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Department of Visual Arts

The Difference is Design.

Read about Eric Say (2009, graphic design) at NBC Universal in NYC!

The School of Design offers courses in animation, art education, art history, ceramics, computer graphics, drawing, film, illustration, interactive design, graphic design, mobile app design, painting, photography, printmaking, sculpture and web design.

With over 230 declared majors, our students earn BFA (Bachelor of Fine Arts) degrees in Art Education, Graphic Design and Studio Arts leading to careers as professional designers and artists. Graduates may also pursue graduate study, receiving advanced degrees in art and design. The department provides ten specialized and multi-purpose studios, located in Grove Hall, the new North Headhouse building, and a 5000 square foot freshman studio, in addition to resources available at the South Dakota Art Museum.

Our commitment to providing real-world experiences is realized through our professional BFA curriculum, internships, practice courses, and travel study to art galleries, museums, and design studios in national and international design centers.


Graphic Design (B.F.A.)
Studio Art (B.F.A.) - Art Education Specialization
Studio Art (B.F.A.) - Ceramics Specialization
Studio Art (B.F.A.) - Painting Specialization
Studio Art (B.F.A.) - Printmaking Specialization
Studio Art (B.F.A.) - Sculpture Specialization


Film Studies Minor
Museum Studies Minor
Studio Arts Minor
(may include studio courses art and graphic design)


Animation Certificate
Art History Certificate
Ceramics Certificate
Graphic Design Certificate
Painting Certificate
Printmaking Certificate
Sculpture Certificate

Student Engagement Opportunities

Programs within the Department of Visual Arts offers opportunities for student engagement through creative activities, scholarship and student organizations.

  • Art Club
  • AIGA (American Institute of Graphic Art)
  • Annual juried student art exhibitions
  • SoDak Animation Festival
  • Honors Art History
  • South Dakota Art Museum internships
  • Professional graphic design internships
  • Undergraduate scholarship and creative opportunities
  • Various studio art related internships
  • Sanford Health art internships
  • Community Art Center internships


The American Institute of Graphic Arts is the professional organization for graphic designers and graphic design students.  Their mission defines global standards and ethical practices, design education, inspiring designers and educating the public, enhancing professional development, making powerful tools and resources accessible to all.

FATE is the national association dedicated to promoting excellence in the development and teaching of college-level foundation courses in both studio and art history.

International Sculpture Center
The International Sculpture Center (ISC) is a member-supported, nonprofit organization that champions the creation and understanding of sculpture and its unique, vital contribution to society.

The National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

Sioux Falls Design Center
The mission of the SFDC is to inform and engage the public on the impact of design in our daily lives and in our community.

The University and College Designers Association celebrates Graphic Design Education and focuses on design excellence and support for higher education.

Visual Arts is part of the new School of Design!

The programs in Visual Arts, along with Architecture, Interior Design, and Landscape Architecture, are part of South Dakota State's new School of Design.