MFA Requirements | MA/MFA Requirements

  MFA Academic Requirements

The MFA program is designed to be completed in two years with a minimum requirement of 60 graduate credits.

This includes the following requirements:

  • 12 credits of the Graduate Studio Critique,a weekly group critique class
  • 12 credits of Independent Studio work with faculty mentors, including the Capstone in the final semester
  • 6 credits of Professional Practice classes
  • 6 credits of Graduate Critical Topics (theory and criticism)
  • 8 credits of Art History (usually fulfilled as the Graduate Art History Colloquium I & II
  • All remaining credits are completed as Electives.  While these are most commonly “making” classes taken in the School of Art + Design, students are welcome to take classes anywhere at Purchase College. Either they register directly, (in the case of 5000 level classes) or they participate in undergraduate classes as 5000-level Independent Study enrollees, making specific arrangements with faculty to tailor the class to the needs of the student while fulfilling curricular requirements.

First Year: 30–31 credits

Fall: 14–15 credits
VIS 5150/College Pedagogy or elective 3 credits
VIS 5720/Graduate Studio Critiques I 3 credits
VIS 5760/Graduate Critical Topics 3 credits
VIS 5801/Independent Graduate Studio I 3 credits
VIS 5—/Graduate teaching assistant or elective 2–3 credits
 
Spring: 16 credits
VIS 5210/Professional Practices: Artists or
VIS 5220/Professional Practices: Institutions
3 credits
VIS 5730/Graduate Studio Critiques II 3 credits
Elective (open) 3 credits
VIS 5802/Independent Graduate Studio II 3 credits
ARH 5326/Master’s Colloquium II or ARH 5-/Graduate Art History elective 4 credits
 

Second Year: 30 credits

Fall: 16 credits
VIS 5740/Graduate Studio Critiques III 3 credits
VIS 5760/Graduate Critical Topics 3 credits
VIS 5803/Independent Graduate Studio III 3 credits
VIS 5—/Visual Arts elective 3 credits
ARH 5325/Master’s Colloquium I or
ARH 5—/Graduate art history elective
4 credits
 
Spring: 14 credits
VIS 5005/Graduate Thesis Intensive 3 credits
VIS 5210/Professional Practices: Artists or
VIS 5220/Professional Practices: Institutions
3 credits
VIS 5750/Graduate Studio Critiques IV 3 credits
Elective (open) 2 credits
VIS 5804/Graduate Studio Capstone 3 credits

Notes: 

  1. ARH 5325 and ARH 5326 are required for students who are also enrolled in the art history MA program. Otherwise, MFA students may choose a different graduate art history course in consultation with their faculty advisor.
  2. Students may enroll in ARH 5325 or the graduate art history elective in the fall semester of either their first or second year. ARH 5325 and 5326 may be taken in either order.
  3. Students must take VIS 5760/Graduate Critical Topics two times.

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  MA/MFA Academic Requirements

In most cases, obtaining both an MA in art history (through the School of Humanities) and an MFA in visual arts at Purchase College 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.

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 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 or
VIS 5220/Profesional Practices: Institutions
3 credits
VIS 5730/Graduate Studio Critiques II 3 credits
Elective (open) 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 5760/Graduate Critical Topics 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 5210/Professional Practices: Artists or
VIS 5220/Professional Practices: Institutions
3 credits
VIS 5750/Graduate Studio Critiques IV 3 credits
Elective (open) 3 credits
VIS 5804/Graduate Studio Capstone 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
**At least one course elective must deal with art before 1950

Notes:

  1. Students must take VIS 5760/Graduate Critical Topics two times.

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Updates to the 2020-21 Catalog

  • Students now take VIS 5760/Critical Topics two times along with two electives rather than Critical Topics I - IV.
  • Increased MFA Thesis to 3 credits and reduced open elective course credits for that semester from 3 to 2.