Rankings and Recognition

The College of Visual and Performing Arts is a major provider of artistic presentations and services to the region in ways that strengthen student learning and faculty and student artistry and research. 

For more accolades about the School of Art, School of Music, and School of Theatre and Dance, visit the College of Visual and Performing Arts website.

College of Visual & Performing Arts Earns National Rankings

Printmaking class

U. S. News & World Report

  • Top Fine Arts Schools: NIU’s MFA printmaking program ranks in the top 20 best fine arts schools for printmaking; overall NIU’s MFA ranks in the top 125 fine arts programs

College Degree Search

American Association of State Colleges and Universities

  • 50 Colleges Where Art Programs Abound: NIU’s baker’s dozen of programs in studio art ranks 35th. The list spotlights “non-specialized colleges and universities across the United States (that) also offer tremendous opportunity to art students, with a variety of programs available at the undergraduate and graduate levels.”

Animation Career Review

Accreditation and Professional Associations

  • nasadNational Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD): NIU’s School of Art is accredited by the NASAD, supporting the association’s pledge to “seek optimum learning conditions for art and design students and develop the strength and quality of art and design in higher education by assisting institutional members and their faculties to do their best work.”

  • National Association of Schools of Music (NASM): The NIU School of Music is accredited by NASM, an organization of schools, conservatories, colleges, and universities with approximately 633 accredited institutional members. It establishes national standards for undergraduate and graduate degrees and other credentials for music and music-related disciplines, and provides assistance to institutions and individuals engaged in artistic, scholarly, educational, and other music-related endeavors.

  • urta_logo.jpgUniversity/Resident Theatre Association (URTA): NIU’s School of Theater and Dance is a member school of the URTA; whose “member institutions' training programs involve a comprehensive approach to theatre training; include one or more degree offerings leading to an MFA in theatre; and contain a graduate student body of a significant size and scope as to allow students to artistically collaborate with and intellectually stimulate one another”