Jamaican graphic design schools
Whenever graphic design comes to mind, it’s often the thought of visually appealing marketing materials; flyers, posters, business cards, or even eye-catching websites and book layouts.
Graphic design is not limited to these examples, as the central focus of the graphic design field is any content that uses visual concepts to communicate to an audience or solve an existing problem.
With the growing need to do so, especially on social media, several Jamaican institutions have been creating graphic design classes to match the global pace; The University of Technology, Jamaica (UTech Jamaica), Caribbean School of Media and Communication (Carimac), and iCreate/the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC Jamaica).
People commonly refer to these institutions as “graphic design schools in Jamaica.” Though these institutions cater to creative minds who want to become certified in graphic design, they are quite different in how they do it and how long it takes to get certified.
Ba. in Communication, Arts and Technology (BACAT) at The University of Technology (UTech Jamaica)
- 4-year program
- Well-rounded with specialization
- Located in Kingston and Montego Bay (1st year only)
- Online component
- Hands-on approach
“The B.A. in Communication Arts and Technology is offered by the Faculty of Education and Liberal Studies at the University of Technology. This 4-year degree programme started in 2009 and graduated its first batch of students in 2013. To date, 55 students have graduated from this programme.” –bacat’s program brochure
The University of Technology, Jamaica, is known to be a very “hands-on”, and its media program is no different from that. The B.A. in Communication Arts and Technology is an accredited four-year program that allows students to have concentrations in Journalism, Advertising, and Public Relations.
On the other hand, the program allows each student to participate in compulsory graphic design courses that work hand in hand with the other courses/ concentrations offered. The graphic design classes incorporate history lessons on visual and design elements, the principles of design as well as practical courses with software such as Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.
During this program, students are equipped with professional knowledge to be versatile in the industry.
(Disclaimer: I am a graduate of the BACAT program at the University of Technology, Jamaica)
Caribbean Institute of Media and Communication CARIMAC at the University of the West Indies, Mona Campus
- Classes focused on the Caribbean
- Covers business and creative aspects of mass communication
- Short courses in the summer
- Several degree offerings
“CARIMAC is the leading academic institution devoted to media and communication research, teaching and training in the English-speaking Caribbean.” -Carimac’s facebook page
CARIMAC is the most popular of the three Jamaican graphic design schools. The program focuses on mass communication within the Caribbean. It is known for offering a three-year-long B.A. in Journalism, Digital Media Production, and Integrated Marketing Communication.
Lately, CARIMAC expanded its reach to provide short summer courses in graphic design. The graphic design classes have two options; basic and advanced. Both courses equip students with insightful knowledge about the field of graphic design.
Upon successful completion, CARIMAC expects students to be proficient in Photoshop, Illustrator, and CorelDraw. The institution also provides a certificate of completion for all graduates.
iCreate at University of the Commonwealth Caribbean (UCC Jamaica)
- Modern approach to classes
- Available on the Jamaica Stock Exchange
- Good mix of long and short courses
- Well rounded
“iCreate is a Creative Training Institute developed with the aim of filling the gap in skills training and development of digital creatives. As an important part of the creative eco-system, we provide students with a wide range of career opportunities in the Creative Economy.” -www.increateedu.com
iCreate is the youngest of the three Jamaican graphic design schools; however, it has been gaining a reputation within Jamaica, as it is aimed at solely fostering digital creatives.
The institution is diverse in its offering, and it is mainly known for producing graphic designers. After this course, students have a basic understanding of colours and typography and its relevance to maneuvering Illustrator and Photoshop.
Additionally, students will graduate having an intermediate level in the art with a Creative Certificate from the institution provided by the University of the Commonwealth Caribbean.
Graphic design is an essential facet within the Jamaican creative industry, and as such, there are several opportunities within the country to foster the art. These Jamaican graphic design schools are tailored to produce graphic designers that make waves internationally.
There are several options for creatives in Jamaica to learn and master graphic design. YouTube videos and online courses can be an excellent resource for independent study. Still, a graphic design degree provides several benefits when working in Jamaica. A notable benefit being the ability to demand more pay for your services and a higher level of trust from corporate Jamaica when they are considering hiring a graphic designer.
Stay tuned for more blog posts on graphic design and web design within Jamaica. In the meantime, check out my portfolio here and if you’re looking for a graphic designer, feel free to reach out to me here.