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The 60-credit M.F.A. signals the highest level of professional competence in the Fine Arts. It requires the development of a verbally and visually articulate argument in a chosen medium, such as painting, drawing, sculpture, print media, metals, woodworking, ceramics, fibers, and trans-media collaborations. The art student‘s research and development culminate in a written thesis and a mature body of artwork presented in a thesis exhibition.

Art students who desire professional practice or university/college level teaching upon graduation should choose the M.F.A. program. Preparation for professional practice and teaching in higher education is exercised through rigorous, diverse components of the program such as critiques, studies in contemporary culture in the contexts of art history, art theory, and criticism.

The M.A. and M.F.A. degree programs at IUP are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design and conform to guidelines and standards of the College Art Association.

Admission Requirements

Individuals seeking admission to the graduate study within the Department of Art must meet the general admission standards and adhere to academic policies established by the School of Graduate Studies and Research at IUP. These specific policies are described in the Graduate Catalog.

An applicant must either be a graduate of an accredited B.F.A., B.A., or B.S.Ed. in Art Education (appropriate for M.A. applicants only) or be judged to possess the necessary prerequisite studio proficiency. Admission into the M.A. or M.F.A. program of the Department of Art is based on the nature, extent, and quality of the preparation in studio, art history, criticism, and other academic subjects. If an applicant is deemed to be deficient in any of these particular areas, the graduate committee may require satisfactory completion of certain undergraduate courses.

Application for Admission

To the School of Graduate Studies and Research:

  1. Application Form and Fee
  2. Official Transcripts - include all undergraduate/graduate course work
  3. Resume
  4. Artist/Goal Statement (one page) articulating the subject matter and artistic content of the applicant’s work as well as professional goals.
  5. Two letters of Recommendation -These letters should be written by professional artists or educators in the arts with whom the applicant has recently studied or worked and who can assess the applicant‘s studio and scholastic competencies.
  6. CD Portfolio - Twenty images representing the applicant‘s professional artistic work. Each image should be numbered and identified by medium, size, and date of completion. Please limit jpegs to 1200x1600 ppi.

Application Deadlines

All of the application materials must be received by the School of Graduate Studies and Research before a review of materials can take place.

All of the application materials must be received by the School of Graduate Studies and Research before a review of materials can take place. Students seeking assistantships must apply by the February 15 deadline for priority consideration. Applications are accepted for:

  • Summer only admission to M.A. program
  • Fall admission to M.F.A. program

The Department of Art requires

  • First admission consideration and applications for assistantships - February 15
  • Final admission consideration - May 1

Program Requirements

I. Required Courses (45 credits)

Major Studio Concentration¹   21 credits
Minor Studio Concentration 1   9 credits
ART 680 Graduate Studio Critique² (counted towards major credits) 9 credits
ART 680 Graduate Studio Critique² (counted towards minor credits) 3 credits
ART 615 Art Seminar 3 credits


II. Studies in Visual Culture and Art History (6 credits)

ART 620 Art and Visual Culture 3 credits
ARHI 683 Graduate Seminar in Theory and Criticism 3 credits


III. Graduate-Level Electives (6 credits) ²


IV. Thesis Requirements (3 credits)

ART 795 M.F.A. Thesis/Exhibition 3 credits


Total: 60 credits

¹Graduate Studio Courses that can count towards the major and minor studio concentration are:

ART 557 Graduate Studio in Print Media
ART 559 Graduate Studio in Fibers
ART 560 Graduate Studio in Jewelry and Metal Work
ART 572 Graduate Studio in Ceramics
ART 573 Graduate Studio in Sculpture
ART 574 Graduate Studio in Oil Painting
ART 575 Graduate Studio in Drawing
ART 576 Graduate Studio in Woodworking

²Nine transfer credits will be accepted from the Academy of Fine Arts, University of Zagreb, successfully earned as part of the College of Fine Arts’ specific international exchange program and will be applied to Graduate-Level Electives (6 cr.) and ART 680 Graduate Studio Critique course requirements.

  • School of Graduate Studies and Research
  • Stright Hall, Room 101
    210 South Tenth Street
    Indiana, PA 15705-1048
  • Phone: 724-357-2222
  • Fax: 724-357-4862
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Summer: 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.