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Welcome to the School of Art, Design and Art History at James Madison University.

From the first days of the Normal and Industrial School for Women at Harrisonburg, when art was taught in the context of the manual and industrial arts, the theory and practice of the visual arts has been important to the pedagogical mission at JMU. 

SADAH is truly a collaborative community that fosters independent thought and creativity. We celebrate the transformation of material to expression; of student to artist, designer, teacher and scholar; we recognize the power of visual art to inspire the imagination and illuminate the human condition. 

Approximately 90% of architectural design graduates seeking work are employed in the field within four months.


"#2 best value bachelor's in Industrial Design" -


100% job placement in art education for more than 5 years


9 concentrations
3 minors
Art Education licensure

Kathy Schwartz
Dr. Katherine Schwartz
Director of JMU's School of Art, Design and Art History


In addition to JMU's general accreditation, all SADAH undergraduate and graduate degrees are professionally accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education and the National Association of Schools of Art and Design.

NASAD is the only accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education that covers the whole field of art and design; it provides a basis for public recognition of an institution’s quality. JMU has been accredited by NASAD since 1981.

Mission, Vision, Goals

We collaborate as creators and scholars to advance diversity and independent thought through rigorous practice and research.

To radically transform ourselves and our communities through creative and scholarly work:

to evolve the new
to navigate the unknown
to build capacities
to dare

In pursuit of the vision and he mission, the School of Art, Design and Art History supports the development of ethical character in our students by promoting the following values: excellence, integrity, mutual respect, learning, personal growth, personal engagement, accountability, responsibility, collaboration, global awareness and diversity.

The School of Art, Design and Art History discerns the following five distinct teaching goals:

To prepare future professionals with a global perspective.
To develop and license future leaders in the field of education.
To enrich the general education of the JMU community.
To offer professional instruction for students who wish to enrich their education with a second major or minor.
To present outstanding contemporary exhibition programs.


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