Online Digital Media Certificate

Undergraduate Certificate in Digital Media

Our Undergraduate Certificate in Digital Media program provides an introduction to computer graphics, video, and motion graphics design. In the two semester, credit-bearing program, you'll develop a fundamental knowledge of digital imaging and illustration, and explore how to animate your artwork in digital video, After Effects, and Adobe Animate.



Student work by Eric Clayborn, UC in Digital Media

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Program Outline

The Undergraduate Certificate is a 24-credit program completed in two semesters. Part-time schedules are available.

First Semester

DES 121 Photoshop I
DES 104 Color Theory
DIG 205 Intro to Motion
DIG 204 Digital Video Production
DES 111 Drawing I

Second Semester

DIG 203 Animate I
PHO 104 History Of Photography
DIG 201 Digital Video Editing I
DIG 208 After Effects I
DES 141 Illustrator I

Program Courses

The program builds a foundation for entry-level art/design design work or further study. All credits can be later transferred into the Associate in Digital Media degree program.

DES 121 Photoshop I - 3 credits

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.

DES 104 Color Theory - 1.5 credits

Focus on developing appropriate color systems for graphic design projects. Projects explore the principles, terminology, and applications of color theory, with an emphasis on manipulating color. A working knowledge of the expression and perception of color, and color interaction, lends credibility and sophistication to a designer’s work.

DIG 205 Intro to Motion - 1.5 credits

This course introduces topics of motion in animation and video through research and observation of real-life movement and movement in animation. Students learn basic principles of visible motion—including physics principles—and apply these principles to written analysis and practical explorations including flipbook-style animation. Topics include movement of objects and characters.

DIG 204 Digital Video Production - 3 credits

Learn how to control white balance, aperture, and shutter speed, to get high quality images from your digital video camera. You’ll explore the different types of shots and camera motion techniques used by the pros and learn how to do location scouting, plan props, wardrobe, and sets, and work with talent. Course lectures challenge you to think about different storytelling conventions in narrative and documentary movie-making and address the fundamentals of sound recording.

DES 111 Drawing I - 3 credits

Learn how to analyze what you see in the world around you and communicate it on paper. Through hands-on projects, and guided by a professional artist, you will explore the critical concepts of line, mass, form, perspective, value, and composition, building a solid foundation for all your art and design work.

DIG 203 Animate I - 3 credits

In this course you’ll get a thorough, hands-on introduction to Adobe Animate, learning how to draw and import artwork, organize it using symbols and layers, and animate it using a range of techniques from basic tweening to frame-by-frame animation. Animation techniques you’ll cover will include motion tweening, scaling and rotating objects, nested animations, shape tweens, masks, frame by frame animation, and lip syncing. You’ll also learn how to add basic interactivity with JavaScript Code Snippets.

PHO 104 History of Photography - 1.5 credits

This course provides a historical overview of photography, from the invention of the photographic process, to the evolution of the medium, to the role of the image in contemporary art and design. You’ll gain an introduction to the styles and achievements of important photographers, and be provided the tools to understand the context of their work as well as their influence on society.

DIG 201 Digital Video Editing I - 3 credits

Learn the art and craft of editing videos from two award-winning filmmakers. The course explores techniques that can be applied in a range of non-linear editing programs, including Adobe Premiere Pro. Yet the main focus is not just on developing software skills; it’s on exploring the magic behind video editing. Challenging projects including editing a commercial, an interview, a narrative scene, a music video, a video diary, and a text title sequence.

DIG 208 After Effects I - 3 credits

Learn how to use After Effects to create sophisticated motion graphics—using text and object animations, compositing videos and images, and adding audio and effects. You’ll learn how to set keyframes on a timeline and work with transform properties, motion paths, masks, and effects, developing a solid foundation in this increasingly popular and versatile program.

DES 141 Illustrator I - 3 credits

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.

Program Objectives
  • Prepare images for professional publication with Photoshop retouching, correction, compositing, or collage.
  • Create sophisticated, appropriate color palettes and use color and contrast effectively in their work.
  • Create drawings in traditional media that show a command of proportion, perspective, and value contrast.
  • Create simple, stylized graphics, icons, and illustrations in Illustrator.
  • Create engaging videos that incorporate skillful production, camerawork, audio, and non-linear editing techniques.
  • Develop interactive animations and multimedia using Adobe Animate software.
  • Explain how technological, social, and artistic changes have influenced the development of the field of photography.
  • Enhance multimedia projects with motion graphics and animated titles created in After Effects.
  • Develop basic competence in various digital media genres including animation, video, and motion graphics.

Financial Aid

Did You Know? Eligible students entering Undergraduate Certificate programs may be entitled to Federal financial aid. Grants and loans can help you cover the cost of your education.

Student Feedback

"Every class I took during my time here has been a collaborative effort for everyone to learn the techniques and get better..." Kyle Gilbreath, Associate Degree in Graphic Design

Student Work

Learn to design from a faculty of professional artists and designers.

Career Information

Program graduates are prepared for entry-level positions in the field of digital media production. Potential employers include TV and broadcast media, game companies, Web design firms, publishers, schools and colleges, and Fortune 500 companies. Job titles include Digital Media Producer, Interactive Designer, Video Editor, and more.

Visit our Career Center for more information, or browse the Federal Occupational Handbook or O*NET database. For Gainful Employment information on this program, visit this page.

Take advantage of our award-winning programs. They’re accredited, affordable, and delivered 100% online.

Getting Started

Enrolling online is easy and convenient.

Apply

Complete our free, no-obligation application form online.

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Ask us about program options and financial aid.

Register

Select your start date and preferred study schedule.

Program At a Glance

Students entering the program are expected to have earned a high school diploma, GED, or state-approved home school equivalent. Any students under 18 years of age will need to provide the signed permission of a parent or guardian.

Classes start in January, May, and August, with early start options in February, June, and October. Our online application is simple and convenient, and there is no application fee.

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

  • Mac or Windows computer with an Internet connection.
  • A digital video camera and ability to connect it to a computer to capture footage.
  • Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Animate and Premiere CC software.
  • Your computer must meet software manufacturer requirements.
  • 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.

Student discount on Adobe Creative Cloud software is available to enrolled students.

The tuition for Undergraduate Certificate students is as follows:

Undergraduate Certificate Tuition
$425 per credit
$5,100 per semester
$10,200 total program tuition

Tuition for part-time students is $475/credit and paid by semester.

A $200 registration fee is required to process your enrollment in the program. Registration fees are nonrefundable after 5 days from the scheduled beginning of program orientation. (Active service members are exempt from registration fees.) See Undergraduate Certificate Tuition and Payment options.

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