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Thread: Masters Degree in Web Design/Development?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
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    27

    Masters Degree in Web Design/Development?

    Hey All,

    I was hoping to get some professional input/opinions on something I have been thinking about and considering lately but am not sure its worth it or if the industry moves too quickly that it would be a waste. A quick background, I have a four year degree in PR & Advertising but the majority of my work was in PR, a field in which I hated. After two consecutive employers I worked for went under 3-4 years ago, I went back to school to pursue a Diploma in Web Design and Development, a field in which I was always interested in and am glad I made this decision.

    I have been working in the field for 3-4 years now and really love it, I wake up each morning not dreading work and when I am at work and doing web related tasks, I love it. With all this said, I want to challenge myself and continue to grow/learn new things and have been considering either taking some classes at a local community college in courses such as PHP and Javascript to better round out those skills or even obtain a Masters Degree in the field which will take longer and be more costly but hopefully return the financial stability and knowledge I truly want and will get me further in the field.

    All this said, in your opinion, is it worth it seeking out a Masters Degree in Web Design/Development? Would a Masters in something like Graphic Design be better because it is more focused and may not change as much or quickly like languages and techniques do in Web Design/Development? Or is perks that come with it not really worth it in the long run and would I be better suited taking courses and learning on the side through tutorials and some local courses here and there. I am a visual learner and get the most out of a learning experience by being able to interact with people and seeing things done first and going from there. I think if I went the Masters route, it would have to be Online and that raises a whole load of more questions since I got my Web Design/Development Diploma online and though I learned a bunch, I mostly only took things away as far as HTML/XHTML/CSS are concerned. Any of the PHP I learned, outside of using Includes, I don't know or remember, I also never was taught Javascript which I feel is an absolute must for my career going forward. Not to mention, with the new coding languages of HTML5 and CSS3 I really feel I need to push in that direction but I want to make sure I have the proper foundations first.

    Any help and input you all can provide would be greatly appreciated.
    Last edited by nodnarbnap; 11-08-2012 at 10:07 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    I guess I'll first note that I don't have a Masters degree so I can't really comment from that perspective of things. There are a few things that I do think I could share that might be useful though.

    I found myself in a similar situation to your intial one, in that I went to school for computer programming but found I really wanted to be in web development. There are a few factors that will really depend on your location and situation though such as what jobs are available to you and which of those suit your current conditions. The great thing about this field is that with the right skill sets it is generally easier to find work (compared to job market as a whole). So to an extent it's entirely possible that you could be better off not investing in something as grand as that Masters degree. It's still possible to educate yourself on industry standards and new changes such as those that come with HTML5 and CSS3.

    But having said all of that, if you do have the time, money and drive to push yourself to get a Masters in Web Design/Development then it can still pay off for you in the end. Obviously, any degree is an investment and another great thing about this field is that with being skilled and technical as a job, you can expect great pay rates/salaries, so the investment would pay for itself in time and you could of course secure a very solid financial future.

    In the end, this really comes down to where you want to take your career from this point. You say you have been working in the field or a few years now so it seems you are more or less wondering if you should further your education to in turn further your career in this field. But personally, if you're already doing what you love it would seem that you don't need to go out and push for the extra degree. You can still further your knowledge while building up your experience in this field.

    And also, in regard to the decision between Web Development or Graphic Design, you'd be better off going with Web Development in the end. It's true there are changes over time making things that were important a few years ago obsolete, however Web Development covers an array of languages and techniques and most of them tend to stay pretty similar. HTML5 and CSS3 have pushed us in to a new age of web development, but core principles and concepts remain the same across the industry.
    "Given billions of tries, could a spilled bottle of ink ever fall into the words of Shakespeare?"

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