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MA, Teachers of Art, Grades K–12, Professional Certification

Professional Certification for Teaching Art, Grades K–12

Join a community of artist-educators eager to change the landscape of art education, with a focus on contemporary art, social justice education, and critical multiculturalism. Coursework combines readings in educational, art, and cultural theory and a flexible course of study to pursue professional interests and curiosities.

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Degree Details

Official Degree Title

Master of Arts in Art Education, Professional Certification

Professional Licensure or Certification
Full-time or Part-time
Start Date
Application Deadlines
Extended Deadline for International Students
Extended Deadline for Domestic Students

Our degree is inspired by the work of contemporary artists and radical educators who help us see ourselves and the world in new ways. We believe that every artist-educator is a cultural worker, researcher, public intellectual, and activist. As artist-educators we explore the making and teaching of art as a social act, and consider its historical, political, and cultural contexts.

Designed for students who already have teaching experience, this degree allows you to further explore issues that are central to the practice of teaching art in schools and alternative educational settings. Our classes model how theory and practice are integral to teaching and making art. We will also prepare you to be a persuasive advocate for the importance of the arts in schools and society through your writing, speaking, and teaching.

You will graduate eligible to apply for New York State professional certification in Visual Arts: K–12 after completing 3 full years of teaching visual art.

Our degree offers personal attention and a sense of community from initial advisement through completion of the final project. You will take a series of required foundational courses including Critical Pedagogy, Artists, and the Public Sphere; Race, Education, and the Politics of Visual Representation; and Media Literacy and Visual Culture: Teaching Art in a Digital Age. Beyond these classes, you will design your own course of study, selecting classes from across the Department of Art and Art Professions and University offerings to focus on areas such as performance studies, artistic activism, technology and education, critical race theory, and social justice pedagogy.  

Our faculty includes internationally renowned artists and scholars as well as actively engaged artist-educators working in diverse contexts across the city. Guest speakers, exhibition opportunities, and special partnerships with museums, nonprofit organizations, and educational initiatives will provide you with a wide range of opportunities to expand your professional networks and gain experience in the field. 

Faculty and Staff list

Blog featuring student projects


Our professional certification degree is designed for students who wish to pursue a graduate-level degree and continue artistic and educational work in a variety of settings. Our students go on to teach in public, private, charter, and independent schools in the US as well as internationally. Many teach in museum education or not-for-profit and community-based organizations and well as serving other educational roles such as curriculum consultants and positions on curatorial projects. Some pursue further study in PhD or EdD programs.

The NYU Steinhardt Teacher Education Program is fully accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council. The 30-credit MA meets the academic requirements for New York State professional certification and is designed for students who already have an initial Teaching Art certificate and wish to pursue graduate training. Learn more about teacher certification.

If you have any additional questions about our degree, please feel free to contact Meghan Wilcox at

Related Degrees

MA, Art, Education, and Community Practice

Join a community of artists, educators, activists, and community organizers working together to create critical art interventions that inspire dialogue and catalyze social change.

MA, Teaching Art, Grades K–12, Initial Certification

With a focus on contemporary art, social justice education, and critical multiculturalism, the MA in Teaching Art, K–12, Initial Certification envisions the artist-educator as cultural worker, intellectual, and activist.

Information Sessions

Every year there are a number of Information Sessions on site and online for prospective students. These sessions will give insights into the program, its requirements and what to expect from the program.

Please contact us if you are interested in learning about upcoming dates.