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Ph.D./M.A. in Arts in Education


The doctoral program and M.A. in Arts in Education spans many disciplines, and offers opportunities to specialize in many aspects of art education. While we offer a strong K-12 focus, many students come into the program with interests in museum education or community arts organizations.

Graduates become educational leaders in diverse contexts – teaching in higher education, attaining leadership roles in school districts, museums, community arts organizations, government agencies and foundations.

Research Opportunities

Students can engage in research that advances the field of art education and ties into their area of interest. Faculty work closely with national, state, and local initiatives in art education. You are encouraged to collaborate on the development, implementation, and evaluation of these programs.

Areas of expertise include:

  • Place-specific, culturally relevant, arts education taught from a critical perspective
  • Mentoring future art teachers
  • Design process
  • Aesthetic problem solving

See examples of past student theses

Career Outlook

Our graduates have gone on to teaching positions in higher education, as academic leaders in schools, as well as philanthropy positions including:

  • University of Nebraska
  • University of Wisconsin at Stout
  • Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies
  • Eagle Ridge Academy


James Bequette Associate Professor James Bequette
Betsy Maloney Lecturer
Betsy Maloney


Master of arts students can choose either a thesis (Plan A) or final paper (Plan B) to complete their degree. See the requirements for both curriculum plans.

View the core requirements for the M.A. in Art Education in the course catalog

Doctoral Curriculum

Your Ph.D. coursework will center on your research interests. The program consists of 51 course credits and 24 doctoral thesis credits for a total of 78 credits.

To see the curriculum requirements in detail, visit the course catalog under sub-plans for Arts in Education.


Support is available in the form of:

  • Teaching Assistantships. The majority work as student teaching supervisors for M.Ed. initial licensure students. Daytime availability, a teaching license, and teaching experience are required
  • Research Assistantships
  • Fellowships. Based on a departmental nomination process. You will be notified by the Director of Graduate Studies if you are being considered for a fellowship

A typical full benefits assistantship (tuition, health insurance and stipend) 20 hours/week at approximately $18/hour. Benefits are pro-rated based on the appointment percentage. Learn more: Graduate Assistant Office.

Have a complete application in by December 1 to be considered for these positions for the following academic year.

While support is not guaranteed, we make every attempt to financially support full-time students through completion. You may also explore assistantships available outside our department on the University's employment page.

Tuition and cost information.

Admissions Information

Priority deadline: December 1

Admissions decisions: January

See detailed admissions information on the M.A. and Ph.D. admissions page.

Wendy Friedmeyer

"There are amazing thinkers within our faculty. I’ve been inspired by their work and every course has exposed me to new and important ideas."

Wendy Friedmeyer, Ph.D. candidate 2020