BFA in Art

Degree Program Description

The School of Visual Studies Art program  offers opportunities for creative development, provides instruction in visual literacy, and trains students in the necessary technical and conceptual skills needed to pursue a lifetime of creative activity.  Through a variety of studio art courses, students learn critical thinking skills, creative problem solving, and become life-long learners. Course offerings include  ceramics, drawing, fibers, graphic design, painting, photography, printmaking, and sculpture.  The BFA is considered a professional degree intended to provide a solid foundation for a career in visual art. Students in the BFA program must complete 60-70 hours of studio art and 12 hours of Art History. Starting Fall 2015, all students wishing to pursue a BA or BFA degree in art must pass the Art program BA/BFA Portfolio Review.  Students that earn a degree in art pursue a variety of careers, including artists; art educators; commercial and studio designers; and graphic, web, print and packaging designers.

Back to Top

Major Program Requirements

Art majors earning a BFA degree complete art foundations courses, art core requirements, and art studio electives with 15 credits in one specific media area. Students enrolled in the BFA degree program may not include art or art history courses with a grade of D.

All art students are assigned a departmental faculty advisor. Students are encouraged to meet with the advisor to plan a program of study with a focus in one particular media area.

BFA students complete 60 to 70 credits in studio art, including a minimum of 15 credits in one specific media area, and 12 credits of art history, including at least two 3-hour Art History & Archaeology courses numbered 2000 or above. A minimum of 35 credit hours of studio art coursework must be taken at MU.

In addition, students must complete all College of Arts and Science and University graduation requirements, including University general education.

Starting Fall 2015, all students wishing to pursue a BA or BFA degree in art will need to pass the Art program BA/BFA Portfolio Review. A student will need to have completed six (6) courses in art before submitting a portfolio (it is acceptable to be enrolled in the last class(es) the semester the portfolio is submitted) for either the BA or BFA. The courses are ART_GNRL 1030ART_GNRL 1040ART_DRAW 1050 and  three studio art courses at the 2000 level.  For more detailed information on the portfolio, please refer to the School of Visual Studies website.

Major core requirements:
Art foundations
ARTGE_VS 1030Basic 2-D Design3
ARTGE_VS 1040Basic 3-D Design3
ARTDR_VS 1050Drawing: Materials and Methods3
Art core requirements
ARTPA_VS 2500Beginning Painting3
or ARTPA_VS 2510 Beginning Watercolor Painting
ARTSC_VS 2800Beginning Sculpture3
(students need a total of 6 hours from ceramics and/or fibers)
ARTCE_VS 2100Beginning Ceramics3
ARTFI_VS 2300Beginning Fibers3
(students need a total of 6 hours from photography and/or printmaking)
ARTPH_VS 2600Beginning Photography3
ARTPR_VS 2700Introduction to Etching and Relief Printmaking3
ARTGE_VS 4975Senior Seminar in Art3
ART media area electives15 minimum
ART studio electivesup to 19
AR H A courses (Art History and Archaeology)12

Semester Plan

Below is a sample plan of study, semester by semester.  A student's actual plan may vary based on course choices where options are available. (Students focusing on graphic design will take ARTGE_VS 4976 Fall of their fourth year instead of an Art Studio Elective which they will move to the Spring of their fourth year and take instead of ARTGE_VS 4975)

First Year
Art Foundations Course3Art Foundations Course3
Art Foundations Course3Art Core Requirement3
MATH 1100 or ENGLSH 10003MATH 1100 or ENGLSH 10003
American History or Government Course3Behavioral Science Course3
 Humanities Course3
 12 15
Second Year
Art Media Area Course3Art Media Course3
Art Core Requirement Course3Art Core Requirement Course3
ARH_VS 11103Biological/Physical/Math Science Course (MRP)3
Biological/Physical/Math Science Course (Lab)3Behavioral or Social Science Course3
Humanities Course3ARH_VS 11203
 15 15
Third Year
Art Media Area Course3Art Media Course3
Art Core Requirement Course3Art Core Requirement Course3
Art Core Requirement Course3Art Core Requirement Course3
Biological/Physical/Math Science Course3General Elective Course3
AR H A Course (2000+)3AR H A Course (2000+, WI)3
 15 15
Fourth Year
Art Media Area Course3Art Studio Elective3
Art Core Requirement Course3Art Studio Elective3
Art Studio Elective Course3General Elective Course3
General Elective Course3ARTGE_VS 49753
General Elective Course3General Elective Course3
Humanities Course (2000+)3 
 18 15
Total Credits: 120

Back to Top

Degree Audit

The degree audit is an automated report reflecting a student’s academic progress toward the completion of a degree.  Degree Audits are not available for all programs; however, please consult with the appropriate college or school for audit information.

MU students can request a degree audit by logging in to myDegreePlanner.  Students may also access myDegreePlanner via myZou, in the Student Center, by clicking on the Request Degree Audit link. The audit automatically pulls in the student’s MU course work, transfer courses and courses in progress.  This is available to current students, admitted students, and those who last attended less than three terms ago.

Past MU students can request a degree audit by contacting the Academic Advising Unit of the division in which they were last enrolled at MU. For contact information, go to

Prospective students, can access a preliminary MU degree audit via Information on the college credits already earned will have to be manually entered before it can be evaluated against current degree requirements.

For additional details on degree audits, go to

Back to Top

Major and Career Exploration

The University of Missouri has many resources to assist you in exploring majors and career possibilities.  For guidance, visit the Majors and Careers website or view specific resources below.

  • If you would like to learn more about your career interests, abilities, values and talents, visit the MU Career Center in the lower level of the Student Success Center.  No appointment is necessary to explore career options with one of our staff members.

For additional major and career exploration resources, visit Major & Career Exploration in the catalog.

Back to Top