skills in graphic design?

"Graphic design will save the world right after rock and roll does." –David Carson

Check: How To Learn Graphic Design At Home?


Education is crucial for aspiring graphic designers in India to improve their abilities and expertise in the industry. You may develop a strong portfolio and get useful experience by enrolling in a degree, diploma, certificate, or online course, making you stand out in the job market. Keep in mind that practice makes perfect! Which educational route thus most interests you? Are you eager to begin studying and honing your graphic design abilities?

And hey, did you hear about the graphic designer who was always nervous about his work? He had a case of the jitters...get it? (Okay, maybe not the best joke, but it's worth a shot!)

Frequently Asked Questions

No, a degree is not a requirement to work as a graphic designer. However, it could help you develop your abilities, create a portfolio, and stand out in the employment market.
Graphic designers may pursue Bachelor's degrees, Master's degrees, Diploma programmes, and Certificate courses.
It depends on your objectives and desired professional path. A Master's degree may help you specialise in a particular area of the profession, while a Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design or a similar topic can be a wonderful place to start.
Yes, provided you have a solid portfolio and the required abilities, you may still get work as a graphic designer with a diploma or certificate course.
Yes, there are a lot of online courses and resources for graphic design, including Skillshare, Udemy, Coursera, and LinkedIn Learning.


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