B.F.A. with an emphasis in Ceramics

Program Overview

The Ceramics Area provides students with the foundational discipline and professional skills to succeed in their careers as artists, craftspersons and designers. Students are introduced to all facets of professional practice within the ceramic arts. This includes hand building, wheel throwing, slip casting and mold making, clay and glaze formulation, as well as firing and studio management. The ceramic curriculum enables students to explore the use of clay and related tools and materials in support of their art and design practice while initiating dialog with issues of utility, aesthetic expression and diverse contemporary topics. The curriculum challenges students to think critically about their work and the work of others and to articulate informed ideas in order to advance their understanding of a broad variety of methodologies, including contemporary and emerging technologies.


The 8,000 sq. ft. studio, supervised by a full-time technician, includes: wheel throwing and hand building areas, a well-stocked glaze lab with spray booth, plaster lab and individual 170 sq. ft. private studio spaces for each grad.  

Tools and Equipment 

30 electric pottery wheels, 7 computer-controlled electric kilns, 32 cu. ft. gas-fired downdraft kiln, 90 cu. ft. gas-fired downdraft car kiln, and 180 cu. ft. gas-fired downdraft car kiln, 300 cu. ft. wood-fired barrel-arched anagama kiln, 80 cu. ft. gas-fired downdraft salt kiln, 6 cu. feet gas-fired drum/cantilevered raku kiln, 40 cu. ft gas-fired updraft kiln, Two Brent Slab Rollers, Laguna Spray Booth, Soldner and Bluebird Clay Mixers, Bluebird and Shimpo Pugmills and a Shimpo Ballmill.


Graduates have several avenues for employment across multiple industries including:

  • Professional Artist or Designer
  • University or Secondary Educator
  • Entrepreneur
  • Fabricator or Studio Assistant
  • Art Handler or Preparator
  • Artist-in-Residence
  • Arts Administration, Museum and/or Non-Profit Positions
  • Gallery Manager, Owner, Curator, Exhibition Designer
  • Art Writer, Librarian, or Consultant 


Visiting Artists 

The mission of Frostic School of Art’s Visiting Artist program is tri-fold: to provide students direct, meaningful contact with working artists, both established and emerging; to elevate the regional, national, and international profile of the Frostic School of Art and Richmond Center for Visual Arts; and to nurture a sense of community among students, faculty and staff within WMU’s College of Fine Arts. Recent visiting artists and scholars that supported the ceramics curriculum include; Kyle JohnsChandra DeBuseJamie Bates SloneLars ZoltzGustav HamiltonKristen CliffelMichael LorsungJenn ColeAkeylah Imani WellingtonSavanna LaBauve, & Eric Zohn

CURRICULUM: Bachelor of Fine Arts WITH AN EMPHASIS IN Ceramics (B.F.A.)

Basic Studies Requirement — 18 credits 

  • ART 1040 Object Drawing
  • ART 1050 Drawing Studio
  • ART 1070 Form and Surface
  • ART 1080 Form and Space
  • ART 2170 Writing About Art and Design
  • ART 2360 Professional Practice

Art History — 12 credits

Two of the four 2000-level Art History courses (6 hours)

  • ART 2200 Caves to Cathedrals
  • ART 2210 Modern and Postmodern
  • ART 2220 Art of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas
  • ART 2230 Introduction to Asian Art History


Two additional Art History courses at the 3000 or 4000-level, or at the 5000-level with instructor approval.

Ceramics Emphasis Requirement — 22 credits

  • ART 2300 Ceramics I (3 credits) 
  • ART 3300 Ceramics II (3 credits) 
  • ART 3060 Topics in Ceramics (3 credits) – repeatable for credit
  • ART 4500 3D Contemporary Practices (3 credits) 
  • ART 4700 Topics in Studio Art (3 credits) – repeatable for credit
  • ART 4830 Senior Project I (fall 3 credits) 
  • ART 4840 Senior Project II (spring 4 credits)

Art studio electives—33 credits

Three hours of non-western art history, and all art education credits, may be applied to the elective requirement.


Art Major—85 credits
Western Essential Studies —37 credits
Total Credit Hours—122 credits

Students should consult the WMU catalog for the ceramics program course descriptions and requirements.

WMU Catalog

Portfolio Reviews

Portfolio reviews for admission into the B.F.A. program with an emphasis in ceramics will be held in the second week of November and March.



Student Group

The Ceramic Arts Student Organization (CASO) is committed to creating opportunities for students to gain knowledge and appreciation for the ceramic medium, interact with the larger Ceramics community, and sponsoring yearly exhibitions of member’s artwork.