Home page

Art and Fine Arts, General


Programs in general art and fine arts teach people the history and theory of visual and performing arts.

In art and fine arts programs, students learn to work in at least one artistic medium, such as:

Students also learn to create an artist's portfolio to promote and market their work.

Students in arts and fine arts also pursue performing arts, including:

This program also prepares students for a wide range of careers, including:


Many colleges and universities offer associate and bachelor's degree programs in art and fine arts. These are called the Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA). Graduate degree programs in this field tend to be more specialized. Generally, an associate degree takes about two years of full-time study to complete. A bachelor's degree usually takes about four years of full-time study.

Career and technical schools also provide studio training and degrees in the visual and performing arts. Independent art institutes may grant certificates, associate, and bachelor's degrees, which typically take anywhere from one to four years of study.

See schools that offer this program.

Related Educational Programs

Related Careers

Careers Directly Related to this Program of Study

Other Careers Related to this Program of Study

Program Admission

Proprietary schools, colleges, and universities all offer this program. If you want to study at a proprietary school, you can prepare for this program of study by completing your high school diploma or getting a GED. If you want to study at a college or university, you can prepare for this program by taking the following courses: four years of English, three years of math, three years of social studies, and two years of science. Some colleges also require two years of a second language.

Some schools require you to complete basic art courses before you can enter their art and fine arts programs. These courses might include the following:

Below is a list of high school courses that will help prepare you for this program of study:

Graduate Admissions

Admission to graduate programs is competitive. You need a bachelor's degree, good grades, good test scores, a strong portfolio, and good studio or performance skills. Writers and visual artists need a portfolio of creative projects. A musical portfolio may include recordings of your performances.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Because this program of study is broad, course work tends to vary from program to program. However, a sample listing of courses you could take as a student in this program is as follows:

Depending on the courses you take, your curriculum may also include performances, exhibitions of your art, and workshops where you and your fellow students exchange and discuss each others work.

Things to Know

Independent art schools tend to focus more on studio work and career preparation. Degree programs at colleges and universities can provide a broad liberal arts education in addition to the art program.

You usually need to buy your own art supplies, including drawing tools, clay, film, and graphic arts software. You may be able to rent or borrow some equipment, such as photography equipment or cameras.

As an artist, you typically assemble a portfolio of your work to promote your skills and talent. You can start developing your portfolio as early as high school.


East Side Area

Big Bend Community College

Central Washington University

Walla Walla Community College

Walla Walla University

Washington State University - Pullman

Wenatchee Valley College

Whitman College

King-Snohomish Area

Bellevue College

Everett Community College

Green River College

North Seattle College

Photographic Center Northwest

Seattle Pacific University

Seattle University

Shoreline Community College

South Seattle College

University of Washington - Bothell

University of Washington - Seattle

Kitsap Area

Olympic College

Spokane Area

Eastern Washington University

Gonzaga University

Spokane Falls Community College

Whitworth University

Tacoma Area

Pacific Lutheran University

Pierce College Fort Steilacoom

Pierce College Puyallup

Tacoma Community College

Tri-Cities Area

Columbia Basin College

Vancouver Area

Clark College

West Side Area

Centralia College

Evergreen State College, The

Lower Columbia College

Skagit Valley College

Western Washington University

Yakima Area

Heritage University

Yakima Valley College