should visual designers be licensed/accredited?

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by shecky, Nov 28, 2007.

  1. shecky Guest

    shecky

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    #1
    based on some of the issues in this thread, i thought it a worthy question. should visual designers be licensed like architects, etc..?

    discuss.
     
  2. Claytoniss macrumors regular

    Claytoniss

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    #2
    WHAT? My business card sized diploma isn't accredited? I have it with me all the time so I can shove it in peoples faces? Oh and they take me seriously too!
     

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  3. wmealer macrumors regular

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  4. guifa macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Yes. Everyone else gets licensed - nurses, doctors, architects, translators, INTERIOR DESIGNERS.
     
  5. klymr macrumors 65816

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    #5
    That's because there is more of a liability involved in their jobs, even interior designers.
     
  6. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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  7. ac6789 macrumors member

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    #7
    Yes, I think it would help present a more professional image to the general population other than "making pretty pictures".

    I am planning on taking the RDG accreditation exam (see canadaRAM's post & Link) but not for a few years. However I also think that in order for the RGD Designation (in Ontario) to be fully recognized there needs to be A LOT more education among the general population before it's fully accepted or even understood.

    The RGD has been advocating licensed designers for 10 years (i think) and, while i know it's going to be a long process, I haven't really seen any concerted effort in educating businesses or the public to the benefits of a registered designer. Until that happens we can have as many designations as we want but it'll mean absolutely nothing. I'm only speaking from what I've seen in Toronto, could be different elsewhere but as of now the RGD designation is really only recognized within the industry and that's kind of defeating the purpose, isn't it?
     
  8. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

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    #8
    Probably, at least to bring some kind of line to hold on ethics ...

    Basically, you want to know that somebody is putting their license on the line for even small jobs.

    Case in point -- I wonder how much Jesse James paid for the james union logo on his shirt, and how much it will ultimately cost him ...

    Plus, having licenses/accreditation and a membership group could help when things do go wrong. Since there is usually a base for legal help.
     
  9. THX1139 macrumors 68000

    THX1139

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    #9
    Yes, definitely. Except they better make the qualifications stringent or any hack will send in and get a certificate. At the minimum, the designer would need to have a bachelors degree from a real university, and they should belong to a recognized organization like AIGA.

    Having certification will bring legitimacy and separate the pros from the self-taught paintshop pro, MS publisher, pagemaker wanna-be's.
     
  10. klymr macrumors 65816

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    #10
    I'm still indecisive on this. I am going into graphic design and would have no problem in taking a test or similar method to prove I'm capable. However, I don't see the need because it's not like other design areas where people's lives are at risk by poor design, if that makes sense.
     
  11. Sun Baked macrumors G5

    Sun Baked

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    #11
    But serious money could be at risk ... and any smart client would gladly toss your ass into the fire before him.

    I would.

    Hey I paid this guy $3000, gave him an idea for some of the elements I wanted, and chose from one of several final designs.

    He copied your design, not me ... we are all victims here.
     
  12. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

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    #12
    Any person with a computer and frontpage can be a web designer (sorry don't mean to add food for a troll) but it does seem as though anyone with basic computer skills can get a business name and start trading as a designer.

    In Australia if you are a builder you need to be a part of the Master Builders Association or you don't work, to be a in Medicine you need to be a part of the Medical Association or you cannot work with anything to do with medicine.

    I don't want to over hype or undervalue the skills of designers but I do see this as an important part of credibility in any industry and also to protect the client and designers.

    During my time in the industry I have seen both very talented designers and the people who think they are designers, I think there needs to be an organisation in place for accredited qualified people.

    But with that said NO-SPEC! has helped me educate clients, it's a wonderful resource.
     
  13. brad.c macrumors 68020

    brad.c

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    #13
    It's a good question, because design, like photography, is something where the line between what a talented hobbyist can do on occasion, and a good designer can do on a day-to-day basis.

    Realistically, I'd say no. What good does accreditation do if there's no talent? I'd think that a good portfolio should say more about you than a certificate or a paying membership dues.
     
  14. brad.c macrumors 68020

    brad.c

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    #14
    I like to say:

    "Just because I have MS Word installed, doesn't make me a writer".
     
  15. SwiftLives macrumors 65816

    SwiftLives

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    #15
    Yes, but in the real world a $50 logo says more to the moron startup business owner than a $5000 identity package.

    Any sort of accreditation test would ideally measure competency rather than talent. Talent is subjective - and that's where the portfolio comes in. Competency is knowing basic principles of design and how to use (and not use) them, or even knowing how to use industry-standard software tools.

    My fear is that without accreditation, we're going to have dingleberries with a mix of Publisher, Word, and clip art selling themselves as designers and undercutting those of us who are actually competent AND talented.

    ...especially during times when the economy starts to turn south.
     
  16. guifa macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Or, more importantly, the license could include things like knowing the basic legal issues involved with copyright, ownership, etcetera and basic freelance business skills. A LOT of self-taught people never go through this but it's drilled into your head at universities, or at least at mine it was. The license would carry the theoretical knowledge, and then certificate programmes like Adobe Certified Professional / Expert could attest to practical knowledge, which of course then a portfolio would attest to individual style. One advantage this would have for people with licenses is that many government agencies are generally required to hire people that are licensed unless a licensed person can not be found. For example in courts translators are supposed to carry forensic certification but barring that many courts use regular translators.
     
  17. Socorso macrumors member

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    #17
    Registered Graphic Designer

    As a Registered Graphic Designer in Toronto, Canada I can tell you its been an uphill battle to put any value on the designation.

    I am all for having a united body of professionals that help to ensure some sort of standards and values in the industry. That being said, right now there is no value in it for most. I believe clients like to see letters at the end of your name... it makes them feel like they've hired a professional. However that is a BIG assumption if the guidelines for becoming registered are not stringent.

    There is a lot of infighting in our community right now over what the association is and what the designation means. Is it an academic body that ensures that all designers have the same basic schooling? Or is it a professional association that focuses more on building standards as a community?

    The jury is still out. Even for me. Yet I still pay my dues every year (for about 10 years now) and hope that eventually it will mean more to my clients than it does to me.
     
  18. ezekielrage_99 macrumors 68040

    ezekielrage_99

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    #18
    The point I was trying to make is that accreditation, credentials, etc adds credibility to a profession. I have heard plenty of people who have a computer, MS office and have then gone down to the ACCC registered a business name and started trading as a Designer (they haven't done well but thats another story).

    That's why I leaning towards an industry certified qualification (similar to the bar for Lawyers or Master Builders for the construction industry) where you cannot legally trade without the certification.

    I think the industry overtime would be taken more seriously as well (e.g. no speculation work).
     
  19. faustfire macrumors 6502a

    faustfire

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    #19
    Accreditation will do nothing. There are thousands of people out there with design degrees from accredited schools who have no talent whatsoever. All that matters is the quality of your work.

    If someone is really worried about no talent hacks taking jobs away from them, they may want to think about looking at a new career.
     
  20. klymr macrumors 65816

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    #20
    In some states you have to be licensed to do wedding photography. A guy I know was one of about 7 licensed photographers in the state he lived in, so he was almost always guaranteed work. He moved to Utah seeing that there were only like 2 licensed wedding photographers living here only to find out it's not a requirement in this state and everyone and their next door neighbor does wedding photography.

    I think it's a good idea, but the real question is, will it ever change that way?
     
  21. SwiftLives macrumors 65816

    SwiftLives

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    #21
    I agree that Accreditation will do nothing to weed out people without talent. That's not what it's designed to do. The purpose is to weed out the incompetent amateurs who think they're a designer because they matched up a lo-res piece of clip art they found on Google with Comic Sans and called it a logo.

    It's not the no-talent hacks that scare me. It's the incompetent amateurs who undercut the professionals mixed with the clients who don't know the difference.

    Talent is subjective.

    Competence is not.
     
  22. kaeckisthename macrumors member

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    #22
    pretty much, a lot of people graduate from design school and their portfolios are garbage
     
  23. kaeckisthename macrumors member

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    #23
    good point there as well
     
  24. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

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  25. tobefirst macrumors 68040

    tobefirst

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    #25
    (I had never considered the thread topic before, so I don't really know where I stand on the subject, but this quote caught me.)

    I'm not so sure it should be a licensor's job to somehow make the client know the difference. If I can't, as a design professional, already demonstrate how and why my work is better than an "incompetent amateur"'s, then I shouldn't be licensed anyway. For this purpose, a "license" seems redundant.
     

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