Pottery Classes in NYC with School Options and Information

Feb 24, 2019

The New York City area has dozens of colleges within 25 miles of the downtown that offer pottery or ceramics classes. Learn about the courses, admission info and program requirements for three schools to make an informed education decision.

New York City Schools with Pottery Classes

The City University of New York (CUNY) has several colleges that offer classes in ceramics, including two 4-year schools. Classes can also be found at a private art and design institute in nearby Brooklyn. Read about the schools and their programs below, and find a comparison table with key school facts. A brief overview of three other area schools that offer programs for pottery or ceramic artists can be found at the end of the article.

  • The City College of New York (CUNY) is located on 36 acres in Harlem, about ten miles from the downtown, and its Neo-Gothic buildings have been awarded landmark status. At the college, students can earn an undergraduate or a graduate degree in art.
  • One of the oldest public institutions in the United States, Hunter College (CUNY) is also the largest school in the city university system. Located approximately five miles from downtown Manhattan, the school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in the fine arts.
  • The main campus of the 125-year-old Pratt Institute in Brooklyn is located on a residential site near the Brooklyn Museum, less than four miles from downtown New York City. This relatively small school offers undergraduate and graduate programs in a number of areas, including art and design.

Comparison of Schools

An interest in sculpture classes may lead to a formal degree program in art. Note the competitive acceptance rates and high full-time student retention statistics at all three featured schools, and find information about undergraduate tuition, financial aid and graduation.

City College of New York (CUNY) Hunter College (CUNY) Pratt Institute (Main Campus)
School Type 4-year; public 4-year; public 4-year; private non-profit
Total Enrollment (2017) 16,001* 23,005* 5,035*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Large city
Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2017-2018) $6,940 in-state; $14,430 out-of-state* $6,982 in-state; $14,372 out-of-state* $50,038*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Any Form of Aid (2016-2017) 86%* 81%* 84%*
Acceptance Rate (2017) 46%* 40%* 57%*
Retention Rate (Fall 2016 to Fall 2017) 86% for full-time students; 73% for part-time students* 83% for full-time students; 80% for part-time students* 88% for full-time students*
Graduation Rate (students who enrolled in 2011) 50%* 52%* 66%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator

City College of New York (CUNY)

Through the Art Department at City College, students can pursue studio work in a variety of traditional and contemporary disciplines, including ceramics, sculpture, electronic media and photography. The faculty is composed of working artists and published academics, and currently includes a professional ceramicist and curator.

Bachelor of Arts in Art: Studio Option

Students don't need to submit a portfolio to apply for this program. The 42-credit curriculum requires studio electives and an array of introductory courses in areas such as drawing, 2-D design, printmaking, global art, painting, photography and writing. Three-dimensional studio work includes electives in ceramics, sculpture and wood design.

The introductory course in ceramics emphasizes basic hand-building techniques, and students learn how to coil, pinch and assemble slabs. At the more advanced level, the department also offers three courses in architectural ceramics, glazing and hand throwing. In particular, students can learn how to work with plaster press and slip casting molds, load a kiln and fire their work. Along with studio time, art majors have the chance to view films and presentations, take part in critiques and visit museums.

Minor in Art

The minor in art allows students to specialize in either art history or studio art, and the latter requires the introductory courses in global art and 2-D design. Students must also take four courses in studio art and pursue additional topics in art history.

Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art

The program requires 60 credits or five semesters to complete. The requirements for the degree program include core studies in art education and history, and students also have to complete a thesis. Graduate students who specialize in ceramics can take up to 15 credits of project-based coursework. To fulfill the art history requirements, they can also study the decorative arts and sculpture of early Egypt, medieval Europe or the Renaissance.

Hunter College (CUNY)

The Department of Art takes an inclusive approach to programming that emphasizes art history and theory, practical studio skills and gallery work. The professional faculty includes three full-time members who provide students in the Bachelor of Fine Arts program with individualized instruction and tutorials. Master of Fine Arts majors should have a bachelor's degree and a minimum of 24 credits in art history and studio art.

Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art

This degree offers a 24-credit and a 42-credit pathway. The first option requires seven courses in studio art, while the latter option offers concentrations in areas like ceramics and sculpture. Students will choose nine credits for their particular concentration to finish their degree.

Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Art

This program is open to students who have completed 90 credits of coursework for the Bachelor of Arts program. As a professional program, it's designed to provide art students with additional studio time and prepare them for a career in the field. Courses in the last semester include a study of current topics and exhibitions, an art history elective and a professional art experience. The latter provides students with the opportunity to pursue advanced projects both within and outside of the department.

Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art

Studio arts majors complete a thesis project and can choose from six areas of concentration, including clay and casting. Students who study clay and casting can take three sequential courses in advanced ceramics and work on an individual basis with a full-time faculty member. An additional program feature is the chance to spend a semester at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, the Royal College of Art in London or another international art school.

Pratt Institute

At the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, students can pursue a minor in ceramics.

Minor in Ceramics

In this minor program, students can gain experience in working with clay. Three courses in ceramics will be required. Students will also need to choose six credits in electives coursework such as glazes, slip casting methods and clay as a canvas.

Other School Options

In addition to the schools highlighted above, Kingsborough Community College (CUNY) in Brooklyn and Parsons The New School for Design in Manhattan offer introductory courses in ceramics through full art degree programs. Through the Department of Art and Art Professions at New York University (Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development), students can also pursue the study of ceramics through open labs and studios.

Next: View Schools

Popular Schools

The listings below may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users.

Find your perfect school

What is your highest level of education?