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Professionals with a bachelor’s degree in web design can help satisfy the growing demand for graphic designers, software developers, digital media specialists, web developers, user experience designers, and more. The curriculum prepares workers for creating the aesthetics, functionality, and style for a variety of websites and mobile applications. Graduates can work in fields such as business, technology, government, education, nonprofits, marketing, and more.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that comprehensive job growth for web designers will grow by 23% from 2023 to 2031. The BLS also reports that the median annual wage for web design jobs is $78,300. Software developers earn a median annual salary of $109,020, and job openings in this field are expected to increase by 25% through 2031.

Students must typically earn at least 120 credits to earn a bachelor’s degree, translating to four years of full-time study. The cost of an online bachelor’s in web design will vary based on several factors. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the average cost of undergraduate tuition in the 2021-22 academic year was $7,869 at public schools and $37,095 at private institutions.

How to Choose an Online Bachelor’s in Web Design Degree Program

Choose your area of study

The first step in the process is determining what you want from your online bachelor’s in web design degree program.

In terms of curriculum and educational experience, think about what your goals are post-graduation. Do you want to be qualified for jobs in a specific area of web design, such as user experience, software development, or information architecture? If so, you’ll want to seek out a program that offers coursework or a specialization in that area. If you want hands-on experience and networking connections, find a program with an internship or practicum requirement.

Now is also a good time to set parameters for the type of program you want. Some web design programs are delivered synchronously, in which students participate in live virtual classes. Others are asynchronous, with coursework delivered through an online portal that students can access 24/7. Both learning formats have advantages and disadvantages, so students should determine which structure best meets their needs. Students should also consider whether they want to enroll full-time or part-time.

Research schools and programs

Before deep-diving into research on a particular program, ensure it’s offered by a regionally accredited university. Accredited schools must meet the highest standards of quality in post-secondary education. Students must enroll at an accredited institution to be considered for federal financial aid. Accreditation status can also affect students’ future job prospects and opportunities for further study.

Once a school’s accreditation is confirmed, students can begin collecting information, such as:

  • What does the program’s curriculum consist of and does it align with your career goals?
  • Are there prerequisite courses like mathematics, computer science, or design required?
  • Does the program have any in-person requirements, or can all coursework be completed remotely?
  • Is it a synchronous or asynchronous delivery?
  • Who are the faculty, and what are their qualifications?
  • How do online students interact with classmates and faculty?
  • What support services do online students have access to, such as technical support, academic and career advising, counseling, and tutoring?

Visiting a school’s website is a good place to start for this information. Many online programs hold virtual information sessions or open houses where prospective applicants can interact with faculty, current students, and admissions counselors. Following a school or program on social media can also provide helpful insight into the school and its culture. Students who have additional questions can contact the school’s admissions office directly.

Prepare for tests and applications

Every school sets its own requirements and procedures for applying. Students can confirm the process with an admissions counselor to ensure they submit the suitable materials. Those applying to multiple programs may want to create a spreadsheet or checklist to keep track of deadlines and requirements.

Generally speaking, students will need to submit the following to apply to an online bachelor’s in web design:

  • Completed application and required fees
  • Official high school transcript showing proof of graduation or a GED
  • Letters of recommendation from teachers, employers, and mentors who can speak to your academic potential
  • An essay or personal statement
  • A resume or CV

Some schools still require SAT or ACT scores, although many institutions are implementing test-optional policies. Students should also check if there are specific requirements, such as a minimum high school GPA.

Students with previous college credits from another institution should also submit their transcript from that school to apply their credits to their new degree program.

Select your program

Once you’ve gathered information on all the programs that interest you, start to eliminate any that don’t meet your curriculum, cost, or schedule needs. If you need help narrowing down the list, evaluate programs based on which ones most closely align with your interests and career goals while offering affordable tuition and strong faculty support.

Ultimately, the number of schools a student applies to is a personal choice. If you plan to use multiple schools, keep in mind that most charge application fees and budget accordingly or request application fee waivers.

Determine how you’ll pay for your degree

There are many ways to pay for your bachelor’s in web design degree. Some of the most common options include:

Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is a prerequisite for determining eligibility for most types of financial aid. Students can contact their school’s financial aid office if they have questions about completing the FAFSA.

Other options include employer tuition assistance benefits, if you plan on working while enrolled in a bachelor’s program, and payment plans that allow students to pay tuition in installments rather than one lump sum at the start of the term. Some schools offer discounted tuition to veterans and active-duty military members, and many accept GI Bill benefits.

Best 50 Accredited Online Bachelor’s in Web Design Degree Programs

Best Online Bachelor's in Web Design Programs Badge

Arizona State University

Southeastern University

University of Arizona

Champlain College

Baker College

Southern New Hampshire University

Franklin University

Fort Hays State University

Liberty University

Bellevue University

University of Maryland Global Campus

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How we rank schools

This list focuses on undergraduate programs offering bachelor’s degrees in web design or a related field. All programs are available at nonprofit, accredited institutions, either public or private, with high standards of quality for post-secondary education. We reviewed fully online and in-person/online hybrid programs.

We evaluated each degree program on factors like tuition costs, faculty, reputation, student resources, and admission, retention, and graduation rates. We then calculated the Intelligent Score on a scale of 0 to 100. Read more about our ranking methodology.

We also compared our picks to a list of aggregated college rankings from reputable publications like the U.S. News & World Report to simplify a student’s college search. We pored through these rankings so students don’t have to.

What Can You Expect From Online Bachelor’s in Web Design Degree Program?

Students in an online bachelor’s in web design program can expect a core curriculum covering fundamentals like programming languages, web and graphic design principles, digital media, and coding design for mobile and web devices. Most programs strive to give students a balanced education in creative and technical skills.

Once students move through foundational-level courses, they may have an opportunity to specialize in a web design area such as user experience, front-end and back-end programming, or software development.

Students should also expect about half their courses to fall under the general education umbrella. General education requirements typically include English, a foreign language, math, physical or social sciences, and history. The number of required general education requirements depends on whether students earn a more liberal arts-focused Bachelor of Arts (BA) or a Bachelor of Science (BS), which emphasizes technical skills.

Programs may require students to complete an in-person or remote internship. There may also be a capstone project requirement, in which a student executes a comprehensive project demonstrating the knowledge and skills acquired in the program.

Potential courses you’ll take in an online bachelor’s in web design degree program

  • Basic Web Design. Students learn to design a website, create advertising, and organize design layouts. Instruction focuses on tools used for basic design. Topics covered include branding, imaging, color theory, typography, and workflow methods.
  • Computer Graphics. This computer science course teaches learners how to generate, create, and distribute images. The class also discusses differences in design strategies for mobile applications, desktop computers, and tablets.
  • Adobe Dreamweaver. This class concentrates on Adobe software that integrates HTML and CSS to aid web designers in constructing websites without effort. Students learn how to navigate this tool effectively.
  • JavaScript. Students familiarize themselves with the programming language JavaScript. They develop dynamic features for applications and websites. Learning how to write and implement it into their designs is paramount.
  • Writing for the Web. The course distinguishes different design strategies for desktop computers, mobile applications, and tablets. Students learn HTML and CSS and acquire a comprehension of user experience. Class members create a website at the end of the course.

What Can I Do With an Online Bachelor’s in Web Design Degree?

An online bachelor’s degree in web design helps students develop the necessary aptitudes for creating and maintaining functional, user-friendly websites. This degree combines technical and creative skills, which graduates can apply to a variety of roles, including web developer, software developer, website designer, graphic designer, and more.

Web designers work across industries, including retail, healthcare, business, tech, media, and more. They may work as in-house designers, building and maintaining websites for a particular company, or as part of a web design company that contracts with clients to create websites and apps. Another option is to work as a freelance web designer or software developer.

A bachelor’s degree is sufficient for most entry- and mid-level web designer positions. However, earning a master’s degree can prepare students for leadership and management roles.

Career outlook

  • Web developers and digital designers — Web developers create and maintain websites, including content and technical aspects. Digital designers develop, create, and test website or interface layout, functions, and navigation and are responsible for the website’s look and functionality.
    • Median annual salary: $98,540
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 16%
    • New jobs projected: 19,000
  • Software developers — Create the computer applications that allow users to do specific tasks and the underlying systems that run the devices or control networks.
    • Median annual salary: $132,270
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 25%
    • New jobs projected: 153,900
  • Graphic designers —  Use computer software or hand-drawing to create visual concepts that communicate ideas to consumers. They also develop the overall layout and production design for applications such as advertisements, brochures, magazines, and reports.
    • Median annual salary: $58,910
    • Projected employment growth (through 2032): 3%
    • New jobs projected: 22,800

Online Bachelor’s in Web Design Degree Frequently Asked Questions

How do I apply to an online bachelor’s in web design degree program?

The best way to get all the information about application procedures and requirements is to contact an admissions counselor. Begin by maintaining a checklist to stay organized regarding important dates and deadlines. Gather all materials needed: official transcripts, test scores, letters of recommendation, an essay, and a resume or CV.

Students can apply online through the school’s website or by completing a Common Application.

How much does an online bachelor’s in web design degree cost?

In the 2021-22 school year, the average tuition for undergraduate programs was $7,869 at public universities and $37,095 at private institutions.

However, several factors can impact the ultimate cost of an online bachelor’s in web design.Public university students’ tuition rates may vary based on whether they are in-state or out-of-state. Online students can seek out programs that offer a flat tuition rate regardless of where students live.

Students should also expect to pay additional fees for things like technology, library resources, and healthcare services. On the other hand, online students often see savings on transportation, housing, and living expenses.

How long does it take to earn an online bachelor’s in web design degree?

The length of time it can take to earn a degree depends on the following factors:

  • Total number of credits required. Most bachelor’s degrees require a minimum of 120 credits.
  • Enrollment status. Full-time students can usually complete their degree in four years, while part-time students might take longer.
  • Transfer credits. If students have previously earned credits from another program, they may be able to apply them to their web design program and shorten their completion time.
  • Program pace. Some schools offer an accelerated program where students complete all required courses in a condensed time frame.

Is an online bachelor's degree in web design worth it?

A bachelor’s degree in web design is an ideal fit for students looking to enter a field with a strong employment outlook and high earning potential. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the employment of web developers and designers will increase by 16% through 2032, translating to approximately 19,000 new jobs per year. The median annual wage for this field is $98,540, with the top 10 percent of earners making over $176,000 annually.

However, students should be aware that educational requirements for web designers vary by employer, with some giving preference to experience over formal education. Depending on the type of opportunities you’re seeking, you may be able to enter the field with an associate degree or a post-secondary certificate, which are typically less expensive and time-consuming than a bachelor’s degree.

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