Overview of a Bachelors in Art Education
As you learn more about bachelor’s degree programs in art education, keep in mind that you may teach any grade level from kindergarten up to the 12th grade or any K-12 classroom. Look for an educational program that helps find art educators employement upon succesfull completion of theirundergraduate art education courses, initial teacher licensure, full teaching certification, and have years of accumulated experience in their the field of art or art education in preschools, elementary schools, middle schools, or high schools. As you gain experience, you will also gain more rewarding career opportunities and professional development possibilities. A bachelor's degree in education from an approved teacher education program is the minimum requirement for you to earn licensure and a teaching certificate.
Your art education program should teach you how to synthesize knowledge and use the art skills you learned in the studio; you should also be able to do the same with the art history classes you took. Ideally, your program should give you opportunities to take part in art education conferences at both the state and national level and you may also be required to spend some hours volunteering in art-related events in your community. On a related note, try to join education and art clubs while you are in school. An undergraduate art education degree program, whether earned on-campus or taken as an online art education, will cover a variety of subjects, including the following.
- Classroom Management
- How to Create Lesson Plans
- Pedagogy and Effective Teaching Practices
- Child Development
- History of Art
- Contemporary Art Education Theory
- Various Electives in Your Chosen Subject Matter or a Separate Art Degree
- And More
You give yourself several advantages when you sign up for an art education major. You’ll be able to continue learning about art, staying involved in creating your own pieces of art.
Because you can do this, you’ll also be able to use your art in the classroom to highlight current societal and human issues, so you and your fellow teachers can educate your students.
If your university approaches art education from a psychological basis, your student will be able to enhance their creativity and organize the experiences they have had in their young lives.
Those classroom internships (student teaching) aid you as you develop your own unique skill sets that will back you up when you begin your job search. Your coursework should do the same, making you dig deep to learn new education and art techniques. After graduation, your theoretical learning and practical experience will back up your job search.
If you choose to stop with a bachelor’s degree, you may limit your opportunities when it’s time for you to move up the career ladder. You’ll be teaching art to your students but if you are considered for a new position requiring you to have an advanced education going beyond a bachelor’s degree, you won’t be chosen.
Look at all the art- and education-related roles you may hold throughout your career: K-12 art teacher, community arts organization teacher, art teacher at a junior/community college, art therapy, art education curriculum creator, museum educator, art exhibit designer, or art curator. While your bachelor-level classes will give you the material you need to teach lower-level courses, a lot of these careers will be out of reach.
Certificate vs. Bachelor's
What Art Education Bachelor’s Degrees are Available?
- Bachelor of Science in Art Education (BS-AE)
This degree is designed to help you become an art educator. This degree fully trains you as both an artist and educator. In fact, you have to take the same number of studio art courses as students who are majoring in studio art.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education
This four-year degree focuses on education and fine art. You’ll learn about teaching children and adolescents how to think visually. You’ll learn how to demonstrate the close relationships between culture, art, and history.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts/Master of Arts in Art Education
This combined degree focuses on studio teaching as you major on one of several studio disciplines (printmaking, painting, sculpture, or graphic design).
- Bachelor of Art Education in Art Education (BA Ed)
You’ll be immersed in intern teaching and, when you complete this, a secondary intern teaching block. Coursework will focus on both education and art.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts, Art Education
Once you complete your degree, you’ll be prepared to teach at any level, from kindergarten through 12th grade. After helping to run a Young Artist’s Workshop, you’ll have the skills needed to teach.
Students applying for a bachelor’s degree will need to provide a variety of proofs that they are capable of completing a college education. These include: a high school diploma or GED, acceptable ACT or SAT scores, a minimum GPA score might be required for more exclusive colleges, students who completed their secondary educations outside the U.S. must satisfy English proficiency requirements, schools may require letters of recommendation, and you’ll need to complete an application and pay any required fees.
Teacher education often has additional requirements. You should contact your state’s Board of Education to learn what these are for your major. Even if you complete the admissions process, this doesn’t guarantee a slot for you.
How long does it take to earn a Art Education Bachelor's?
Each university has its own required number of credits students have to earn before they can graduate. For instance, you may need to earn at least 120 semester credit hours. If you take 12 credits per semester, you should expect to graduate in 10 semesters or five years. If you take 15 credits per semester, you’ll cut this down, meaning you’ll graduate closer to four years after you start school.
If you accumulate any “I” grades (incomplete), you will have to clear these from your transcript by re-taking the class. Maintain a minimum GPA to pass your courses satisfactorily.
Potential Careers in Art Education with a Bachelor’s
- Art Therapist:
Once you graduate with your art education degree, you may need additional education and training to work as an art therapist (master’s degree in psychology, art therapy, social work, or counseling). You’ll work with patients with emotional or mental health challenges. Art therapy helps them to unleash a hidden creativity that allows you and them to explore their feelings so they can begin to make improvements in their mental health and overall life.
Average annual salary: $44,400
- Early Childhood Education:
Expect to work with young children, helping them to improve their educational potential as they get older. You’ll work with children between the ages of 3 and five (kindergarten). Art education allows you to help them learn to express their creativity. You’ll help your students with motor skills, emotional development, writing, and reading.
Average annual salary: $35,000
You’ll treat and possibly diagnose mental health disorders in your clients. To help your clients, you may choose to use art therapy as a modality. If you have a background in art and mental health, you’ll be able to help your clients face their issues and begin healing.
Average annual salary: $40,700
- School Psychologist:
As the job title implies, you mainly work within a school setting. You’ll work with students, assessing and interpreting testing results as you and the schools work to ensure that they receive the best possible education to which they are entitled. You’ll observe students and their learning environments, diagnose learning disorders, mental health issues, and behavioral problems.
Average annual salary: $60,200
You are the lead administrator of an entire school system. The school board supervises your work and decisions; in fact, this body hires you. You hire principals for every school in your district. You have the final decision on teacher dismissal or discipline. You’ll work closely with the school board to develop and maintain the budget.
Average annual salary: $117,600
Salary by Occupation
|Art Teacher, K-12||$31,000||$44,609||$65,000|
|Art Education Teacher||$31,000||$45,000||$62,000|
|Art Education Teacher, BFA||$29,000||$47,000||$54,000|
|Art Education Teacher, BFAEd||$25,000||$46,000||$66,000|
|Art Teacher, Secondary Education||$32,000||$55,000||$66,000|
|Art Education Teacher, MA||$35,000||$43,000||$64,000|
Options to Advance
If you think you might want to advance after earning your BA, why not consider a combined degree? That is, a combined BA and MA or MS in Art Education. In this type of program, you’ll be in school for five years. This is about the amount of time you would be in school, taking 12 credits per semester for your bachelor’s in art education.
In this combined program, you earn a BA in art and an MS in art education. The goal of this type of program is to help prepare art educators for both private and public-school teaching and for advancement to the next level after that. After earning your degrees, you’ll hold advanced theoretical and practical knowledge in art education, as well as the roles of education inside the more-broad contexts of both society and culture.
Best Bachelor of Science in Art Education Programs
Northern Arizona University
NAU opened its doors 120 years ago, with the philosophy of “students first.” It still holds this philosophy and strives to meet it daily. The university’s academic offerings are intended to meet the needs of today’s generations.
- Art Education, Bachelor of Science in Education
This Catholic university was founded in 1851, by Sister Theresa Hackelmeier. She wanted to establish an American religious congregation in Oldenberg, Indiana, where the German-speaking students would learn. In 1936, the school transitioned into a four-year, state approved institution. Its name changed from St. Francis Normal to Marian College.
- Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Creative Arts: Studio Arts and Education (Art Education)
Near Houston, Lamar University is one of the fastest-growing universities in Texas. Lamar offers more than 100 programs for students earning bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees. It is nationally recognized for its high-quality core curriculum and the diversity of its student body.
- Bachelor of Science in Studio Art - Art Education
West Virginia University
Morgantown, West Virginia
Diversity is the word at West Virginia University. Students may hear Russian, Spanish, Chinese, Hindi, Mandarin, Korean, Arabic, Italian, or German being spoken on campus. Individuals from the student body have come from all 50 states and more than 100 nations.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education
Long Island University
Brooklyn, New York
Long Island University was founded in 1926. As time passed, the university bought the Marjorie Merriweather Post estate in 1951, once it knew families of students had begun to move to the suburbs. Today, LIU offers more than 200 programs (certificate, bachelors, masters, and doctoral).
- Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Education
Traditional Schools Offering a BS in Art Education
Academy of Art university
San Francisco, California
The Academy’s goal is to be the first choice for students who want a world-class education. This university also works hard to prepare students who want to be art teachers. In addition to preparing students to teach art, the school teaches art and design.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts, Art Education
Ohio State University
For more than 149 years, Ohio State University has been a central location for academic achievement. It is also where revelry and rivalries have begun and where friendships have started.
- Bachelor of Art Education (BAE)
Oral Roberts University
Oral Roberts University offers more than 77 undergraduate majors. It also offers more than 65 undergrad minors, 14 master’s programs, and three doctoral programs. As a leading Christian university, ORU embraces a global format both at home and abroad.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts with an Art Education Specialization
Indiana State university
Terre Haute, Indiana
Indiana State University’s mission is to help create knowledge, maintaining its long commitment to inclusiveness and the community. The university is also dedicated to ensuring that access to education is available to all who want it. The entire university melds teaching, research, and activity in ways that support a learning environment for all.
- Bachelor of Science in Art Education
Education Degrees & Career Paths