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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 MFA Program in Studio Art application is divided into two parts. We do not require a GRE score to apply. 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 near the end of February. We only accept applications for the fall semester of each year.

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 to go to graduate school.
      • Describe your professional goals and how you plan to actively achieve them while in school and after.
      • Please 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 that the faculty most often recommends admissions to individuals with a studio art background, which generally includes 40 undergraduate credits and a minimum of 12 credits in art history (quarter equivalents apply).

  1. A CV or resume that includes your complete contact information, your educational background, and any honors or awards. If you have any teaching experience, please list it as well.
  2. Please provide the names and emails of three (3) people who can write letters of recommendation that speak to your creative talent and your ability to succeed in a rigorous academic program (academic references from former or current professors are preferable to those from employers). They will receive an email from Apply Yourself with a custom link where they will be asked to fill out a questionnaire and upload their letters.
  3. Complete the application form and pay the applicable fee (non-refundable graduate application fee for applicants is $55).
  4. Transcripts from each college or university attended. They can be unofficial for this portion, but you will be required to submit official transcripts if accepted.
  5.  For international students, an English language proficiency test score is required. Please visit the Admission's English Proficiency page to answer your questions and submit the scores. Your tests must have been completed within two years of submitting your application and paying your application fee. This is the current list of acceptable tests and scores:
      • TOEFL: 80 or higher
      • IELTS*: 6.5 or higher
        • *IELTS Indicator is not approved for admissions at this time.
      • DUOLINGO: 105 or higher
      • ACT English score of 18 or higher
      • SAT Reading score of 27 or higher

Please visit the Graduate Students Admissions web page for further instructions about Apply Yourself.

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. 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 (sound or video) 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 or (801) 581-8677.