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Art – Graduate Degree

Degree Offered: Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)

Departmental Web Site:  ART- M.F.A.

Program Description: The terminal degree in studio art, the M.F.A. requires a minimum of 60 semester hours of graduate study. Studio faculty in each area will advise and manage student coursework towards completion of the degree. The program includes 36 hours in the studio core, 9 hours of art history/theory/criticism, 3 hours of teaching methods, 6 hours of thesis and 6 hours of electives. Candidates must provide a written defense of a solo thesis exhibition and pass an oral examination.                     

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Location of Course Offerings: On-campus in Cullowhee

Admission Requirements:

Graduate School Admission Requirements

Program Admission Requirements

  • Minimum of 3.00 GPA in their undergraduate major. Students are expected to have the equivalent of 18 credit hours of undergraduate art history/philosophy of art and to have completed 50 credit hours of undergraduate studio, including 24 credit hours of concentrated study or equivalent portfolio-assessed experience. Candidates must commit to fulltime study. No more than 12 semester hours of credit may be granted for work previously completed at the master's level (transfer credit.)
  • Applicants must submit the following via the online application process:
    • Three letters of recommendation from former instructors and/or professionals in the field and
    • A 300-500 word artist's statement/letter of intent, addressing the individual's influences, interests, current direction and vision for growth, including the applicant's reasons for wanting to study at WCU.
  • In addition, a portfolio of 15 recent works, organized chronologically from the earliest to the most recent, must be sent directly to the School of Art and Design, attn.  the M.F.A. Coordinator. Applicants must include a SASE if they wish the portfolio to be returned.
    • The portfolio must be submitted on a standard CD-R/DVD as JPEG images to be viewed on a Mac OSX operating system at 1024x768 pixels and at 72dpi. An accompanying portfolio inventory list in hard copy must identify each piece by title, dimensions, medium and date.
    • Time-based media files must be submitted as Quicktime MOV files, not to exceed 5 minutes in length. 
  • In addition to the above requirements, a campus interview with the M.F.A. Coordinator is strongly recommended.

Application Deadline

Graduate Program Director:
Tom Ashcraft, M.F.A.



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