MFA in Art

The Master of Fine Arts degree (MFA) is a 60-unit graduate program offered in the following Options:

  • Design (Graphic Design/Visual Communication, Animation)
  • Studio Arts (Drawing, Painting, Photography, Ceramics, Sculpture, New Genres)

The MFA degree is a highly selective, rigorous program for students who have already achieved a strong direction and focus in their work and a high level of technical proficiency in a specific discipline in the Design Option or Studio Arts Option. The program's goal is to develop students into professional artists capable of producing high quality work for public exhibition and presentation, or professional designers well-positioned to be leaders in their industry. MFA graduates are qualified to teach at the university level, and are prepared to take their place within the visual arts or design communities and to make a significant contribution to their fields.

1) The applicant will use the CalStateApply site for a one stop online submission of all materials for the university and program.

2) Within CalStateApply there is a quadrant of the page where the applicant will apply to the Art Department Program Option. The Art Department admits students only in the Fall semester. Applications open October 1st and the deadline is February 15thPlease note: There is now only one application form to complete within CalApply which suffices both the university and the department. As of 2023 there are no longer separate application forms for each.

3) The applicant will select an area of interest on the department application form and will then be prompted to submit. Instructions for submitting BA/BFA transcripts are included.

4) Within the program submissions process there are instructions for uploading images of sample works if you are applying to the Studio Arts or Design Options. If you are applying for an MA in Art History or Art Education, there will be unique instructions for submission materials. Physical submissions (CDs, DVDs, flash drives, printed materials, etc.) are no longer accepted.

Applicants will be asked to upload a single .PDF file with the designated amount of images required for your Option:

10-15 images for Studio Arts and Design, a list of works, a department application, and an artist statement should be contained within the upload.

5) Two separate letters of recommendation are required and will be prompted to upload. It is the applicant’s responsibility for coordinating with their recommenders and there is an embedded process within the website for submitting letters of recommendation.

If any part of the above is incomplete after the February 15th deadline, the application will not be reviewed. Once the application is completed and submitted, the Department’s Graduate Option Committees will deliver a decision by the end of March.


Design (Animation)

Sun Jing

Design (Graphic Design/Visual Communication)

Rebekah Albrecht

Liz Sweeney

Graphic Design Presentation

Graphic Design Presentation
Adriana Rivera


Studio Arts

Graffiti painting
Graffiti painting
Graffiti painting

Carlos Virgen

Video installation
video installation

Boone Nguyen