Combined Degree (BFA + BA/BS)
Five years. Two degrees.
Become a portrait painter with a distinctly feminist perspective. Or a social activist trained in performance strategies. Or a biologist with deep expertise in 3D modeling. SMFA’s Combined Degree program leads to both a Bachelor of Fine Arts and either a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree—a combination that yields academic and creative skill sets that will serve you well no matter where your journey takes you.
As a combined-degree student, you’ll spend your first year exploring both the fine arts and liberal arts and sciences curriculum. You’ll make the most of both campuses, expand your social and intellectual horizons, and start to imagine where you’d like to go with your combined degree.
Working outside of the confines of a traditional major (or single medium) means a multiverse of new ways to uncover your creative potential—in all of its many forms. At SMFA, our varied areas of study are a chance to immerse yourself in a specific discipline or explore a range of different creative modes. The result: a truly customized art school experience.
Our open studio curriculum is built on the belief that ideas, not requirements, drive your practice and coursework. The path you create is yours—and it’s how you’ll build your skills, discover new tools, and refine your vision. It’s a unique and customized approach that prepares students for a range of different art careers.
In addition to earning your BFA in Studio Art, you’ll also choose from more than 70 majors across the arts and sciences.
Review boards are an essential component of the SMFA experience. At each board, you’ll present a semester’s worth of work to a group of faculty and student peers. You’ll receive valuable feedback on your work and the ideas at its core, and have the opportunity to consider how your art-making connects to your liberal arts and sciences studies. It’s an intense but highly rewarding process that helps you better articulate and refine your artistic vision and direction.
Our Senior Thesis Program is a year-long capstone course that requires intensive research, writing, and art-making and is only open to students in their final year. You’ll work closely with peers, visiting artists, and core faculty to clarify your artistic goals and deepen your practice. The year culminates in a major public exhibition.
Combined Degree program students must fulfill the foundation, distribution, and concentration requirements of a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science degree in the School of Arts & Sciences in addition to the studio requirements of a BFA.
For Lily Pisano, the arts have always been a medium for connection and telling stories, and leveraging language and art together to effect change is at the core of her practice.
Thanks to her SMFA education, including a life-changing internship, former figure skater Celia Glastris, BFA + BA '21, is looking forward to a career writing about art.
Students explore the sociopolitical implications of cooking, ceramics, and metalwork in a new course that celebrates the spirit of communal dining and powerful art.