College of Marin Career Education - Career Pathway Information

Graphic Design

The demand for digital artists is expected to follow the growth of the Internet. In addition, businesses will continue to want visually appealing ideas for their products, publications, and videos.

Digital artists are also involved in the creation of multimedia projects. They are involved in video production, animation, interactive installations, software design, and more.

Graphic design at College of Marin is part of the Multimedia Studies department, which means you can study other peripheral areas and understand how graphic design comes together with website design, animation, gaming, and video production.

Multimedia Graphic Design – What does COM Offer?

CLICK on the program award to view costs and required classes for each certificate and degree

Multimedia Studies, Graphic Design Certificate of Achievement (21.5 units)

Time to Completion (minimum):4 semesters
Estimated Tuition & Fees*:$1425.00
Estimated Books & Supplies*:$100.00
Required Courses (21.5 units)
Class CodeNameCompletedUnits
MMST 101Orientation to Multimedia0.5
MMST 110Introduction to Multimedia3.0
MMST 111Multimedia Production3.0
MMST 112Graphic Design I3.0
MMST 120Illustration3.0
MMST 122Graphic Design II3.0
MMST 132Typography3.0
MMST 200EGraphic Design Portfolio Development3.0

Multimedia Studies, Graphic Design Associates Degree (60.0 units)

Time to Completion (minimum):4 semesters
Estimated Tuition & Fees*:$2759.00
Estimated Books & Supplies*:$537.50
Required Courses (24.5 units)
Class CodeNameCompletedUnits
MMST 200EGraphic Design Portfolio Development3.0
MMST 101Orientation to Multimedia0.5
MMST 110Introduction to Multimedia3.0
MMST 111Multimedia Production3.0
MMST 112Graphic Design I3.0
MMST 115Photoshop for Design3.0
MMST 120Illustration3.0
MMST 122Graphic Design II3.0
MMST 132Typography3.0
General Education (35.5 units)
See a counselor.
* These expenses may not reflect your actual cost to attend College of Marin. Tuition cost is for in-state tuition, which is currently $46/unit plus additional fees. For out-of-state tuition, see For information about opportunities for financial aid, please contact Enrollment Services at (415) 457-8811 Ext. 8822 or
** These courses have prerequisites.

Career Outlook

What work can I get and how much can I earn?

JOB TITLE: Graphic Designer

  • Annual Earnings: $32,210 to $98,440
  • What They Do: Design or create graphics to meet specific commercial or promotional needs, such as packaging, displays, or logos. May use a variety of mediums to achieve artistic or decorative effects.

JOB TITLE: Multimedia Artist or Animator

  • Annual Earnings: $26,850 to $120,170
  • What They Do: Create special effects, animation, or other visual images using film, video, computers, or other electronic tools and media for use in products or creations, such as computer games, movies, music videos, and commercials.
Salary ranges reflect 10% to 90% of annual earnings per data sourced from Economic Modeling Specialists International (; data includes the North Bay Region (Marin, Napa, Solano and Sonoma) and San Francisco County.

Key Contacts

Who do I contact if I have questions?

PLAN: Call the Counseling Office at (415) 485-9432

OTHER QUESTIONS: Call COM's Career Programs Dept at (415) 457-8811 x8200


Multimedia Studies Dept. (415) 457-8811 x8255

Full-time Faculty:

  • James Gonzalez (415) 457-8811 x8250
  • Derek Wilson (415) 457-8811 x8255

Why Choose College of Marin for Graphic Design / Multimedia?

COM is the place to get your career started fast. You can finish the certificate in 3 semesters — and many students have jobs before they even finish the program!

  • State-of-the-art Facilities: COM has amazing facilities, with a beautiful new $2m building fitted out with new huge 32” monitors iMacs, doubling with Windows or Mac and fast Wi-Fi. You’ll also learn the most current versions of software.
  • Real-world, Project-based Learning: The classes are project-based, leading you to finish work that will become part of your portfolio, key to your future career. COM’s program also includes an internship, which is the key to successful transition into the workplace. An internship builds your real-world experience, making you more employable.
  • Affordable and Accessible: College of Marin classes are open to all and cost only $46 per unit for California residents. Financial aid and student support services are available to those who qualify. Class meeting times and locations are convenient to the working student’s schedule.
  • Small Class Size: Most classes have 10-22 students. This low student-to-teacher ratio allows instructors to work individually with students as needed while covering material in-depth.
  • Location & Scheduling Convenience: COM has two campuses in Kentfield and Novato. Evening, weekend, and online classes are available for a wide range of scheduling needs.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What else should I know?

Are there any pre-requisites?

Yes. There are advised prerequisites for courses that follow the introduction level. Advanced courses have the preceding course as prerequisites.

What software do I need to buy?

None specifically, all software can be used at the college. Trial or free academic versions may be used at home. That said, depending on your specific interests, it can be helpful to budget up to $400 for software.

Can I take classes in the evening or online?

You have plenty of online learning options – some course have online options to take classes at the time that is right for you.

Do I need to buy a computer?

You may use the computers at school in the classroom or the open labs. It is convenient to have a current computer to work on from home.

Will I have flexibility with my work as a Graphic Designer?

It depends on the job you take. In general, Graphic Design has plenty of flexibility, such as plenty of freelance opportunities.

How do I get started?

To get started, you need to enroll at College of Marin and should meet with a career counselor (who can help you with planning your education, direct you to financial alternatives, and more!)