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A Guide to Photography Degrees Abroad

A degree in photography provides more than instruction on how to take a photo, it delves into how to see and communicate emotions, stories, and culture (to name a few) through imagery. International degrees in photography tend to focus on theory, methods, and hands-on experience. Earning an entire degree abroad in photography will give you an incredible advantage, not to mention fresh inspiration. Whether you’re looking to advance your career as a photographer, photo editor, art buyer, or studio manager, there are photography programs and degrees abroad to fit your needs!

Why Earn a Photography Degree Abroad

While quality and prestigious photography programs exist in most Western nations, earning a  photography degree abroad gives students a unique opportunity to learn about this skillful art in an environment that is unfamiliar. Studying photography abroad will challenge and encourage students to develop a deeper understanding of photography as an art form and communication style. In addition, photography degree programs abroad often focus on creative and design skills (above and beyond technique), which is necessary to set yourself apart in the competitive industry of photography.

Studying photography abroad allows students to further understand the diversity and complexity of the art, while gaining invaluable experience in an international setting. Furthermore, international schools, particularly in Europe, tend to have degrees, institutions, and instructors that have longstanding reputations for excellence and a history dedicated to fine art.


With one of the earliest known photographs created in France, it should come as no surprise that there are many reputable and enriching photography programs throughout Europe.

Italy: Art and design institutes are plentiful in Italy, which has a rich history in the arts and a culture that embraces artisans. Popular institutions include the Instituto Europeo di Design in Milan, and Lorenzo de’ Medici in Florence, both of which offer comprehensive degrees and courses in photography.

Not only do photography students in Italy get the chance to learn from world-renowned professors and professional photographers, but they also get to take advantage of their surroundings, which inspire many of the world’s photographers and art aficionados.

Prague: Students studying photography in Prague will find themselves in the midst of countless museums, galleries, studios, and exhibits. Whether they’re steeped in history and culture, or they’re rising stars in the Czech Republic’s growing contemporary art scene, students are sure to find inspiration while taking courses at one of Prague’s top art institutions.

Spain: The Instituto Europeo di Design campus in Madrid offers photography courses and degrees that will develop students’ knowledge and skill in the field, while also offering them the opportunity to explore and draw inspiration from one of Europe’s most culturally diverse countries. Visits to artists’ studios and exhibits are integrated into most photography degree programs as well.

Barcelona is also a popular location for the arts and draws students and photographers from around the world. Famous for architecture, tapas, and a plethora of art galleries, museums, and more, Barcelona is yet another mecca of art that provides an ideal backdrop for studying photography abroad.

Academics & Degrees

Photography degrees can vary slightly depending on the location you choose to study in, however, most degree programs offer not only the basics, but plentiful opportunities for hands-on experience. In many cases, photography courses are taught by professional photographers turned professors, or a portion of the degree requirements will involve working with and learning from a professional photographer or expert in visual arts. Most photography degree programs also include projects that help build your own portfolio, arguably one of the most important outcomes of your study abroad experience.

It’s also important to note that degrees in photography yield several professional opportunities, including but not limited to: Visual Artist, Creative Director, Producer, Art Director, Curator, Retoucher, or Educator. Applicants are encouraged to review the specifics and requirements for each photography degree program abroad, as several do require basic knowledge and experience in photography, as well as equipment.


Whether you’re looking to become the world’s next great photographer, art buyer, creative director, or studio manager, earning a photography degree abroad will provide the skills and experience you need to further your career. Studying abroad also allows you to learn about art and photography in another setting and culture, something that will set you apart and help you develop a deeper understanding of photography as a medium of communication. So, what are you waiting for?

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Banner Report 2018

A Guide To
Photography Degrees Abroad


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