Web design is one of the topics found in Information Technology, one of the fastest-growing fields worldwide, with an expected job growth of 15% from 2021 to 2031. A master’s degree in web design will help you develop advanced skills and knowledge in web design and development.
Graduates with a master’s degree in web design can find employment in several fields, including web page design, web development, graphics, databases, UI/UX, and software apps, among other digital design disciplines. They can work with cutting-edge programs and learn in-demand coding languages.
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Online programs are one of the best ways to pursue a master’s degree in web design without spending much on external expenses, such as transportation and housing. It offers the same academic rigor as traditional web design programs. If you want to gain competency in the market without leaving behind any of your current responsibilities, pursue an online master’s degree in web design.
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Due to an increasing number of online Master’s in Web Design degree programs, it’s often challenging to narrow down which are the best. Students, especially working adults, may not always have the time and energy to thoroughly research the curriculum offered by each Master’s in Web Design degree online.
We want to help you achieve greatness! In this list of the Best Grad Schools with Online Master’s in Web Design, we only included online programs that emphasize these features:
- Offered online or in a blended format for the convenience of professionals seeking to earn their graduate degree in Advertising,
- Emphasizes the development of skills in HTML, CSS, Java, Python, and PHP, producing the most competent web designers with substantial knowledge of the different programming languages,
- Immerses students in research, preparing them for better career opportunities and doctorate degrees in Web Design,
- Offers courses outside the field, such as business courses, that will provide students with transferable skills.
- Features highly skilled instructors with terminal degrees and actual expertise in Web Design,
- Offers student support and assistance to locate and qualify for internal and external financial aid opportunities,
- Obtained proper accreditation, ensuring that they uphold the highest standards of excellence in post-secondary education,
- Recognized in the industry as a top-quality Advertising master’s degree program.
Read our Methodology for a closer look at our best master’s degree selection process.
4 Best Master’s of Web Design Graduate Schools
University of Florida
The state’s oldest and largest higher education provider is the University of Florida, a top-10 public, land-grant research university. UF is one of the country’s six most academically diversified universities, with 16 colleges and 170 research centers on its Gainesville campus.
- UF offers an online Master of Arts in Mass Communication with eight unique concentrations and a career-focused curriculum that strongly emphasizes digital competence.
- This online web design degree requires students to complete core, concentration, and elective courses in addition to a three-credit final project or capstone course.
- Students will complete 37 credit hours in total.
- An advisory board of leading industry executives oversees the program’s curriculum, taught by teachers from the University of Florida and industry members.
- Students explore several courses, including Advanced Web Topics, Corporate & Brand Identity on the Web, UX Theory and Research, Web Design Principles, and Web Research Methods.
Standout Features of the University of Florida’s Online MA in Mass Communications in Web Design:
The Web Design concentration is one of its multifaceted master’s program concentrations designed to equip students with knowledge about codes and design software. The concentration takes a three-pronged approach: design skills, communication theory, and code.
Did You Know?
This online master’s degree in web design is among the fastest online programs in the area. Students enrolled full-time will have accelerated courses, allowing them to complete the entire coursework in 16 months. Accelerated courses make your master’s degree journey faster and more affordable.
Southern New Hampshire University
Manchester, New Hampshire
Southern New Hampshire University is a small university that strives to provide everyone with access to a top-notch education at a reasonable price. It has a 90+ year history and over 25 years of online education experience. In both on-campus and online formats, SNHU offers more than 70 undergraduate degrees and ten graduate programs.
- The online MS in Information Technology at SNHU is one of the most in-demand IT degrees in the country, thanks to its 100% online format, affordable tuition rates, and generous transfer credit option.
- The MSIT degree offers seven concentrations, including Web Design. You must complete at least 36 credit hours to become ready for a career building and maintaining interactive and e-commerce websites.
- You’ll gain a solid foundation in information technology by studying IT-focused courses, such as computer architecture and operating systems, database management systems, simulation and modeling techniques, and more.
- The course material looks at advanced information technology analysis, design, implementation, management, object-oriented analysis, and web software development.
- Sample courses include Website Construction, Website Optimization, and Interface Design for Websites.
Standout Features of Southern New Hampshire University’s Online Master’s in Information Technology in Web Design:
The creation and maintenance of interactive websites, HTML/XML, scripting, content organization, database connectivity, accessibility, functional structure, branding, and marketing are all covered in web design training. You’ll be required to create an e-commerce website and client applications to edit data in a common database, honing your interface design, object-oriented design, data management, and security skills.
Did You Know?
Online students who want to partake in graduate experiential learning can participate in online tournaments, study cloud computing, or analyze actual data while earning credit. It’s a 3-credit STEM experiential learning that will allow you to obtain practical experience.
University of Denver
The University of Denver, a premier private university, was founded in 1864, just a few years after the city of Denver was founded. DU provides various undergraduate and graduate courses designed to empower students for future success. DU offers comprehensive programs across various disciplines, from business and technology to arts and sciences.
- The online MS in Information and Communications Technology at the University of Denver offers a Web Design and Development track with four concentration courses; Web-Enabled Information Systems, Website Design and Management, Advanced Website Design & Management, and Website Usability Design.
- The program can be completed in as quickly as 18 months of full-time study.
- Students who enroll part-time in the program can choose between a 24- and 36-month completion.
- The web design concentration aims to equip students with the knowledge to develop interactive web and mobile applications for the 21st century.
- Students will receive practical training in UX and web design principles, information architecture, and web design.
- While developing valuable skills in client-side and server-side development, you’ll learn about the convergence of design and development.
Standout Features of the University of Denver’s Online MS in Information and Communications Technology in Web Design and Development Program:
One of the best features of this web design program is its HyFlex course. This course format will allow you to attend face-to-face on campus or online (or blended) during simultaneous online and on-campus sessions. Moreover, you can customize your MSIT degree further by choosing an elective to complete the required 48 credit hours.
Did You Know?
The University of Denver introduced its first online course in 1996. There was no multimedia content, learning management systems like Canvas, or video conferencing. The online course only used email and phone calls for all communication and learning.
Minneapolis College of Art and Design
The Minneapolis College of Art and Design, established in 1886, is situated in the vibrant Twin Cities art and design scene. MCAD is home to about 800 students from 45 states and 15 countries and is renowned nationally and internationally for its unique approaches to art and design education. Here, students discover their personal and professional calling as cultural leaders with creativity.
- Minneapolis College of Art and Design’s online MA in Graphic and Web Design is one of its sought-after degree programs for working adults seeking career advancements in computer and information technology.
- Students can enroll in one or two classes per semester, beginning in the autumn or spring.
- The MA degree is a 30-credit hour program with synchronous meetings allowing conversations, critiques, and community development with professors, colleagues, and visiting designers. Students will also have asynchronous courses for added flexibility.
- MCAD is also known for its small class sizes, which promote cooperation and individual attention from knowledgeable professors with years of experience as web designers.
- Students explore various courses, including Web Design and Motion Design, Typography, Programming for Web, Design Studio, and UX Design.
Standout Features of Minneapolis College of Art and Design’s Online MA in Graphic and Web Design Program:
Online students are given extensive help in creating professional portfolios to position themselves as versatile contributors in print, digital, and web contexts as they pursue graphic and web design opportunities. Moreover, online students will be given the same opportunities as their on-campus peers to obtain practical experiences.
Did You Know?
MCAD offers its students a strong, supportive alum network. Emmy-winning directors, Whitney Biennial artists, and Guggenheim fellows are just some notable MCAD alumni. They established new benchmarks for various creative professions, including freelance artists, corporate designers, and entrepreneurs.
Overview of Master’s in Web Design
A Web Design graduate program equips students with the knowledge to create business applications for mobile and computer devices. They will learn how to create and develop websites that adhere to user experience, information architecture, and web design through well-known programming languages and frameworks. A master’s in web design usually requires students to complete 35 to 50 credits, which takes about two years of full-time study.
This course encourages students to investigate jobs in hardware, software, multimedia, and systems integration services design, development, management, support, and management. Students will gain knowledge and abilities to help them flourish in a society and career path heavily reliant on technology.
Foundations of Web Design
This course equips students with knowledge about using CSS and HTML to create responsive websites. Students create websites for desktop and mobile applications at the school’s computer lab or via live meetings. Additionally, they will use style manuals to aid in the conception of an effective web design plan.
Design Thinking and Methodology
This introductory course teaches students about the cutting-edge methods of design. By conducting research, employing prototype methods, and coming up with ideas, students will learn about media design principles. As part of their final design project, students will often give a presentation where they can discuss their problem-solving skills and key learnings.
UX/UI Design Principles
This course teaches students about the connection between media and human perception through experiential learning. This course covers various topics, including style manuals, software interface design, conceptual design difficulties, and technical research.
Visual Design Foundation
Students will study the origins and development of design and the extensive and fascinating history of design worldwide. Students will study complex links between fashion, culture, and technology.
Programming for Designer
This is a specialized course designed for students with a strong design background. This course will teach web design students how to apply their creations to computer software using basic concepts from object-oriented programming. Classes, variables, control structures, and functions will all be covered in class.
Common Area of Specialization
Because it is a specialized field, web design and development occasionally only provides concentration courses. Through these courses, students can pick a specific professional field from a larger industry sector and develop the skills necessary for success in that field. Courses in concentration may include, but not be limited to:
- Advanced Website Design and Management
- Usability Design for Websites
- Web-Enabled Information Systems
- Website Design and Management
Specific admission requirements vary by school and program. But many graduate schools would require applicants to possess a bachelor’s degree in a computer- or design-related field. Here are other common admission requirements for an online master’s degree in web design:
- Application fee
- Application for admission
- Official academic transcripts
- An undergraduate degree with a 3.0 GPA
- GMAT or GRE scores
- Personal statement
- Two letters of recommendation
- Graduate resume
- Proof of proficiency in English (for non-native English speakers)
Obtaining graduate-level certificates in a particular field of web design is the best course of action for continuing education after receiving a master’s degree. Graduates will find lucrative and satisfying web design jobs with the assistance of specialization and further qualifications.
A PhD in Web Design, the highest degree level, is another option for continuing education. This degree level, however, is best for those seeking to teach at the college level or apply for research careers. This carefully thought-out degree course explores web development with a focus on education.
Career and Salary Outlook for Master of Web Design Graduates
The Statistics Bureau discloses that, as long as there is a demand for online services and websites, there will be more job prospects for web designers and developers. According to the BLS, employment will rise 23% between 2021 and 2031. This anticipated growth is considerably more rapid than the typical growth for other job sectors. Those with experience using multimedia software and multi-language programming will have the best job possibilities.
These are some career options that master’s degree holders in web design may apply for.
A web designer is responsible for the creative side of website creation. They arrange a client’s written and graphic information to accomplish a particular objective and tell a narrative. By developing low- and high-fidelity wireframes that specify what content belongs where and how the user should traverse the website, these experts put the user experience first.
Median Annual Salary: $62,175
With the help of digital and physical designs that often employ graphics, photos, art, and other visual elements, graphic designers create visual concepts to capture clients’ attention. All graphic designers, regardless of whether they choose to utilize their digital talents and graphic design software or a range of tools, must be able to produce designs with their hands at least periodically.
Median Annual Salary: $50,710
Application developers create software for mobile devices running Apple, Android, and Windows. Application developers are responsible for testing their creations when finished and supplying updates as needed.
Median Annual Salary: $107,784
A search engine optimization (SEO) specialist raises a website’s placement on popular search engines like Google, Yahoo!, and Bing. By ensuring on-page optimization, they increase site traffic, lead volume, and brand exposure while ensuring relevant search results and a great user experience.
Median Annual Salary: $57,771
For multimedia applications, including presentations, games, movies, CD-ROMs, information kiosks, and the web, multimedia professionals develop computer animation, video, audio, and graphic image files. To discuss web-related concerns like user access, disaster recovery planning, and web server security, multimedia specialists also consult network specialists.
Median Annual Salary: $60,946
Web content manager
To coordinate the site’s content and ensure that it meets the target audience’s demands, a web content manager collaborates closely with project teams, editors, developers, and designers. Moreover, web content managers manage and produce various available content for many users.
Median Annual Salary: $76,585
Median Annual Salary: $82,475
A UX designer is concerned with every product development facet, from branding and marketing to usability, function, and even design. Their work includes finding new prospects for the product and company and the full end-to-end journey of a user’s interaction with a product.
Median Annual Salary: $117,209
The multimedia programmer develops online and multimedia programs. They use multimedia characteristics like text, sound, graphics, digital photography, 2D/3D modeling, animation, and video to build goods like websites or computer programs.
Median Annual Salary: $82,573
Advantages and Disadvantages of a Master’s Degree in Web Design
Information technology, including web design, has become a trendy career. But before immersing yourself in the field, you should know the pros and cons of the profession to help you decide whether a web design career is for you.
- This is an in-demand field.
There’s no overstating that the field is growing rapidly. In 2022, 48% of small businesses have their own app. This means that web designers with higher education will have low chances of unemployment.
- Web design is a massive industry.
According to IBISWorld, Web Design Services is a $56.7 billion industry.
- You’ll have a flexible career.
Web design and web development programs help you avoid being confined to a single place of employment. You can set up your office anywhere and make money wherever you are as long as you have Wi-Fi.
- Endless learning
You must stay current to succeed in this line of work, as the competition will obliterate you if you don’t. To provide your clients with the finest service possible, you must constantly advance your knowledge because the Internet and technology are fast-evolving fields. You’ll often feel exhausted.
- Some related careers have a negative job outlook.
Not all careers in web design and development provide a positive job outlook. One biggest example is graphic design. According to BLS, graphic design is only expected to grow 3% from 2021 to 2031.
- Not all projects will keep you upbeat.
You won’t always get projects you enjoy. Due to the wide range of web design, you could encounter some stale content. It’s fantastic if you have the choice to select your niche. If not, be aware that you may occasionally need to put your creativity on hold in favor of a mindless or unimportant task.
Is an Online Master of Web Design Worth It?
Yes, an accredited online master’s in web design is worth it if you have an eye for design, a love of programming, and a desire to create memorable user experiences. Anyone interested in technology has a bright future, and earnings for design professions are rising as demand increases.
Web design degrees are excellent at offering students who want to study a variety of diverse web design skills a thorough, structured education program. They help graduates pursue various employment routes and keep their options open.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does a Master’s in Web Design require a thesis?
Web design is art, and like most programs in the visual arts, it will rarely require a thesis. Alternatively, you’ll spend most of your time building projects that use the abilities you learned in your program. This could involve building a website for a local business, upgrading a local school’s website, or even developing a comprehensive personal website.
What master’s degrees are available online for Web Design?
Here are four of the many master’s degrees in Web design that are available to students.
- MS in Web Design and Development
- MS in Information Technology – Web Design
- MS in Web Design and Application Development
- MA in Web Design and Online Communication
What degree is best for Web Design?
The answer depends on your personal interests and goals. But, in general, Information Technology degrees are great for those wanting to advance their web design and web development skills. IT programs explore current computers’ different systems, modern software methodologies, hardware, and software components. Another degree best for aspiring web designers is Software Engineering.
Is a Web Design degree the Same as a Web Development degree?
A website’s aesthetic elements and effectiveness, such as the graphics, layout, and overall user experience, are frequently the emphasis of a master’s degree in web design. On the other hand, a master’s in web development program concentrates on producing the code that determines how a website functions at its core.
A web development degree prepares students to build interfaces, maintain databases, and ensure property functionality. Web design degrees prepare students to collaborate with web developers by incorporating their designs’ artistic and practical elements.
How much does a master’s degree in Web Design typically cost?
The National Center for Education Statistics estimates a Master’s degree in Web Design to cost an average of $19,792 annually. Tuition rates differ depending on the university type, the program, and the duration. The same NCES research states that a master’s degree typically costs $26,597 at private colleges and $12,410 at public colleges.
- The best online master’s degrees in web design will help you land a fulfilling job.
- Graduate degrees in web design develop a student’s thorough understanding of the critical ideas and abilities in their specialized subject.
- An online master’s degree in web design generally requires students to enroll in 35 to 50 credits, which can be completed in two years.