Why This Matters


    Most educational institutions require art teachers to have a Master’s in Art and Art History or a related field. Some art teachers go on to pursue doctoral degrees and can earn tenure at prestigious universities.


    Jobs for postsecondary teachers — such as university art teachers — are expected to increase by 9% between 2019 and 2029. This increase of approximately 121,500 jobs is faster-than-average industry growth.


    The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a median annual salary of $69,690 for postsecondary art teachers. Location and experience are two factors that affect art teacher salary.

Our Research

This list features graduate programs for aspiring art teachers, curators, and fine artists — including Master of Arts in Art History and Master of Arts in Art Education. Most of these programs are online, but there are also hybrid programs listed.

The National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) accredits some of the programs on this list. You’ll also see programs accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), an organization that accredits 19 colleges and universities based on rigorous quality criteria. There are other regionally accredited programs listed; choosing an accredited program lets students transfer credits and degrees to other schools.

  • 63 hours to write this article
  • 42 universities and colleges we assessed
  • 64 education programs we compared

The Top 50 Online Master’s in Art and Art History Programs

Best Online Master's in Art and Art History Programs Badge
Intelligent Pick
Azusa Pacific University
Most Affordable
Fort Hays State University
Best Private Institution
Lindenwood University
Best on the West Coast
Academy of Art University
Best Hybrid Program
Northwestern State University of Louisiana
Best In-State Tuition Rate
University of Nebraska at Kearney
Best Faculty Mentors
Edinboro University
Most Customizable Program
Savannah College of Art and Design
Best for Adult Learners
Tiffin University
Best in New England
Boston University
Best Focus on Art Education
The Ohio State University
Best for Educators
Maryland Institute College of Art
Best Focus on Global Art
University of Florida
Best for Working Professionals
University of Missouri

What You Should Know About This Degree

There are similar degrees for teachers to consider, such as a master’s in English or a master’s in literature; some art teachers hold dual degrees, which allows them to teach different subjects. A master’s degree in curriculum and instruction is another option for any aspiring art teacher.

With an accredited degree, your credentials can be professionally recognized, and credits can transfer to another school. Some accreditations to look for include National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and regional organizations like the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

The job outlook is positive for graduates of a master’s in art and art history or similar program. According to the BLS, postsecondary teachers can expect jobs to increase by 9% from 2019 to 2029, which is considered an above-average rate.

Graduates of a master’s in art and art history program are required to pass a state teacher’s exam. Over 40 states use the Praxis exam to determine licensing eligibility.

What’s Next?

Here are some questions to ask when researching online master’s in art and art history programs:

  • Am I eligible for this program? If you have a bachelor’s in art and art history or a related field, you are most likely eligible to enter a master’s in art and art history degree program. Exact admissions requirements vary from school to school; there may be entrance exams or a minimum GPA requirement.
  • What tests are required for this online degree? Students must pass midterm and final exams each semester to earn an online master’s in art and art history. Graduates applying for teaching certification must pass a state exam. You may also need to take the GRE or other tests before enrolling.

When searching for the right master’s in art and art history degree program for you, keep records of application deadlines and other important information. If you have questions, call the school’s admissions department or visit their website, where you can also learn more about the program.