2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog


Fine Arts Program of Study

Since the founding of Texas Christian University more than a century ago, fine arts and related professional studies have been integral parts of the University's educational program. Today, some 950 students concentrate their studies within the three departments and three schools that comprise the College of Fine Arts. Degree programs are available in art and art history; ballet and modern dance; fashion merchandising; graphic and interior design, and music; and theatre. The academic programs provide a balance between professional training and liberal arts studies, and small classes enable the faculty to give personal attention to the work of each student.

College of Fine Arts faculty are dedicated teachers who combine extensive academic training with years of professional experience in their disciplines. They pride themselves on the ability to convey to their students the knowledge necessary for successful lives and careers in the 21st century. Visiting faculty, guest artists and performers also interact with students throughout the year, enriching the learning experience.

Resources available to students include specialized computer labs, lighting and sound systems, specialized libraries and equipment, galleries, art and dance studios, theaters and performance halls. College of Fine Arts programs enjoy close working relationships with the Kimbell Art Museum, The Fort Worth Symphony, Texas Ballet Theatre and the other visual and performing institutions in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

College of Fine Arts Organization

The College of Fine Arts is organized into three schools and three departments, offering 33 major fields of concentration. The departments provide professional training in vocational fields for students planning careers and serious avocational training for those who wish to attain artistic ability without professional intent.

College of Fine Arts Degrees

The College of Fine Arts offers the following degrees:

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) with a major in graphic or interior design, studio art or art education, ballet or modern dance and theatre.
  • Bachelor of Arts (BA) with a major in art history, music, studio art or theatre. (The BA degree requires a minor along with the completion of sophomore-level foreign language.)
  • Bachelor of Science (BS) with a major in design studies or fashion merchandising.
  • Bachelor of Music (BM) with a major in performance, piano pedagogy, theory/composition or church music.
  • Bachelor of Music Education (BME)

Multiple Majors

Students majoring in the College of Fine Arts who wish to pursue an additional major in the college must obtain permission from the unit director/chair, and the academic dean. The student must satisfy all requirements of the additional major, including seeking permission for courses that will satisfy both majors; minimal overlap is permitted with pre-approval of the dean's office.

Students outside the College of Fine Arts whose home college permits an additional major in the College of Fine Arts must complete all degree requirements for the additional major, including courses specified in the TCU Core Curriculum for that particular degree and major.

Requirements for Graduation

The online Intent to Graduate form must be submitted by FAME, MUEI, MUEV and ARED majors once the student has completed 86 hours of coursework. All other majors in the college should complete the Intent to Graduate form once the student has completed 96 hours of coursework or two semesters prior to graduation, whichever comes first. Students may make an online request for their official degree plan from the College of Fine Arts once they have completed 54 semester hours (usually at the end of the sophomore or the beginning of the junior year).

Approval of the unit chair/director is required for all nontraditional courses, e.g, special problems, independent study, research problems.

Beyond the studies specified for each major, the bachelor's degree is built on the TCU Core Curriculum that applies to all University students.

Transfer Credit

Students wishing to take courses at another institution after matriculation at TCU must secure approval through the Office of the Dean of the College of Fine Arts before enrolling in those courses. Requests are made online via the myTCU student portal. Once matriculated at TCU, students may only take 12 hours of coursework from another institution. Any exceptions require permission from the unit chair/director and academic dean. See the University's Transfer Credit Policy for more information.

Pass/No-Credit Policy

No courses applied toward any major or minor in the College of Fine Arts may be taken a pass/no-credit basis.

Arts Leadership and Entrepreneurship (ARLEMIN)

The ARLE minor provides TCU Fine Arts graduates with the knowledge and practical skills to effectively lead arts organizations, such as orchestras, galleries, theaters, museums, film and dance companies, and/or to successfully manage artistic careers in the creative economy.

The ARLE curriculum addresses the essential competencies required for running nonprofit/public arts organizations: organizational development, visioning and planning, effective governance, financial management, fundraising, managing staff and volunteers, audience development, community engagement, programming and special events, marketing and public relations, and effectiveness evaluation.

College of Fine Arts Special Programs

The Artist Diploma is available for instrumentalists and vocalists with exceptional performance ability. See the School of Music section.