Graphic Design Certificate Programs at Sessions College

Instructor-Led Graphic Design Certificate Programs

Professional Certificate in Graphic Design

Expand your creative, technical, and design skills

ENROLL NOW for our next start:

July 1, 2024

Program Overview

In the Sessions College Professional Certificate in Graphic Design program, students learn the software programs that every graphic designer needs to know: Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Students discover how to produce digital images, illustrations, and page layouts, addressing concepts of color, typography, and composition. Class assignments involve hands-on photo editing, logo design, poster design, magazine design, and more.

  • Train in techniques using today's design software tools Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.
  • Learn fundamental concepts in color, typography, and composition.
  • Create digital images, illustrations, and layouts.
  • Gain design project knowledge, including photo editing, logo design, poster design, magazine layout, more.

Instructor-Led Program

  • Project-based courses from industry-leading design and digital media professionals.
  • Learn at your own pace—no mandatory logins or preset meeting times.
  • Build skills through mentoring and critique from expert instructors.

A Better Way to Learn

Study at your own pace


Study 100% online from anywhere with 24/7 access to classes.

Learn by doing


Complete your program on your own time in 9 months or less.

Connect with pros

Industry Relevant

Develop in-demand skills for your creative field.

grow your portfolio


Customize your program with added courses and concentrations.

Graphic Design Courses

Program Curriculum

Designed for the busy adult learner, the Professional Online Graphic Design Certificate is a 360-hour program completed in nine months or less studying part time.

Level 2

Course Descriptions

4218 Photoshop Basics

Get a thorough grounding in Adobe Photoshop, the premiere image-manipulation tool for print design, Web design, and photography. You'll learn to choose and use the best techniques for common Photoshop jobs including selecting and isolating objects, creating image composites, masking and vignetting images, setting typography, and improving images with retouching and effects. Every designer must tame this creative powerhouse of a program. Learn more

4226 Illustrator Basics

Build a working knowledge of Adobe Illustrator, the graphic designer’s vector program of choice. Course projects explore selection tools, drawing tools, layers, the Pen tool, transformations/distortions, type tools, and modifying paths and shapes. Tapping the power of vector software allows you to produce detailed and scalable art for almost any application. Learn more

4023 Design Foundations

Color is a fundamental medium for any artist or designer. Typography is what sets designers apart from other artists. Composition, literally the assembly or construction of elements, is the artful arrangement that guides the viewer's eye through an image. In this course, you will analyze everything from Grand Masters to Madison Avenue ads to tubes of toothpaste, and discover how color, type, and composition are combined to create effective and powerful visual communications. Class projects challenge you to build and apply your design skills in application to real-life creative scenarios. Learn more

4228 InDesign Basics

Explore fundamental techniques for Adobe InDesign and develop an efficient workflow for both print and digital publishing. The course will impart a working knowledge of InDesign’s main capabilities, everything from basic features to using master pages, importing and manipulating objects, controlling text flow and style, and organizing content with tables, layers, links, and conveyor tools. Valuable methods for cutting-edge digital publishing techniques are explored, and projects give you training in a range of real world print/digital publishing projects: brochures, catalogs, magazines, ePubs, and even an interactive folio for the iPad. Learn more

4023 Typography II

Typography, technology, and culture are intertwined. Type has the power to communicate meaning and mood through its quirks and beauty, its history and diversity. In this advanced online typography course, you'll learn advanced concepts in typography, building your portfolio through hands-on projects. You'll experiment with type fusion, learn the details of text layout and information hierarchy, create a visual identity for product package and a civic authority, and even design your own currency. Learn more

4013 Graphic Design I

Establish a firm foundation for taking on professional design work. You'll gain insights from industry veterans and explore the challenges of designing posters, logos, magazine covers, book layouts, 3D designs, and brand identities. Looking to establish a career as a freelance designer? The course provides you opportunities to hone your design process, as you research each project, develop concepts, work with iterative feedback, and begin to develop quality pieces for your portfolio. Learn more

Build Your Own Learning Path

This program is adaptable to a wide range of experience levels. Choose the option(s) below that best meet your learning goals.

Option 1


New to the field? Simply complete all required courses in the certificate program.

Option 2


Already have some industry and/or software experience? Customize up to 50% of your programChoose from courses in Web Design, Software, Motion & Video, and more by choosing alternate courses.

Option 3


Need more training? After you've completed your program, add concentrations at reduced tuitionChoose from concentrations in Web Design, Digital Photography, Illustration, and more to enhance your creative skills.

Program Outcomes

By completing the program, Professional Certificate in Graphic Design students develop the following competencies:

1. Technology

Create images and design layouts by effectively and efficiently using design software including Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign, and other industry technologies.

2. Art/Design Principles

Demonstrate the ability to produce visually compelling work by applying knowledge of color, typography, and composition.

3. Design Process

Develop strategic and compelling designs for a variety of audiences and social contexts.

4. Projects

Produce and present a range of standard professional graphic design projects including graphics, posters, ads, logos, page layouts, and packaging.

Sessions Student Work

Career Outlook for Graphic Designers

Graphic Designers produce creative work for a myriad of industries and design for print, web, and a variety of media including television, film, and live streaming. Graphic Designers need to possess technical expertise, analytical skills, artistic ability, communication skills, creativity, time-management, and well-developed attention to detail.

Job Titles

Graduates could be employed as a Graphic Designer, Brand Identity Designer, Web Designer, UX/UI Designer, Production Artist, Desktop Publisher, or Digital Designer.

Median Annual Wage

According to the Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics the median annual wage for graphic designers was $58,910 (as of May 2023).

Median annual wages for graphic designers in top industries (in which they work):

Specialized design services$62,330
Advertising, public relations, and related services$56,970
Publishing industries$54,450
Printing and related support activities$44,500

Job Projections

Employment opportunities for graphic designers are projected to grow 3 percent from 2022 to 2032.

There are about 22,800 projected openings for graphic designers each year, on average, over the decade.

What Students Say

For me, the best thing about Sessions College is definitely the instructors. They are very helpful and don’t simply grade your work, but also give excellent feedback. Their feedback really pushed me to produce my best work and I believe it really helped me to learn to critique my own work as a designer.

Dhani Mouttet

Professional Certificate in Graphic Design, Class of 2022

Getting Started

Our Graphic Design Certificate online application process makes getting started easy, fast, and convenient.

What's the Admissions Process?
Open Admissions.

The Professional Certificate is open admissions, with classes starting each month. To apply for the program, simply complete our free, no-obligation application and select your program options. Applicants are expected to have graduated high school.

How Long is the Program?
Nine Month Program.

The program can be completed in nine months studying on a part time schedule. Since you study at your pace, you may complete it sooner! If you need more time to complete, there is a painless extension policy for an additional 6 months of access for students who qualify based on academic progress.

Will the Program Fit My Schedule?

There are no set login times, so you can complete your program at your own pace in our most flexible program. A designated Student Advisor will track your progress from class to class, providing you support and motivation.

What Software or Supplies Do I Need?

To take this program, you’ll need the following:

  • Mac or Windows computer with an Internet connection.
  • Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign CC.
  • Your computer must meet software manufacturer requirements.

There are no textbook or course material costs to participate in this online program. Student discount on Adobe Creative Cloud software is available to enrolled students.

What are the Program Costs?

Sessions College programs are flexible and affordable. There are no textbooks required; tuition costs include all digital materials.

Tuition and FeesProfessional CertificateProfessional Certificate PLUS
Registration Fee$200$200
Total Cost$2,750$3,750

Paid in Full Discount: Total cost is $2,700 (regularly $2,750) for Professional Certificate students who pay in full. Total cost for Professional Certificate PLUS students who pay in full is $3,700 (regularly $3,750).

Enrollment in any certificate program requires a $200 registration fee (non-refundable after 5 days of enrollment in the program). All tuition and fees must be paid on time, including those paid by third parties.

Can I Use a Payment Plan?

Most definitely. Affording your education is easier with our Payment Plan.

  1. Pay for your Professional Certificate with 11 monthly payments of $250, or pay for your Professional Certificate PLUS with 13 monthly payments of $288.
  2. Once you’ve set up your plan, your payments are automatic.
  3. Your first payment which includes a $200 Registration Fee.