Contact Information

Address:  159 Art and Design
Phone:  906-227-2194
Fax:  906-227-2276
Department Email:

Art and Design at NMU


The School of Art and Design faculty mentor students in the development of unique visual voices within a larger visual culture. Students are engaged in creative problem solving and independent production of art and design toward a path of becoming engaged professionals in their respective fields. The School offers a foundation program that teaches students to communicate effectively by gaining a theoretical understanding of visual culture across diverse communities and developing an awareness of the evolving nature of Art & Design. Students acquire hands-on material techniques and technological skills while exploring diverse modes of thinking during the production of art & design work, fostering a sustainable creative practice. The DeVos Art Museum and Visiting Artist Program support the mission of the school by providing global, national, and regional exhibitions, educational and research opportunities, and providing students with direct interactions with recognized professional artists.

General Education and art/design courses are combined in programs that lead to the bachelor of fine arts, bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, or a two-year associate of applied arts degree. The school also offers the required courses for art teacher certification, a non-teaching art and design minor and an art history minor.

All of the school’s faculty members are regionally and nationally recognized for their work.

In each area of concentration, the Art and Design curriculum provides students with a broad knowledge of concepts, issues, procedures, and tools to prepare them for the design and production of art/design objects at a professional level. Areas of concentration include:

  • ceramics
  • computer art
  • digital cinema
  • drawing/painting
  • graphic design
  • human-centered design
  • illustration
  • metalsmithing/sculpture
  • photography
  • woodworking/furniture design


Student Organizations


  • American Institute of Graphic Arts (AIGA)
  • Art Students League
  • Industrial Design Society of America (IDSA)
  • Ceramics Collective (ceramics group)
  • Student Photographic Society (SPS)
  • Student Michigan Education Association


Department Facilities


The School of Art and Design has professionally equipped, safe, new, state-of-the-art studios to support 10 concentrations. Equipment includes: 

  • large induction furnace 
  • ceramic kilns 
  • casting and blacksmithing facilities 
  • computer labs 
  • woodworking, digital video facilities
  • photography darkrooms (color and black and white)
  • professionally equipped lighting studios
  • combination machine lathe and mill
  • CNC routers, 3D printers, and 3D scanner

The library collection in Art and Design includes:

  • over 10,000 volumes
  • 50 journals and periodicals 
  • large slide collection

The school uses the DeVos Art Museum for its many national, regional, local, faculty and student exhibitions, as well as the Students’ Art Gallery.


Types of Course Offerings


The following courses provide artists with greater depth in the supporting knowledge of the visual arts.

Concentration: Courses comprising one studio area or studio concentration: 100-, 200-, 300-, and 400-level seminar courses.

Foundations: Courses developing core art/design concepts with relevant concepts drawn from history, sociology, psychology, and the physical sciences.

Art History: Courses devoted to the study of Western and non-Western art, design, and architecture within a historical framework. Since the School of Art and Design is primarily a studio school, art history courses take as their central concern (though not exclusive) concepts that are relevant to the studio artist.

Individual Art Review: A series of courses required of art and design majors to develop at each level as professional artists. All work is evaluated by the faculty.


School/Program Policies


Students must purchase supplies individually and/or contribute to a purchasing cooperative for the studio courses in which they are enrolled.

Community college transfers should take general education courses and art/design courses in the areas of design, drawing, and history of western art.

Art and Design Education
Teaching certification for K-12 art is obtained by completing a major/minor in art and design and the professional education sequence.

Students majoring in art and design education must maintain a grade point average 3.0 or greater overall, in their major, and/or minor(s) with no grade below a "B-" in the professional education sequence and no grade below a "C" in the major and/or minor(s).


Prerequisites for Individual Art Review


Students registering for AD 303 Individual Art Review and AD 403 Senior Exhibition must complete the following prerequisites prior to enrollment:

  1. Instructor permission.
  2. Receive a grade of “S” in AD 303 Individual Art Review for enrollment in AD 499 Senior Capstone Project.
  3. Complete or co-enroll in the 2D Studio, 3D Studio, and Digital Studio Foundation courses with a "C-" minimum grade.
  4. Complete the selected studio concentration with at least a "B-" (2.70) average.


Criteria for Remaining in the Art and Design Program


  1. Students in AD 303 Individual Art Review must receive a passing grade of “S.”
  2. AD 303 Individual Art Review may be repeated. Although this course may be repeated, students receiving either two "U" grades or who withdraw twice from the course will not be allowed to continue the program. 



Bulletin Year: 2023 - 2024 Undergraduate Bulletin