Artist: Career Diploma Programs

About this article
Professional artists perform on stage, in orchestras, in studios, or launch solo careers. Artists may also eventually become teachers. There are many areas to specialize in when enrolling in an artist diploma program. Read more about this career below.
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What is an Artist Diploma Program?

An artist diploma program prepares students for a career in music. This can includes many fields such as vocal performance, teaching music theory, and mastering an instrument.

Required Courses:

Since there are different areas within this degree program that students can specialize in depending on their interests, most colleges offer general courses in music theory and music performance. Basic required courses include:

  • Vocal training
  • Music theory
  • Music history
  • Music education

Skills Obtained:

The skills obtained from completing an artist diploma program will allow students to pursue careers in music education, perform in musical theater as a vocal performer or musician, be a part of a studio band, or start a career as a freelance musician.

Career Related Information

Reasons to Earn an Artist Diploma:

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics,, even though the pay may be lower in comparison to other careers, musicians do not typically work full-time and are able to pursue other facets of their career. Orchestral musicians may work a full year when under contract, but in many cases, musicians are free to work for whomever they choose.

Salary Information:

Though salaries will vary depending on the career path chosen, those who have an artist diploma can expect to earn between $20,000 and $50,000 annually.

Economic Outlook and Growth of the Professional Artist Field:

There will always be jobs available for those who are aggressive about finding work and trying to get name recognition in the music industry. While a musician may have to work in another field to support themselves, they should be able to find work in various places including theaters, symphonies, nightclubs, and other musical venues.

Popular Schools

  • Campus and Online Programs
    1. The Art Institutes

    Program Options

      • Visual Arts (MFA)
      • Computer Animation (MFA)
      • Illustration & Design (BFA)
      • Illustration (BFA)
      • Visual Arts (BFA)
      • Computer Animation (BFA)
      • Game Art & Design (BFA)
      • Game Art & Design (BS)
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Penn Foster High School

    Program Options

    High School Diploma
      • Penn Foster High School with Early College Courses
      • HS Diploma
  • Campus Locations:
    3. CDI College

    Program Options

      • Diploma in 3D Modeling Animation & Design (Conception, Modlisation et Animation 3D - NTL.0Z)
  • Towson, MD

    Towson University

  • Stanford, CA

    Stanford University

  • Cambridge, MA

    Harvard University

  • Nashville, TN

    Vanderbilt University

  • Washington, DC

    Howard University

  • Athens, GA

    University of Georgia

Featured Schools

The Art Institutes

  • Visual Arts (MFA)
  • Computer Animation (MFA)
  • Illustration & Design (BFA)
  • Illustration (BFA)

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Penn Foster High School

  • Penn Foster High School with Early College Courses
  • HS Diploma

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CDI College

  • Diploma in 3D Modeling Animation & Design (Conception, Modlisation et Animation 3D - NTL.0Z)

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