What You’ll Learn

If you wish to pursue a degree in studio art at Columbia College, you will have many opportunities in the studio and academic classes to work with, study, and experience the visual arts from diverse cultural sources, historical periods, and media.

The department’s faculty are regionally and nationally recognized artists and scholars. Through their guidance and instruction, you will learn to:

  • Analyze and interpret the non-verbal language and contemporary issues of art or design.
  • Recognize major achievements in the history of art, including the works and intentions of leading artists in the past and present.
  • Establish an emphasis in at least one specific studio area to learn foundation-level skills (e.g. art, two-dimensional design, and/or three-dimensional design).
  • Demonstrate competence in a number of art and/or design techniques. In addition, the Art program provides survey and activity courses for the non-major-seeking learning experiences in visual arts.

Career Opportunities 

There are a variety of internships available to begin preparing you for a career in the arts. Many art majors have pursued graduate degrees in studio art, art education, art therapy, art history, and other areas.

Graduates from the Studio Art program have become teachers, practicing artists, pursued careers in graphic design, worked in galleries and museums, and opened their own advertising agencies.

The Columbia College Difference

Our Studio Art program is located in the R. Wright Spears Center for the Arts where you'll find a ceramics and three-dimensional design studio. The Goodall Gallery often features student work and art exhibits.

The facilities include studios, darkrooms, framing and exhibition labs, and computer labs aimed at giving our students the best access to the newest technology.

Studio Art Scholarships

If you wish to apply for one of our art scholarships, we'll need to see some of your work.

Scholarships are based on a review of an applicant’s portfolio of original artwork. Art faculty are looking for evidence of basic skills, a strong work ethic, and a commitment to art. Portfolios should include 8-12 works of the student’s choice and may be in a variety of media or all in one or two media.

Works do not need to be polished, nor is it necessary to mat or frame works. Inclusion of a sketchpad is optional. Once we have received all portions of your admissions application and portfolio we will contact you with feedback.

There are three ways to show us your portfolio:

1. Submit by Mail

You may send us a copy of your portfolio in the mail and we will contact you with feedback.

2. Submit Online

You may submit a portfolio by e-mail or provide a website that displays an appropriate selection of your works.

3. Meet with faculty

We believe this is the best option for your work to be reviewed. We encourage you to bring your portfolio to campus and meet with faculty for a review of your work.

You may do so by attending any of the Admissions Open Houses throughout the academic year or by contacting the Program Coordinator to set up an appointment.

Additional Course Options


The disciplines of art and art history actively integrate a learning model of leadership into the curriculum. When you create, analyze, and interpret artworks, you begin to understand your power as a means of communication.

Studio Art

Students wishing to pursue a minor in Studio Art will be required to take lab based Art courses to showcase their ability and passion for art.

Art History

Students wishing to pursue a minor in Art History will be required to take some Studio Art lab courses as well as lectures.