It’s important to understand that multimedia is not just an information and communications technology (ICT)-related initiative, but it is also a very creatively orientated field. Multimedia bachelor degree students are taught a very diverse academic curriculum spanning design theories, computer hardware and software applications to human behavioral sciences.
Besides theory and computer applications, it’s equally important for students to be able to learn the developments of the industry to enable them to identify an area of expertise once they join the workforce.
Bachelor degree students are advised to choose a program, which is highly industry driven rather than one, which is highly academic in nature. Multimedia design is a very technology driven pathway and multimedia designers are required continuously to keep up with the pace of this highly challenging industry. Therefore, it’s important that students who wish to pursue multimedia design have an inclination towards technology and are prepared to continuously learn and enhance their skills upon completion.
There are basically two broad divisions in multimedia studies, which are programming and multimedia design. The difference between programming and design is the emphasis. A multimedia programming course is more IT oriented while a multimedia design course is more aesthetically inclined.
Multimedia design studies have a two-pronged approach in theory and practice. Theoretical components are very important as multimedia design involves an understanding of the chosen media format, like websites, as each media format has unique limitations and abilities.
A multimedia course prepares bachelor degree students to understand the working processes of a multimedia application and provides them with the skills to do so. The fundamental concerns and expectations in multimedia are also taught to all students.
Multimedia by nature is a diverse and eclectic field of study. Bachelor degree students will share basic skills but will develop advanced abilities in key areas that they have personally identified, usually culminating in their final multimedia project.
Multimedia design is very challenging yet very technical in nature. Heavy workloads and short deadlines are a norm in the industry and bachelor degree graduates should expect to face many obstacles.
Technology plays an integral role in the creation of multimedia and computer technology changes rapidly. This creates a very steep learning curve for not only multimedia students but also multimedia professionals as they are expected to keep up with the changes and continue learning long after completing their formal education. Experience also makes a multimedia professional more valuable as the development of multimedia is a learning process where you improve as you gain more exposure.
Multimedia designers are employed to develop state-of-the-art websites, interactive kiosks or even video and animation effects for the movie industry. The need for multimedia exists from company websites for small organizations up to government initiatives for medical research.
This multi million industry will certainly need a huge supply of resources in the form of young bachelor degree graduates capable of expanding and enhancing it. Multimedia designers can be employed by an advertising agency, multimedia development agency or even with organizations with high demands for multimedia applications and development like banks and even manufacturers. However, greater opportunities exist for multimedia professionals who venture into development for the internet.