This question may not apply to most people on Photo.SE, but my question is directed towards those who have an undergraduate degree in photography or a closely related field:

  • What experience as part of photography school do you feel you could not have acquired without having gone to school?
  • Could you imagine an idea you were impressed upon in school that others who have not been to school for photography would have missed?
  • Lastly, considering the ubiquity of photographic wisdom on the web, do you feel in hindsight formal school was a worthy investment?
  • \$\begingroup\$ What is the main thing you hope to get out of school? Do you have a degree in some other field already? For me, going to college and studying art allowed me to come into contact with people and ideas I might not have otherwise. \$\endgroup\$
    – moorej
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 2:40
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yes; I studied mathematics and biology in undergrad. \$\endgroup\$
    – user74091
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 2:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ Interested in what if any projects or experiences professional photographers reflected on as being influential in the academic career. \$\endgroup\$
    – user74091
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 2:45
  • \$\begingroup\$ In that case, I would consider taking a course or two as a non-matriculated student. \$\endgroup\$
    – moorej
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 2:48
  • \$\begingroup\$ Taking a course or two would be a way for you to figure out if it's right for you. \$\endgroup\$
    – moorej
    Commented Jul 11, 2015 at 2:52

1 Answer 1


Lets look at the pros and cons.

For example a BA in Photography:


  • Access to high end equipment and studio time
  • Industry doors opened
  • A chance to develop a "style"
  • A chance to build a portfolio


  • A MASSIVE cost (Probably £10k PA + equipment, living costs etc)
  • There are VERY few jobs that require this, and 1000+ people applying per opening
  • Unlikely to ever pay for itself

Personally I know a lot of people who have a photography / artistic degree and now have completely unrelated jobs. Art / Photography have become "Lifestyle" degrees. So to answer your question, based on overwhelming evidence based on friends who have done this:

In most cases: No (certainly not financially)


Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.