Michigan State University
Michigan State University
Department of Art, Art History, and Design



Art Education occupies the overlap between visual expression and social responsibility. Art Education is recognized as an integrated, compound discipline, requiring intensive training in studio art and art history while reaching beyond art and education for its resources. The social and cognitive sciences provide frameworks through which contemporary issues in visual culture and the transmission of cultural knowledge are explored. All coursework has an accompanying practicum, designed to provide pre-service teachers with the means to examine and apply their knowledge in a field setting. As a result of this learning-through-practice approach, all stakeholders benefit, including the pre-service teacher, the profession, the school district and future generations of young students. 

Our program is distinguished by our concentration on practical applications — hands-on experience working with children and youth — throughout the course of study. Our Saturday Morning Art classes, taught by Art Education pre-service teachers, have brought opportunities for creative expression to nearly 300 community youngsters each semester for over 20 years. Additional outreach opportunities are provided through collaboration with various non-profit organizations in mid-Michigan.


The MSU Art Education Program leads to the Bachelor of Fine Arts (B.F.A.) in Art Education. Upon graduation, Michigan teacher certification is offered through a fifth year of study in the College of Education Teacher Education program. The Art Education Program focuses on preparing pre-service teachers for a profession in k-12 Art Education. Through supplemental courses, pre-service teachers also may prepare for positions in museum education and other non-profit visual arts applications, or for graduate study.

BFA Program Overview


In preparation for the Teacher Certification Internship-Year Art Education students spend two semesters in the Saturday Morning Art (SmART) K-12 outreach program.