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MFA Application Process


All graduate applicants to the University of Utah must meet the following minimum Graduate School requirements:

    • A bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university. The Office of Admissions will determine if an applicant’s degree meets the Graduate School's requirement of a recognized Bachelor's degree.
    • At least a 3.0 or higher undergraduate weighted mean GPA on a 4.0 scale. If the undergraduate GPA is below 3.0, a GPA will be calculated based upon the last 60 semester hours (90 quarter hours) if the student attended a U.S. institution.
    • Meet the academic department’s admission standards and receive a recommendation for admission to their program.

The application to the MFA Program in Studio Art is divided into two parts. Please include all the necessary paperwork, your portfolio, and make sure your letters of recommendation are submitted prior to the deadline. The faculty will review the applications after January 15th and acceptance letters are sent out from three to four weeks after the due date. We only accept applications for the fall of each semester.

The deadline is January 15. 

Part 1

The University of Utah has institutionalized an online graduate application process through “Apply Yourself.” Please click the button to the right to begin your application process.

When filling out the information in Apply Yourself, you will upload the following items.

  1. A letter of intent and a detailed artist statement that addresses the following:
    • Describe current artistic interests, the direction of your work, preferred area of study influences, and why.
    • Write about any relevant experiences that have prepared you as an artist and describe why this is the right time for you to go to graduate school.
    • Describe your professional goals and how you plan to actively achieve them while in school and after.
    • Describe what you can contribute, initiate, and risk as a member of our community.
    • Why is this program a good fit for you?

    Please be aware the faculty most often recommend for admissions those individuals with a studio art background, which normally includes 41 undergraduate credits and a minimum of 12 credits in art history (quarter equivalents apply).

  2. A CV or resume that includes your full contact information, your educational background, any honors or awards, and/or teaching experience as well as the names of your references and the coursework you did with them.
  3. Three (3) letters of recommendation that speak to your creative talent and to your ability to succeed in a rigorous academic program (academic references from former or current professors are preferable to those from employers), sent separately by your evaluators. They will upload their letters through the Apply Yourself website.
  4. Completed application form and pay the applicable fee (non-refundable graduate application fee for applicants is $55).
  5. Transcripts from each college or university attended. They can be unofficial for this portion, but if accepted, you will be required to submit official transcripts.
  6. Language proficiency test results.  An official TOEFL score for international students is required per the international graduate’s admission office. Beginning with the Fall 2013 semester, applicants must have a minimum TOEFL score of 80 iBT (550pBT) or a minimum IELTS band score of 6.5 or better. (Minimum score requirements are subject to change.)

We do not require a GRE score to apply.

For further instructions about the application process, please visit the Graduate Students Admissions webpage.

International Applicants

If you are an international student, please visit the Graduate Admissions website for the necessary information to complete your application.

Part 2

Submit MFA Portfolio files via the Box widget below.

The MFA Portfolio should reflect a strong, self-directed involvement in your intended emphasis and supporting fields.

Applicants do not need to sign up for a subscription to Box in order to make a submission.  Box.utah.edu is secure, online cloud storage, file sharing, and collaboration software available to all University of Utah students and faculty anywhere on any device.

Drop a zipped folder titled with your first and last name in the Box widget below. The folder should include the following:

    • Twenty (20) JPG images of recent artwork (recommended size: 72 PPI, no larger than 1800 pixels at the longest dimension).
    • For sound and video artwork, each file should be a maximum of three minutes (MP3, MOV, or MP4 file).
      • If those artworks are on a website or cloud service, you can simply include those URLs on your Image List instead of uploading the files.
    • An Image List as a PDF document listing the following details for each artwork.
      • A thumbnail sketch or the file name
      • Title of the work
      • Year created
      • Medium
      • Size

Once you have submitted your Portfolio to the Department of Art & Art History, you can check the status of your submission by contacting info@art.utah.edu or (801) 581-8677.