The Arts Guidelines

Study possibilities in the arts include:

  • both practice and history and criticism of the visual arts (sculpture, painting, crafts, photography, design, graphics, etc.)
  • performing arts (dance, theatre, music, etc.)
  • film arts (film, video, photography, etc.).

Any of the five organizing frameworks may be used to design concentrations: disciplinary, interdisciplinary, problem oriented, professional/vocational or thematic.

A degree program in the arts should provide for the development of:

  • understanding of the historical and cultural context of works of art
  • knowledge of relevant theoretical and philosophical issues
  • awareness of diverse cultural perspectives
  • awareness of current developments and critical perspectives
  • research skills
  • technical proficiency
  • capacity to formulate, express, and communicate concepts and images
  • ability to formulate critical judgments.

Concentrations in the arts begin with foundation studies, which prepare the student for more advanced-level work. Advanced-level competence should be developed in those areas which are most relevant to the specific concentration design and to the specific organizing framework.

A progression of studies for concentrations in practice, performance and creation should lead to:

  • competence in methods and techniques
  • an understanding of current developments, theory and critical perspectives
  • resourcefulness and independence.

A progression of studies for concentrations in history and criticism should lead to competence in understanding history, theory, critical perspectives and cultural contexts.

In planning the concentration, consideration should be given both to depth and breadth.

Students who wish to continue their studies on the graduate level and/or become practicing artists should consult the guidelines for professional degrees, which have been developed by professional associations such as the College Art Association and American Theater Association.

Students preparing for graduate work also should investigate the entrance requirements of specific graduate schools.

The creative arts are traditionally included with those studies considered to be liberal arts. Studio arts would fall within this definition. Learning not considered liberal studies focuses on specialized knowledge and skills often related to specific professional vocational needs and practices. Technical photography, art therapy techniques, advertising art and methods for art education might fall into this category.

 

Revised February 1993