Program type:


On Campus
Est. time to complete:

4 years
Credit Hours:

Ceramics — an ancient yet critical industry of today!
Turn your passion into your profession! Since prehistoric times, ceramic materials have had significant roles. Fine artists advance professionally as their work circulates and they establish a reputation for their particular style. Many of the most successful artists continually develop new ideas, and their work often evolves over time.

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Why Earn a Ceramics Studio Art Degree?

We believe clay is a means of expression, a tool for communication and a conduit for critical thinking.

The Ceramics program is an engaged and inclusive community of undergraduate and graduate students, technical staff and accomplished faculty who promote excellence in the field. Students work in the new $10 million Art Annex with the oldest of nature's materials while practicing contemporary methods of fine art, craft, technology and design.

The Studio Art B.F.A. with a concentration in Ceramics offers knowledge, aesthetics, technical approaches and invention through hands-on experiences with raw materials and technical processes. We strive to have a diverse and inclusive outlook on contemporary ceramic art history and theory which also encompasses non-western art and craft. In the classroom, we cover current issues of social practice, sustainability and interdisciplinary practices which reflect the current cultural landscape.

Students in the Ceramics program have active contact with the faculty and technical staff who provide critical and rigorous mentorship while encouraging exploration and guidance in professional practices.

Throughout the curriculum, students are taught traditional methods, such as hand-forming, wheel-throwing and mold making alongside contemporary methods of computer-aided design, digital fabrication and industrial production. All students engage in the preparation of clay bodies and glazes, kiln stacking procedures, firing processes — electric, gas, wood, raku, primitive and soda — and surface techniques. The studio environment is one where functional and sculptural aesthetics are both equally valued.

Whether interested in the entrepreneurial aspects of the ceramics industry or developing a fine art career, the study of Ceramics offers a variety of possibilities for a fulfilling future.

Marketable Skills
  • Creative thinking
  • Adapting techniques
  • Autonomous working
  • Oral and written communication
  • Multiple approach assessment

Ceramics Studio Art Degree Highlights

Our faculty members are nationally and internationally acclaimed artists and scholars who impact communities worldwide as active members and leaders of national organizations, including NCECA and the International Academy of Ceramics.
Our new $10-million, 22,600-square-foot Art Annex is home to the Ceramics program. Across the street is our 238,000-square-foot, four-story, open-concept new Art Building, which opened in 2019 and includes classrooms, computer labs, faculty offices, studios, critique spaces, three galleries and a visual resources library.
Our new facilities include 3D printers, a clay printer, ram press and Blauuw kilns.
Through an annual juried art competition, many students receive cash prizes and scholarships. Scholarships also are available through local, regional and international exhibitions.
A Living-Learning Community brings together art and design majors who live on campus.
Students are encouraged to participate in the Clay Guild student organization, sponsor visiting artist workshops, exhibitions, ceramic art sales and annual travel to the conference sponsored by the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts.

Career Outlook

Education – continue in a graduate program. May instruct private lessons or public workshops and classes at colleges, universities, museums, galleries, community centers, artist residencies or studios.

Ceramicist – creates and sells one-of-a-kind fine art for galleries, specialty shops, craft markets or art fairs. May work in production-ceramics jobs.

Craft and fine artists advance professionally as their work circulates and as they establish a reputation for their particular style. Many of the most successful artists continually develop new ideas, and their work often evolves over time.

Overall employment of fine artists is projected to grow 14% from 2020 to 2030, faster than the average for all occupations. Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Ceramics Studio Art Degree Courses You Could Take

Beginning CeramicsThrowing (3 hrs)
Introduction to functional and non-functional wheel-throwing and glazing techniques and practices.
Intermediate CeramicsForm, Function and the Body (3 hrs)
Technical and conceptual understanding of functional object design, utilitarian pottery, and their relation to the body. Clay and glaze mixing, firing theory and practice, and conceptual ideas will be employed in this class.
Intermediate CeramicsMolds and Multiples (3 hrs)
Study and practice of the creation of molds for slip casting and press molding and the practical and conceptual approach to the ceramic multiple. Clay and glaze mixing, firing theory and practice, and conceptual ideas will be employed in this class.
Intermediate CeramicsMaterial Studies (3 hrs)
Study and practice of ceramics materials, clay body and glaze formulation/mixing, kiln building practices, and firing techniques.
Intermediate CeramicsSurface and Ornamentation (3 hrs)
Study and practice of ceramic surfaces through the implementation of decorative surface techniques, glaze application, and firing methods.
Beginning Ceramics: Hand-building (3 hrs)
Introduction to hand-building techniques to fabricate functional ceramics forms and ceramic sculpture.

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