Best Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Programs

A web design and development certificate prepares workers for lucrative, in-demand careers. Learn more about top online programs in web development and design.

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by Genevieve Carlton, Ph.D.

Updated April 22, 2022

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An online certificate in web design and development provides training in building and maintaining websites.

During a certificate program, learners gain technical skills and create a portfolio. Web development careers report a high earning potential and strong projected job growth compared to the national average. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), web developers earn a median salary of over $77,000 per year.

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Ready to start your journey?

Many of the top online schools offer online web development programs. These flexible, convenient programs make it easier for professionals to enter the growing web design and development field.

Our list ranks accredited online certificate programs in web design and development. Prospective students can use the rankings to find the best fit for their budget, schedule, and career goals.

What Is an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Program?

A certificate in web design and development trains students in core digital design and web development skills. These certificate programs differ in important ways from certifications and degree-granting programs. Professional certification demonstrates knowledge and experience in a field, often through an exam. A certificate, by contrast, trains learners through courses.

Certificate programs offer specialized coursework in web design and development. Unlike an associate or bachelor's program, learners do not take general education courses. Instead, the entire course of study focuses on web development and design. Professionals making a career change to tech or seeking to launch their tech career benefit from certificate programs.

What Can I Expect From an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Program?

Web design and development programs build the technical skills and knowledge for careers in a growing field. Courses focus on practical training in programming languages, design software, and frameworks. Students often begin by learning the basics of HTML and CSS. Programs then move into more complex programming languages like JavaScript.

Programs use a project-based format to strengthen skill sets. Learners begin with simple projects to create webpage layouts and styles. The assignments then move onto more complex projects where learners design a complete website. At the end of the certificate program, enrollees build a portfolio showcasing their abilities.

During an online certificate in web design and development, learners concentrate in:

Completing a certificate in web design and development typically requires 15-40 credits, depending on the program. Students generally finish the certificate within one year. Some programs use a part-time or self-paced format for added flexibility.

Online programs require self-motivation and organizational skills. In self-paced programs, learners must keep a schedule to progress toward their certificate. Many programs provide support services like academic advising, tutoring, and career counseling for certificate students.

Still Looking for the Right Fit? Discover Similar Degree Programs.

Popular Online Web Design and Development Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

What Courses Will I Take in an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Program?

Web Design and Usability

Web design focuses on the look and usability of websites. Students explore the software and programming tools used to create functional, dynamic websites. The course also emphasizes creative approaches.

Web Development

Web developers create responsive web content. This course explores the programming languages, tools, and libraries used to build websites. Students gain foundational skills they can build on in further classes.

Web Application Development

Learners examine how to build web apps, including the technical tools and frameworks used in app development and database integration. Topics may also include testing, development frameworks, and different web app environments.

JavaScript

Web designers and developers rely on JavaScript to create interactive websites. Students build on their introductory JavaScript training to develop functional forms, validate data, and create polished websites.

User Testing

Students learn how to test websites throughout the creation process, including alpha testing and beta testing. The class covers user interaction research, incorporating user feedback into revisions, and accessibility requirements.

What Are Admission Requirements for an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Program?

Compared to degree-granting programs, certificate programs typically set lower admission requirements. Most online certificate in web design and development programs only require an application, which prospective students typically fill out online. Applicants may need to provide proof of high school graduation. But they do not need any prior training in web development or a college degree.

Depending on the program, the potential admission requirements may include:

  • A completed application
  • An admission fee
  • High school transcripts

Most certificate programs do not require college entrance exam scores. Similarly, applicants usually do not need letters of recommendation. Programs may ask for a cover letter or application essay describing the candidate's background and career goals. Applicants can apply to web design and development certificate programs after earning a degree in a different field or without attending college.

What Can I Do With an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Degree?

Career Outlook

The technology industry continues to grow. The demand for web designers and developers is no exception. According to BLS projections, the field will grow faster than average for 2020-2030. This translates into more than 25,000 new jobs for web developers and digital designers.

Many of these positions offer above-average salaries. Web developers earn a median salary of $77,200 per year. Location, experience, and job title affect earning potential.

Earning a web design and development certificate prepares graduates for many career opportunities. Certificate programs build career-ready skills for web designers, front-end web developers, and back-end web developers. Certificate-holders can also become UX/UI designers. With specialized training, professionals can pursue web support and programming careers.

A certificate in web design and development opens the door to many job opportunities. Learn more about web development careers.

Career Paths

Web Designer

Web designers, also called digital interface designers or digital designers, craft a website's layout and style. They choose color schemes, font types, images, videos, and other elements for websites. Web designers also make sure the website works as intended for users. They blend graphic arts and technology training.

Median Annual Salary: $77,200

Web Developer

Web developers build websites. They write the programming code to create a website's look and interactive elements. Web developers also focus on site speed, database management, and performance. Their job requires strong programming and testing skills, plus an ability to work with team members and clients.

Median Annual Salary: $77,200

User Interaction Designer

User interaction designers create interactive elements on websites and apps. They research how users interact with software programs and websites. Based on that research, they create layouts and elements that improve the user's interaction with the product. Many designers bring a background in graphic design, web design, or web development.

Average Annual Salary: $65,710

Graphic Designer

Graphic designers communicate information in engaging, original ways. They design advertisements, logos, and illustrations for clients. Graphic designers use software to build layouts that attract customers, inform readers, and communicate client messages. Some graphic designers specialize in digital design and web design.

Median Annual Salary: $53,380

UX Designer

UX designers, also known as user experience designers, research how people use products. They also implement changes to improve user experience. These designers work closely with developers and analysts to create and test prototypes. They may also conduct user surveys and tests. UX designers need strong teamwork skills and a portfolio demonstrating their abilities.

Average Annual Salary: $75,420

Web Design and Development Not For You? Check Out These Related Careers.

Continuing Education

After completing a certificate in web design and development, graduates enter the workforce or continue their education. A certificate provides foundational training in web development and design. However, students seeking advanced training in the subject can consider an online associate in web development or an online bachelor's in web development. Both options may provide transfer credits for courses taken as part of an associate degree.

Web designers and developers maintain their skills by taking free online courses, training programs, and other types of continuing education. Extra training can help web developers increase their earning potential.

How Do I Choose an Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Program?

Cost

The cost of a certificate program varies depending on the school and credit requirement. In general, community colleges offer the most affordable rates. An online learning format may also save students money. When researching costs, prospective applicants must consider the true program cost rather than merely looking at the per-credit or per-class rate.

Program Format

Online certificate programs come in many formats. Students can find options with synchronous or asynchronous classes. Synchronous classes meet at set times. Asynchronous courses let students access material on their schedule. Learners can also choose between part-time or full-time programs. Some schools offer accelerated web design and development certificates.

Location

Online learners can attend schools nationwide or locally. Some students may prefer a local option. Enrolling at a local school can increase opportunities for mentorship or in-person meetings. Students may also benefit from the program's network of alumni and corporate partners in the area.

Accreditation

Students seeking a certificate in web design and development should look for accredited schools. An accredited institution meets high standards for academic quality and faculty qualifications. Some certificate programs may also qualify for federal financial aid. Choosing an accredited institution assures learners and their future employers of the school’s academic quality.

Student Support

The best online certificate programs offer student services for learners. Academic advising, career planning, and mentorship help web design and development students transition from their certificate program into the workforce. Some programs also offer internship support or job placement resources.

Best Accredited Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Programs

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Best Online Certificate in Web Design and Development Programs

  1. Rappahannock Community College
    Location

    Glenns, VA

    Tuition

    $7555

    RCC's certificate in web design features a four-course curriculum that emphasizes web page graphics, web page design, and design concepts for mobile applications. Most coursework can be completed online. Students must maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA to remain in the program. Participants learn to create websites that advertise a product or service.

    RCC's Office of Career and Transition Services provides career coaching, employment tips, and best practices for writing cover letters. Students can also access College Central Network to research job openings.

    Active-duty service members pay in-state tuition. RCC awards several merit-based scholarships and need-based grants to qualified students.

  2. Georgia Northwestern Technical College
    Location

    Rome, GA

    Tuition

    $2587

    GNTC's online certificate in web site development prepares students to build and maintain websites. The 35-credit curriculum covers topics like scripting technologies, web graphics, and program design and development. Learners can personalize the curriculum through electives.

    GNTC offers online students a resume template, an interview checklist, and a list of the most common interview questions. Current students and alumni can also review top job search sites and take a career interest inventory.

    GNTC requires that distance learners attend an on-campus orientation and meet with an advisor to create an initial course schedule. Georgia residents who maintain a minimum 3.5 GPA may qualify for the full-tuition Zell Miller Grant.

  3. Bismarck State College
    Location

    Bismarck, ND

    Tuition

    $9390

    Prospective students who want to learn about multiple software suites can pursue BSC's certificate in web page development and design. This one-year, 30-credit certificate includes required courses in electronic publishing, web design theory, and desktop publishing. In their second semester, all students create a web portfolio.

    BSC's career advisors provide students with a career planning guide, a private networking website, and internship fairs. These services help 97% of BSC alumni find a job or earn admission into another educational program within one year of graduating.

    Incoming students take a placement test; based on their results, they may need to complete up to four additional courses in areas such as English and keyboarding. BSC awards merit-based scholarships to outstanding learners.

  4. St. Petersburg College
    Location

    Clearwater, FL

    Tuition

    $3477

    SPC's 18-credit web development specialist certificate features online coursework in web foundations/essentials, JavaScript, and advanced website development. Alumni leave the program with an advanced skill set in HTML, CSS, JavaScript, and website marketing planning. Program graduates can also apply certificate credits toward an associate degree at SPC.

    The college provides students with career exploration tools, resume and cover letter tips, and internship opportunities throughout Florida. SPC also oversees a career blog that covers topics like virtual interviewing and what to do after a layoff.

    Before enrolling in this web development program, learners can earn a GED certificate or take remediation courses at SPC. Incoming students can apply for federal financial aid by submitting their FAFSA results.

  5. St. Johns River State College
    Location

    Palatka, FL

    Tuition

    $5183

    Learners who earn SJR State's web development specialist certificate prepare for careers as web developers. The 36-credit curriculum includes required courses in advanced database concepts in programming, multimedia, and web page authoring. The program uses a hybrid learning format in which labs take place on SJR State's campus in Orange Park, Florida.

    SJR State provides learners and alumni with a three-step career success plan that features self-assessments, career exploration, and obtaining relevant experience.

    Applicants must submit GED scores or high school transcripts. Additional requirements include an online orientation and FAFSA results. SJR State offers dozens of Foundation Scholarships, each of which requires that recipients maintain a minimum 2.0 GPA.

  6. Daytona State College
    Location

    Daytona Beach, FL

    Tuition

    $6171

    Learners with and without web design experience can pursue DSC's online web development specialist certificate. This three-semester, 35-credit program features courses in database management, software design and development, and digital imaging fundamentals. In their final semester, students spend 12-15 hours per week interning at an approved job site.

    In addition to virtual advising sessions, online learners can access employment opportunities and cover letter critiques. Over 70% of DSC web design graduates who use these resources find a job before or soon after graduation.

    Admission requirements include FAFSA results and an orientation. Non-Florida residents pay higher tuition rates for online programs at DSC.

  7. Riverland Community College
    Location

    Austin, MN

    Tuition

    $9472

    Riverland's online certificate in web page design offers courses in digital video, web page design with responsive design, and digital photography with Adobe Photoshop. Upon graduation, students are prepared to create websites and video games.

    Participants complete 29 credits of classes over the course of two semesters. Students also create a portfolio, which they can show to prospective employers. New learners can begin the program in the fall or the spring.

    Riverland provides its students with access to GPS — a service that helps Minnesota residents research and apply for jobs throughout the state. Riverland charges the same tuition rate to all online learners in this web design program, regardless of residency.

  8. Cerro Coso Community College
    Location

    Ridgecrest, CA

    Tuition

    $11565

    Prospective students seeking entry-level web design jobs can consider earning Cerro Coso's online web professional certificate. The core curriculum features coursework in web production management, digital imaging, and UX design. Additionally, the certificate offers two concentrations: design and development.

    Cerro Coso provides students with virtual advising sessions, labor market guides, career coaching software, and state government documents that cover economic trends.

    Cerro Coso admits applicants ages 18 and older. California residents pay the lowest tuition rates. The Cerro Coso Community College Foundation awards dozens of merit-based scholarships each year.

  9. Minnesota West Community and Technical College
    Location

    Granite Falls, MN

    Tuition

    $10068

    MWCTC's web page design assistant certificate includes a one-year, 16-credit curriculum with courses in electronic spreadsheets and graphics, multimedia for the web, and art appreciation. Students can customize the certificate by selecting between two elective courses. Learners also gain a fundamental understanding of C++.

    The college provides access to College Central Network — a centralized resource where students can research and apply for jobs. MWCTC's website also features links to multiple resources, with an emphasis on job openings in Minnesota, Iowa, and South Dakota.

    All applicants must submit FAFSA results. Minnesota residents receive a tuition discount. Additionally, the college posts information about the latest scholarships on its Our Opportunities website.

  10. Peninsula College
    Location

    Port Angeles, WA

    Tuition

    $6402

    Students who earn PC's online multimedia web design certificate learn to create engaging websites. The web design track features a three-course curriculum: introduction to multimedia, web authoring, and database-driven websites. Learners also gain experience with HTML5, Dreamweaver, and CSS.

    Two-thirds of PC graduates begin a fulfilling career within nine months of earning a certificate or degree. Students can explore jobs, hone their job search skills, and take an interest inventory on PC's website.

    The program admits learners in the fall, spring, and summer, and the college does not charge an application fee. PC provides a slight tuition discount to Washington residents. Incoming students can apply for scholarships on the WashBoard website.

Frequently Asked Questions About Certificate in Web Design and Development Programs

Is a certificate in web design and development worth it?

Yes. A certificate program provides focused training in web design and development. An accelerated format helps learners build technical skills and enter the job market faster than a degree-granting program. As a result, a certificate in web design and web development can pay off.

Prospective students should weigh the cost of a certificate program against their earning potential after completing the degree. Many career paths in web development report average salaries around $60,000-$80,000 per year. A certificate, which takes less than one year, can help professionals break into a growing, lucrative tech career.

What can you do with a certificate in web design and development?

A web design and development certificate prepares learners for web designer or web developer careers. Professionals may work as front-end web developers, back-end web developers, or full-stack web developers within those broad fields.

People more interested in design can specialize in digital interface design, user interaction design, or user experience design. These career paths offer many options for professionals, depending on their interests and strengths. After earning a certificate, professionals can also transfer into an associate or bachelor's program to continue their web design and development education.

Is a web design and development certificate program hard?

A web design and development program can challenge learners. In a short time, certificate students study multiple programming languages and learn how to use different tools and frameworks. For example, many programs start by teaching HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Students then learn how to use design software programs, web development frameworks, and other tools.

Depending on the program, learners may progress through the material at their own pace or follow a set schedule. Programs often provide academic support services for students who find the coursework difficult.

How long does it take to get a certificate in web design and development?

Earning a certificate in web design and development typically takes around 9 months. Some programs offer an accelerated route to a certificate. This option can take as little as 4-6 months. Programs that provide more courses or require more credits to earn the certificate may take 12-18 months.

In general, certificate students complete their program within a year. In contrast, degree-granting programs typically take 2-4 years. Students in an associate program can expect to spend two years earning their degree, while a bachelor's degree generally takes four years.

What's the highest-paying job you can get with a certificate in web design and development?

Web developers earn the highest salary with a certificate in web design and development. But earning potential varies by location, title, and experience. For example, full-stack web developers may earn more than front-end or back-end web developers.

In addition, some areas offer a higher earning potential. Web developers in Washington state report the highest mean annual wage at more than $133,000. With experience or a higher degree, web developers can also increase their earning potential.

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