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Grand Valley State University    
2018-2019 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog 
  Aug 23, 2019
2018-2019 Undergraduate & Graduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Visual and Media Arts - Program Description

For additional information about opportunities your college offers, please refer to the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences  section in this catalog.


The Department of Visual and Media Arts offers courses with degree programs leading to a B.A. or B.S. degree in art education and a B.A. in art history, B.A. or B.S. degree in film and video production, photography and studio art, a B.F.A. degree in studio art with an emphasis in ceramics, graphic design, illustration, jewelry and metalsmithing, painting, printmaking, sculpture, or visual studies. Also available are minors in art history, photography, and studio art. The degree programs in Visual and Media Arts combine intensive studio training in the visual arts with a liberal arts education. The programs are designed to support students’ acquisition of conceptual and technical skills while fostering their awareness of current issues, theoretical frameworks, as well as the historical and cultural contexts for visual and media arts production.

Coursework is augmented by field trips, a campus student exhibition program, campus and off campus student film screenings, visiting artists and filmmakers, and international programs. Internships and independent study also enhance coursework, especially in film and video production, graphic design, and photography, where off-campus field experience is required or recommended.


Students admitted to Grand Valley State University who declare an interest in pursuing an art history, film and video production, or photography degree, they can begin to register for the introductory courses. Students admitted to Grand Valley who are pursuing the art education or studio arts degrees will receive a materials packet explaining the portfolio entrance. The student is then responsible for following the instructions in the packet. In addition, film and video production, graphic design, and illustration require a secondary admission. Students can find details on the website or consult with their academic advisor. Photography and several studio arts emphasis programs do not require a secondary admission. More information regarding application for studio art and art education admission is available online at

Transfer Students

  • Transfer students pursuing film and video production and photography degrees will be able to receive transfer credit for those courses approved as an equivalent course from their previous institution. The Registrar’s office will be able to provide course equivalency information.
  • Admittance to the department and all transfer credit will be by departmental portfolio review only, both for newly admitted and current Grand Valley students. Contact the department for application information and specific details. Transfer students should bring the results of this review as well as the transfer credit statement from admissions with them at the time they register so they can be advised about advanced placement.
  • Transfer students pursuing studio art and art education are required to take a minimum of 15 art credits within the department, including one art history course.
  • Transfer students may take longer to graduate in the B.F.A. or art education programs because of the high number of professional courses required in those programs and the sequencing necessary for skill development.

Admission information on how to apply to the Department of Visual and Media Arts is available online at


The department is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).


The following programs are available:

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Art Education  

Bachelor of Arts in Art History  

Art History Minor  

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Film and Video Production  

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Photography  

Photography Minor  

Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science in Studio Art  

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art  

Studio Art Minor