There are a myriad of different types of programs to consider! They can be broken down into 3 main categories: State Schools, Private Universities, and Conservatories. All three of these types of programs will allow you to have a wonderful career in the arts, it’s just about choosing which one best fits your needs! The two main factors that differentiate these three programs are: cost and time.

  • Government-funded institutions

  • Offer both in-state (usually less expensive) and out-of-state tuition

  • Some schools offer in-state tuition to all BFA students - you just have to ask! 

  • If out-of-state tuition proves extremely expensive, most schools are often willing to help you find extra scholarships to bring down cost.

State Schools or Public Universities

  • Largely funded by private and individual donors, instead of receiving government funding.

  • Students must cover full cost without government assistance. 

  • The cost tends to be higher, and the type of education offered is likely a bit more specialized.

  • These universities support lowering tuition costs through both federal student aid and university scholarships.

Private Universities

Still not sure? Try looking at a sample curriculum from a school that fits into these categories. Based on your interests, does that kind of school provide you with the opportunities to do everything you want to do? Each school's requirements will be different so keep an open mind, you may really like individual programs at different kinds of schools!
  • “Conservatory” implies a program that is very specific and intensely focused on training in certain fields within the arts.

  • Many conservatory programs around the world offer 2-3 year programs.

  • Unlike a State or Private University, these schools do not offer a degree but instead offer a certificate of completion. 

  • Tuition costs tend to fall between the in-state and out-of-state costs for Public Universities.

  • There are many public and private universities that host a conservatory program on campus, ensuring a conservatory’s specialized education while also allowing you to complete a full degree program.