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High School Diploma 

The High School Academic Program grants the University of North Carolina School of the Arts diploma with concentrations in Dance, Drama, Music, and Visual Arts to students who successfully complete all requirements for their arts program and sufficient college preparatory-level academic courses to meet graduation requirements. 

First-Year Program (2 Units per Year) 

Each term, students will normally have two two-hour studio art classes every day, which will include drawing, fundamentals of design and color, sculpture, and three-dimensional design. Classes will stress individual development and critique to encourage analysis and self-evaluation.

Second-Year Program (2 Units per Year)

Daily studio art classes will continue on an advanced level. Students also are required to take Art History. Although structure and technique are addressed, greater emphasis is placed on the interpretive style of each individual and the development of a portfolio.

Essential Qualifications

Applicants who are accepted and enrolled in the Visual Arts Program must be committed to a rigorous course of study in design, drawing, sculpture and art history.  The list of required activities includes, but is not limited to, the ability to:

  • Participate physically in all phases of art production and studio maintenance.  This covers a broad range of physical movements and hand-eye coordinated activities that includes, but is not limited to: standing at a drawing easel, design table, or sculpture stand for extended periods of time; free-hand drawing and painting; using hand and power tools to measure, cut, fold and secure designs; spatial understanding that allows for mold-making, modeling, carving, casting and other fabrication methods; as well as a full range of body motions in the execution of classroom assignments and performance art activities;

  • Produce original works of art that are compelling on an aesthetic, conceptual and technical level in a variety of mediums, genres and styles.  Students must be ready, willing and able to participate fully in the design and fabrication of actual works of art that result from both direct classroom instruction (assignments) and purely independent motivations;

  • View reference materials and observe demonstrations, as well as to hear required lectures in studio art and art history courses;

  • See images, hear sounds, process information and clearly communicate with faculty, staff and their peers using the English language;

  • Analyze and discuss works of art produced in the program, as well as examples drawn from a broad range of cultural and historical references.  In written and oral critique sessions, students are expected to respond to a variety of learning modalities occurring in both traditional and non-traditional of teaching environments;

  • Actively participate in a learning environment that encompasses an openly diverse range of philosophical, social, moral, and ethical approaches to the creation and analysis of art and culture;

  • Undertake serious study of the human form.  Figure drawing, the traditional cornerstone of art training that includes portraiture and the nude, is a required component of the curriculum; 

  • Work in both large and small group settings in the completion of program-related tasks, from maintaining a clean and productive studio environment to working collaboratively on art and research assignments.