Parents   |   Community   |   Current Students   |   Faculty & Staff  
Academic Programs

School of Art+Design

For prospective students:
Portfolio Review Day
Apply for Admission
For Transfer Students
Laptop Requirement

Degree Programs:
BS Program
BFA Program
MFA Program

Student Learning Outcomes

Minor in Visual Arts


Faculty & Staff

Artist in Residence Program


Visiting Artist Talks

Richard & Dolly Maass Gallery

Student Work Gallery

2016 Exhibition Catalog

Click here

Home / Academic Programs / Arts / School of Art+Design /
School of ART+DESIGN

The MFA in Visual Arts Program | Academic Requirements | Student Learning Outcomes | MFA/MA Academic Requirements | Courses | Advising & Review Process | Thesis & Exhibition

MFA/MA Program and Academic Requirements

Graduate students have an opportunity to earn both an MA in art history (through the School of Humanities) and an MFA in visual arts at Purchase College. In most cases, obtaining the two degrees requires three years of in-residence study with a total course load of 98 credits. For successful progress through the program, a 3.0 (B) GPA must be maintained.

Apart from preparation for museum and gallery work and writing art criticism, students enrolled in the MA/MFA program gain a significant competitive advantage when pursuing a teaching career in studio art. Candidates for both the MA and MFA should review the options for the thesis exhibition. Studio space is provided during the first two years of the program.

First Year | Second Year | Third Year

Academic Requirements

First Year: 32 credits
Fall: 16 credits
VIS 5150/College Pedagogy or elective 3 credits
VIS 5720/Graduate Studio Critiques I 3 credits
VIS 5760/Graduate Critical Topics I 3 credits
VIS 5801/Independent Graduate Studio I 3 credits
ARH 5101/Proseminar: Method and Theory in Art History* 4 credits
*ARH 5101 offered alternate years; one semester required
Spring: 16 credits
VIS 5210/Professional Practices: Artists 3 credits
VIS 5730/Graduate Studio Critiques II 3 credits
VIS 5770/Graduate Critical Topics II 3 credits
VIS 5802/Independent Graduate Studio II 3 credits
ARH 5325/Master’s Colloquium I* 4 credits
*ARH 5325 and 5326 may be taken in either order
Second Year: 34 credits
Fall: 16 credits
VIS 5740/Graduate Studio Critiques III 3 credits
VIS 5780/Graduate Critical Topics III 3 credits
VIS 5803/Independent Graduate Studio III 3 credits
ARH 5326 Master’s Colloquium II* 4 credits
Studio art elective 3 credits
*ARH 5325 and 5326 may be taken in either order
Spring: 18 credits
ARH 5—/Art history elective 4 credits
VIS 5005/MFA Thesis Tutorial 2 credits
VIS 5220/Professional Practices: Institutions 3 credits
VIS 5750/Graduate Studio Capstone 3 credits
VIS 5790/Graduate Critical Topics IV 3 credits
VIS 5804/Independent Graduate Studio IV 3 credits
Third Year: 32 credits
Fall: 16 credits
ARH 5—/Art history electives (two) 8 credits
Elective (open) 4 credits
ARH 5990/Master’s Thesis I 4 credits
Spring: 16 credits
ARH 5—/Art history electives (two) 8 credits
Elective (open) 4 credits
ARH 5991/Master’s Thesis II 4 credits

Updated June 30, 2016

Arrow up icon 

Please direct updates for this page to the managing editor in the Office of the Provost and Academic Affairs. Eight-semester plan updates or questions should be directed to the associate provost.
– For curricular revisions, please refer to the Faculty Handbook.

Admission to the
Dual MFA in Visual Arts/MA in Art History:

Apply online