Best Photography Schools

By Elizabeth Morrisey

  • Overview

    Trying to improve your skills in photography? Do you love being behind the camera and offering the world a different point of view? There are several photography schools that offer bachelor and master degrees, but finding the right one is the key.
  • Goals

    First, you should ask yourself what you are trying to accomplish. Some people may want to sharpen their skills for fun and others may be starting a photography business. Either way, there are different schools out that can help you accomplish your goals. A career in photography can include photojournalism, portrait photography, medical photography, digital imagery and commercial photography. According to www.photography-schools.com, employment opportunities for photographers are set to increase as fast as the average for all occupations through 2010.
  • Top-Rated Schools

    With so many photography schools, it can be a daunting task to find the one that's best for you. "U.S. News & World Report" provides fine art specialty rankings for the best schools in the subject of photography. To find the best, you'll have to go to Connecticut, Illinois or Rhode Island. The No. 1 school on its list is Yale University in New Haven, Ct. Yale offers a master's in fine arts in the subject of photography. The two-year program, admitting only nine students per year, includes technical instruction in black-and-white and color photography. Second, is the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. At this school, students can learn the basics and more advanced skills. Undergraduate and graduate degrees are offered. Third, is the Rhode Island School of Design. Undergraduates at this school investigate several approaches to contemporary image making.


  • Course offerings

    There are a multitude of courses that you will have to take to earn a degree from one of the best photography schools including basic digital photography to the more challenging courses like studies in photographic criticism. Yale University's photography program includes classes such as medium-format photography, view-camera photography and technical seminars. At the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, classes include the basics as well as classes such as lighting fundamentals and studio practice. The Rhode Island School of Design also covers beginning photography along with classes like trends in contemporary photography and photography history.
  • Caution

    Many schools offer photography classes and degrees, but make sure the school is accredited. Accreditation ensures that the education those institutions provide meets acceptable quality levels. The U.S. Department of Education can provide information on this topic where a database of accredited post-secondary institutions and programs is available.
  • Now what?

    When you find the photography school you are interested in, do your research and apply. Most colleges have applications online. You can visit each of the webites and take a look at the requirements to see if it's right for you.
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