Well I am now 17 years old and am going into my senior year of high school. I absolutely LOVE web design and it is the field I would want to go in 100%. The only problem is, I live in the US and all of the colleges/universities that specialize in web design are super expensive.
One I was looking into was the Art Institute in Seattle. I mean, minus the fact that it’s $25,000 a year, it’s a damn nice place.
That’s really the only place I’ve looked into as of now, but I wanted to ask you guys: are there any places in the US that are really good and specialize in web design? I would go to a normal college but most around here don’t offer web design.
Thanks for your guys’ help, I really need it!
This doesn’t really answer your question so you can take it for all its worth, but you don’t really need to go to college for web design to be a successful web designer. In fact, if you aren’t visually talented, going to college for it won’t suddenly make you Pablo Picasso.
Anyway, sorry, I just wanted to throw that out there. I’m 17 as well, but I’m planning to go to college for something more serious like Computer Science (general) or something more specific, in the same field—haven’t decided yet.
Theme Forest already set me for college. Thanks Envato!
I’ll provide you a bit of advice, though you can determine how valuable it is. I’m a sophomore in college right now, studying web design (well, technically, web application design, but it’s similar). The basic fact of the matter is that web design is not a hugely complex or in depth-field. Sure, you can push your knowledge of it very far, but it’s not something as complex as, say, 3D modeling or visual effects, and because of that, I wouldn’t say it’s really as vital that you go to a school that “specializes” in web design (and in fact I’m not aware of any that really do). In other words, what I’m trying to say is that any web design program in any decent school will be more than adequate, and coupled with learning on your own through resources such as the internet, you should be fine. You also have to keep in mind, with the private art schools, your return on investment. Sure, you can come out with a great degree, but you might also come out with $100,000 in student loans. So, you’d better hope that you can get a high paying job, and fast (something not necessarily easy for a starting out web designer). In addition, there’s still no guarantee your degree will get you the job, whether it’s from your state college or Ringling University, the reason being that web design is one of those fields where your portfolio and work matter quite a bit more to potential employers than the piece of paper that is your degree.
Now, on the opposite end, you also have to be careful. There will undoubtedly be people who are going to tell you that you shouldn’t even bother going to school at all, that you can learn everything you need to know to be a competent web designer through self-teaching, books, the internet, etc. And this is often absolutely true- if all you want to be the rest of your life is a web designer. Where the college degree becomes invaluable is in getting other types of jobs (what if you change your mind about your career one day?), and in getting higher paying and management-type positions. Speaking from experience, both of my parents are currently looking for jobs, but unfortunately neither of them went to college. I can tell you that it is incredibly difficult for them to find a company that will even talk to them without a degree (granted this is somewhat influenced by the current economy, but it applies no matter what). When potential employers see your college degree, they don’t think “hey, that guy must know web design really well”. They think, “hey, that guy must be an expert in finishing projects on time, managing resources, working well with colleagues, ...” Succeeding in college is a very good indicator that you have other life and professional skills that will be very valuable, and perhaps much more valuable that just knowing the technical end of your profession alone.
So, my advice would be to absolutely try to attend college for web design. However, don’t get hung up on attending a dedicated art/design school. Just evaluate the state schools (or more affordable private schools) and if the web design program they offer is adequate (as I said, almost all are), then explore that option as a potential. As I said, you’ll take away much more from that school than just some technical knowledge- and your future employers will absolutely be aware of that.
Wow I honestly could not have asked for a better answer blabus. Thanks a ton man. Yeah, I really don’t want to come out of school with a ton of money to pay back, and I’m really going to have to look at colleges around the area and just see what I can do then.
Thanks again man
I didn’t attend any web design courses or school or Uni. That’s because we don’t have it here at that time. But if you have a chance to learn it in a more ‘official’ way, why not
Just bear in mind that it’s up to you to keep yourself up to date in this industry.
You can go to the best college in the world, graduate top of your class, know every single thing about web design in the entire world but if you’re not motivated to keep learning and researching on your own then a year or two later you’ll be the equivalent of that guy who still uses marquee tags and thinks they’re cool.
I’m not saying don’t bother, blabus’ answer covered that pretty well (plus, you know, being a student = fun), but a general design degree will serve you well alongside the much more important self-teaching part.
p.s. $25k a year? /faint
$25k / year is nothing. That’s about as cheap as you can get in the US for higher education. A private design school would run you more in the range of 40k – 60k / year.
I have a few words for you that might help you; I myself spend the last 2 months in Germany and Europe searching for a college or university.
1- Despite the fact that you ‘could’ learn most of web design/development through advanced tutorials and online seminars, it will NEVER be the same as living a student’s life, getting contacts (very important in the long term) and having overall a more socially-active live.
2- I would suggest you, as Bill said, not to study something a ‘simple’ as web design. You can push yourself to the very maximum and become a crazy and cutting-edge developer/designer, but that’s not really up to the college/uni but rather to you. If you are going to study, aim at something much more complex such as computer science, digital media, technical sciences, etc.
Good luck :d
$25k / year is nothing. That’s about as cheap as you can get in the US for higher education.
Is that serious? Wow!
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$25k / year is nothing. That’s about as cheap as you can get in the US for higher education.Is that serious? Wow!
In Eastern Europe if you had $ 100.000 ( 25.000×4 years ) in the bank you could basically live off of the interest the bank gives you for it!
So I second cmt and say WOW !
If you decide to get formal education make it count! But going to some kind of collage is worth it even for the student life