Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art

The Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) program allows students to concentrate their efforts in a studio art education. Mentorship by dedicated faculty prepares students for a successful career in the arts.

Admission into the Bachelor of Fine Arts program is a selective process, requiring acceptance by both the University of Alaska Anchorage and the Department of Art BFA Committee. Students who exhibit the potential for success through strong coursework and portfolio are encouraged to apply for admission into the program.   

Students who become BFA candidates have demonstrated the considerable commitment required for the study and production of art. BFA candidates are expected to devote a large measure of time to studio work as they plan for a professional life in art.

The structure of the program provides the candidate with many opportunities for interaction with the department faculty and fellow BFA students, encouraging close working relationships and mentorship.

Completion of the program culminates in a written thesis and exhibition at the Kimura Gallery in the Fine Arts Building.

Admission Requirements

Satisfy the Application and Admission Requirements for Baccalaureate Programs.

Admission into the BFA program, withdrawal from it and granting of the degree is at the discretion of the BFA Committee.

Students admitted into the BFA program must complete a minimum of 24 Art credits (upper- or lower-division courses) in residence at UAA.

A student must choose a primary studio area of concentration and a secondary studio area of emphasis. A primary studio area of concentration is defined by a student completing a minimum of 15 credits within a specific area of study. A secondary studio area of emphasis is defined by a student completing 9-12 credits within a specific area of study.

Transfer students need a minimum of 12 resident Art credits: 9 credits must be completed in the primary studio area of concentration, and a minimum of 3 resident Art credits completed in the secondary studio area of emphasis.

Applicants for admission into the BFA program must meet the following minimum requirements:

  • Applicants must have been officially admitted to UAA as a declared pre-BFA in the program.
  • Applicants must have completed all lower-division Art major courses in the Foundation Core and the Beginning Studio categories.
  • Applicants must have been enrolled at UAA for at least one semester prior to application to full BFA status.
  • Applicants must meet minimum academic GPA requirements of 2.50 for overall coursework and 3.00 for overall Art coursework.

Refer to the most recent BFA Handbook on the Department of Art website for more details.

The following materials must be submitted to the Department of Art at least two weeks prior to the BFA Committee’s scheduled application review:

  • Application for Admission form.
  • Letter of Intent stating objectives and qualifications in relation to the BFA in Art program.
  • BFA Procedures and Requirements form signed by the student and the art faculty advisor indicating an understanding of BFA procedures and requirements.
  • Copies of all college transcripts.
  • A Projected Plan of Study signed by the College of Arts and Sciences academic advisor for the Fine Arts Division.
  • Portfolio of 15-20 pieces of artwork in the primary studio area of concentration and secondary studio area of emphasis showing technical skills, design abilities and a potential for developing a conceptual vision. Applicants must submit work for consideration in digital formats. Applications will be reviewed only in the fall semester. Admission decisions are determined by a consensus of BFA Committee members in the fall semester.

Academic Requirements

To graduate with a BFA in Art, students must have met the following GPA requirements:

  1. A minimum overall major GPA of 3.00 in the major.
  2. A minimum GPA of 3.50 in the primary studio area of concentration
  3. A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 in all university coursework.

Semester Reviews

The progress of all BFA candidates will be reviewed a minimum of once a semester by the BFA Committee.

Thesis Project and Capstone Course

Upon completion of all studio courses in the primary studio area of concentration and secondary studio area of emphasis, approved BFA candidates will enroll in ART A491 Senior Seminar in the fall semesters, and ART A499 Thesis in the spring semesters only. ART A491 fulfills the integrative capstone GER requirement.

Students enrolled in the BFA program must submit their thesis proposal for approval during the fall semester of the academic year. 

Once the BFA Committee has reviewed and accepted the thesis proposals, candidates will be granted permission to register for ART A499. During ART A499 students will complete a body of work that will culminate in a formal exhibition. BFA students enrolled in ART A499 will meet with the BFA Committee a minimum of twice a semester.

The BFA Committee’s evaluation of the student’s thesis project will be based on content, exhibition presentation and the degree of success in visual realization of the written proposal. At least 10 digital images of the student’s thesis artwork must be submitted to the Department of Art. These images must meet the standards set by the BFA Committee and will become the property of the Department of Art. The digital images must be received by the department before a grade for ART A499 is awarded.

Exhibitions and Presentations

BFA candidates will participate in the BFA Group Show which is generally held in the Kimura Gallery. The BFA Committee must approve all aspects of the thesis exhibition. The BFA Group Show will be held during the spring semester each year.  Prior to completing all BFA requirements, the student is responsible for submitting an Application for Graduation to obtain the degree.

Graduation Requirements

Major Requirements

Foundation Core Courses
ART A105Beginning Drawing3
ART A111Two-Dimensional Design3
ART A112Color Design3
ART A113Three-Dimensional Design3
ART A205Intermediate Drawing3
ART A261History of Western Art I3
ART A262History of Western Art II3
ART A307Life Drawing and Composition I3
Beginning Studio Electives
Choose one course from the two-dimensional list and one course from the three-dimensional list, and one course from either list:9
Two-Dimensional Area
Beginning Watercolor
Beginning Painting
Beginning Printmaking
Beginning Photography
Beginning Graphic Design
Computer Art
Three-Dimensional Area
Beginning Handbuilt Ceramics
Beginning Wheelthrown Ceramics
Beginning Sculpture
Art History
Select three of the following:9
History of Modern Art
History of Contemporary Art
Italian Renaissance Art
History of Photography
Art History Seminar
Primary Studio Area of Concentration and Secondary Studio Area of Emphasis
Select a primary studio area of concentration and a secondary studio area of emphasis from the following:
Ceramics
Drawing
Illustration
Painting
Photography
Printmaking
Sculpture
Primary Studio Area of Concentration
Select a primary studio area of concentration from the list above and complete the following studio courses in the same concentration:
200-level studio course *3
300-level studio course6
400-level studio course6
Select a support course from the following:3
Selected Topics in Studio Art
Selected Topics in Studio Art
Individual Research
Other courses by permission
Secondary Studio Area of Emphasis
Select a secondary studio area of emphasis from the list above and complete the following studio courses in the same emphasis:
200-level studio course **3
300-level studio course3
Select a support course from following:3
300-level studio course
400-level studio course
Selected Topics in Studio Art
Selected Topics in Studio Art
Individual Research
Other courses by permission
Thesis Requirements
ART A491Senior Seminar (fall semesters only)3
ART A499Thesis (spring semesters only)3
Additional Requirements
ART A203Introduction to Art Education3
PHIL A401Aesthetics3
Complete 6 credits of electives selected from art history or art studio courses.6
Total Credits87
*

Students must choose a beginning course studio area of concentration. Exception: Students with a drawing concentration may choose from any 200-level two-dimensional class listed under Beginning Studio Electives.

**

Must be other than a course selected to fulfill the Beginning Studio Electives within the Foundation Core.

A total of 121 credits is required for the degree, of which 42 credits must be upper-division. A maximum of 84 credits in ART can be applied to the degree. 

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Students graduating with a Bachelor of Fine Arts will be able to demonstrate:

  • Mastery of techniques, composition, and the use of materials to express ideas in a cohesive body of work.
  • A comprehensive knowledge of contemporary and historical contexts in the visual arts.
  • Critical thinking, writing and research skills in the discovery of original approaches to creative problem solving.
  • Effective professional skills to be a practicing artist as applied to art proposals, exhibitions and business matters.