Study Art

Study Art in United States

Study Art in United States

Find your program

Use this search box and filters to browse Erudera's study program database.

Erudera's Complete Guide to Studying Art in The US

Reasons to Study Art in The US

Exposure to an International Environment

As an artist, international exposure will be good for your art. The United States is one of the most visited countries in the world, attracting millions of international visitors every year. If you know how to use this to your advantage, your art could possibly get incredible exposure, which is excellent for your artistic career. Besides, the United States is a great place to create connections with prospective employers, potential buyers, or fellow artists. The opportunities to advance are endless in the US, both professionally and personally, which brings us to our next point.

Source of Inspiration and Growth

If you are looking for a place to broaden your horizons and build meaningful connections, the United States is the place to be. Being home to a diverse range of cultures and traditions, you will learn so much from each and every one of the people you meet. Whether it is fellow students, academic staff, neighbors, or total strangers, they will give you an insight into other cultures, traditions, and ways of life. These experiences will help you better understand the world around you and become a well-rounded artist.

Exceptional Art Schools

One would expect the United States to be home to exceptional art schools, especially considering that its education system is one of the best in the world. Whatever field of art you are interested in, you will find your perfect program in the United States. Universities here have countless resources and funding that go towards the education system. This ensures that degree programs are comprehensive and efficient when it comes to providing students with the knowledge and skills necessary to enter a dynamic job market.

Home of Famous Artists

The United States has created hundreds of famous artists whose works of art are valued and loved on an international level. Artists like Jackson Pollock, Edward Hopper, Keith Haring, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Andy Warhol are only some famous American artists of the 20th century. In one way or another, the United States has been a source of inspiration for many renowned artists, who have now gained global recognition across a wide range of artistic fields.


The requirements for admission to art school in the United States depend on the type of art program you intend to pursue. Generally, entry requirements to art school include:

  • High school academic transcripts.
  • GPA (depending on the school).
  • SAT or ACT scores.
  • TOEFL or IELTS scores (for international students).
  • Letters of recommendation.
  • Cover letter.
  • Portfolio* (for art/music programs).
  • Audition (for music/theater programs).

*The portfolio you submit must meet the requirements set by the art school. Such requirements usually include a specific method (such as the preferred format, e.g., JPG, PDF, or other). Music applicants are also typically required to submit a portfolio of 2-3 scores of their original work on a CD. Your chosen university/admissions office will provide you with detailed information.

Note: To apply for a Master’s of Fine Arts degree, you do not necessarily need to have a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts degree; you generally only need to have a bachelor’s degree accompanied by your portfolio, other documentation, and performance audition.

Application Process

You are advised to begin the application process to art school in the United States as early as one year before the entrance date of freshman year. The earlier you start preparing, the better your chances of fully meeting the requirements and submitting a successful application. You will have to complete an application form from the college of your choice and include your personal information, required test scores (TOEFL/IELTS or SAT/ACT), personal statement, academic transcript, GPA, portfolio, etc.

The portfolio is a crucial part of the application. Make sure to put your best work into your portfolio and follow the instructions set by the university/art school you are applying to. Interviews are often part of the application process as well, mainly because school representatives want to see what students are like in person. This is why many institutions recommend that applicants schedule in-person interviews. The interview process will be a great way to show your passion and talk about your work.

Degree Duration: How Long Does It Take to Study Art in United States?

A bachelor’s degree in art will take you approximately four years to complete. You can get a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree in either a college that has an art department, a university that has its own art school, or an educational institution designed specifically for the arts. Whatever your choice of institution is, obtaining a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree will take roughly four years; however, the specific duration will depend on the amount of studio work, student commitment, and other factors. Students should use this study period to their advantage by networking with companies and gaining practical and professional experience.

A Master of Arts (MA) in an art-related field or a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) takes around 2-3 years of full-time study to complete.

Tuition Fees: How Much Does It Cost to Study Art in United States?

The cost of a degree in the arts in the United States varies depending on the higher education institution. While state residents pay an average of $14,000 per year at some of the best art colleges, out-of-state students pay around $50,600 in tuition and fees per year. Students, both national and international, can apply for scholarship opportunities, which can really help cover the cost of education in the United States. Scholarships usually have their own requirements. Some may be aimed at high-achieving international students, students who show leadership potential, and even students who demonstrate financial need.

Art Career Prospects in United States

An arts education can create employment opportunities in a wide range of industries. Common job titles graduates can take include Art Directors, Multimedia Artists and Animators, Fashion Designers, Digital Designers, Industrial Designers, Interior Designers, Museum Curators, Graphic Designers, Craft and Fine Artists, to name just a few. Whether you are an artist, designer, performer, or musician, you are likely to enjoy a profitable career. Artists are generally self-employed; however, many of them also hold other jobs.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, fine artists, including painters, sculptors, and illustrators, earn a median salary of $52,340 per year.

Arts & Design Related Study Destinations