Art and animation post-secondary education is actually a very competitive business.  You may see the hundreds of animation and art school facilities competing for your attention (especially through advertisements on the internet) and wonder “how can I possibly pick the one that is right for me?”  To answer this question, you must take into account the following personal and general factors when choosing an art school:
How To Choose The Right Art Or Animation School:
About You:
Do you know the exact field of employment you wish to enter after graduation, or do you only know it will be employment related to the arts? If you know exactly what you want to do, i.e. website design, perhaps a private school specializing in that area of study is right for you.  If you are not sure of the exact field of employment you wish to pursue, a general arts degree at a traditional university would be a better choice.

What experience and education do you already have?  Have you prepared a proper portfolio?  If you feel the experience you have gained through public school, hobbies, or work experience isn’t enough, consider taking an art-related course at an adult education school in your area.  In most cases they are offered by your local school board, and are usually free.

Are you willing to leave home to pursue your education? If so, consider whether you would be comfortable at a large school with a competitive environment, or a smaller school with more personal support from your instructors.  If not, an online art course may be best for you.

What is your financial situation?  Will you need to work part time while you study, and will the course curriculum give you enough time to do this?

About Your School:
Does your school have the latest technology that is commonly used in your field of employment? This is especially important for industries such as computer animation or graphic design.  Be sure that there is ample supply of this technology per student.  For example, one camera for every 25 students is not a good ratio.

Do the instructors have real world experience in your industry?  Find out everything you can about the history and experience of your instructors.  If possible, you should visit the school to meet with the faculty and sit in on some classes.

What about support after you graduate?  Does the school have a department to assist graduates in their search for employment?  Find out the school’s placement rate and if possible, talk to former graduates.

Do the big names in your industry actively visit the school and recruit future graduates?  If this is the case, it says a lot about your school’s reputation in the industry.

If you take into account these factors, you should have a rewarding career in the artistic field.  Good luck!
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