Education

Best Art Education Degree Programs of 2022

Learn more about the top Art Education programs, what to expect, job prospects, and how to choose the program that’s right for you.

Art education is the study and practice of teaching art. Art educators work in a variety of settings, including public and private schools, museums, and community centers. Art educators teach students of all ages about the history, theory, and practice of art.

Art education degrees can prepare students for a variety of careers in art education, including teaching, museum education, and community arts. Students in art education degree programs learn about the different theories and methods of teaching art, and how to apply those methods to the teaching of art history, studio art, and design.

How to Choose the Right Art Education Program

When it comes to choosing the right art education program, there are a few key factors that prospective students need to keep in mind. The first is accreditation. Students should make sure that the program they are considering is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). This will ensure that the program meets the highest standards for art education.

Another important factor to consider is the curriculum. Prospective students should make sure that the program they are considering offers a curriculum that is aligned with their career goals. For example, if a student is interested in becoming an art teacher, they should make sure that the program they are considering offers a teaching certification.

Finally, students should also consider the cost of the program. While many art education programs are very affordable, there are some that can be quite expensive. Prospective students should make sure to research the cost of tuition, fees, and other associated expenses before making their final decision.

Best Bachelor’s in Art Education Programs

The best programs for Art Education ranking is based on key statistics and student reviews using data from the U.S. Department of Education. Some of the metrics influencing how the rankings are determined include graduation rate, average salary for graduates, accreditation, retention rate, and cost.

Rank 1
University of Wisconsin
Madison, WI

The Bachelor of Science in Art Education from University of Wisconsin is a great choice for students who thrive in creative and collaborative environments. The program provides essential preparation for a variety of careers in art education, with students working directly with children and adolescents in school and community-based field placements. Additionally, students study with outstanding art and education faculty, while also connecting with Madison’s vibrant arts community.

Rank 2
University of Georgia
Athens, GA

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education from University of Georgia is a program designed for students who are interested in sharing their love of art with others, primarily in a K-12 setting. The program provides students with the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful art educators, including courses in art criticism and art history. The program also offers the opportunity to study abroad in Cortona, Italy, where students can teach in a local elementary school and take courses in topics such as art and culture. Upon completion of the program, students are prepared to take the GACE Art Education Test I & II for Georgia Teacher Certification.

Rank 3
Ohio State University
Columbus, OH

The Bachelor of Art Education (BAE) from Ohio State University is an undergraduate degree designed for students who want to become art educators in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade schools.

The BAE program is four years long and includes a student teaching practicum. Students in the program develop a strong understanding of educational theory and practice and then apply those skills in museums, community arts or other non-traditional art education spaces. Instead of completing a student teaching practicum, students finish with an internship experience in a museum, community-based arts, or other non-traditional setting.

Rank 4
Grand Valley State University
Allendale, MI

The Bachelor of Arts in Art Education from Grand Valley State University is a program that leads to teacher certification for visual art in the Michigan public schools at the primary and secondary levels. The program is fully accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

The program emphasizes the training of committed artists who desire to work in the field of teaching after their graduation. Art education students receive intensive studio training that enriches their individual roles as artists and prepares them for diverse teaching environments. The curriculum includes educational theory, community-based arts education, and the role of technology in the classroom.

Rank 5
Marian University
Indianapolis, IN

The Bachelor of Arts in Studio Arts and Education from Marian University is a unique program that prepares students to become art educators. The program combines liberal arts coursework with education and studio arts courses. Students will have the opportunity to student teach and exhibit their work. The program culminates with a senior exhibition, professional communication materials, and a comprehensive portfolio.

Rank 6
University of Maryland-College Park
College Park, MD

The Bachelor of Arts in Art Education from University of Maryland-College Park is a double major program that prepares students to become art educators in today’s diverse schools. The program provides a solid foundation in the liberal arts, as well as knowledge and specialized skills in studio arts, art history, educational best practices / teaching strategies, curriculum planning / writing and classroom management. Students in the program have the opportunity to gain pre-kindergarten through 12th grade (P-12) applied learning experiences in each art education course, and also participate in an ‘After School Arts Program’ at a local school during the junior year. In their senior year, students become immersed in a year long internship at a school.

Rank 7
Seton Hill University
Greensburg, PA

The Art Education Program at Seton Hill University is a great choice for students who want to become art teachers. The program combines a strong liberal arts education with advanced art teacher preparation, making its graduates exceptionally well prepared to teach and ready to succeed both personally and professionally. While earning your degree, students will also fulfill the educational requirements for teacher certification in Pennsylvania.

Rank 8
Point Loma Nazarene University
San Diego, CA

The Bachelor of Arts in Art Education from Point Loma Nazarene University is a four-year program that prepares students to enter a credentialed program to teach visual arts in K-12 classrooms. The program is accredited by the Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CCTC). Students in the program will learn from PLNU’s committed art professors, while drawing on their strengths and insights as emerging artists. Class sizes are small and students will have opportunities for experiential learning through field trips to local museums and galleries and student teaching experiences in charter and traditional classrooms.

Rank 9
Colorado State University
Fort Collins, CO

The Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education from Colorado State University is a comprehensive program that prepares students for a career in art education. The program includes coursework in studio art, professional education, and service-learning, giving students the skills and experience they need to be successful in the field. The program also includes a unique career preparation component, ensuring that students are well-prepared for their future careers.

Rank 10
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM

The Bachelor of Arts in Art Education from University of New Mexico is a 120-hour program that prepares students to become licensed art teachers in the state of New Mexico. The program includes coursework in art history, studio art, and education, and students must complete a student teaching internship in order to graduate. Admission to the program is based on a student’s performance in three prerequisite courses, and students are required to meet with a faculty advisor each semester to plan their course of study.

What to Expect From a Bachelor’s in Art Education Program

Students in a bachelor’s in art education program can expect to take classes that focus on both the practical and theoretical aspects of teaching art. The coursework emphasizes studio art, art history, and pedagogy. Most programs also require students to complete an internship in order to gain real-world experience.

In addition to the core coursework, many programs offer concentration options that allow students to focus on a specific area of interest. Common concentrations include ceramics, painting, photography, and sculpture.

Overall, a bachelor’s in art education provides students with the skills and knowledge necessary to become successful art teachers. However, students must possess some natural ability for creativity and communication.

Common Art Education Courses

A degree in art education typically includes a mix of liberal arts courses, art history classes, and studio art classes. The following is a list of five courses that are often found in an art education degree program.

Language of Art

This course covers the principles and elements of design as they apply to the visual arts. Emphasis is placed on the relationship between the elements of design, the principles of design, and the expressive qualities of art. Upon completion, students should be able to apply the elements and principles of design to the analysis, composition, and criticism of art.

Art in Contemporary World

This course examines the role of art and artists in the contemporary world. Emphasis is placed on the study of selected artists and their work in the light of current issues and problems. Upon completion, students should be able to analyze and interpret the work of selected artists in the light of current issues and problems.

Art for Special Needs Students

This course covers how to teach art to students with special needs. Emphasis is placed on adapting materials and methods, modifying the environment, and using behavior management techniques. Upon completion, students should be able to develop and implement lesson plans that are based on knowledge of individual students, use a variety of materials and methods, and create an environment that is conducive to learning and personal growth.

Methods and Materials in Art Education

This course covers the methods, materials, and resources used in teaching art in grades K-12. Emphasis is placed on the elements and principles of design, art criticism, aesthetics, art history, and the integration of the arts into the curriculum. Upon completion, students should be able to apply methods and materials in art education, select and use appropriate resources for teaching art, and integrate the arts into the curriculum.

Curriculum Development in Art Education

This course covers the process of developing an art education curriculum. Emphasis is placed on the study of models for curriculum development, the use of various instructional strategies, and the integration of the arts into the total school curriculum. Upon completion, students should be able to develop an art education curriculum.

Career Options for Art Education Graduates

Graduates of art education programs work in a variety of industries, including education, museums, galleries, and publishing. They may also work in fields such as marketing, advertising, and event planning.

Art Teacher

Art teachers work with students of all ages to help them develop their creativity and artistic skills. Teachers typically work in elementary, middle, and high schools, but they may also work in after-school programs, community centers, or museums. In addition to teaching classes, art teachers may also be responsible for planning lessons, grading student work, and meeting with parents.

Art Gallery Curator

Art gallery curators are responsible for the planning and execution of exhibitions and educational programs at art museums and galleries. Curators typically specialize in a particular time period, culture, or type of art, and they use their expertise to select works of art for exhibitions. They also work with other museum staff to install exhibitions, write catalogs and labels, and develop educational materials. In addition, curators often give tours and lectures about exhibitions and individual works of art.

Art Therapist

Art therapists use art as a form of therapy for patients who are dealing with mental health issues, physical health issues, or a combination of both. The therapist may use different mediums, such as painting, drawing, sculpture, or collage, to help the patient express themselves in a way that words cannot. The therapist may also use art to help the patient process trauma, work through difficult emotions, or explore different aspects of their identity. The therapist may work with individuals, groups, or families.

Art Conservator

Art conservators work to clean, repair, and preserve works of art and historical objects. They use a variety of techniques to clean objects, stabilize them if they’re deteriorating, and repair them if they’re damaged. In some cases, they may also work to restore an object to its original condition. Conservators typically specialize in a particular type of object or material, such as paintings, photographs, or sculptures.

Art Instructor

Art instructors teach students the skills and techniques they need to create art. They may work in a school setting, teaching classes of students of all ages, or in a studio setting, working with one or more students at a time. In addition to teaching, art instructors may also be responsible for planning lessons, grading student work, and maintaining a classroom or studio space.

Insights From an Art Education Graduate

Ellie Flynn is an Art Teacher at the Brooklyn Museum School. She has a bachelor’s degree in art education from the Pratt Institute. Ellie has been teaching art for over 10 years.

ClimbtheLadder: What were the biggest takeaway(s) you got from your Art Education program that you may not have gotten otherwise?

Ellie Flynn: The biggest takeaway from my Art Education program was the importance of creativity in the classroom. I learned that it is important to encourage creativity in my students, and to provide them with opportunities to be creative. I also learned that it is important to provide students with feedback on their work, and to help them to improve their skills.

ClimbtheLadder: What are the most rewarding aspects of your career? What are the most challenging aspects of your career?

Ellie Flynn: The most rewarding aspect of my career is being able to share my passion for art with my students and seeing them grow as artists. The most challenging aspect of my career is finding the time to keep my own art practice fresh and current.

ClimbtheLadder: What misconception(s) do people have about an Art Education degree, and what would you tell them?

Ellie Flynn: I think the biggest misconception about an Art Education degree is that it is not a “serious” degree. I have found that my degree has been very helpful in my career as an art teacher. It has given me the skills and knowledge I need to be successful in my job.

I would tell people that an Art Education degree is a great way to prepare for a career in the arts. It is a very versatile degree that can lead to many different careers.

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