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Online Degrees & Certificates

AA in Photography

Program Description

The mission of the Photography department is to provide superior instruction in the use of photographic techniques for vocational, general education, and transfer students. A photography major will provide the student with a strong foundation in aesthetic principles as well as an extensive range of practical photographic techniques needed for college transfer, entry into the photographic workplace, or artistic expression. Course work includes digital photography, color photography, studio lighting, experimental processes, photo criticism, and portfolio preparation. Students are encouraged to develop a personal, expressive style, achieve technical excellence, and examine photography's role in society.

Learn more about the program on the Photography website.

Program Learning Outcomes

Students will be able to produce images that demonstrate knowledge of photography's visual and expressive elements (light, color, and composition), using standard professional equipment and production processes.

Students will be able to analyze how images reflect and shape our culture and assess the contributions made in the field by people from diverse cultures and backgrounds.

Career Opportunities

Career opportunities for graduates may include: advertising photographer, aerial and underwater photographer, art collector, art critic, art documentation photographer, art writer and blogger, commercial photographer (architectural), commercial photographer (portrait), commercial photographer (product), commercial printing and reproduction, corporate photographer, darkroom lab technician and/or manager, digital photography technician, digital photographic illustrator, documentary and editorial photographer, photography teacher, fashion photographer, film-set photographer, fine art photographer, fine art printing assistant, forensic photographer, freelance photographer, gallerist or art dealer, graphic artist, laboratory manager, nature photographer, photo editor, photo-historian, manager for fine art or commercial photography studio, photographic assistant, photographic retoucher, photojournalist, professional photography-laboratory custom printer, photographic sales, sports photographer, stock photographer, studio and wedding photography, theater production photographer, travel and stock photography, wedding and event photographer.

Award Type(s)

AA = Associate in Arts Degree

Units Required

Major: 40

Additional Information

Note: Please contact department faculty for information about recommended course sequence to assist with student success. Faculty contact information is available on the Photography website.

Online Courses for Photography

The courses listed BELOW are offered as online courses at least once every two years. Please see the Class Schedule for verification.

NOTE: Students having difficulty attaining an associate degree because of timing or availability of classes should consult with a counselor to submit a petition for course substitution.

Associate Degree Requirements

English Proficiency: Select one of the following
ENGL 1A Composition & Reading 5
ENGL 1AH Honors Composition & Reading 5
ESLL 26 Advanced Composition & Reading 5
or equivalent    
Mathematics Proficiency:
College-level math course at or above the level of Intermediate Algebra

A minimum of 90 units is required* to include:

Completion of one of the following general education patterns: Foothill General Education, CSU General Education Breadth Requirements or the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC)

Core courses (32 units)

Support courses (8 units)

*Additional elective course work may be necessary to meet the 90-unit minimum requirement for the associate degree.

Note: All courses pertaining to the major must be taken for a letter grade. In addition, a grade of "C" or better is required for all core and support courses used for the degree or certificate.

Core and Support Courses

Core Courses

PHOT 4A Photoshop for Photographers I 4
PHOT 4B Photoshop for Photographers II 4
PHOT 4C Photoshop for Photographers III 4
PHOT 5 * Introduction to Photography 4
PHOT 10 History of Photography 4
or PHOT 10H Honors History of Photography 4
PHOT 57B Professional Practices in Photography 4
or GID 60 Careers in the Visual Arts 2
and GID 61 Portfolio 2
PHOT 72 Lightroom & Photographic Design 4
PHOT 74A Studio Photography Techniques I 4
or PHOT 71 The Photographic Book 4

Support Courses (8 units)

Select 8 units from the following:
ART 5A 2-D Foundations 4
ART 20 Color Theory 4
GID 60 Careers in the Visual Arts 2
GID 61 Portfolio 2
PHOT 8 Photography of American Cultures 5
or PHOT 8H Honors Photography of American Cultures 5
PHOT 11 Contemporary Issues in Photography 4
or PHOT 11H Honors Contemporary Issues in Photography 4
PHOT 22 Photojournalism 4
PHOT 57A Photographic Portfolio Development 4
PHOT 68E Lecture Topics in Photography 1
PHOT 70R Independent Study in Photography 1
PHOT 71R Independent Study in Photography 2
PHOT 72R Independent Study in Photography 3
PHOT 73R Independent Study in Photography 4
PHOT 71 The Photographic Book 4
PHOT 74A Studio Photography Techniques I 4
PHOT 74B Studio Photography Techniques II 4
PHOT 74C Studio Photography Techniques III 4
PHOT 78A Landscape Field Study in Photography 1
PHOT 78B Social Concerns Field Study in Photography 1
PHOT 78C Documentary Field Study in Photography 1
PHOT 78D Museum/Gallery Field Study in Photography 1
Total Units   40
Note: Courses listed in both the core and support sections may be completed only once for credit to satisfy either the core or support course requirement.
Note that this is a list of fully online courses that satisfy degree requirements.
* PHOT 5 is recommended as the first course in the sequence.

For a list of on-campus courses that satisfy degree requirements,  please visit Photography 2023-2024 Degrees & Certificates.

Based on the 2023 - 2024 degree program.