Careers and Employability Service

What can I do with my degree in Multimedia and Digital Arts?

Multimedia and Digital Arts careers

Multimedia covers a wide variety of job areas including web design, computer games design, advertising graphics, animation and new media. Multimedia is used in libraries, museums, security systems, cable TV, publishing houses, schools, retailers, films, games, training and video conferencing.

Some of the work is freelance work and can be done working from home. You need to be adaptable - able to cope with constant change. Able to learn new things quickly, client focused with good team skills and able to work in project teams.

There is a need for multimedia developers - Flash Developers, network engineers, legal and “rights” experts, publishers, graphic artists, sound experts, animators, authors/content providers, project managers, picture researchers.

Employers look for knowledge of specific packages e.g. Flash, Dreamweaver, AJAX etc. and preferably knowledge of more than one package. There is plenty of opportunities for "skills transfer". A web-based portfolio can be valuable.

Common job areas:

  • Web Designer/Developer
  • Multimedia Designer
  • Software Developer/Programmer
  • IT Support/Helpdesk
  • On-line publishing – editorial/design

The occupations below are a selection of those which may interest students and graduates from the School of Multimedia and Digital Arts.

Web Design

Web Designers with HTML and multimedia skills - networking, XML, AJAX, Flash, JavaScript and Java skills are in demand. Web database skills, especially PHP and SQL are very important. Lot of jobs are with small firms but most large organisations now employ in-house web designers and developers and it is a good area for self employment

You need to keep your skills up to date as these are constantly changing

Starting salaries for Multimedia graduates entering web design/development typically ranged from £18K to £24K, averaging about £21k.

Web content producers seem to have salaries around the £27-35k mark. They would normally require a couple of years of experience, although there are a few vacancies for junior content producers which might be ideal.  Some content producer roles focus more on the text side where the role is closer to journalism and would normally require evidence of strong writing skills.

The key skills are CSS, AJAX, Dreamweaver, PHP, Flash and JavaScript. Flash Actionscript is based on JavaScript so this should be easy to learn if you know Flash. Look at a range of jobs in web design and development, junior content production and Flash. If you can get any one of these you should be able to move on after a year or two to a more senior role where you can specialise more.

Infographic on the career progression of a graphic designer

PROFILE: Multimedia Designer/Web Designer

INVOLVES: Designing & producing multimedia CDs & Internet Web Sites using text, graphics, sound, animation & video. Discussing requirements with clients. Prototyping - providing an initial quick draft of the solution for clients to see. Programming - often using a simple programming language called a scripting language. Liaising with graphic designers, musicians & video producers regarding content. Completing projects on time & budget. Keeping up to date with rapid developments in software & hardware.
EMPLOYERS: training organisations, educational institutions, educational software producers, IT consultancies. Almost any company with a Web Site. Self-employment & freelancing possible.
RELATED JOBS: applications programmer, systems analyst, graphic designer, publishing editor, advertising copywriter
SATISFACTIONS: Creative Design. Seeing the results of your work on screen. Problem solving. Intellectual challenge
NEGATIVES: Always needing to keep up to date with the latest technology - skills can rapidly become outdated.
SKILLS: analysing & investigating, planning, creativity, artistic ability.
ADVANCEMENT: To head of design team. Can move into the marketing & sales side. Can set up you own business.
DEGREE: computer science or multimedia degree.
POSTGRADUATE STUDY: A postgraduate computing conversion course would be the best route for graduates in subjects other than those above.
TIPS: Get experience of computer graphics, sound, video & programming. Look at Web Sites to see what makes them stand out. Learn the key skills: html, Flash, Photoshop etc. Design your own web page - make it look professional, then send out speculative CVs to multimedia employers with instructions of how to access your web pages. Web Designers with HTML and multimedia skills - networking, HTML, Flash, CGI, JavaScript and Java skills in demand.

Further Information: UK Web Designers Association

Jobsite: Graduate Jobs

List of 57 web design companies in Kent (also has lists for other counties)

SourceThatJob media specific job board. Jobs for journalists, PR professionals, advertising people, web designers and marketers.

Animation

The animation industry ranges across many different segments of the audio visual industries including television, feature films, commercials, websites and computer games. There are about 2000 employees in UK. Often your first job is as a production assistant or runner. You need to network and send out speculative CVs and need a quality portfolio

Digital Marketing and Search Engine Optimisation

This is a rapidly growing area, using channels such as e-mail, websites, social media and texts to promote products, services and events to a targeted audience.

See our page on this

Computer Games

Computer games companies require fluent Java and C++ programmers, 3D and digital graphic designerssound and credits screen designers, technical writerstranslators and customer support staff. 90% of those recruited are graduates.

See our page on this

Educational Multimedia

This is a fast growing sector as interactive learning increasingly replaces books. Learning technologists are now found in many universities, colleges and schools. Here are some resources to get you started

  • World Open Learning Event Takes place each November at the NEC.  Most exhibitors produce CD-ROM training materials.
  • The BETT exhibition 'The UK's leading educational resource event'. Takes place in January. Over 500 suppliers attend.
  • Contact the Education Department of your local Council. They will advise schools on educational software
  • Use Yell and Google using search criteria such as Educational Software, Multimedia, Educational Publishing.

  • Companies
  • Trade magazines
  • Other resources

Secondary school teacher

To teach in state schools (excluding academies and free schools) in England and Wales, you must complete a period of “initial teacher training”, such as a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) course or school-centred training, which leads to Qualified Teacher Status. History is a popular subject so it is important to build up teaching-related experience during your undergraduate degree and to apply each for teacher training.

Job profile of a secondary school teacher from the Prospects website
Job profile of a secondary school teacher from the TARGET Jobs website
I Want to Work In: Teaching

Publishing

This covers the production of books, magazines and online publishing, generalist or specialist (including academic publishers). Graduates may work in editorial roles or in business roles such as production and marketing. 

Types of jobs in publishing and journalism

Journalist

Journalists research, write and present stories, features and articles across a range of media platforms – newspapers, magazines, television, radio and internet. Experience gained in student journalism will be helpful in breaking into this area.

Types of jobs in publishing and journalism

Please note that some of these careers may require further study.

For further information on these careers, see also:

People in some Multimedia and Digital Arts roles may be self-employed.

Thank you to Prospects for the content on these pages.

Visit the Multimedia and Digital Arts web page


Their pages also include infromation on Employability


 

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Last Updated: 10/09/2019