Difference Between BA and BFA

Main Difference – BA and BFA

Both BA and BFA are undergraduate degrees in the Arts stream. BA stands for Bachelor of Arts whereas BFA stands for Bachelor of Fine Arts. The main difference between BA and BFA is that BA is a general degree whereas BFA is a professional degree. Although there may be an overlap between the material covered by both degree programs, there are major differences in the basic curriculum and the professional goals of the students.

What is BA

BA, which is short for Bachelor of Arts, is an undergraduate degree program in the liberal arts or sciences. This course may take three to four years to be completed depending on the country, institution, and other requirements. The main difference between BA and BFA, as mentioned earlier, is that BA is a general or academic degree. It mainly deals with the theoretical aspects of a subject, not on the practical or professional side of the subjects. You can take courses/subjects like literature, history, language, psychology, etc. for your BA degree. BA students are also required to take elective courses in some other areas. Therefore, a BA gives students a wider range of knowledge which allows them to apply for a broad variety of jobs.

Difference Between BA and BFA

What is BFA

BFA or Bachelor of Fine Arts is an undergraduate course in the field of visual and performing arts. This is a professional degree which specializes in a specific field. Practical courses like photography, acting, theater production, etc. can be studied under this program. 

This program is more suited for students who want to gain experience and practical skills in their specific field. BFA can have more coursework than a BA since it focuses extensively on practical sides of the subject. Unlike a BA, it rarely deviates from the basic subject. This is generally a four-year course.

Main Difference - BA vs BFA

Difference Between BA and BFA


BA is Bachelor of Arts.

BFA is Bachelor of Fine Arts.

Academic vs practical

BA is an academic degree.

BFA is a professional degree.


BA covers a broad range of subjects like history, literature, language etc.

BFA covers more practical subjects like photography, art, acting, etc.

Theory vs Practice

BA mainly deals with the theoretical side of a subject.

BFA mainly deals with the practical side of a subject.

Course Work

BA generally has less course work than a BFA.

BFA typically has more course work than a BFA.


BA students take more elective courses.

BFA students take less elective courses.


BA prepares students for a wide range of jobs.

BFA trains students for a more specific job.Difference Between BA and BFA - infographic

Image Courtesy:

” Image 1″ by Vgrigas – Own work, (CC BY-SA 3.0) via Wikimedia Commons

“Image 2” by Tulane Public Relations – Studying with a viewUploaded by AlbertHerring, (CC BY 2.0) via Commons Wikimedia 

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