There is a broad spectrum of concepts to explore when one is taking up arts; liberal arts, performance arts, fine arts, and much more. Today, it proves to be one of the most crucial factors to building products or services, be it digital or otherwise. It’s as important as any other technical or non–technical opportunity available. Given how India is always on the lookout for art connoisseurs, there’s always a dazzling opportunity waiting for you. But, where does one begin their journey to learn about the subjects in detail? Well, you start with education!
Arts colleges can be some of the most underrated resources available to students who wish to explore the social aesthetics, culture, and vibrance that India is so rich with. With that said, getting into the right one can be troublesome. We’ve written down everything you should know about the best art colleges in India. From what the best-specialised courses are to the criteria, cutoffs and the fee structure for them.
Table of Contents
- Top 10 Arts Colleges in India by NIRF
- Top 10 Arts Colleges in India by IndiaToday
- Top Arts Colleges in India Based on Zones
- Top Arts Colleges in India with Specialisations
- Fee Structure for Top Arts Colleges in India
- Entrance Exams Accepted by Top Arts Colleges in India
- Eligibility Criteria and Admissions for Top Arts Colleges in India
- Cut Offs for Top Arts Colleges in India
- Scope of Arts
- Arts Placements in India
Top 10 Arts Colleges in India by NIRF
In this section, we have listed the 10 best art colleges in India, as ranked by the National Institute Ranking Framework (NIRF). They have been listed based on their actual NIRF ranking. Their locations have also been provided to help distinguish between the different branches that most colleges tend to have.
|Ranking||College Name||NIRF Score|
|1||Miranda House College for Women, Delhi||77.23|
|2||Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi||72.08|
|3||Hindu College, Delhi||70.44|
|4||St Stephen’s College, Delhi||69.67|
|5||Presidency College, Chennai||68.89|
|6||Loyola College, Chennai||68.03|
|7||St Xavier’s College, Kolkata||67.59|
|8||Ramakrishna Mission Vidyamandira, Howrah||67.59|
|9||Hansraj College, Delhi||67.23|
|10||PSGR Krishnammal College for Women, Coimbatore||66.63|
Top 10 Arts Colleges in India by IndiaToday
One of India’s most popular weekly magazines — IndiaToday — has also provided their 10-item list of colleges that they rank as the top arts colleges in India.
|Ranking||College Name||Annual Fees (In INR)|
|1||Hindu College, Delhi||17,000|
|2||St Stephen’s College, Delhi||37,285|
|3||Miranda House College for Women, Delhi||17,040|
|4||Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi||21,440|
|5||Madras Christian College, Chennai||18,719|
|6||Hansraj College, Delhi||20,400|
|7||Loyola College (Autonomous), Chennai||48,000|
|8||Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University, Bengaluru||66,000|
|9||Gargi College, Delhi||10,500|
|10||Ramjas College, Delhi||13,220|
Top Arts Colleges in India Based on Zones
In order to further understand the academic hotspots in India that are attracting a lot of attention — high-profile publications and media outlets — we’ve helped divide the colleges based on their situational zones: North-South, and East-West. We’ve provided a list of the best arts colleges in India that are located in those particular zones. The lists were created using the rankings provided by NIRF and the Week. The order of the colleges are not synonymous to the ranks given to them by the respective ranking agencies.
Top Arts Colleges in North India
It turns out that the majority of the best colleges in India that you’d find in the northern parts are in Delhi. As the capital of the country itself, Delhi sees lakhs of students flow in and out of their well-established institutions. We’ve listed the 5 top colleges in India located in the northern zone below.
5 Top Arts Colleges in Delhi
- St Stephen’s College
- Lady Shri Ram College for Women
- Hindu College
- Miranda House College for Women
- Hansraj College
5 Top Arts Colleges in Guwahati
- Guwahati College
- Assam Down Town University
- Assam Don Bosco University
- Tata Institute of Social Sciences
- Pandu College
Top Arts Colleges in South India
Although Chennai is deemed to be the hotspot for education, South India as a whole has seen its fair share of institutions flourish over the years. We’ve provided a list of the top arts colleges in South India for each city.
5 Top Arts Colleges in Bengaluru
- St Joseph’s Autonomous College
- Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University
- Mount Carmel College
- Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology
- Jain University
5 Top Arts Colleges in Chennai
- Loyola College
- Madras Christian College
- Stella Maris Autonomous College
- Anna University
- DG Vaishnav College
5 Top Arts Colleges in Coimbatore
- Kongunadu Arts and Science College
- Bharathiar University
- Sri Ramakrishna College of Arts and Science
- Dr NGP Arts and Science College
- Karpagam Academy of Higher Education
5 Top Arts Colleges in Hyderabad
- Jawaharlal Nehru Architecture and Fine Arts University
- Anurag University
- Dr BR Ambedkar Open University
- Maulana Azad Urdu University
Top Arts Colleges in East India
The list provided below will provide the names of 5 of the top arts colleges in India in the eastern zone. East India consists of four states, and one union territory: Bihar, Jharkhand, Odisha, West Bengal, and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
5 Top Arts Colleges in Kolkata
- St Xavier’s College
- Loreto College
- Bethune College
- Presidency College
- Jadavpur University
5 Top Arts Colleges in Bardhaman
- Durgapur Government College
- Katwa College
- Pandaveswar College
- Syamsundar College
- University of Burdwan
Top Arts Colleges in West India
Mumbai is so far the most sought after city for education when it comes to education in West India. As far as composition goes, Goa, Gujarat, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, and Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu all make up the entirety of West India. We’ve provided you with lists of city-wise colleges to peruse through.
Top Arts Colleges in Mumbai
- St Xavier’s College
- Mithibai College of Arts, Chauhan Institute of Science & Amrutben Jivanlal College of Commerce and Economics
- Sophia College of Women
- KJ Somaiya Autonomous College of Arts and Commerce
- Wilson College
Best Arts Colleges in Pune
- Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce
- Fergusson College
- St Mira’s College of Arts, Science and Commerce (AKA St Mira’s College for Girls)
- SIES College of Arts, Science & Commerce
- SNDT College
Top Arts Colleges in Central India
The composition of Central India changes depending on the definition, but almost all definitions share that Madhya Pradesh and Chattisgarh are a part of it. With that said, here’s a list of the 5 top arts colleges in India in the central zone.
|Bhopal School of Social Sciences||Bhopal|
|Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya||Indore|
|Guru Ghasidas Vishwavidyalaya||Bilaspur|
|Pt Ravishankar Shukla University||Raipur|
Top Arts Colleges in India with Specialisations
We mentioned at the beginning of the article that arts is, in and of itself, a spectrum of concepts to explore. If we had to divide it, we’d get a few classifications of the arts.
There are Visual Arts, which largely deals with the intricacies of fine arts as well as applied arts. Literary Arts delve into the art of creating literature, such as drama, poetry, prose, and fiction. Performing Arts is all about storytelling through the mediums of theatre, music, or dance. We also have Culinary Arts, which is all about the wine–and–dine crafts, including baking and brewing. The fact that India’s heritage is packing hundreds of years of extraordinary arts and culture makes it crucial for us to immortalise it through education for generations.
And finally, the most common discipline taken up amongst much of the youth today: Liberal Arts. This deals more with the social, psychological, philosophical, and cultural aspects of (more than) a single society.
We’ve written this section up to give you a list of the best art colleges in India that specialise in those particular categories.
Top Visual Arts Colleges in India
Visual arts has been part of India since the Paleolithic culture during the Stone Age, and it’s only grown since. As part of the country’s efforts, education on visual arts has been increased tenfold over the years, with more and more of the youth opting for education in the arts. Given how there’s a massive surge in the need for arts graduates in applied arts (commercial purposes) as well as fine arts (cultural purposes), opportunities for visual arts graduates are now abundant.
If you’re looking to join up a visual arts college, then consider looking into one of the 5 top visual arts colleges in India. We’ve provided their names in the list below.
- Visva–Bharati University — West Bengal
- LS Raheja School of Arts — Mumbai
- Jamia Millia Islamia University — New Delhi
- Aligarh Muslim University, Department of Fine Arts — Aligarh
- Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design, and Technology — Bengaluru
Top Culinary Arts Colleges in India
Like visual arts, food has played a big role in highlighting India on the globe. Our cuisine is responsible for influencing cuisine from across the globe, especially those of the Middle East. Due to the popularity of our cuisine, as well as the fact that some of the spices are indigenous to our region, the country has earned the title ‘the land of spices’. It was only natural for us to preserve the country’s culinary arts.
Joining up a college that specialises in culinary arts is always a good move if you don’t know where to start. So, here is a list of the best culinary schools in India that you should definitely take a look at.
- Culinary Academy of India — Hyderabad
- Institute of Bakery and Pastry Arts — New Delhi
- Oberoi Center of Learning and Development — New Delhi
- International Institute of Culinary Arts — New Delhi
- Amrapali Institute of Hotel Management — Haldwani
Top Performing Arts Colleges in India
Few know what it really means to explore performing arts. Much of the concept emphasises telling a story to the audience through a visual medium of expression. Indian music is divided into two main schools (Hindustani and Carnatic), dance has a 2,000–year tradition, and film and theatre packs as much rich culture and knowledge as the previous two disciplines of performing arts.
Over the years, the education system has put special emphasis on the preservation and practice of such arts to help enrich the culture of India even further. After all, India’s kaleidoscopic culture makes way for many commercial opportunities. The list below gives you the names of the 5 top performing arts colleges in India worth checking out.
- Ramjas College — New Delhi
- Indira Kala Sangeet Vishwavidyalaya — Khairagarh
- Banaras Hindu University — Banaras
- Lovely Professional University — Chandigarh
- MIT Vishwashanti Sangeet Kala Academy — Pune
Top Literary Arts Colleges in India
Literary arts go hand–in–hand with performing arts. India is rich with literature, with the related works stretching back as far as the Vedic age, a time when the synthesis of Hinduism itself was being formed. Those with an interest in drama, poetry and the likes would thrive in colleges that offer literary arts courses. With that said, here is a list of the best literary arts colleges in India.
- Hansraj College – Delhi
- Lady Shri Ram College for Women – New Delhi
- Loyola College – Chennai
- Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University – Bengaluru
- Ramjas College – Delhi
Top Liberal Arts Colleges in India
Liberal arts is perhaps considered to be the most important discipline today considering that there’s a rise in and demand for those with a liberal arts background.
Graduates of liberal arts may obtain certifications to be psychologists and anthropologists, humanitarians and social workers, historians and philosophers, politicians and economists, journalists and reporters, writers and editors, and other such roles that prove substantial to maintaining and raising the social, cultural, and economic values of a society.
But their roles don’t stop there, further proving that there’s more to obtaining an arts degree than most would think. Here’s a list of the best liberal arts colleges in India worth looking into.
- Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University — Bengaluru
- Jindal Global University — Haryana
- FLAME University — Pune
- Mahindra University — Hyderabad
- Hansraj College — Delhi
Fee Structure for Top Arts Colleges in India
The fee is always going to be the first worrisome detail for most students. When it comes to arts education, the fees tend to be less than the ones for other educational backgrounds, especially science. If you find it difficult to pay the fees, you may look into student loans and other public sources of financial support to help with the expenses. We’ve provided the fees in detail below.
Fees for Public Bachelor of Arts Colleges
Here, you’ll find the fee structure for each of the public colleges that provide Bachelor of Arts programmes as part of their lineup.
|Public College Name||Bachelor Fee Structure (Total Tuition in INR)|
|Government Arts College||6,195|
|Indira Kala Sangeet Vishwavidyalaya||12,410|
|Lady Shri Ram College for Women||55,570|
Fees for Private Bachelor of Arts Colleges
The fee structures below are for the Master of Arts programmes that each of the listed private colleges provides to the interested candidates.
|Private College Name||Bachelor Fee Structure (Total Tuition in INR per annum)|
|St Stephen’s College||40,420|
|Stella Maris College||7,200|
Fees for Public Master of Arts Colleges
For anyone interested in taking up Master of Arts programmes in a public college, the following list will provide you with the fee structures for them.
|Public College Name||Master Fee Structure (Total Tuition in INR per annum)|
|Government Arts College||6,170|
|Indira Kala Sangeet Vishwavidyalaya||10,690|
|Lady Shri Ram College for Women||35,832|
Fees for Private Master of Arts Colleges
This particular list provides an insight in the fee structure of the Master of Arts programmes provided by the private colleges whose names have also been provided.
|Private College Name||Master Fee Structure (Total Tuition in INR per annum)|
|St Stephen’s College||10,299|
|Stella Maris College||40,000|
Entrance Exams Accepted by Top Arts Colleges in India
Entrance exams help any arts candidate take up additional courses, especially one that awards a Masters degree, in other institutions that accept these exams. What you must know is that most of the exams are divided into two types: Visuals arts and literary arts.
Although we’ve listed the best entrance exams accepted by a majority of art colleges below, it’s still worth looking into the complete list of entrance exams for arts candidates. And with that, here are the top 5 entrance exams accepted by the top arts colleges in India.
- Kalinga Institute of Industrial Technology Entrance Exam (KIITTEE)
- Cochin University of Science and Technology Common Admission Test (CUSAT CAT)
- Sam Higginbottom Institute of Agriculture, Technology & Sciences Entrance Test (SHIATS)
- UGC National Eligibility Test (UGC NET)
- Visvesvaraya Technological University, University Level Research Aptitude Test (VTU ULRAT)
Eligibility Criteria and Admissions for Top Arts Colleges in India
Before applying for any arts college, it’s important to ensure that you are eligible for the admissions into the college you’re aching to apply for. As far as admissions are concerned, it’s similar and straightforward.
However, eligibility criteria may differ from college to college. Some colleges require you to go through additional steps, such as passing the National Eligibility Test (NET) while others require you to only pass your previous educational levels.
Having said that, we’ll walk you through what you should expect for each of the aspects so that you don’t feel too confused about what to look for when first doing your research on the admissions processes.
Eligibility Criteria for Top Arts Colleges in India
The first step you must take before going ahead and applying for art colleges is to see if you’re eligible for the admissions process. Different colleges may or may not have different criteria for you to meet. For the most part, the following conditions should be met by you:
- Complete 12th grade from a recognised board, like ICSE, CBSE, or State Syllabus.
- Complete 12th grade with at least 60% pass percentage.
- Complete 12th grade with a background in Arts.
- Complete 12 grade with English or Hindi as a core subject.
Now, the conditions for each type of programme you apply for may vary. As such, here are some of them:
- BA: The main eligibility criteria stated above is enough to gain admission into a BA programme.
- MA: Complete a Bachelor’s degree from a UGC-recognised college with a minimum duration of 3–4 years with more than 50% pass percentage.
- PhD: Referring to the college’s eligibility criteria for a PhD is the best option as it varies between colleges. Some colleges may also require you to pass the National Eligibility Test (NET).
Admissions for Top Arts Colleges in India
The admission process for any art colleges relies on two things. The first would be the eligibility criteria itself, which, if you don’t meet them, means you’d be automatically rejected from the college. The second would be a selection process in that you would be interviewed and assessed by the college to see if the course is right for you and if the college would be a good fit for you.
Here’s how the admission process generally works:
- You fill an application form provided by the college itself.
- Whilst keeping the cutoff score in mind, you fill-up and submit the application before the deadline.
- On submission, the application will be processed, wherein you will be called for the selection process if your application goes through.
- The selection process is carried out with the major factor of success being your 10+2 marks.
- Once the entrance test is cleared, the final steps would be to pass one or more interviews with the faculty members.
Of course, this admission process is only a general one. Some colleges may take it further by bending some rules, adding their own, and adjusting the difficulty levels of it based on what they expect of you.
We recommend familiarising yourself with how the admission processes work in different colleges by interviewing current students, talking to faculty members, and whatnot.
Cut Offs for Top Arts Colleges in India
Here’s where you’ll find the cut off scores for the top arts colleges in India. With it, you can estimate how much you need to be able to obtain admission into the arts college you’re trying to get into. Keep in mind that some arts colleges may or may not make an exception, so the cutoffs can also be treated as an approximation. However, we recommend that you target arts colleges whose cutoff scores are lower than the scores you’ve achieved. We’ve tabulated the cut-off details below.
|College Name||Cutoff Scores|
|St Stephen’s College, Delhi||87–95|
|Hindu College, Delhi||70–95|
|Presidency College, Chennai||70–90|
|Hansraj College, Delhi||88–91|
|St Xavier’s College, Mumbai||80–85|
|Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University, Bengaluru||70–85|
|Symbiosis College of Arts and Commerce, Pune||75–80|
|Loyola College, Chennai||60–80|
|Stella Maris College, Chennai||70–98.5|
|St Joseph’s College, Bengaluru||50–55|
Scope of Arts
With more and more folks opening up to potentially interesting opportunities, the saturated ideology of science and commerce streams being the only worthwhile investments is becoming a thing of the past. As of today, there is a paradigm shift occurring in the way businesses produce products and services to their customers, a shift in how audiences consume their watchlist, and a shift in how we perceive culture as is. This is allowing the economy to grow and produce more opportunities for able candidates.
With an arts degree, you could do some of the following:
- Visual arts graduates may take up opportunities in digital marketing, product design, animation, graphic design, art direction, and much more.
- Culinary arts graduates may take up opportunities in the culinary and hospitality industry.
- Performing arts graduates may take up opportunities in the entertainment industry involving film, music, and dance.
- Literary arts graduates may take up writing opportunities for numerous organisations, ranging from academic writing, literature thesis, scriptwriting, creative writing, copywriting, and much more.
- Liberal arts graduates may take up counselling opportunities, event planning, and consultations, or work in media, journalism, and digital marketing.
Arts Placements in India
Colleges in India play a crucial role in placing candidates in the right companies. During the final stages, they act as the stable bridge between the candidate’s time as a student to their time as a full-fledged employee. In the final semester of the course you’re doing, you would insert your name into one of the placement cells; there may be separate cells for different subject streams. To offer an example, psychology students may get placed in medical or counselling institutions.
As for salary, it entirely depends on the course you took, the college you’re graduating from, and the skills you possess right off the bat. Even though jobs related to arts is commonly seen as the less paying kind, it’s actually quite the contrary as far as recent developments are concerned. There is more demand for counsellors and psychologists, designers and visual artists, event managers, subject matter experts, researchers, and academic professors.
Top Arts Recruiters
Here’s a tabulated list of all the colleges and universities that have certain tie-ins with other reputed companies that are always looking out for the best arts graduates.
|College Name||Top Recruiters|
|St Stephen’s College||Google, TeachForIndia, Standard Chartered, Oxford University Press, Rakshak Foundation|
|Hindu College||Google, Deloitte, KPMG, EY, Ernst and Young|
|Hansraj College||ICICI Bank, McKinsey & Co, United Airlines, Boston Consulting, DE Shaw|
|Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University||Accenture, Dell, Amazon, Goldman Sachs, Tata Consultancy|
|Presidency College||Flipkart, Adecco, Wipro, TVS, Mindtree|
Average Salary Offered in Top Arts Colleges in India
As far as the salary ranges are concerned, the average salary range is between 3 to 8 LPA. The individual salary package details have been provided below in a tabulated form.
|College Name||Average Salary Per Annum in Lakhs|
|Christ (Deemed–To–Be) University||6.43|
|St Stephen’s College||8.22|
- What is the best college for arts?
St Stephen’s College is the best arts university in India for two reasons: 1) It’s the best arts college in the mixed-gender education category, and 2) it provides placements to some of the best companies.
- What careers are there for art degree holders?
Depending on what you specialise in, you may opt for the appropriate job posts. A wide array of opportunities may be seized in numerous industries, such as media and press, digital marketing, software development, multimedia entertainment, education, and hotel management.
- Is an art degree useless?
Far from! A paradigm shift is occurring in the way we produce products and services today. Interest in the fields of entertainment, news and communication, marketing, and education has skyrocketed due to the abundance of visual and aural aid, which is only expertly crafted by those who understand how to design a product.
- Is Fine Arts a good career?
It’s really good. As mentioned above, the services we use today are going through a much-needed paradigm shift. For instance, experts in sketching, animation, and graphic design are crucial to creating and maintaining a brand’s aesthetics. This is prominent in companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon.
- Is there any career in drawing?
Yes! Roles such as graphic designers, product designers, 2D artists, sketch artists, and much more earn just as much as the general technical worker, marketer, or business enthusiast. If you have the skills to draw or sketch, then you may seize opportunities in digital marketing agencies, and game development companies. Alternatively, you may maintain your own art business by working as a contractor–for–hire.
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