The question of whether classes at universities are or aren’t worth it, and why you should take one, can be very controversial.
For years now, students have called on university-level arts courses (and their associated tuition fees) to be scrapped on the grounds many of the courses are poorly done, are too expensive, and/or often do not prepare people well enough to get a higher paying job.
However, while critics of art in higher education and the arts in general would like arts students to get a leg-up in the job market, they would have you believe that arts programs are a waste of money and money should be spent on other vital concerns like social mobility and human rights.
For anyone who works in higher education or works for a museum or university, the answer to that question is a firm no. As a society, we are looking to improve the quality and quantity of education in schools and universities to help ensure quality to help ensure equity.
Art in our higher education system
Art education has taken a hit of late over the last few years with university art majors being advised to look for jobs in the arts as opposed to the more practical occupations of engineering, architecture, and law.
On the other, we have seen a rising demand for arts degree programs in the UK and abroad.
Since the beginning of the millennium, an increasing number of countries are seeking to offer a national arts degree and it is now gaining momentum.
The Netherlands, the United States, and several countries have the option of providing this degree. New Zealand is currently the only country to offer them.
In recent years, the demand for artistic credentials has increased considerably as well.
Since 2000, the number of students graduating with a Bachelor’s degree in art or design went from 19% to 40% of the total student population.
With increasing interest in art students in the UK (and elsewhere) are taking to Twitter to voice their concerns about art school fees too.
We’ve also seen a significant increase in Art in the World competitions to see who can create the most creative work for exhibitions at global events.
The question is how is university art, whether it be in high or low-cost institutions, going to help students who work in art in the workplace better prepare them for better paying employment?
Are arts courses worth it?
To answer this question, one thing is for sure – art courses at Oxford and Cambridge colleges cost a lot
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