Fine Arts Degree Program Info - Bachelor Degree Review

Published Dec 19, 2006

RSS Feed

A Bachelor of Fine Arts degree covers a wide variety of specializations, and usually combines large amounts of studio time working in the area of specialization, as well as lecture classes in that area. Graduates with a degree in Fine Arts can become professional artists or teach in their area of specialty.

What is a Bachelor's Degree in Fine Arts?

A Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree prepares the student for a career as a professional artist in a certain specialty or as a teacher in that area. To accomplish this, the student spends a large portion of preparation time in the studio practicing the craft chosen. In addition, students work with eminent practitioners in the field, learning techniques and methods and attending lectures.

Students for a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree may focus on one specific craft such as painting, drawing, sculpting, acting, film production, photography, etc. or they may receive instruction in a large variety of areas. Most BFA programs require that students take at least some non-fine arts related courses, such as mathematics or a foreign language.

What Careers can a Bachelor of Fine Arts Pursue?

There are a couple of options a Bachelor of Fine Arts can Follow:

Professional Artist

Professional artists support themselves by selling their creations, or by winning grants or subsidies. They may be freelance artists, or salaried fine artists. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (, professional artists had the following median incomes in 2004:

  • Art Directors: $63,840
  • Salaried Craft Artists: $23,520
  • Salaried Fine Artists: $38,060
  • Multimedia Artists and Animators: $50,360

Art Instructor

Art instructors educate students in secondary or postsecondary institutions. The median earnings for all postsecondary instructors in 2004 was $51,800, although this varies according to specialization, type of institution, and seniority. The median earnings for all other levels in 2004 was about $45,000.

Featured School Choices: