Computer Arts Program

Computer Lab

The Graphic Design and Web Design Certificate Programs offer instruction in the rapidly expanding field  of computerized graphic design. Although state-of-the art graphic and web design software is utilized in both programs, imagination and creativity are the cornerstones of the programs. It is expected that students will develop individual styles and techniques using both PC and Macintosh-based platforms. Principles of design, composition, color and other art foundation concepts are stressed. Students are expected to emerge from either program with a viable portfolio of original work to present to prospective clients and/or employers. Both day and evening classes are available.

Computer Arts Career Options:

  • Graphic Design
    • Business Graphics Specialist
    • Commercial Graphics Designer
    • Commercial Illustrator
    • Multimedia Computer Graphics Specialist
    • Scientific Graphics Specialist
  • Web Design
    • User Interface Specialist
    • Web Designer
    • Web Developer
    • Web Graphic Designer
    • Web Multimedia Specialist
    • Website Architect

Certificate Opportunities:

  • Web Design
  • Graphic Design

Program Requirements

Graphic Design

Career Preparation:

Two years of training beyond high school is preferred by employers. It takes a minimum of two to four years of training to be qualified as a commercial artist or graphic designer. Those who use computer software to create designs need an art/design background, along with a sense of innovation and creativity. It is not necessary to be a graduate of an art school to become a successful computer graphics specialist. Knowledge of graphic production, computer-generated imagery, and the principles of art and design are essential, as is the ability to express a client's ideas in graphic form, exhibiting your own style and technique. Evidence of experience with industry standard design software, such as Adobe PhotoShop, Illustrator, and InDesign, along with a strong, professionally presented portfolio, is usually required by employers.

Certificate: Graphics Design
Course Units
ART 1011 - Photography 3
ART 1031 - Digital Illustration 3
ART 1032 - Digital Imaging 3
ART 1033 - Digital Publication Design 3
Complete one of the following courses:
ART 1002 - Design 1 3
ART 1004 - Painting 3
ART 1009 - Drawing 3
Total Units Required 15

The Graphic Design certificate has an advisory of CSCI 1020 (Introduction to Microcomputers) and eligibility for ENGL 1001 (College Composition).

Web Design

Career Preparation:

Many job descriptions for Web designers require a bachelor's degree in graphic design, visual arts, fine arts or similar fields. However, the Web is evolving so quickly that traditional university programs may still be too cumbersome for potential Web designers. If you are looking to get into the field as quickly as possible, then consider taking some specialized courses in the areas that are of interest to you in a specialized program such as the Web Design Certificate Program. At a minimum, Web designers need to be familiar with HTML, JavaScript, and understand the way Web graphics such as JPEGs and GIFs work. You should also be proficient with industry-standard graphic-design software such as Adobe PhotoShop Illustrator. Industry standard software includes Adobe Dreamweaver.

Computer Science Certificate: Web Design
Course Units
ART 1035 - Web Design 3
CSCI 1028 - Web Publishing I 3
CSCI 1512 - Web Programming 3
CSCI 1528 - Web Publishing II 3
Complete one of the following courses:
ART 1031 - Digital Illustration 3
ART 1032 - Digital Imaging 3
Total Certificate Units 15

Job Outlook

Overall employment of graphic designers is expected to grow about as fast as the average for all occupations through the year 2015 as demand for graphic design continues to increase from advertisers, publishers, and computer design firms. Employment of desktop publishers is expected to grow faster than average through 2015, as more page layout and design work is performed in-house using computers and sophisticated publishing software.

Completion of math, writing and reading assessments are required for enrollment in any certificate or AA/AS degree program. Please contact Counseling Services for more information: (530) 938-5353(530) 938-5353. Students must receive a "C" grade or better in all major or certificate coursework.


Computer Arts Program Coordinator
Jim Gilmore
Phone: (530) 938-5294(530) 938-5294