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2021 Fine & Studio Arts Degree Guide

If you enjoy creating masterpieces and believe it is the best way to express yourself, you may be a Fine and Studio Arts major.

Majoring in Fine and Studio Arts allows students to take classes in the many disciplines within the field including painting, sculpting, art history, drawing, photography, painting, illustration, graphic design, and digital media. The variety of classes allows you to try different art mediums in order to find what you are most interested in. These classes will also improve your technique and teach you express yourself.

Fine and Studio Arts is a field with many areas of specialization. You may choose to concentrate in more specific areas such as Art History, Drawing, Multimedia, Painting, Sculpture, Printmaking, Ceramic Arts and Ceramics, Fiber, Textile and Weaving Arts, and Metal and Jewelry.

#29 Most Popular Major
33.6k Degrees Awarded
-1.7% Increase in Graduates

In 2018-2019, fine and studio arts was the 29th most popular major nationwide with 33,643 degrees awarded. This represents a 1.7% reduction in Fine Arts degrees awarded over the prior year's total of -34,217.

There are 1,368 schools offering degrees in fine and studio arts in the United States. This year's Best Colleges for Fine & Studio Arts ranking compares 332 of them to identify the best overall programs in the country. Continue reading to check out one of our many unbiased rankings of Fine Arts programs later in this article.

What Are The Requirements For a Degree in Fine & Studio Arts

Students in the fine arts field usually have some amount of natural talent and experience working in one or more artistic mediums. They have passion for art and enjoy working with their hands to create things. Their creativity and imagination allows them to form unique pieces of art that express the emotion of the artist. Students in this field have good interpersonal and communication skills because they will be required to speak with gallery owners and the general public to sell their artwork.

This field can lead to either a part or full time job. Those who work full time are typically employed in commercial art studios or with performing arts centers, while other artists are self-employed or are commissioned by clients to create pieces.

Depending on the area of study to wish to follow, a college degree may not be necessary. Some artists only take a few classes to improve skills and techniques, while others need a degree to be hired. By working in and internship or summer job, you will learn what type of education you need for a successful career.

Prior Education for a Fine Arts Program

fine and studio arts degree applicants generally need have finished high school or their GED. Many schools may also have GPA and SAT/ACT score minimums that must be met. Specific Fine Arts careers may require a certain level of degree attainment or additional certifications beyond that.

Fine & Studio Arts Degree Types

There are many different Fine Arts degree levels. You can get anything from a in fine and studio arts to the highest Fine Arts degree, a . The type of Fine Arts degree you choose will determine how long it takes to get your diploma.

Degree Credit Requirements Typical Program Length
Associate Degree 60-70 credits 2 years
Bachelor’s Degree 120 credits 4 years
Master’s Degree 50-70 credits 1-3 years
Doctorate Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation At least 4 years

A bachelor's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to Fine Arts, with approximately 25.7% of workers getting one. See the the most common levels of education for Fine Arts workers below.

Level of Education Percentage of Workers
Master’s Degree 25.2%
Bachelor’s Degree 23.7%
High School Diploma 13.1%
Some College Courses 8.6%
Doctoral Degree 8.2%

54.7% of Fine Arts workers have at least a bachelor's. The chart below shows what degree level those who work in fine and studio arts have obtained.


This of course varies depending on which Fine Arts career you choose.

Career Opportunities for Fine Arts Majors

Above Average Number of Jobs
$23.8k Average Starting Salary
6% Growth Job Outlook 2016-26

Fine and Studio Arts graduates work for a number of different companies including commercial art studios, manufacturing companies, performing arts companies, and art galleries. Some graduates have decided to be self-employed and are commissioned to create pieces. Artists who rely on selling art to make a living may have a difficult time and need to work an extra job.

Growth Projected for Fine Arts Careers

Want a job when you graduate with your Fine Arts degree? Fine & Studio Arts careers are expected to grow 6.3% between 2016 and 2026.

The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to fine and studio arts.

Occupation Name Projected Jobs Expected Growth
High School Teachers 1,095,500 7.5%
Photographers 139,000 -5.6%
Art, Drama, and Music Professors 137,200 12.0%
Art Directors 95,200 5.4%
Multimedia Artists and Animators 79,900 8.4%

How Much Money Do Fine Arts Grads Make?

Fine & Studio Arts graduates between 2015-2017 reported earning an average of $23,847 in the 2017-2018 timeframe. Earnings can range from as low as $13,200 to as high as $59,500. As you might expect, salaries for Fine Arts graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.


Highest Paid Fine Arts Careers

Salaries for fine and studio arts graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top 5 highest paying careers Fine Arts grads often go into.

Occupation Name Median Average Salary
Art Directors $104,590
Art, Drama, and Music Professors $82,560
Multimedia Artists and Animators $78,230
Artists $67,700
High School Teachers $64,340

Getting Your Fine & Studio Arts Degree

With over 3,604 different Fine Arts degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased Fine Arts school rankings to help you with this.

One of 9 majors within the Visual & Performing Arts area of study, Fine & Studio Arts has other similar majors worth exploring.

Related Major Annual Graduates
Design & Applied Arts 29,541
Music 25,623
Drama & Theater Arts 16,329
Film, Video & Photographic Arts 14,870
General Visual & Performing Arts 5,265

View All Fine Arts Related Majors >


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