2021 Best Online Web Design Degrees [Website Designer]

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Pursuing a web design degree online can help prepare you to enter this growing industry.

Online Web Design Degrees

A web designer degree can teach you to understand technical aspects of site design, to write programming languages, and to develop navigational and technical improvements for websites. You can also learn how to build and incorporate web applications into your designs.

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With technology being front-and-center in our lives, pursuing a reputable degree in web design can help you develop the necessary expertise and qualifications for this lucrative field.

Web Design Degrees Online

Web Design Degrees Online

If you want to acquire technological skills that are dynamic and in-demand, you might want to look into getting an online website design degree. There is currently a demand for web designers and developers, so online web design programs can lead to positions in a variety of industries.

Common careers in this sector include:

  • Web developer
  • Digital designer
  • Graphic designer
  • App developer
  • Software tester

Some professionals in the field work as freelance web designers, while others may work as in-house web designers for corporations. Some may also work for companies that delegate their services to their clients’ needs. Web designers often work on a variety of projects, sometimes for a variety of clients, which can help their work stay innovative and lively.

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Coursework for a web design program is often focused on technology and the latest updates in the field. Your curriculum may cover topics like:

  • Basics of web design
  • Web technologies
  • Computer graphics
  • HTML
  • CSS

It’s common to enter the industry through an entry-level position. The skills you can develop through a bachelors program in web design, though, can help prepare you for growth into higher-level positions down the road.

Some students decide to major in web design, and others choose to specialize in web design within a broader major, such as information technology or computer science.

Web Design Careers and Salaries

Web Design Careers and Salaries

A career in web design can encompass a variety of roles in many dynamic work environments and industries. Digital careers and technological industries continue to see growth and demand, year after year.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, digital designers and web developers are expected to experience 8% job growth over the next ten years.

Careers Annual Median Salaries
Computer and Information Systems Managers $151,150
Software Developers, Quality Assurance Analysts, and Testers $110,140
Database Administrators $98,860
Computer Systems Analysts $93,730
Computer Programmers $89,190
Special Effects Artists and Animators $77,700
Web Developers and Digital Designers $77,200
Computer Network Support Specialists $65,450
Graphic Designers $53,380
Computer User Support Specialists $52,690

The Bureau of Labor Statistics emphasizes that the more technological and digital knowledge you have, the more opportunities you can have when you enter the workforce. For instance, being able to understand programming languages is a valuable, versatile skill in the IT industry.

Website Design Major Curriculum & Courses

Website Design Major Curriculum

A web design degree online program can teach you the basics of web design and web development, though a number of universities also offer online web development degrees, which focus more on the web programming aspects.

Web designer schooling can also help you better understand web technologies, help you develop your ability to write various programming languages, and teach you how to use common design tools.

Here are some courses you may encounter during your program:

  • Basics of Web Design: You’ll learn how to design a website, how to organize design layout, and how to create advertising, and you’ll learn about the tools used for basic design.
  • Web Technologies: This course teaches the science behind the web, including the different types of websites, how websites and hosting work, and how domains are registered.
  • Computer Graphics: This computer science course teaches you how to create, generate, and distribute images.
  • HTML: HTML is the basic and most integral foundation of web design. This course teaches you how to understand and write this web language.
  • CSS: CSS is an essential tool to web design, and you’ll learn how this web language functions and adapts to different web designs.
  • Adobe Dreamweaver: Adobe Dreamweaver is a software that integrates HTML and CSS to help web designers build websites effortlessly. You’ll learn how to navigate this tool.
  • Bootstrap: This is an open-source tool that you’ll use to learn how to better comprehend the development and framework of web design.
  • Mathematical Structure for Computer Science: In this course, data and algorithms are studied as a way to better understand how to formulate solutions to web and application issues.
  • Javascript: This is a programming language that helps develop dynamic features for websites and applications. You’ll learn how to write and implement it into your designs.
  • Animation Techniques: This course teaches you how to create animations specifically for web and application purposes.

These courses can help you become well-rounded and knowledgeable in the tools and skills necessary for web design.

How to Choose an Online Web Design Degree Program

Online Web Design Degree

Choosing an online design degree program is a personal choice, but here are some factors you may want to consider prior to enrollment:

  • Accreditation. It’s strategic to ensure that your program and school of choice are accredited by a reputable organization.
  • Cost. It can help to compare program costs and whether you will require financial assistance.
  • Transfer policies. You can check out your program’s transfer policies so you know their process in case you end up switching schools or programs.
  • Program length and flexibility. You can take a look at the lengths of different programs length and the amount of time it would take for you to complete them. It’s also helpful to determine whether or not you could adjust your academic schedule to fit your other obligations.
  • Internship requirements. It’s helpful to determine whether you are able to keep on top of any work or internship requirements needed for graduation.

It can be beneficial to take the time to research these and other elements to make sure that a program is the right fit for you.

Web Design School Admissions Requirements

Web Design School Admissions

Due to job demand for roles in web design and development, you may find the application process to be quite competitive. Though admission requirements differ from school to school, here are a few you may encounter as you look to apply to a web design program:

  • SAT or ACT scores (only some schools require them)
  • Entry-level computer science course completion
  • High school transcripts
  • Cover letter and reference letter

Any experience or training in a related field can be added to your application to help you stand out. Some programs prefer applicants with a strong mathematical or technological background.

Bachelor’s Degree in Web Design and Development Accreditation

Web Design and Development Accreditation

Regional accreditation is essential for many reasons. It’s a sure sign that you’re earning a degree from an institution that meets high academic and quality standards. It can also determine your eligibility for federal financial aid, should you require it.

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There are many fraudulent accreditation institutions all over the web, so you can use the US Department of Education’s website to check that your program is recognized through their stringent criteria methods.

Web Design & Development Certifications

Web Design & Development Certifications

Having an additional certification following your web design degree can help set you apart from the rest.

Certifications can demonstrate to future employers that you are committed to growing your skill sets and building your knowledge base. In addition, it may allow you to negotiate for a larger salary upon employment.

Here are a few web design and development certifications you can consider pursuing:

  • Google Analytics IQ: This certification develops your web analytics skills, which is beneficial for the marketing industry.
  • General Assembly Bootcamp Courses: GA courses cover a variety of topics and allow you to develop skills in a short length of time.
  • Google Mobile Web Specialist: Mobile apps and application development is in demand, and this demonstrates to employers that you have mastered mobile web development skills.
  • Adobe Certified Expert: This certificate shows you are adept at using Adobe platforms and tools.

There are numerous other credible certifications that can help set you apart from the competition and help you gain useful skills.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Web Design and Development financial aid

If you require financial aid to pursue your studies, you can start by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA determines your eligibility for federal aid and even state aid.

The FAFSA is often linked directly with your school so that you can continue to receive assistance as long as you maintain a certain academic standard. Other opportunities for scholarships, loans, or grants may exist through the school you are applying to.

Some employers may even sponsor educational development or a work-study program, and some large technology and web companies offer scholarships through a competitive application.

Web Design Professional Organizations

Web Design Professional Organizations

Being a part of a professional organization is never required, but it can be beneficial. A professional organization can offer access to professional private job boards, networking opportunities, and conferences and events. It can also connect you with resources in your industry and domain.

Here are some professional organizations for web design:

Some of these organizations may also connect you with international job opportunities.

What Can You Do with a Bachelors in Web Design?

A bachelors in web design can help you develop technological skills that are in demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates 8% job growth for web developers and digital designers over the next ten years, which is much faster than the average for all occupations.

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Web design is needed in practically every field and industry. Related careers in include software quality assurance analyst, app developer, computer programmer, graphic designer, and web support specialist.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Web Design Online Degree?

How long it takes you to earn a web design degree online often depends on your enrollment. If you are enrolled in a traditional 16 week semester, it generally takes 4 years of full-time study to get your degree.

You may be able to finish in less time if you choose to enroll in a quick degree program with 8 week semesters and stay continuously enrolled year-round. Enrolling part-time can enable you to navigate your course load around your personal obligations, but it may take you longer to complete your program.

What Does a Web Designer Do?

Web Designer vs. Web Developer

A web designer has multiple responsibilities within the domain of software, web, and computer technologies. They are responsible for understanding programming and web languages, including how to write and implement them.

Web designers also create and design webpage layouts with a variety of features. In addition, they can be responsible for continuously monitoring the data and analytics of a website to ensure it is easy to navigate and is functioning correctly.

What’s the Difference Between a Web Designer vs. Web Developer?

Here are a few differences between the roles of web designers and developers.

Web Designers Web Developers
  • Are responsible for webpage conception, layout, and functions
  • May have some understanding of programming languages
  • Focus on the purpose and layout of a website
  • Are responsible for platform, software, and application development, layout, and functions
  • Usually understand and can fluently write programming languages
  • Build and manage the core structure of a website

There can be some overlap between the responsibilities of a web designer and a web developer.

What’s the Difference Between a Graphic Design vs. Web Design Bachelor Degree?

Graphic design degrees and web design degrees often have some overlap in the courses they study, but here are some key differences to note between the two.

Graphic Design Degree Web Design Degree
  • Focuses on artistic skill development
  • Does not involve programming and web languages
  • Is arts based
  • Focuses on design and function development for websites
  • Will look at programming and web languages
  • Has scientific and mathematical elements

Choosing which degree is best for you often depends on your personal career goals.

Is a Web Design Degree Worth It?

Web Design Degree

Yes, a web design degree is worth it for many professionals. The work in this field can be dynamic and ever-changing, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates 8% job growth for web developers and digital designers over the next ten years.

A degree in web design can also open the door to numerous career opportunities, whether you wish to perform freelance work or seek employment through a company, office, or organization.

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This domain will likely continue to see expansion, as computer and IT occupations are expected to grow 11% over the same time period, which is much faster than the average for all occupations (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Universities Offering Online Bachelors in Web Design Degree Programs

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.

Academy of Art University

Academy of Art University campus

Academy of Art University offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Web Design and New Media. Classes in the program are 7.5 weeks or 15 weeks long. Students must complete 132 credit hours with a GPA of 2.0 or higher to graduate. Applicants must complete an online application and submit official transcripts to be eligible.

Academy of Art University is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Arizona State University

Arizona State University campus

Arizona State University offers an online program for a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Information Technology. The program requires students to complete 40 classes. Each class is 7.5 weeks long. Applicants must either have a minimum GPA of 3.0, an ACT score of 22, or an SAT score of 1120 to be eligible for the program.

ASU is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Champlain College

Champlain College campus

Champlain College offers an online program for a Bachelor of Information Technology in Web Design and Development.

The online classes are 7 weeks long. To graduate, students must complete 120 credit hours. Applicants must complete an online application and short answer essay questions and submit official high school or college transcripts and a resume.

Champlain College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

East Coast Polytechnic Institute University

ECPI University campus

East Coast Polytechnic Institute offers a Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Science with a major in Software Development. This program offers a Web Design and Development track. Students must complete 120 credit hours to graduate. Applicants may speak with an admissions advisor before applying.

ECPI University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Liberty University

Liberty University campus

Liberty University offers a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology with a focus in Web and Mobile Programming.

The program can typically be completed in 3.5 years and requires students to complete 120 credit hours to graduate. The classes are 8 weeks long and offered online. Applicants must have a GPA of 2.0 or higher and submit official transcripts.

Liberty University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Miami International University of Art and Design

Miami International University of Art and Design campus

Miami International University of Art and Design offers an online program for a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic and Web Design. Students must complete 180 quarter credit hours to graduate. Applicants must complete an online application and an interview and submit their high school transcripts and a personal essay.

Miami International University of Art and Design is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Southeastern University

Southeastern University campus

Southeastern University offers a Bachelor of Science in Digital Media and Design. The program requires students to complete 120 credit hours and can typically be completed in 48 months. Applicants must submit high school transcripts, SAT or ACT test scores, an essay, and a Christian character reference.

Southeastern University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Southern New Hampshire University

Southern New Hampshire University campus

Southern New Hampshire University offers a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design and Media Arts with a concentration in Web Design.

Students must complete 120 credit hours, with at least 12 courses dedicated to the concentration. Applicants may apply on a rolling basis. Admissions counselors are available to assist students through the process.

Southern New Hampshire University is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

University of Arizona

University of Arizona campus

The University of Arizona offers a Bachelor of Arts in Design Arts and Practices with courses in Web Design. To graduate, students must complete 120 credit hours and a senior capstone project. Applicants must complete an online application through the school’s website and submit official transcripts.

The University of Arizona is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

University of Maryland Global Campus

University of Maryland Global campus

The University of Maryland Global Campus offers a Bachelor of Science in Digital Media and Web Technology. To graduate, students must complete 120 credit hours. To be eligible for the program, applicants must have a high school diploma or the equivalent and submit official transcripts from all schools attended.

UMGC is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Getting Your Bachelor’s in Web Design Online

Bachelor’s in Web Design Online

The computer and information technology industry is seeing tremendous growth, and a bachelors degree in web design can help prepare you to enter this lucrative field.

Pursuing your bachelors in web design online can allow you to build your course schedule around your professional or personal obligations and to complete your studies on your own time.

If you’re ready to build your expertise in web design, you can start your educational journey by exploring online degree programs from accredited universities.

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Claudia Amendola Alzraa
WRITTEN BY
Claudia Amendola Alzraa
Claudia has a Master's in Library and Information Studies, a Bachelor's in Education, and a Bachelor's with Honors in English and Philosophy. With a history working in Special Education, Claudia is an advocate for diversified and equitable education, and student success initiatives.