Skip To Main Content

Educational Programs

The visual arts program integrates traditional and contemporary approaches to the creation of art and design. The primary goal is to develop students as creative, productive and intellectually curious artists or designers capable of historical insight, critical thinking and technical proficiency in their areas of emphasis. Our program combines professional training and broad study in the liberal arts so that students majoring in art and design receive as comprehensive an understanding of the discipline as possible; become cognizant of historical and cultural knowledge of the past and present; and develop competence in the use of tools, materials and processes in their profession.

Student-Learning Objectives
In connecting with national accrediting agencies, the department’s assessment of student learning and the University’s assessment program, the department of art and design designates six major student-learning objectives. These objectives are a reflection of (and are expressed in) the department’s mission and philosophy. Evidence of these learning objectives and standards are manifested in students’ work and portfolio. The potential for our students’ continuing development is essential for the awarding of the professional undergraduate degree.

  • Learning objective 1: Creative
  • Learning objective 2: Productive
  • Learning objective 3: Intellectually curious
  • Learning objective 4: Historical insight
  • Learning objective 5: Technical proficiency
  • Learning objective 6: Critical thinking

Degrees and Majors
The department of art and design offers two degree programs: the bachelor of fine arts (BFA) and the bachelor of arts (BA). Students may choose the BFA degree program after passing Sophomore Review. This professional degree program is a rigorous course of study in art and design. Other students may elect the BA degree which offers an intense study in art and design along with a major or minor in another discipline.

Within either of these degree programs, students can pursue majors in advertising design, art education (licensure program), graphic design, or studio arts. For detailed information about these majors, see "areas of study."

Study Abroad
A number of art & design majors study abroad to broaden their art and design experiences, gain a greater global understanding and develop independence and self-discipline. In addition to stretching talents, these experiences give students a deeper understanding of other cultures and the thinking of its people.

The department of art & design has a specific cooperative art exchange agreement with the University of Ulster in Belfast, Northern Ireland and the University of the Arts London, United Kingdom. The University also has agreements with the Studio Art Centers International in Florence, Italy, and the Burren School of Art in County Clare, Ireland. Numerous other international opportunities are available to students at Ohio Northern, including studying in Cuba, South America and Europe.

ONU is a member of the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC), which provides many study abroad and internship opportunities. For more information about these programs, consult one of the USAC brochures available in various departmental offices, contact the department’s study-abroad coordinator or visit

All art & design candidates in the BFA program complete some sort of an internship experience. For art education majors (BA degree), 12 weeks of student teaching are required for licensure and graduation. For design majors, students are required to complete 16 hours of an internship in a traditional graphic design firm, wayfinding firm, advertising design firm or a design office or organization. Studio arts majors are also required to complete an internship. In certain occasions, students may elect to study abroad or study domestically in an approved program to fulfill this educational requirement.

Numerous opportunities are available to students at Ohio Northern. For additional information, see "professional opportunities".

Department of Art & Design

Ann Hood

Wilson Art Building
525 South Main Street
Ada, Ohio 45810
Monday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Tuesday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Wednesday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Thursday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Friday: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Saturday: Closed
Sunday: Closed