Visual Arts Education | University of Northwestern, St. Paul
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School of Education

Visual Arts Education

School of Education

Visual Arts Education


  • Bachelor of Science
  • Bachelor of Arts
  • Undergraduate

141 credits

required for program

141 credits

141 credits

required for program

Discover your passion with Christian art professionals who can help you inspire creativity in the hearts and minds of children. The visual arts education degree equips you to teach visual art to children in grades K-12 within a public or private school setting. This degree also prepares you for further graduate study.

Why study visual arts education at Northwestern?

At Northwestern, you can develop your unique gifts and strengths as a teacher and servant leader. Here you will learn from seasoned teachers who share your faith and enjoy helping others learn. Our caring faculty will help you learn to engage God’s children through artistic platforms and become role models for their future success. You can grow your professional portfolio and showcase your art in exhibits throughout the year hosted by Northwestern.

The School of Education offers you the opportunity to travel to Haiti for one week to learn how education is different outside the U.S. This will equip you to teach in diverse communities. You can also study abroad in China over spring break or participate in a Civil Rights Pilgrimage spring break trip with other education majors. You can gain even more experience by participating in our international student teaching program.

Northwestern’s beautiful campus is only 15 minutes away from major art and design centers, which allows for regular field trips to places like the Walker Art Center, the Minneapolis Institute of Art, and the Swedish Institute to view others’ work and be inspired. With campus so close to downtown Minneapolis and St. Paul, students can take advantage of opportunities in Minnesota’s thriving education system.

Northwestern’s School of Education provides you with four levels of classroom practicum experience. The first allows you to find your personal "fit" within the teaching profession. The second level focuses on developing theory and skills related to diversity. The third level engages you to apply methodologies within your chosen field by creating, teaching, and evaluating lessons in a school classroom. The final level is full time student teaching in a chosen licensure field.

The School of Education provides teacher education programs approved by the MN Professional Educator Licensing and Standards Board and as a result meet the state standards adopted for licensure programs as defined in state rule 8710.2000 through 8710.8080. All licensure programs are aligned with INTASC (Interstate Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium) standards and the Minnesota Standards of Effective Practice.

The School of Education has hosted Christian Educators Association International (CEAI) events, and is a member of CEAI.

The School of Education attends the Compass Educator Breakfast each fall (through Grace Church in Eden Prairie, MN).

If you have a passion for art, enjoy working with children, are eager to serve, and are interested in a career in education, this might be the right degree for you.

UNW’s Visual Arts Education Program began in 1991.

What will I learn?

You will learn to analyze, problem solve, and be able to teach visual arts to children in grades K-12.

I really enjoyed studying visual arts education at UNWSP. The major has the perfect combination of art and education, which prepared me to teach many different mediums to all different grade levels. What really makes UNW’s art education program stand out is the small studio class sizes, as well as the skilled and intentional art professors who care about you and want to challenge you to grow as an artist. Having the time in college to work on my own art skills and style helped me be equipped to go on and teach my students how to create confidently.
Madeline Phipps (Binsfeld)
Alumni Class of 2018

Careers in visual arts education

There are a variety of career and academic pathways that begin with a degree in visual arts education.

What types of work are related to this degree?

  • Teaching in your area of specialty
  • Private tutoring
  • Creating/directing educational programs
  • Curriculum development or textbook editing
  • Instructional design (technology training may be required)
  • Online education
  • Student life/student affairs
  • Corporate or business training and development
  • Private or community education instructor
  • Administration/management in the fine arts
  • Art gallery or museum research or exhibits

Who employs people with this degree?

  • Schools of all kinds-public, private, charter, international, government, residential
  • Day care and nursery school
  • Parks and Recreation departments
  • Educational testing companies
  • Curriculum/educational publishers
  • School district offices
  • Educational research firms
  • Industries related to your subject area
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Universities and colleges
  • Employee training programs
View Career Guide
95%
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of seniors view the faculty as available and accessible

Program

meets licensure requirements for the Minnesota Board of Teaching

100%

of Northwestern’s education graduates felt professionally prepared

Preparing for a Career

College graduation rates continue to increase each year making competition for jobs even greater. Set yourself apart from the crowd with the following strategies for getting started, networking, and gaining experience.

Strategies for success:

  • Requirements for certification/licensure vary by state; multiple certifications will increase employability. A master’s degree will increase earning potential.
  • Be willing to work hard at finding a job and to go where the jobs are.
  • Obtain part-time, summer, internship, or volunteer experience with the age group you intend to work within various settings: pre-schools, daycares, camps, community agencies, adult centers, YMCA’s, etc.
  • Participate in co-curricular activities and related organizations to broaden skills, interests, and opportunities.
  • Identify transferable skills learned in teaching applicable to other careers: written and verbal communication, teaching and instruction, program planning, organization and record-keeping, working under pressure and meeting deadlines, motivational skills, creativity, working autonomously, decision-making, problem-solving.

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