Visual communication captures your eye and sparks your creativity. With access to both the newest and traditional technological tools, explore the conceptual freedom of photography and expand your skills. Understanding how context informs images adds nuance to your medium.
The Photography program at the University of South Florida encourages a broad range of experimentation with the expressive potentials of photography, as well as an awareness of contemporary practice and critical thinking on issues surrounding the medium. Students are encouraged to gain a grounding in history and criticism, while also maintaining a strong foundation in traditional photographic skills and techniques. The program is characterized by a strong interaction between photography and other media; students are often actively involved in video, digital imaging, animation, painting, printmaking or sculpture.
Both the undergraduate and graduate programs require coursework in art history and contemporary issues. Photography courses include: Beginning Photography; Intermediate Photography; a series of Special Topics in Photography courses which can include: Color Photography, Digital Photography, Alternative Processes, Images in Context; and some cross-media classes such as Photo Sculpture. Students complete their undergraduate coursework with a pair of Advanced Photography courses that afford them the opportunity to compile an extensive portfolio. A comprehensive History of Photography course is taught annually and is encouraged for all students with an area of concentration in photography. Undergraduate requirements include both media-based courses and cross-media courses organized by theme.
Students have opportunities to gain experience outside of the department as well. They can meet with and expand their perspectives through lectures and critiques from artists and critics brought in by the School’s visiting artist program each semester. In addition, they can embark on the Paris Summer Art program and investigate visual arts with the guidance of expert faculty. Both studio art and art history courses are offered.
The USF Photography and Digital Media Club organizes exhibitions and events. Student members also travel to the regional and national conferences of the Society for Photographic Education.
Our nationally ranked Master of Fine Arts degree is an idea-centered program encouraging broad media exploration, in-depth projects and engagement with theoretical and cultural issues.
The MFA program encourages our graduate students to take advantage of excellent private studio space, technical facilities and the opportunity to teach. Graduate students receive focused, individual attention in their studio work from professionally active research and teaching faculty. In their first year, graduate students work closely with faculty as graduate assistants, often helping in their courses and gain experience to teach independently. In their studio work and pedagogy, MFA students are integral to the area’s mission for delivering contemporaneous content.
Degrees / Ways to Study
To study Photography at USF, students can pursue the following undergraduate and graduate studio art degrees at the School of Art & Art History.
- Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in Studio Art
- Bachelor of Arts (BA) in Studio Art
- Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Studio Art
- Minor in Art Studio
Lou Marcus, Founder of the Paris Summer Program
BFA Photography Curriculum
Explore the details of the curriculum and example eight-semester plan for the BFA in Studio Art with a Photography Specialization.
Apply for Admission
Get information on how to apply and list of requirements for admission to the University of South Florida and the School of Art & Art History.
Students and families can also request more information about the School of Art & Art History’s programs by filling out the USF College of The Arts online form.