Best Colleges with a Photography Major: List of Schools

Gain information on the best colleges with photography majors in the country. Explore school rankings, degree options and location info, and compare similarities and differences to find the right school for you.

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School Information

Two of the top schools that offer majors in photography are Providence College and John Brown University. Undergrads majoring in these schools' programs learn techniques like lighting, composition, equipment use and image processing; often they have a concentration in their coursework, like art or commercial photography. After reviewing the profiles of these two schools, check out the table of additional schools with good photography programs at the end of the article.

1. Providence College in Rhode Island

School Highlight: The photography major at Providence is experiential and focuses on hands-on learning.

For 2015, Providence College was ranked second among regional universities in the North by U.S. News & World Report. The Providence College Studio Arts program leads to a Bachelor of Arts, and students who select a concentration in photography are pushed to pursue creative limits while also learning the technical side of photography. Graduates receive extensive classmate and faculty critiques and are given the chance to publicly exhibit their work.

2. John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas

School Highlight: The university was ranked #3 among best value schools in the South by U.S. News & World Report In 2015.

John Brown University (JBU) was ranked first (tie) among regional universities in the South by U.S. News & World Report for 2015. Those in the Bachelor of Science in Photography program take classes in design, darkroom, social documentary and commercial photography. Students from John Brown have gone on to careers in such fields as fashion, event and crime scene photography.

Find schools that offer these popular programs

  • Cinematography and Film Production
  • Film and Cinema Studies
  • Photography

Top Photography Schools

School Name Distinction Location
Central Washington University The school's campus houses the Sarah Spurgeon Gallery, which offers artwork on display as well as workshops and artist lectures. Ellensburg, WA
Columbia College Columbia College ranked #10 on U.S. News & World Report's 2012 list of schools with the best photography programs. Columbia, MO
Grand Valley State University Photography students can participate in a Photography and Art Desert Southwest Workshop class, traveling to various locations in the American Southwest. Allendale, MI
Rochester Institute of Technology The school's photography facilities house 35 darkrooms, five computer labs, 30 studios, and an experimental space for presentations. Rochester, NY
Syracuse University Syracuse offers a photography major with two tracks, illustration photography and photojournalism. Syracuse, NY
University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign The university offers several awards for incoming freshmen studying the arts, including tuition waivers, the Lois Marie Orr Scholarship and an exhibition scholarship. Champaign, IL
University of Miami The University of Miami ranked #48 among all national universities, according to U.S. News & World Report in 2015. Coral Gables, FL
Western Washington University About 98% of WWU's classes are taught by faculty rather than graduate assistants. Bellingham, WA
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