Northern's Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with digital media emphasis offers outstanding educational opportunities in graphic design, interactive design and other new media.

    About The Program

    The BFA in digital media degree program prepares you to excel in highly technical areas of art and design, including:

    • Commercial photography
    • Video production and editing
    • Web design and programming
    • 2D animation
    • Illustration
    • Graphic design
    • Product/packaging design

    It's the perfect gateway to attending graduate school for a master of fine arts degree (MFA) or doctorate in art education degree.


    A BFA in digital media offers a rich selection of upper-level courses to enhance your academic experience and professional potential.  In this program, you'll engage intensely with your art and design practice while being immersed in technological advancements and art history. In your final year, you'll take your first steps into the industry through career planning in the senior capstone course; upper-level media courses; and optional internship opportunities. The  capstone course requires a portfolio, thesis, public exhibition, and career mentoring.


    The program offers three areas of emphasis:

    1. Interactive media such as animation, video, and web
    2. Graphic design and static media such as corporate identity, digital imaging, digital illustration, and photography
    3. New Media, the intersection of traditional studio arts and digital media

    With a solid foundation gained early in the program followed by challenging classes with a focus on your individual interests, you'll have plenty of time and opportunity to grow your design practice before entering the workforce.


    The field of digital media is diverse, ranging from education to print/static design to interactive, web, and/or video occupations. A BFA in digital media presents several potential career paths, including graphic designer, art director, illustrator, photographer, filmmaker, web designer, arts manager, independent designer, and video editor.


    According to Americans for the Arts, 72 percent of all employers say that creativity and critical thinking are necessary characteristics of  business leaders and that creativity is the No. 1 skill they seek when hiring.




    The art department offers a variety of competitive, merit-based awards. Scholarship assistance requires strong academic performance, minimum GPA of 3.0, and demonstrated potential for academic and career success. Scholarships also are available for minority students and students who excel in specific art disciplines or media.


    Fine Arts Scholarships

    NSU Scholarships

    Sample Plans of Study
    Contact Information

    For more information about this degree, call 605-626-2267. Or, contact NSU Admissions at 605-626-2544 or

    M.F.A., University of California-Santa Barbara

    B.A., Augustana College



    I have exhibited my artwork in regional and national venues for more than 25 years, with works in the Knight-Ridder Collection, South Dakota State Art Collection, Contemporary Arts Forum (Santa Barbara) and numerous private collections.


    Discipline Specialties




    M.F.A. Digital Filmmaking - University of Central Arkansas

    M.S. Instructional Design & Technology - Emporia State University

    B.G.S. Special Major: Digital Film & Computer Production - University of Kansas




    Originally from Northeast Kansas, Knowles is an award-winning filmmaker who teaches courses in digital media, web and interface design, and motion graphics at Northern.  At other institutions, he developed and facilitated in-person and online classes in filmmaking, live-streaming/broadcasting, 3D animation, media writing, and podcasting/audio production.


    Jason's media production interests include writing and directing screenplays with strong female lead characters whose journeys transcend the genres of action-adventure films, science…

    M.Ed., Lesley University
    B.S.Ed., Northern State University
    Nadya Preszler graduated from NSU in 1999. A Roscoe, S.D., native, she was a track athlete during her time at Northern. She spent five years teaching art in Marshall, Minn., and five years at Roosevelt High School in Sioux Falls, S.D. At Northern, she concentrates on art education.

    M.F.A., East Carolina University

    B.A., Hastings College