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We do not teach artists; rather we teach students to become artists.
The MFA in Painting is a 60-credit, 2- to 3-year program of study for students who wish to advance their creative exploration and professional development. The MFA degree is the credential that signifies a student's capacity to work independently in a discriminating, distinctive, and professional manner.
The Fine Arts program provides an educational context where motivated and creative artists can pursue their own goals, hone technical skills, and advance personal vision through intense, focused individual studio activity. Faculty members generate critical dialogue with graduate students at specific intervals during each semester.
Academic courses in art history, critical theory, philosophy, and a range of university offerings support the cultivation of the individual's intellectual and aesthetic maturation.
A limited number of assistantships are available on a competitive basis. This award is subject to the work needs of the position and department, your satisfactory performance of duties, your academic record, and availability of funds, and may be subject to change.
Pursue your MFA at UMassD
- Assistantships: provide stipends, tuition waivers, fee reductions
- Exhibition opportunities: local, regional, and on campus
- Faculty: involved in scholarly, creative, and professional projects
- Individualized attention extended to every student
- Interdisciplinary projects and committees are encouraged
- Location: an hour from Providence, Boston, and Cape Cod
- New Bedford: an active dowtown arts community
- University education: access to faculty in other fields
- Visiting artists: enrich your artistic and professional development
- Visual Resources Center: more than 150,000 archived images
- Workspaces: assigned to each graduate student at the Star Store, New Bedford
University requirements for graduate admissions
- Submit an application via the online portal. Be sure to provide your full legal name and to capitalize the first letter of all proper nouns.
- Pay non-refundable $60 application fee (American Express, Discover, MasterCard or Visa) via the online portal. For Nursing applicants, the non-refundable application fee is $75.
- Statement of Purpose, minimum 300 words. Unless otherwise indicated in the program requirement details, indicate your graduate study objectives, research interests and experience, and business or industry experience if applicable. If you are applying for a teaching or research assistantship, include any special skills or experience that would assist us in making assistantship decisions.
- Transcripts for all post-secondary institutions attended (regardless of whether a credential is earned or not). Unofficial transcripts are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled a final official transcript is required.
- Many programs have specific recommendations/requirements, please see the additional program-specific requirements for more information.
- International students: official TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson PTE or Duolingo (if accepted by program) score. Unofficial scores are accepted for admissions application review, once enrolled official scores are required and must be sent by the testing agency (copies/scans not accepted). This is required of any applicant who did not earn a bachelor’s degree or higher degree from an accredited academic institution in the U.S. or accepted English-speaking country, see exemptions for more details. The Duolingo test is not accepted for the following programs: Art Education, Biology/Marine Biology, Luso-Afro-Brazilian Studies & Theory, Marine Science and Technology (MS, PSM, PhD), Nursing (MS, DNP, PhD), Portuguese Studies, Professional Writing and Communication, Psychology (ABA, Clinical, Research), and Public Policy.
Candidates must submit the required application materials, university requirements and program-specific requirements, for consideration.
- Portfolio of 20 images representing your artwork, process of thinking, implementation of concepts, and studio production. The portfolio is the equivalent of the entrance examinations which other academic areas often require. Submit your portfolio to: SlideRoom.
- 1 letter of recommendation. Applicants will be required to provide the recommenders name and email address so we can contact the recommender for the letter of recommendation.