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Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools

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2021 Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools

312 Colleges
$31,649 Avg Salary
$28,898 Avg Student Debt

Finding the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree School for You

Design & Applied Arts is the #35 most popular major in the country with 36,179 degrees and certificates awarded in 2018-2019.

There are so many programs in today's world that it can tough to figure out which one is the right one for you. With more and more schools offering online options, you could even register for a great program on the other side of the country. On top of that, there are a considerable number of trade schools that offer fast-track entry to many fields.

To assist you in seeing some of the education options that are available to you, Course Advisor has created its Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools ranking. This report analyzed 312 schools in the United States to see which ones offered the best bachelor's degree programs for students. The factors used to develop this ranking include those related to how in-demand the school is, the overall quality of the school, and post-graduation wages, and more.

View our full ranking methodology.

2021 Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools in the United States

The following schools top our list of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Colleges.

Top 25 Top Schools for a Bachelor's in Design

#1

University of Notre Dame

Notre Dame, IN

Our 2021 rankings named University of Notre Dame the best school in the United States for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. Notre Dame is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the large suburb of Notre Dame.

Design majors at Notre Dame take out an average of $19,187 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $197, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#2

Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, PA

The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Carnegie Mellon University helped the school earn the #2 place on this year’s ranking of the best design and applied arts schools in the United States. Located in the city of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon is a private not-for-profit college with a fairly large student population.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Carnegie Mellon take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $20,204. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $239.

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The excellent bachelor’s degree programs at Georgia Institute of Technology - Main Campus helped the school earn the #3 place on this year’s ranking of the best design and applied arts schools in the United States. Located in the large city of Atlanta, Georgia Tech is a public school with a very large student population.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, design graduates from Georgia Tech carry an average student debtload of $23,538. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $279.

Full Design & Applied Arts at Georgia Institute of Technology - Main Campus Report

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A rank of #4 on this year’s list means Northeastern University is a great place for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in the city of Boston, Northeastern is a private not-for-profit school with a very large student population.

Design majors at Northeastern take out an average of $25,534 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $301.

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A rank of #5 on this year’s list means University of Delaware is a great place for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. U of Delaware is a very large public school located in the suburb of Newark.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, design graduates from U of Delaware carry an average student debtload of $22,152. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $254.

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#6

Virginia Tech

Blacksburg, VA

Virginia Tech came in at #6 in this year’s edition of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Located in the city of Blacksburg, Virginia Tech is a public school with a fairly large student population.

On average, design graduates from Virginia Tech take out $24,129 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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University of Wisconsin - Madison landed the #7 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree design and applied arts programs. Wisconsin is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Madison.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Wisconsin take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $21,864. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $241.

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With a ranking of #8, Wentworth Institute of Technology did quite well on this year’s best schools for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in the city of Boston, WIT is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

On average, design graduates from WIT take out $25,229 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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#9

American University

Washington, DC

American University landed the #9 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree design and applied arts programs. The American University is a fairly large private not-for-profit school located in the large city of Washington.

Design majors at The American University take out an average of $20,378 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree.

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University of Washington - Seattle Campus came in at #10 in this year’s edition of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Located in the large city of Seattle, UW Seattle is a public college with a fairly large student population.

Design majors at UW Seattle take out an average of $18,270 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $203, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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#11

University of Florida

Gainesville, FL

With a ranking of #11, University of Florida did quite well on this year’s best schools for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. U of F is a very large public school located in the midsize city of Gainesville.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at U of F take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $19,540. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $171.

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#12

Endicott College

Beverly, MA

Endicott College came in at #12 in this year’s edition of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. Endicott is a small private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Beverly.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Endicott take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $25,052. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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Lawrence Technological University ranked #13 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Southfield, Lawrence Tech is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

On average, design graduates from Lawrence Tech take out $25,594 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network ranked #14 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Boston, Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network is a private not-for-profit college with a large student population.

While working on their Bachelor's Degree, design majors at Northeastern University Professional Advancement Network accumulate an average of around $25,534 in student debt. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $301.

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#15

Taylor University

Upland, IN

Taylor University ranked #15 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the town of Upland, Taylor U is a private not-for-profit college with a small student population.

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The University of Texas at Austin came in at #16 in this year’s edition of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. UT Austin is a fairly large public school located in the large city of Austin.

On average, design graduates from UT Austin take out $23,321 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $268.

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#17

Clemson University

Clemson, SC

Clemson University ranked #17 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Clemson is a very large public school located in the large suburb of Clemson.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, design graduates from Clemson carry an average student debtload of $21,692. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $239.

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Art Center College of Design ranked #18 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the city of Pasadena, Art Center College of Design is a private not-for-profit school with a small student population.

Design majors at Art Center College of Design take out an average of $33,686 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. Assuming that a graduate chooses a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly loan payment is $322.

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#19

Texas Christian University

Fort Worth, TX

With a ranking of #19, Texas Christian University did quite well on this year’s best schools for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. Located in the city of Fort Worth, TCU is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

On average, design graduates from TCU take out $22,370 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. The average monthly payment of a loan this size is about $213, assuming that the borrower is on a 10-year repayment plan.

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University of Illinois at Urbana - Champaign came in at #20 in this year’s edition of the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools ranking. UIUC is a fairly large public school located in the small city of Champaign.

While working on their Bachelor's Degree, design majors at UIUC accumulate an average of around $23,417 in student debt. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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#21

Stonehill College

Easton, MA

Stonehill College landed the #21 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree design and applied arts programs. Stonehill is a small private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Easton.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, design graduates from Stonehill carry an average student debtload of $26,452. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $280.

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North Carolina State University did quite well in this year’s ranking of the best places for design and applied arts students to get a bachelor’s degree. It came in at #22 on the list. NC State is a very large public school located in the large city of Raleigh.

On average, design graduates from NC State take out $21,871 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $253.

Full Design & Applied Arts at North Carolina State University Report

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#23

Chapman University

Orange, CA

Chapman University landed the #23 spot in the 2021 rankings for the best bachelor’s degree design and applied arts programs. Located in the medium-sized city of Orange, Chapman is a private not-for-profit college with a medium-sized student population.

The average amount in student loans that design majors at Chapman take out while working on their Bachelor's Degree is $21,000. When it comes time to repay the loan, graduates who are on a 10-year repayment plan pay an average monthly payment of $207.

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With a ranking of #24, Southern Methodist University did quite well on this year’s best schools for design and applied arts students working on their bachelor’s degree. SMU is a large private not-for-profit school located in the suburb of Dallas.

After completing their Bachelor's Degree, design graduates from SMU carry an average student debtload of $19,172.

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#25

Drexel University

Philadelphia, PA

Drexel University ranked #25 on this year’s Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor’s Degree Schools list. Located in the large city of Philadelphia, Drexel is a private not-for-profit school with a fairly large student population.

Design majors at Drexel take out an average of $23,273 in student loans while working on their Bachelor's Degree. For students who choose a 10-year repayment plan, the average monthly student loan payment is $275.

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Rest of the Top Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools

#27

Marist College

Poughkeepsie, NY
#29

Syracuse University

Syracuse, NY
#30

San Jose State University

San Jose, CA
#33

Purdue University - Main Campus

West Lafayette, IN
#34

Boston University

Boston, MA
#36

Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL
#39

Bellevue University

Bellevue, NE
#42

Texas Tech University

Lubbock, TX
#44

Lindenwood University

Saint Charles, MO
#45

Michigan State University

East Lansing, MI
#46

Bradley University

Peoria, IL

Honorable Mentions

These are some additional schools worth mentioning that are also great but just didn't quite make the cut to earn our top Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools award.

Rank College Location
47 University of Houston Houston, TX
48 University of California - Los Angeles Los Angeles, CA
49 University of Nebraska - Lincoln Lincoln, NE
50 North Dakota State University - Main Campus Fargo, ND
51 Seattle Pacific University Seattle, WA
52 George Washington University Washington, DC
53 Washington State University Pullman, WA
54 University of California - Davis Davis, CA
55 Saint Cloud State University Saint Cloud, MN
56 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
57 University of Northern Iowa Cedar Falls, IA
58 Ball State University Muncie, IN
59 West Texas A&M University Canyon, TX
60 Pennsylvania State University - University Park University Park, PA
61 University of Kansas Lawrence, KS
62 Susquehanna University Selinsgrove, PA

Design & Applied Arts by Region

View the Best Design & Applied Arts Bachelor's Degree Schools for a specific region near you.

Region
Southeast
New England
Rocky Mountains
Plains States
Middle Atlantic
Far Western US
Southwest
Great Lakes

Design & Applied Arts is one of 9 different types of programs to choose from.

Majors Similar to Design

Related Major Annual Graduates
Fine & Studio Arts 40,751
Music 26,968
Drama & Theater Arts 17,726
Film, Video & Photographic Arts 16,756
General Visual & Performing Arts 5,720

Notes and References

*These averages are for the top 25 schools only.

  • Read more about our ranking methodology.
  • The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), a branch of the U.S. Department of Education (DOE) serves as the core of the rest of our data about colleges.
  • Some other college data, including much of the graduate earnings data, comes from the U.S. Department of Education’s (College Scorecard).

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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