Associate of Fine Arts Degree (AFA)


The Associate of Fine Arts (AFA) degree in Art is designed for students pursuing the fine arts. The AFA degree may not transfer to other colleges and universities as an Associate of Arts (AA) degree would. Students seeking a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Fine Arts should always consult their art advisor and the university in which they intend to enroll about equivalency requirements.

Learning Outcomes

When a student leaves our AFA program they will be able to:

  1. Apply to a four-year Art school with a professional portfolio allowing for the continuation of their Art education.
  2. Create artwork that is technically and conceptually well-crafted using the tools and concepts appropriate to the discipline.
  3. Communicate using the language and vocabulary of the Visual Arts.
  4. Articulate the history and traditions of the discipline.
  5. Create artwork with personal expression: connect the Arts with the cultures and communities of which they are a part.
  6. Make aesthetically informed judgments and decisions.
  7. Integrate the Arts into one’s life as a member of the community and a lifelong learner.
  8. Demonstrate the proper attitude, skills and knowledge for the visual arts related arena.
  9. Enhance their lives and to see the world from a different perspective.


Candidates for the Associate of Fine Arts degree in Art must complete a minimum of 90 credits of college transfer-level courses (numbered 100 or greater) with a GPA of 2.0 or higher. The majority of these courses should be earned at NSC. The last quarter must be completed at NSC.

The AFA in Art requires successful completion of the following specific general education courses:

  • ENGL&101
  • One of the following courses:
  •  MATH&107 (or higher)
  •  ACCT&110 (or higher)

Courses include

There are also 45 required ART credits and a minimum of 25 ART electives. Please note that some of the art courses are offered only once a year. Check back often with the schedule and contact the Art Department Coordinator to plan your schedule out in advance.

Students must submit a portfolio – 10-15 pieces of their best work – for evaluation during the final quarter of the degree. Each student chooses 3 art faculty members to advise them through the portfolio process. Students need to identify who they'd like to work with and arrange these faculty meetings two quarters before graduation.

Studio art courses are designed to be taken in sequence. Art history courses may be taken in any order. Substitutions may be made only with the approval of the art faculty coordinator and the dean. Requests for such substitutions must be made on a Request for Waiver form. Contact your advisor for the required form and be sure to discuss substitution with all faculty involved.

See the following PDF document for the complete requirements, a recommended sequence of courses, and a course planning worksheet.  AFA-requirements-2020.pdf