student artist painting

Incoming freshmen and transfer students need to apply to both the university and School of Art in order to pursue one of our bachelor’s degrees.

Key Dates for First-Time Freshmen

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Feb. 9 – Portfolio Review Day: Bring artwork for School of Art faculty to review. You need to register by Feb 6.

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March 1 – Priority Deadline for Admission and Freshman Scholarship: Materials must be submitted in order to receive full consideration.

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April 1 – Deadline for Regular Admission: After this date, we will only consider portfolios based on available space in the program.

Admission Criteria

Incoming Freshman

While there are no specific courses that you must take in high school, observational drawing is an important part of the portfolio. We recommend you take courses in drawing and other areas of art.

BFA Degree Applicants – What We Review

  • academic record – a review of high school transcripts
  • portfolio – 10-15 original works demonstrating studio art skills and other art-related abilities 
  • inventory sheet – a list of submitted work, indicating title, course, media, size, and date or term completed
  • BA or BS degree applicants are not required to submit portfolios unless applying for scholarships

We will review the transcript you submit to Ball State’s Office of Undergraduate Admissions for your university application. 

Submit Your Materials

All students admitted to the School of Art also must complete a common first-year program of study comprised of required courses in drawing, design, computer art, and art history.

Applicants not admitted to the School of Art may still enroll at Ball State, declare a major in Studio Art (BA degree), and with the successful completion of the first year foundations courses may change to BFA.

Studio Art majors (BA degree) and students enrolled in other majors across campus who want to pursue a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree in art must successfully complete the first year foundation studio courses (ADS 101, ADS 102, AFA 101, and AFA 202) with a grade of C or higher.

  • Declare major in Studio Art and begin taking art courses in the spring or summer.
  • Complete the first-year foundation courses (ADS 101, ADS 102, AFA 101, AFA 202).
  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher.

We will review applications for any transfer students who meet the deadlines for incoming freshmen. Or you may declare a BA in Studio Art, and after you successfully complete the first-year foundation courses (ADS 101, ADS 102, AFA 101, AFA 102) with a grade of C or higher you may change to a BFA degree.

The university must admit you before the School of Art will accept you into one of our programs.

Apply to Ball State

What We Review

  • academic records – college transcripts
  • portfolio – 10-15 original works of art that demonstrate studio art skills and other art-related abilities
  • inventory sheet – a list of the work submitted, indicating title, course, media, size, and date or term completed

Our admissions committee gives greater consideration to your college academic records than your high school record or SAT/ACT scores.

Course Evaluation

Transfer students who have studio art or art history credits must undergo a separate evaluation of coursework to determine art program credit. In addition to submitting the School of Art application, you also need to submit a portfolio of artwork and course syllabi to determine course-to-course transfer equivalencies.

We recommend you:

  • Keep your course syllabi, project descriptions, and sketchbooks.
  • Preserve artwork or projects (actual work or digital images) from each course.
  • Bring all of your materials for any review process.
  • Follow through with any part of the process that was note completed in the first meeting.
  • Contact the Andy Beane Associate Director of the School of Art for more information.