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Illustration programs prepare people to apply artistic techniques to designs and ideas developed by others.

In this program, students learn:


A few community colleges offer associate degree programs in illustration. An associate degree program at a community college usually takes two years of full-time study to complete.

Several colleges, universities, and independent art schools offer a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree program in illustration. A BFA degree usually takes about four to five years of full-time study.

A few universities offer graduate degrees in illustration. A Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degree typically requires two years of study beyond a bachelor's degree.

See schools that offer this program.

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Careers Directly Related to this Program of Study

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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 illustration program. 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, and good test scores.

Additional requirements at some schools include:

Typical Course Work

Program Courses

This program typically includes courses in the following subjects:

Graduate Program Courses

Graduate programs in illustration typically require:

Things to Know

You can begin developing your portfolio in high school with hobby and project work.

Many programs offer personal studio space to BFA art students.

Students who major in illustration are responsible for purchasing some of their own tools and supplies. These include brushes, pens, pencils, canvases, and specialty papers.


East Side Area

Walla Walla University

King-Snohomish Area

Bellevue College

Cornish College of the Arts

Highline College

Lake Washington Institute of Technology

Seattle Central College

Seattle Pacific University

Shoreline Community College

University of Washington - Seattle

Spokane Area

Gonzaga University

Tacoma Area

Northwest College of Art & Design