Online Computer Graphic Design Program

Why ICS Canada?

  • DEAC Accredited
  • Self-Paced
  • Supportive
  • Low monthly payments

Computer Graphic Design Program Overview

You have an eye for design and a knack for working with technology. It's time to tap into that potential and take the first step toward the career you've always wanted as a digital artist. With ICS Canada’s Computer Graphic Artist Career Diploma program, you'll use Adobe® Illustrator® and other software commonly used in the field of computer graphic design. Your comprehensive lessons include color theory, computer graphics, elements of design, graphic design and production, and the home-based business. With ICS Canada, you train online, at home and at a pace that's right for you, and you can complete your program in as little as four months.

Computer graphic designers work at advertising agencies, design studios, publishing houses, newspapers, public relations, manufacturing, or travel agencies. Whatever you choose to pursue, ICS Canada can help you take the first steps toward your future in graphic design.¹

Curriculum Details

Program Goal and Outcomes

Program Goal

To prepare students for an entry-level career as a computer graphic artist.

Program Outcomes

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  • Understand the benefits of using computer programs and hardware to create computer graphics that are artistically interesting and appealing to clients and consumers, as well as review different career options available to digital artists.
  • Explore basic color theory concepts and software techniques, the relationship between light and color, the organization of colors using color wheels and color spheres effectively, and the differences between additive and subtractive color and how it affects art on a computer.
  • Understand computer graphics and the difference between raster graphics and vector graphics along with the components and steps involved in publication design.
  • Identify how a computer works with existing graphics, original graphics, photographs, and the different types of graphics software available.
  • Understand the history of and the current uses for the Internet and the World Wide Web, how to navigate through the Internet using web URLs, and links and use email and upload and download files.
  • Recognize and name Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and search engines, while understanding how to use search engines and their features, including parts of a URL.
  • Identify the various components of a document, how the spacing between letters, lines, and words can be used, and what must be considered before a document can go into a page layout program.
  • Understand the term illustration and its applications in the world of graphic design, including the role of graphic images in publications; identify the different types of illustrations commonly used in graphic design and computer graphic formats used by most page layout software; and review today’s most popular graphics software packages.
  • Exhibit the basic design principles for communicating visually and incorporating Gestalt theory into your work by demonstrating how to use color, type, and an understanding of four basic principles of design: contrast, repetition, alignment, and proximity.
  • Display the skills involved with setting up your own workspace including working with multiple art boards and preparing artwork for output by creating documents that fold and using templates, and explore drawing of basic shapes, drawing and painting complex artwork; working with gradient meshes, custom swatches, brushes, symbols, special effects, and type; combining text with graphics; creating charts, graphs, using image trace and live color and drawings in perspective, and constructing website interfaces.
  • Recognize the advantages and disadvantages of working from home, as well as how to review strategies for organizing and managing your home office, develop a proper work-life balance, and list the equipment you’ll need, as well as understand procedures for successfully marketing your home business.
  • Understand the role of client’s expectations, the various functions of a portfolio, including common methods of presenting artwork, key elements of a professional résumé and different ways to promote your artwork.
  • Understand the particular requirements for starting and operating a business in Canada; including business registration and taxes.

Instruction Set 1

Learning Strategies

The advantages of learning at home; types of study materials; types of examinations; accessing and using the features of our website; determining what kind of learner you are; establishing a study schedule; using study tips; preparing for and taking examinations.

Introduction to Digital Art

Learning about the Digital Graphic Artistry field; basic equipment; skills needed; career opportunities.

Instruction Set 2

Color Theory

Color sends a powerful message, and the correct use of color can add to the effectiveness of any project.


  • Describe the relationship between light and color.
  • Understand the basics of color theory.
  • Organize colors using color wheels and color spheres.
  • Use color in both two-and three-dimensional projects.
Computer Graphics

Computer graphics: what they are and who uses them; types of graphics: raster and vector; computer graphics software; the electronic publishing process; multimedia production and styles.

Instruction Set 3

Elements of Design

Basic design terms; transferring document design skills to online publishing and the creation of Web pages.


Types of illustrations used by desktop publishers; selecting, sizing, and placing art in documents; arranging and manipulating images.

Instruction Set 4

Introduction to Graphic Design

Introduction to Graphic Design; the Four Basic Principles of Design; Color Relationships; Essential Aspects of Typography; Incorporating Proximity, Alignment, Repetition, Contrast, Color, and Type into Design.

Graded Project

At this point in your program, you'll be required to complete a graded project.

Additional Material

Textbook: The Non-Designer's Design Book

Learning Aid: LABSim: Configuring Windows 7

Instruction Set 5

Graphic Design and Production

Getting Started with Illustrator® and Creating Text with Illustrations Transforming Objects and Working with Layers, Patterns and Brushes Filters, Effects, Appearance Attributes and Graphs Using Symbols; Preparing for Printing and for the Web

Graded Project

At this point in your program, you'll be required to complete a graded project.

Additional Material

Textbook: Adobe® Illustrator® CC: Classroom in a Book

Software: Adobe® Design® Standard Software

Instruction Set 6

The Home-Based Business

Discover what it takes to run your business from home.


  • Organize your home office.
  • Balance home and work schedules.
  • Market your products and services.
Selling Yourself as a Computer Graphic Artist

You’ve worked hard and now have the skills you need to work as a computer graphic artist. Learn how to market and promote yourself.


  • Build a portfolio
  • Write a resume.
Government Requirements for Launching a SOHO Enterprise

Registration and incorporation of the business tax collection; payroll remittances; tax payments; local or special permits.

Computer Specifications
As you know this is an online academic program. This means you will need high-speed internet access to begin your program. In addition, you will need access to a Microsoft® Windows® based computer running Windows 7® or later or an Apple® Mac® computer running OS X® or later, and an email account to participate in and complete your program.

We reserve the right to change program content and materials when it becomes necessary.
In order to further enhance your performance in this field, ICS has researched and recommended specific practical activities designed to complement your coursework.
To ensure that you acquire the manual skills which are important in this program area, we encourage you to follow all of the course instruction.
Microsoft, Paintbrush and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.
Pentium is a trademark of Intel Corporation and its subsidiaries registered in the United States of America and/or other jurisdictions.

Sample Lesson

To view a Computer Graphic Artist sample lesson, click here.

Computer Graphic Artist Course Details

In the ICS Canada Computer Graphic Artist online program, you’ll cover topics such as:

  • Illustration and page layout techniques
  • Photo retouching and image editing
  • How to prepare a graphic design portfolio
  • How to start a graphic design business
Online computer graphic artist courses

Computer graphic artists design and format documents and Web pages, using software such as Adobe® Illustrator,® for advertising agencies, publishing houses, and corporations. Here are a few qualities that effective computer graphic artists have in common:

  • Creative: When it comes to design, you often have to think outside of the box.
  • Flexible: Projects may require compromise and different approaches for different clients.
  • Innovative: Design issues will require creativity and unique problem solving.
  • Dependable: Clients and employers rely on you to get the job done.

"I chose to further my education and accounting knowledge with ICS Canada while working as an accounting clerk, which allowed me to move up within the company at which I am currently working. Studying with ICS Canada was a great experience, and the instructors were very helpful when it came to resolving any issues I had while studying."

- Sean S., ICS Canada graduate

"I have taken three diploma courses with ICS Canada. It has been very rewarding and challenging. I love to increase my knowledge level and share experiences. ICS Canada is great. Enrol! The contact with them is always very pleasant. You feel like a part of the ICS team."

- Connie K., ICS Canada graduate

Your program includes:

  • Customized payment plans with 0% interest
  • Learning aids, including Adobe® Design Standard Software²
  • Study Planner App to customize your study plans and keep track of your progress
  • Instructional support from our experienced faculty
  • Your personalized online student homepage and learning portal
  • Exclusive access to ICS Canada’s Student and Alumni Facebook Group
  • Additional resources such as our online library and career guidance from Career Cruising

Does ICS Canada’s Computer Graphic Artist Career Diploma Program include any software?

Yes, students who meet at least 40% of their tuition obligation will receive Adobe® Design Standard software with their program.

More FAQs >

¹ In order to further enhance your performance in this field, ICS Canada has researched and recommended specific practical activities designed to complement your coursework. To ensure that you acquire the manual skills which are important in this program area, we encourage you to follow all of the course instruction.

² Adobe® Design standard software will be released to active students who have met at least 40% of their tuition obligation.