Sculpting Schools and Degree Programs

Learn about the structure of sculpture classes and the requirements for associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees in studio art with sculpture concentrations. Research online options for low-residency graduate degrees. Schools offering Sculpture degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

While academic training is not required to pursue a career as a sculptor, you may decide to complete postsecondary education at the associate's, bachelor's or master's degree level. These programs are offered at many schools. Classes are offered to instruct you in sculpting many different mediums, such as stone, glass and metal, allowing you to express your artistic vision.

Schools Community colleges, universities and colleges offer programs
Degrees Associate's, bachelor's and master's degrees in sculpting or studio arts are available
Courses Art history, drawing, design, color theory, stone carving, glass blowing, welding, blacksmithing and metalworking, technology in sculpture, installation art and public art

What Can I Expect From A Sculpting Degree Program?

In a sculpture degree program, you can expect to receive instruction in the history, theory and practice of 3-dimensional art in multiple media like ceramics, woodworking, fibers and clay. You will take introductory courses in art history, drawing, design and color theory before moving on to advanced courses in sculpture. Faculty, and sometimes visiting artists, will help train you in several techniques, media and facilities, and you will give and receive feedback in workshops. You may receive career-oriented instruction on topics like galleries, public art commissions and portfolio development. Your study may culminate with a gallery exhibition of your work.

What Undergraduate Degrees are Available in Sculpting?

Associate's degree programs are typically made up of courses in fine art history and practice, with sculpture courses available through electives. While some programs may lead directly to a career, most are designed to help you enter a 4-year bachelor's degree program. Bachelor's degree programs include the type of introductory coursework you'd find at the associate's level and may build upon it by offering more courses, facilities and media. Bachelor's programs generally require courses in liberal arts and may offer opportunities for independent study, direct mentorship and study abroad.

An Associate in Arts program with a specialization in art may include a sculpture course. Many Bachelor of Fine Arts degree programs are available in sculpture. These course topics may be covered at the undergraduate level:

  • Figurative sculpture
  • Blacksmithing
  • Molding and casting
  • Iron casting
  • Welding
  • Woodcarving
  • 3D sculpture
  • Anatomical structure

What Graduate Degrees are Available in Sculpting?

Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture programs typically take two years to complete and require studio courses, seminars, critiques and electives. You may receive a personal studio, a teaching fellowship and industry training during your study. You may also complete a thesis project or final exhibition in the last semester of your program. A Master of Fine Arts in Sculpture and Dimensional Studies is another degree option.

What Kind of Courses Will I Take?

Sculpture is a broad field, with materials ranging from marble to old electronic parts, so the courses you can take can vary widely depending on your school and interests. You can take courses that will train you to use equipment including kilns, forges and foundries. You could take classes in techniques like sandblasting or papermaking. You may also take interdisciplinary courses that blur the boundaries between sculpture and other artistic media, such as writing and video. Some subjects you might study through sculpture courses include:

  • Stone carving
  • Glass blowing
  • Technology in sculpture
  • Installation art
  • Public art

Can I Pursue a Sculpting Degree Online?

There are a few low-residency Master of Fine Arts programs that allow you to pursue a large portion of your coursework online. Low-residency programs typically require occasional campus visits and stays that can last several weeks. Still, these programs may offer you a greater amount of flexibility than a traditional master's program. If you do pursue a low-residency degree, you will need a computer with Internet access and a digital camera for taking pictures of your work. These schools offer degree programs in sculpting, including some with low-residency degrees:

  • Academy of Art University (San Francisco, CA)
  • Massachusetts College of Art and Design (Boston)
  • University of Northern Colorado (Greeley)
  • Maryland Institute College of Art (Baltimore)
  • San Bernardino Valley College (CA)
  • The University of Southern Mississippi (Hattiesburg)

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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