JAMB Syllabus for Arts –

This JAMB Syllabus for Arts aims to prepare the candidates for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).

JAMB Syllabus for Arts

General Objectives | JAMB Syllabus for Arts

aim of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) syllabus
in Art is to prepare the candidates for the Board’s examination. It is
designed to test their achievement of the course objectives, which are
1. exhibit knowledge of the fundamental elements, principles and terminologies of art;
2. show knowledge of historical dimensions of art with emphasis on Nigerian arts and crafts;
3. demonstrate knowledge of artistic techniques, processes, the use of materials and maintenance of tools and equipment;
4. display aesthetic awareness of to the environment, and meaning and functions of art in society.



Topic 1: Classification of Art

a. Visual Arts: (Fine and Applied Arts)
b. Performing Arts: (Music, Dance and Drama)
c. Literary Arts: (Poetry, Prose, Recitals), etc


Candidates should be able to:
i. differentiate between the three branches of art.

Topic 2: Elements and Principles of Design

a. Elements: line, colour, shape, form, texture, tone, value, space etc.
b. Principles: balance, rhythm, proportion, harmony, contrast, repetition, dominance, variety, etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. identify the elements of design;
ii. analyse the principles of design.

Topic 3: Art Terms

Pigments, motif, greenware, armature, silhouette, chiaroscuro, cireperdue, terracotta etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. identify art terms;
ii. link the terms to their areas of art;
iii. use the terms in analyzing art works.


Topic 1: Historical Dimensions of Art

a. Prehistoric, Greek and Roman Art
b. Medieval Art: architecture, surface decorations and calligraphy
c. Renaissance Art and Artists: Giotto Di Bondone, Michelangelo Buonarroti, Leonardo da Vinci and Raphael (Raffaello Santi)

d. 19th and 20th Century art movements; Impressionism, Realism,
Futurism, Cubism, Bauhaus, Pop art, Abstract Expressionism and Fauvism.


Candidates should be able to:
i. compare their materials, styles and techniques;
ii. classify the periods and styles with emphasis on architecture, surface decoration and calligraphy;
iii. compare the artists, their works and styles;
iv. differentiate between the various art movements;
v. analyze their styles techniques, innovations and influences.

Topic 2: Traditional African Art

Egypt, Ashanti, Dogon, Mossi, Fon, Senufo, Bambara, Mende, Kissi, Bamileke and Bakumba.


Candidates should be able to:
i. categorise works in terms of style, materials and locations.

Topic 3: Traditional Nigerian Art

Nok, Igbo-Ukwu, Ife, Benin, Esie, Igala, Jukun, Akwashi, and Mbari.


Candidates should be able to:
i. categorise works in terms of style, materials and locations.

Topic 4: Nigerian Crafts

Pottery, woodworks, cloth-weaving, carving, leather works, metal works, beadworks, body decoration, mat and cane weaving.


Candidates should be able to:
i. analyze the works in terms of functions, characteristics and locations;
ii. trace the origins, locations and styles.

Topic 5: Development in Contemporary Nigerian Arts and Artists

a. Art Schools: Zaria, Nsukka, Osogbo group etc.
b. Nigerian artists and art educators; Aina Onabolu, Ben Enwonwu, S. I. Wangboje, Jimoh Akolo, Dele Jegede etc.
c. Museums, galleries and art centres;

d. Art institutions, cultural art centres, national art organizations –
Nigerian Society for Education through Arts (NSEA), Society for
Nigerian Artists (S.N.A), National Council for Arts and Culture
(N.C.A.C), etc.
e. Major Festivals: Argungu Fishing Festival, Eyo, Egungun, Iri-ji (New Yam), Durbar, Igue, Ekpo, Odo, etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. determine the influence of the art schools and groups;
ii. assess the artists in terms of their works, specializations, techniques and styles;
iii. analyse the functions of museums, galleries, art centres and art institutions;
iv. evaluate their impact on the development of art;
v. assess their roles and functions;
vi. examine the impact of major festivals on art and culture.


Topic 1: Artistic Skills, Techniques and Processes

a. Two-Dimensional Art: drawing, painting, graphics and textile design.
b. Perspective:
i. Linear, angular, aerial, parallel etc.
ii. Perspective terms: foreground, picture plane, eye-level, vanishing point, foreshortening, optical illusion, depth etc.
c. Sculpture, Ceramics and Crafts,
d. Computer Graphics: CorelDraw


Candidates should be conversant with:
i. the techniques, skills and processes with emphasis on tone, composition and colour application;
ii. the types of perspective;
iii. the use of perspective rules and terms;
iv. techniques, skills and processes;
v. the basic tools of designs.

Topic 2: Tools, Materials, and Equipment

a. Two-Dimensional Art Tools: brushes, lino cutters, drawing instruments, calligraphic pens, sharpeners etc.
b. Two-dimensional Art Materials: pencils charcoal, pastel, crayon, fixative, fabric, dyes, lino, wood blocks etc.
c. Two-Dimensional Art Equipment: air compressor, spray gun, enlarger, computer etc.
d. Improvisation of tools, materials and equipment
i. Two-Dimensional Art: colours, brushes, calligraphic pens etc.
ii. Three-Dimensional Art: spatula, kiln, beater, etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. maintain tools and art materials;
ii. use art materials and tools;
iii. operate and maintain art equipment;
iv. improvise alternatives.


Topic 1: Art Appreciation

a. Man-made objects: architecture, sculpture etc.
b. Natural phenomena: Zuma Rock, Ikogosi Warm Springs, etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. appreciate the aesthetic qualities of natural and man-made aesthetic phenomena in Nigerian environment;
ii. differentiate between natural and man-made aesthetic phenomena.

Topic 2: Meaning and Functions of Art in Society

a. What art is
b. Functions of art in society: religious, social, cultural, political, therapeutic and economic needs,
c. Functions of art in media: advertisement, education, recreation etc.


Candidates should be able to:
i. examine the meaning and functions of art;
ii. use art to enhance societal values;
iii. assess the role of art in media.

Topic 3: Art Entrepreneurship

prospects in Visual Arts: Ceramist, Curator, Textile designer,
Industrial designer, Sculptor, Photographer, Cartoonist, Illustrator


Candidates should be able to:
i. identify job opportunities in visual arts.

Recommended Texts

  • Banjoko I. (2000) Visual Arts made Easy: Textbook for Schools and Colleges, Lagos, Movic Publishing Company Ltd.
  • Egonwa, O.D. (1991) African Art: A contemporary Source Book, Benin: Osasu Publishers.
  • Egunlae, S.A. (1985) The Essential Ground work in Art and Design, Omotola Standard Press and Bookshop (Nig) Ltd.
  • Erese, U. O. and Ogunsina E. D. (1989) Creative Arts and Crafts for J. S. S. Onibonoje Press.
  • Nahab, S. J. (2003) Art of the Millennium for Senior Secondary Schools, Ehindero (Nig.) Ltd.
  • Ogumor, E. (1993) Certificate Art for Junior Secondary Schools and Senior Secondary Schools, Ibadan: University Press Plc.
  • Olaosebikan W. A. (1982) Cultural and Creative Arts, Evans.
  • Olurukooba, B. K. (1991) Art for Senior Secondary Schools, ABU.
  • Uzoagba I. N. (1982) Understanding Art in General Education, Onitsha; African Publish Ltd
  • Wangboje, I. N. (1982) A Textbook on Art for Junior and Senior Secondary Schools, Evans Publishers

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Written By Michael Larry


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