Art (BA)

The Art major’s curriculum provides you with training in the studio arts, illustration or photography/digital media. It also aims to prepare you for both professional practice and advanced study.

  • A minimum 73–92 credits are required for majors in art, depending on your chosen emphasis, including 37–39 upper-division credits.
  • The Illustration/New Pictures concentration has sequenced courses and will require a minimum of two years from the start of the admitted Autumn Quarter.
  • Application to this major requires submission of a portfolio and written statement in addition to the online major application.
  • You will choose one of these emphases: Studio Art; Illustration/New Pictures; Photography/Digital Media.
  • As a condition of graduation, you are required to participate in a Senior Exhibition during Spring Quarter of your senior year.

entering and completing the Art major (Illustration/New Pictures, Photography/Digital Media, and Studio Arts

    In order to earn a degree, you must complete at least one academic major. SPU encourages students to explore various academic paths, so if you change your mind about a major or minor, or want to include an additional program, you are able to do so.

    Note that the University encourages you to enter your chosen major(s) and minor(s) by the start of your junior year. Students who transfer as juniors and seniors should enter a major within their first two quarters at SPU.

  • Admission to the Art major (all areas of emphasis) is selective and based upon prior academic performance and portfolio.
  • If you are a transfer student with class status beyond the sophomore level, you may apply to the major after an advising/work sample review with the head of your intended concentration. You should be sure to apply in your first quarter at SPU.
  • If this is your first quarter at SPU or you are a continuing student with an SPU GPA of 2.0 or better, follow these instructions to apply on Banner.
  • In addition to requesting admission to the major in Banner, you must also submit the following:
    • A written statement on why you are choosing to pursue studies in the Art major. This should be approximately 200 words.
    • A specified portfolio for review. (See “Portfolio Guidelines” below.)
  • Students on academic probation (with an SPU cumulative GPA below 2.0) will not be permitted to enter a new major or minor until they regain good academic standing.
  • The University requires a grade of C- or better in all classes that apply to a major or minor; however, programs may require higher minimum grades in specific courses. You may repeat an SPU course only once for a higher grade.
  • To advance in this program, meet with your faculty advisor regularly to discuss your grades, course progression, and other indicators of satisfactory academic progress. If your grades or other factors indicate that you may not be able to successfully complete the major or minor, your faculty advisor can work with you to explore options, which may include choosing a different major or minor.
  • You must complete the major or minor requirements that are in effect in the SPU Undergraduate Catalog for the year you enter the major or minor.

Portfolio guidelines

The Art major (all areas of emphasis) requires submission of a portfolio. 

Before submitting a portfolio, you must apply for entrance to the major in Banner by following these instructions.You should submit the Banner request after you have completed the following courses: ART 1105 Art Foundations 1: Surface; ART 1106 Art Foundations 2: Space; and ART 1107 Art Foundations 3: Time. For equivalency of previous course offerings and/or transfer credits, please consult with the head of your intended concentration.

Portfolios must include:

  • A declaration that you intend to pursue studies in the Art major with an emphasis in Studio Arts. Illustration/New Pictures, or Photography/Digital Media.  
  • Anticipated date of graduation.
  • A current transcript.
  • A document listing the address of your online portfolio.
  • Required artwork samples: Three projects from each core course, for a minimum of nine pieces.
  • A current transcript.
  • Suggested physical artwork samples: In addition to the on-line portfolio, some programs require the submission of physical artifacts. Please consult with the head of your intended concentration for specific requirements.
  • The required contents may be emailed to the head of your intended concentration, or these works may be submitted to the Art Department administrative office in a portfolio case large enough to contain all original work. If you are turning in a physical portfolio the exterior of the portfolio should include a document that includes your name, the major for which you are applying, your SPU email address, and your expected year of graduation.

Application deadlines

Freshmen/sophomores: We have a rolling deadline with opportunities to submit your portfolio throughout your freshman and sophomore years. Please notify the head of your intended concentration to let them know you have submitted your application and portfolio.

For Junior/seniors: The last date to submit your portfolio for entrance into the major for fall admissions is June 15 prior to the Autumn Quarter you intend to begin the program. The Illustration/New Pictures concentration has sequenced courses and will require a minimum of two years from the start of the admitted Autumn Quarter.Please meet with the head of your intended concentration to discuss portfolio submission or change of major.     

Post-application review process

You will be notified by email of the status and final decision regarding your application. Portfolios can be collected at the Art Department administrative office during office hours. Criteria for acceptance will be based upon the quality of the work, grades, essay content, and success in academic coursework.

Time Schedule: Art

Course planning

Suggested course sequences help you complete your degree in a timely manner.

The Art Center Gallery at Seattle Pacific University

Senior exhibition requirement

All Art majors are required to participate in a Senior Exhibition during Spring Quarter of their senior year.

All Visual Communication majors are required to participate during Spring Quarter of their senior year in the Visual Communication Portfolio Exhibition.