2017 RANKING & REVIEWS
TOP RANKING BEST FAMOUS ART SCHOOLS


Reasons to Attend One of the Prestigious Art Schools

The U.S. is home to many of the famous art schools in the world and overall top art schools. Some of the most common majors of people at art schools include graphic design, photography, and animation among others. There are many top art schools that teach not only the arts component of an education but also have liberal arts and even science programs.

Top 6 Best Art Schools in the US

Award Emblem: Top 6 Best Art Schools in the US

Some features and benefits of famous art schools and the best art schools in the U.S. include:

  • The professors are often also well-known professional artists in their field
  • Professors at the best art schools can serve as not only teachers but also mentors
  • When you attend one of the top art schools in the U.S. you have access to leading-edge equipment and resources
  • Art schools offer abundant studio space

Finally, when you attend one of the best art schools in the U.S., you get the advantage of being around other artists who can inspire you and help you through constructive criticism and support.

The following is a ranking of famous art schools, prestigious art schools, and the best art schools in the U.S.

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AdvisoryHQ’s List of the Top 6 Best Art Schools in the U.S.

List is sorted alphabetically (click any of the names below to go directly to the detailed review section for that school):


Top 6 Best Art Schools in the U.S. | Brief Comparison

Prestigious Art Schools

Location

Key Benefit

Parsons School of Design

Greenwich Village, NYC

Students have access to resources and internships in New York City

Pratt Institute

Clinton Hill, Brooklyn, NYC

One of the top art schools but also one of the top overall universities in the U.S.

Ringling College of Art and Design

Sarasota, Florida

Offers excellent career services and access to leading-edge technology

Rhode Island School of Design

Providence, Rhode Island

Participants can take classes at adjacent Brown University

School of the Art Institute of Chicago

The Loop, Chicago, Illinois

Students can participate in an interdisciplinary curriculum

Tyler School of Art

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Students are encouraged to study abroad in countries including Italy and Japan

Table: Top 6 Famous Art Schools | Above list is sorted alphabetically 



What to Consider When Attending Art Schools

Many people wonder if they should attend one of the top art schools or attend a traditional university. While there is no right answer for everyone, there are some things to think about and consider as you make the decision.

First, you need to think about your career goals after graduation. It is certainly possibly to get a job in your field after attending one of the top art schools, but is that what you want to do? If you see art as more of a passion in your future than a career, you might rethink art schools.

Best Art Schools in the US

Image Source: Pexels

Also, when you’re considering some of the best art schools, realize that all of them tend to have their own environment and atmosphere. Some are going to be more prestigious and professional than others, while some of the best art schools may seem very bohemian and offer a lot of freedom in how students study and learn.

Some of the schools on this list of the top art schools also have very high admissions standards, so are you ready for that process?

Finally, when you’re thinking about attending one of the top art schools, the cost is probably a significant consideration, but you have to factor something in that a lot of other students in different fields don’t, and that’s the cost of your supplies.

You need to think about that when you’re looking at the tuition and other fees for attending the prestigious art schools in the U.S. Is the investment in your education at one of the top art schools going to be worth the payoff after graduation?



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Detailed Review: Top Ranking Best Art Schools in the U.S.

Below, please find the detailed review of each of the best art schools in America. We have highlighted some of the factors that allowed these art schools to score so well in our selection ranking.



Parsons School of Design Review


Parsons School of Design is one of the most prestigious art schools in the world, and it’s located in New York City, as part of the New School.

Famous Art Schools

Image Source: Parsons

Features of Parsons leading to its ranking as one of the best art schools in US cities are detailed below.

Comprehensive University

Parsons is not only one of the best art schools. It’s also part of the New School, which is a comprehensive university, and Parsons is the only U.S art and design school that’s located within a university in this way.

The New School includes a liberal arts college and a performing arts school, so Parsons undergraduate and graduate programs including training, interdisciplinary study options, and collaborative learning.

Parsons itself offers extensive learning opportunities including 13 undergraduate bachelor’s programs and 17 graduate-level master’s programs.

Location

Parsons is one of the most famous art schools in the world, and a lot of that is because it’s located in New York City, which is considered by many to be one of the capitals of the arts and design scene in the world. This private art school is located in Greenwich Village, and students have access to all of the resources, galleries, and leading professionals that are in New York.

There are opportunities for field research everyone from some of the world’s top galleries to tech start-ups, and internships allow students to work hands-on in some of the most notable organizations globally.

Faculty

As one of the top art schools in the U.S., Parsons also attracts world-class faculty. The school has more than 1,200 faculty members that are recognized as top artists and scholars in their focus area.

Each year members of the Parsons faculty are recognized by the National Design Awards and the Council of Fashion Designers of America, among many other notable recognitions.

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Pratt Institute Review


Pratt Institute is one of the best art schools in US cities, located in the Clinton Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York. It was found in 1887 and also has a satellite campus on 14th Street in Manhattan.

Among good art schools, the following are some key reasons Pratt Institute is included in this ranking of art schools in America.

Undergraduate Degree Programs

The Pratt Institute, one of the famous art schools and one of the top art schools in the U.S., offers many valuable undergraduate degree programs. These include:

  • Architecture
  • Art and design education
  • Communications design
  • Construction management
  • Critical and Visual Studies
  • Digital Arts
  • Fashion
  • Film/vid
  • Fine Arts
  • History of art and design
  • Industrial design
  • Interior design
  • Photography
  • Writing

Financial Aid

As well as being one of the top art schools in the U.S. among the many good art schools, Pratt also strives to make the cost of a private education at their intuition affordable for as many students as possible.

78% of Pratt students receive financial aid.

There is $28.8 million in unrestricted scholarship funding distributed each year, and $450,000 in restricted scholarship support given each year.

Rankings and Recognition

Pratt isn’t just one of the country’s best art schools. Pratt, which is made up of six separate schools, has some of the top-ranked programs in areas like architecture and industrial design. Much of the focus of these study areas is on research.

Outlets like U.S. News & Word Report name Pratt as one of the best art schools and also one of the top regional colleges in the Northeast, and it’s often ranked among the top 25% of all colleges and universities in the U.S.

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Ringling College of Art and Design Review


Ringling College of Art and Design is one of the famous art schools in the world and one of the best art schools in the U.S. This pick for one of the good art schools is located in Sarasota, Florida.

Ringling College of Art and Design is on this list of the best art schools in America for reasons like the ones listed below.

The Collaboratory

The Collaboratory is one of the many unique resources available to students of Ringling, one of the top art schools in America. The Collaboratory provides businesses with design-based solutions, while also providing experienced-based learning for students.

Students of the Collaboratory meet with clients to find solutions to their most pressing business challenges, which can include everything from branding to product design issues.

This initiative is an excellent way to prepare for a real-world career, and it was developed through a partnership with the Patterson Foundation.

Internships

One of the unique things at Ringling, one of the top art schools in America, is the emphasis on preparing students for their future careers. The school is home to the Center for Career Services, and through this office, students can be connected with some of the best internships available in their field.

Any student can apply for internships through the Center for Career Services, and it lets them build their portfolio and expand their options regarding specific careers related to their major.

Technology

Among good art schools, Ringling excels in many ways including the provision of technology and resources they offer to students. They were named the Most Wired Campus in America by US News & World Report. They have an average of 2.2 computers per students.

Campus labs have the most advanced Macintosh computers, Cintiq tablets, high-resolution printers, 3-D printers, laser cutters, and more.

Students can also access large-format printing resources and a digital checkout system for things like digital projectors.



Rhode Island School of Design Review


Undoubtedly one of the most prestigious art schools in the world, Rhode Island School of Design is located in Providence. It’s not just one of the best art schools in America, but also one of the best art schools in the world.

Among good art schools and famous art schools, the following are specifics of why RISD is ranked as one of the top art schools in the U.S.  

Brown University Connection

RISD, one of the most famous art schools and prestigious art schools in the world, shares an adjacent College Hill campus with Brown University. Students of RISD have the opportunity to cross-register for classes at Brown for no additional cost, including foreign language, advanced science, and math classes. These can fulfill their liberal arts distribution requirements mandated by RISD.

Students also have access to Brown’s athletic facilities and supplemental activities.

There is also a Brown-RISD Dual Degree program that allows students to earn a BFA from RISD and an AB from Brown in five years.

Jobs

Extremely important to our ranking of the top art schools in the U.S. and overall good art schools was the focus they put on helping students prepare for careers.

According to a yearly survey conducted by the RISD Career Center, 96% of alumni are employed one year after graduation, and another two percent are enrolled in a full-time advanced degree program.

Of the alumni from RISD that are employed, 70% are employed in positions directly related to their major, and 25% in positions indirectly related to their major.

Degree Programs

RISD, one of the top art schools in America, offers bachelor’s and master’s degrees in 19 majors.

Most undergraduates earn their bachelor of fine arts degree, which requires four years of full-time study, and most graduate-level students receive their master of fine arts degree in around two years.

There is also a five-year professional baccalaureate degree: the bachelor of architecture. This is degree is required for licensing in architecture.

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School of the Art Institute of Chicago Review


The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) is one of the largest accredited, independent art schools in America. This leader among top art schools and good art schools is located in the Loop in Chicago, and it’s associated with the Art Institute of Chicago Museum.

Prestigious Art Schools

Image Source: SAIC

Among the many good art schools, SAIC is included on this list of the most prestigious art schools and best art schools in the US for reasons like the ones highlighted below.

Recognition

SAIC is frequently recognized as one of the top art schools in America and one of the best art schools in the world. Some of their many awards and accolades include:

  • Named the most influential art school in the United States by the Columbia University Art Critic’s National Arts Journalism Survey
  • This pick for one of the best art schools has produced more Fulbright Scholars in the past ten years than all other art and design schools
  • U.S. News and World Report names their fine arts program as in the top two of 220 graduate programs
  • Named as one of the top schools for animation by “Animation Career.”

Interdisciplinary Curriculum

One of the unique features of SAIC, one of the most prestigious art schools and one of the best art schools in America, is their interdisciplinary curriculum. Students of this selection for one of the best art schools in America don’t declare a major or work in one discipline. The idea is that modern artists and designers’ work starts with research and ideas.

Some of the many choices available to students of this pick for one top art schools in America include building sustainable environments and objects, exploring robotics, graphic novel creation, and working with writers to animate films.

Studio Experience

Also unique to SAIC among the top art schools in the U.S. are the availability of immersive studio experiences. Studio experiences are designed to prepare students for the creative drive and self-motivation they’ll need when they’re working in a professional setting.

During studio time students of this pick for one of the leading art schools in America also get time with their faculty, and they can benefit from mentorships.


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Tyler School of Art Review


The Tyler School of Art, one of the top art schools in the U.S., is part of Temple University and is located in Philadelphia.

Among good art schools and prestigious art schools, the following are reasons Tyler is ranked on this list as one of the best art schools in US cities.

Student Life

As well as being one of the top art schools in America, at Tyler students also enjoy a productive, fulfilling student life. The Tyler School of Art frequently hosts events including lectures from leading artists, open studio nights, free bus trips to museums, and art school mixers.

Students at this pick for one of the best art schools in the U.S. also get the chance to participate in the yearly Art Market, which is a non-profit art and craft fair that lets artists sell their work, promote themselves and their brand, and network.

Study Abroad

Students of Tyler, one of the top art schools, have ample opportunities to study abroad, so they can explore different cultures and philosophies that are of particular value to art students.

Students are encouraged to explore other art environments and study abroad programs are offered during the academic year and the summer.

Some of the programs include options at Temple University Rome Program, Temple University Japan Campus in Tokyo, the Tyler Art Workshop in Scotland.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

Tyler, one of the leading art schools, offers a range of financial aid opportunities including portfolio scholarships which are merit-based and merit/financial need-based. At least 20 portfolio scholarships are generally awarded to undergraduate students, with amounts that range from one-time $1,000 awards to full tuition.

As well as portfolio scholarships, academic achievement scholarships are available through Temple University.

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Conclusion—Top 6 Best Art Schools in the U.S.

The best art schools in the U.S. including famous art schools and prestigious art schools offer a range of learning opportunities from sculpture and other fine arts programs, to options related to engineering and architecture.

Each of the art schools included in this ranking of the best art schools offers a wide variety of programs to students, financial aid opportunities, access to leading faculty and technology, and they prepare students for thriving careers in their field of study.



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