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Art and Design

MSU's Department of Art and Design is one of the most comprehensive schools of art, design and teacher education in the state. Our Bachelor of Arts (BA) and Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) programs in studio art and art education will allow you to pursue your passion and explore your creativity. You will acquire the knowledge and skills needed for 21st century professions in the visual arts.

You will be exposed to a variety of artistic media, disciplines, techniques and technology through coursework in:

  • 2D design
  • 3D foundations
  • Ceramics
  • Digital art and design
  • Drawing
  • Graphic design
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Printmaking
  • Sculpture


You may choose to pursue any of the following areas:

  • Art education (Bachelor of Arts area and Bachelor of Fine Arts)
  • Studio art  (Bachelor of Arts major and Bachelor of Fine Arts)

The following minors are also available within our department:

Program Requirements

Bachelor of Arts

To be accepted into one of our Bachelor of Arts programs, you must meet MSU's admission requirements.

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)

The Bachelor of Fine Arts programs have special admission requirements. Before applying, you must have completed between 21-36 credit hours in art or be enrolled in the following art courses: 

Art Core courses (12 credit hrs.):

  • ART 100 - 2D Design & Color Foundations 
  • ART 102 - 3D Foundations 
  • ART 109 - Digital Foundations 
  • ART 112 - Drawing Foundations 

One of the following survey courses (3 credit hrs.):

  • ART 263 - World Arts
  • ART 264 - Ancient-Medieval
  • ART 265 - Renaissance-Modern

And one studio and/or design course beyond the art core (6 credit hrs.)

To apply for admission, complete a pre-registration form (contact Chris Field or Sherri Ward) and submit a portfolio application for review in either the fall or spring semester of your sophomore year. Your portfolio will include 10-12 pieces of artwork completed in MSU art and design courses. You will also submit a one-page statement about your portfolio and why you are interested in applying. Transfer students will be considered on an individual basis.

Applying to a BFA Program as a Sophomore

Students may apply to the BFA programs in either the Fall or Spring semester of their sophomore year. There will be a Portfolio Application Review Day once per semester as follows: 

  • Fall semester: the 3rd week of October
  • Spring semester: the 3rd week of April 

Students will have two opportunities to apply to the BFA program; if a student is not admitted to the BFA program after two attempts, he or she will be in the Bachelor of Arts program.

BFA Portfolio Application Review Process

Students must complete a pre-registration form and submit it to Sherri Ward in the Art Office (CY 211). Students must then prepare an application for admittance to the BFA programs. The student application will consist of: the application form, available in the Art and Design office;

  • 10-12 pieces of artwork completed in MSU Art & Design courses; students must include at least one piece from each Art or Design course. Independent work is acceptable, as long as it was completed while at MSU;
  • All work must be matted and, if produced digitally, printed. Original 3D work should be included whenever possible. If original 3D work is unavailable, photographic documentation (printed and matted) is required. Time-based work (video or animation) may be uploaded to a viewable site (YouTube, Vimeo, etc.) or included on a flash drive for review;
  • A one-page statement about the student's work and why he or she is applying to the BFA program;
  • A printed copy of the student's Program Evaluation.

BFA students must meet the following program requirements for graduation:  

  • Be accepted into the program following a portfolio review.
  • Maintain an Art GPA  of 3.0, and an overall GPA of 2.5. Should a student's GPA fall below one of these minimums, he or she will be placed on a one-semester probation to bring their GPA back to the required minimum; if the GPA remains under the requirement, the student will be dropped from the B.F.A. program with no chance for re-admittance.
  • Complete a 1 credit hour course (Advanced BFA Studio/Design Studies) during their senior year.
  • Exhibit their work during their senior year with their graduating BFA peers.

Career Opportunities

Graduates of our art and design programs are able to pursue a wide array of careers in corporate, government, non-profit and independent sectors including: 

  • Art museums/galleries: administration, curatorial, conservation, public relations, out reach programming, exhibit design and preparation
  • Graphic design: digital, print, multimedia, type, web, illustration, advertising
  • Education P-12: studio art, fine arts, art history
  • Independent studio practice: sales, promotion, design, development, freelance

Earning a degree from our department will also prepare you for pre-professional study and entrance into graduate programs. Students go on to earn master of fine arts degrees in disciplines such as painting, ceramics, graphic design, animation, printmaking, and photography and achieve success in masters programs such as entertainment technology, art administration, art therapy and historic preservation.

Career Services offers career planning, interview and resume preparation assistance, internship placement, and services to help you find a job after you graduate.

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  • MSU at Prestonsburg
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Major In You.