Art Education, Bachelor of Science in Education

School of Art

College of Arts and Letters

This plan prepares you for a secondary education certificate, with a PK-12 endorsement in Art.

This program is accredited by the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP).

  • To receive a bachelor's degree at Northern Arizona University, you must complete at least 120 units of credit that minimally includes a major, the liberal studies requirements, and university requirements as listed below.

    • All of Northern Arizona University's diversity, liberal studies, junior-level writing, and capstone requirements.
    • All requirements for your specific academic plan(s).
    • At least 30 units of upper-division courses, which may include transfer work.
    • At least 30 units of coursework taken through Northern Arizona University, of which at least 18 must be upper-division courses (300-level or above). This requirement is not met by credit-by-exam, retro-credits, transfer coursework, etc.
    • A cumulative grade point average of at least 2.0 on all work attempted at Northern Arizona University.

    The full policy can be viewed here.

In addition to University Requirements:

  • At least 88 units of major requirements

  • Up to 9 units of major prefix courses may be used to satisfy Liberal Studies requirements; these same courses may also be used to satisfy major requirements.

  • For this major the liberal studies prefixes include ARE and ART

  • Elective courses, if needed, to reach an overall total of at least 120 units.

Candidates in this program are required to demonstrate content knowledge, pedagogical knowledge and skills, professional knowledge, and professional dispositions to be eligible to enter student teaching or internship placements.

Content, pedagogical, and professional knowledge or skills, professional dispositions are demonstrated through candidate performance on key assessments embedded in the following course(s):

Students may be able to use some courses to meet more than one requirement. Contact your advisor for details.

Minimum Units for Completion 120
Major GPA 2.5
Additional Admission Requirements Required
Fieldwork Experience/Internship Fieldwork Experience/Internship is required.
Student Teaching/Supervised Teaching Required
University Honors Program Optional
AZ Transfer Students complete AGEC-A Recommended
Progression Plan Link View Progression Plan

This program may lead to licensure.

Purpose Statement

As an art education major, you will understand the requirements for teaching art in public and private schools and explore avenues for your own personal artistic growth.  At NAU, students achieve a balance between being an expert in their subject and being a great teacher.  Courses in studio art will allow you to explore a variety of areas in the studio arts, including drawing, ceramics, painting, print making, sculpture, and new media.  Art education classes will prepare students to teach in PK-12 by learning about content pedagogy, student development, diverse learners, instructional strategies, classroom management, research, communication and technology.
The faculty of the School of Art are innovative artists, designers, scholars and educators who engage students in and out of the classroom. Our students are encouraged to participate in independent research projects with faculty, study abroad programs, internships, and student clubs and learning communities. Participation in these experiences provide our students with a depth of knowledge that benefit their own students later.

Student Learning Outcomes

Degree Program Student Learning Outcomes for the Bachelor of Science in Secondary Education: Art (BS Ed Art) encompass knowledge, skills, and dispositions that upon graduation lead to highly qualified art-teacher status. Students are expected to exhibit strong evidence of achieving a level of proficiency necessary for graduation, certification in secondary education, endorsement in K-12 art, and participate effectively in a competitive art-teaching market.
Outcomes align with Standards from the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation, and the Interstate New Teacher Assessment and Support Consortium

  1. Content Pedagogy: Graduates will become attentive facilitators of meaningful art learning experiences through the application of the central concepts of art teaching, tools of art inquiry, structures and functions of the discipline of art, and ideas of global engagement, environmental sustainability, and diversity. 
  2. Student Development: Graduates will become conscientious supporters of children’s intellectual, social, ethical, and personal growth and potential through rigorous art-learning opportunities that are age and ability appropriate.
  3. Diverse Learners: Graduates will become effective curriculum designers who know how to analyze, synthesize, and evaluate the interconnectedness and interdependence of the human experience on a global scale and deliver differentiated instructional opportunities in art that are adapted to the learning needs of diverse student populations.
  4. Multiple Instructional Strategies: Graduates will become responsive art educators who select and use varied approaches to art teaching to engage students through challenging problem solving activities that contribute to development of critical thinking skills.
  5. Motivation and Classroom Management: Graduates will become caring motivators who encourage social interaction, active engagement, and purposeful art learning in a well-organized and managed classroom.
  6. Communication and Technology (Information Fluency): Graduates will become focused art classroom catalysts who recognize when information is needed and have the ability to locate, evaluate, and effectively use the needed information to successfully foster information fluency in the children they teach.
  7. Planning: Graduates will become diligent researchers who develop challenging art instruction based upon reliable data that informs knowledge about the diverse learning community and other important stakeholders. 


Additional Admission Requirements
  • Individual program admission requirements over and above admission to NAU are required.

    • 30 units of coursework which includes:
      • EDF 200 with a grade of "C" or better
      • MAT 110 or MAT 114 with a grade of "C" or better
      • The English foundations requirement (ENG 105 or equivalent) with a minimum GPA of 3.0. (If your English GPA is below 3.0, you may take an approved writing course to achieve the 3.0 GPA.)
      • A minimum GPA of 3.0 in all content major courses (must have taken at least 3 units)
      • A cumulative GPA of 2.5.
      • Additional requirements:
      • You must be declared in this major.
      • Submission of a copy of your State-approved Identity-Verified Print (IVP) fingerprint clearance card, obtainable through the Arizona Department of Public Safety (602-223-2279)
Major Requirements
  • This major requires 88 units distributed as follows:

    • Content Major Courses: 61 units
    • Teacher Preparation Courses: 27 units

    Content Major Courses

    To be prepared to teach art in grades PK-12, take the following 88 units. A minimum NAU cumulative GPA of 2.5 is required and a minimum GPA of 3.0 is required for all ARE, ARH, and ART coursework. For all major requirements, a passing grade is required and a Grade of "C" or better is required for courses evaluated on an A-F scale.

    Content Major Courses: 

    Note that PHO courses, ART 100, ART 101, and ART 300 do not fulfill the requirements of the B.S. Ed Art Education major.

    Teacher Preparation Courses
Teacher Preparation
  • Teacher education programs require a student teaching or internship experience. A minimum number of practicum units are also required, which involves supervised field experience with a practicing teacher. These required experiences are embedded in the major requirements courses.

    Before being accepted to student teaching, the following criteria must be met:

    • Admission to the Professional Education Program (PEP)
    • GPA and course grade requirements for degree program as stated in Additional Admission and Major Requirements
    • Take the Arizona Educator Art Content Knowledge Exam
    • Complete all plan requirements
    • All ARE coursework must be completed within the six years prior to student teaching
    • Passing score on the required Professional Dispositions Modules
    • All candidates must demonstrate professional and ethical standards of practice as described in the Model Code of Ethics for Educators and adhere to NAU’s and PEP’s Student Code of Conduct
    • All outstanding PEP Alerts must be resolved per improvement plan
    • Attend mandatory Student Teaching Orientation
  • Arizona Teacher Certification

    In order to obtain an Arizona teaching certificate you must pass the National Evaluation Series Secondary Assessment Professional Knowledge Exam.

General Electives
  • Additional coursework is required if, after you have met the previously described requirements, you have not yet completed a total of 120 units of credit.

    You may take these remaining courses from any of the academic areas, using these courses to pursue your specific interests and goals. You may also use prerequisites or transfer credits as electives if they weren't used to meet major, minor, or liberal studies requirements.

    We encourage you to consult with your advisor to select the courses that will be most advantageous to you.

Additional Information
  • You must have completed all of the coursework used to fulfill these requirements within the last 10 years.

  • Be aware that Arizona state teacher certification requirements leading to an Institutional Recommendation may change at any time, and may impact program of study requirements.

  • Be aware that some courses may have prerequisites that you must also take. For prerequisite information, see course information contained in the catalog or your advisor.