Graphic Design Degree Online | Sessions College Associates Degree Programs

Graphic Design Degree

Associate of Occupational Studies

Image of vocational graphic design degree Packaging design work by Sessions College student Brian Carpenter

Earn your Associates Degree fully online with our accredited AOS program in Graphic Design. Contact our Admissions team about start dates, how to apply, and financial aid

Visual communication plays a vibrant, essential role in our culture and everyday experience. Are you ready to turn ideas into images? The Sessions College Associate of Occupational Studies (AOS) Graphic Design degree provides a thorough creative and technical online training in everything that designers do.

You'll immerse yourself in color, typography, and layout, and learn to navigate Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign with ease, as you gain experience an array of branding and print design projects. Discover your strengths and develop a strong portfolio, working with our faculty of professional designers.


AOS in graphic design degree program seal

The Associate of Occupational Studies (AOS) in Graphic Design program is a 2-year fully online program. Classes start in January, May, and September. Credit transfer is welcome and part-time schedules are available.

Progam requirements include 54 credits in art/design and 18 credits in general education. Your onramp to the industry includes a design business course, capstone project, and final portfolio review. Click to view course information below.

Graphic Design Major - Year One

Graphic Design major Myriam Keaton
“The instructors have top credentials and experience and are always there to offer a new perspective, as well as valuable coaching and mentoring.”
- Myriam Keaton, Associate Degree in Graphic Design.

Graphic Design Major - Year Two

back to top

Program Goals

Foundation studies develop proficiency in the traditional elements of art and design. Software and coding classes build skills in contemporary design tools and technologies for digital imaging, illustration, layout, and Web publishing. First-year courses introduce you to drawing, photography, Web publishing, and general education.

Online student work in graphic design Online graphic design degree students are expected to present their work in a final portfolio review. Student work by Rebeccah Robinson.

In the second year of the program, you will dig deeper into the tools and techniques that are essential to print designers. Graphic Design majors develop a professional design process as they explore a range of media including layout projects, print production, packaging, and branding and marketing concepts. An elective course allows for further exploration of Web design or digital media.

Graphic Design majors are expected to develop the ability to:

  • Create sophisticated, appropriate color palettes and use color and contrast effectively in their work.
  • Design and lay out typography for readability, impact, or expression.
  • Create drawings in traditional media that show a command of proportion, perspective, and value contrast.
  • Prepare images for professional publication with Photoshop retouching, correction, compositing, or collage.
  • Create engaging and readable layout designs that attract the eye using fundamental design and composition techniques.
  • Develop effective logo designs from a client brief using an iterative design process.
  • Create simple, stylized logos, icons, and illustrations in Illustrator.
  • Manipulate framing, perspective, distance, and lighting to take professional-level digital photographs in a range of settings.
  • Create consistent, engaging, and readable layouts in InDesign for multi-page print publications.
  • Create consistent, visually appealing page designs using HTML and CSS via Dreamweaver or via hand coding.
  • Apply in their work an understanding of English composition, business writing, psychology, computer science, marketing, and art history.
  • Write papers and presentations that demonstrate critical thinking, clear organization, and professional style, grammar, and spelling.
  • Represent their design services to potential clients or employers and manage different aspects of the graphic design process.
  • Identify current areas of strength and prepare and maintain a portfolio of their best design work in print or on the Web.
  • Develop competence in various print design genres including poster design, logo/branding design, magazine layouts, cover design, and packaging.

For more information on courses in this major, view Graphic Design degree courses or browse our complete design degree course list.

For Gainful Employment information on this program, visit this page.

Below, Associate Degree student Kyle Gilbreath talks about his experiences working with Sessions College instructors.

back to top


woman smiling
The coffee's on us.
Select a time now >>
Notices and Deadlines

Graphic Design Degree Admissions

Classes start in January, May, and September. To apply to this online Graphic Design Degree program, you'll need to complete our degree application, write an application essay, provide 5-10 samples of art or design, and order transcripts from high school or colleges attended. 

Graphic design degree admissions advisor Mhelanie
"As a trained graphic designer, I really like helping students select their program options. They're getting to take classes I'd like to take myself!" – Mhelanie Hernandez, Senior Admissions Advisor

Whenever you're ready, talk to our friendly Admissions admissions staff or sign up for an Open House.

Software and Supplies

Software for graphic design majors

To take this online program, you'll need a computer with an Internet connection as well as additional software and supplies.

  • A Windows-based or Macintosh computer that meets software manufacturers' requirements.
  • Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and Dreamweaver CC software.
  • Microsoft Office software (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)
  • A digital camera with adjustable ISO and adjustable white balance features recommended.
  • Basic drawing supplies including pencils, charcoal, newsprint, and sketch paper.
  • A Web hosting account with an ad-free hosting service.
  • Webcam, headphones or speaker, VPN connection, and microphone connected to the computer for live proctored exams.

Please check course syllabus pages or the catalog for detailed information on course requirements or proctored exams. Be sure to visit our Student Store for discounts on hardware and graphic design software. You must be an enrolled student to be eligible for educational discounts.

back to top

Request Information

  1. First Name
  2. Last Name
  3. Email Address
  4. Phone Number

Asterisk(*) indicates that information must be entered.

An admissions advisor will contact you to discuss program options. We will never share your information and you may choose to opt out at any time. Privacy Policy.

Sorry, all of our Advisors are offline.
How can we help?

  1. First Name
  2. Last Name
  3. Email Address

Asterisk(*) indicates that information must be entered.