Students paint mural in downtown Vermillion


Explore a broad spectrum of media to express your ideas visually and who you are as an artist. Build on your own unique strengths as an artist to find your personal creative direction. 

Discover your community

Gain the knowledge and tools you'll need to become an informed, competent and creative artist by becoming a painting student at USD. Bridging both the technical and conceptual approaches to painting, our program offers you a rigorous and supportive environment that encourages creative thought and personal growth through research, experimentation and critical discussion. You'll learn to develop a thoughtfully executed and skilled body of paintings and to contextualize your work through readings, field trips and research.

Degrees & Offerings

Art: Painting (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

As an undergraduate painting student, you will learn the basics of your major through courses such as introductory painting, figure painting, painting materials and methods, studio projects, independent study courses, and special projects which allows you to focus your program of study to match your art interests.

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Art Education: Painting (BFA)

  Vermillion Main Campus

The BFA in art education is a four-year degree program that prepares you for certification to teach K-12 visual arts or pursue another professional career. This degree is offered in conjunction with the School of Education to ensure that you are equally and comprehensively exposed to the academic and artistic components of the degree. With a specialization in painting, you'll learn to develop a thoughtfully executed and skilled body of paintings and how to contextualize your work through readings, field trips and research.

Learn more about the art education program

Program Details







Departments & Facilities

Explore the departments, facilities and centers that contribute to your education in the only College of Fine Art in the state.
Students in an art gallery


The Department of Art will provide you with unique and applicable real-world experience and connections that enable you to immerse yourself in an environment built for personal and creative discovery.

USD Painting Facility

Our Facility

Here are some of the facilities and resources available to painting students:


  • Large, naturally lit critique spaces
  • Large light control system spaces for studio projects and figure painting
  • Free-figure model sessions
  • Access to video and audio editing equipment and professional-grade digital cameras and light kits
  • Well-ventilated spray booths
  • Laser cutters
  • Undergraduate and graduate individual studios
  • Woodshed facilities to create canvas and panel supports
USD students involved in community art mural projects.

Discover Your Community

Everybody is an artist and holds the ability to create art. Find out what it means to be part of both an interesting community that engages in art, comes together to tell an interesting story.  Learn more about community-based mural making.


Hear from an Expert

Student Success story

Success story Dakota Wilson smiling.
I chose art education because I am incredibly passionate about art and loved my art teachers throughout school. The Fine Arts department at USD has exceptional faculty and graduate students, and I have been inspired by the faculty’s achievements in education and in their studio art practices. As a first generation college student, my advisors and teacher mentors in the Fine Arts department helped me find my passions, find the perfect classes, and given me advice about my graduate school options. 

Dakota Wilson

B.F.A. Art Education, Painting '22
Art History Minor
Shawnee, Kansas

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