Do you love coming up with fun projects that let others explore their creativity? Do you love working with kids and believe that there’s no such thing as a “bad” drawing? Do you love taking chances, getting messy, and making mistakes? If the answer to all those questions is “yes,” you might be the perfect candidate for Buffalo State College’s art education program.
Michael Parks, professor emeritus of art education, cites evidence from the College Board and the National Art Education Association that studying, creating, and analyzing art supports the state's Common Core requirements for literacy in public K-12 schools. "Teaching visual arts is very much in line with current state standards," Parks said. "The adage that art is about ideas, not about putting a pretty picture on the wall, supports this. Images are metaphorical and parallel how students evaluate literature and write explanatory text."
"I get e-mails regularly from districts in states in the South and West where the population is growing," Parks said. "They want our graduates."
Our undergraduate art education program trains students to be both educators and artists. Art education students work side-by-side in studio classes with art and design majors. This means that art education majors are able to develop their resumes and their portfolios.
Art education majors graduate with a bachelor of fine arts (BFA) rather than a bachelor of science. Graduates emerge with a concentration in one of the studio arts, along with a deep knowledge of art history and an advanced approach to art-making.
Because of the Art and Design Department’s excellent reputation and national accreditation, school districts across the country eagerly hire our graduates. Recent graduates have been hired by schools in Upstate New York and New York City, as well as districts in Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Texas, Nevada, Virginia, Colorado, and Alaska. What else makes our art education special? Here are just some of the reasons:
Students majoring in art education at Buffalo State understand that art is about visually representing ideas. Being able to interpret visual culture makes them critical thinkers in a greatly changing world. With their combination of art-making skills, art history knowledge, and understanding of developmental psychology, they’re excellent candidates for art teacher positions in preschool through secondary schools throughout the country. The art education program prepares students for other careers as well, some of which require graduate education. These other professional positions include:
All Buffalo State students are afforded many professional opportunities beyond the classroom. Those of particular interest to art education majors include:
Art education students can participate in undergraduate research, a student-faculty collaboration to examine, create, and share knowledge or works in ways commensurate with practices in the discipline.
Our students have opportunities to conduct undergraduate research both during the academic year and in the summer. They can gain additional exposure to art education best practices by studying abroad, such as in the Siena Program in Siena, Italy, and the Anne Frank Program in Rwanda. In addition, art education students have found research and intern opportunities through organizations including:
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