The MFA program is 2 years and 60 credits (15 credits per semester over 4 semesters).
Graduate Research Studios are the core of the MFA program.
Each semester, students engage in at least 7.5 credit hours of intense studio exploration, research, production, and critique of their individual creative work, in close collaboration with their MFA faculty advisors. There is a wide selection of studio courses to choose from in the Art and Media Studies Departments.
At least 3 credits should include Real-Space Electronics, Designed Play. Biological Art, Installation, or Performative Action.
Students participate in regular critique groups to develop their ability to discuss, describe, assess, contextualize and understand their own work and the work of their fellow graduate students.
Each fall semester, both first year and second year MFA students participate in an interdisciplinary graduate seminar. Seminar topics include “Research Methods” and “Professional Practice,” and other topics related to contemporary art practice.
Students choose Academic Elective courses to meet their individual MFA curriculum goals. They can pursue additional studio courses to focus on studio practice, or they can select academic courses which complement their unique research needs.
Academic Electives can be taken in any UB Graduate Level program. Many of our students choose courses in Art, Art History, Film and Media Study, Architecture, Gender Studies, and Philosophy.
Students choose Open Elective courses to meet their individual MFA curriculum goals. Internships may be used to fulfill this requirement.
MFA students are required to take a three credit Introduction to Critical Theory course. Students are also encouraged to select courses that support their fields of inquiry from History, Theory, and Criticism courses offered within the Art Department, Media Studies, or other university programs.
Once you are accepted into a graduate program in the Department of Art, you are automatically eligible for the Beijing Graduate Exchange Program.
The Beijing Graduate Exchange Program is an exchange between the Department of Art and the School of Fine Art at CAFA (Central Academy of Fine Arts) in Beijing, China. CAFA was ranked “China’s top art school” by The New York Times in 2008.
This is an interdisciplinary program, and there are no concentration-specific requirements.
This program of study is an example and does not need to be strictly followed as long as all program requirements are met. In the sample shown, students take 2 academic electives in the spring semester of their first year and by doing so the final semester of study is freed up for complete immersion in the thesis project. Alternatively, students may wish to divide the 4 academic electives evenly across 4 semesters, or some other variation. For more information on how students structure their coursework, contact the Graduate Program Director.
Each semester, Teaching Assistants are required to register for one credit of ART 598, Supervised Teaching. These credits do not count towards the 60 credits required for the MFA degree. Teaching supervisions ensure that Teaching Assistants feel supported as they develop their skills as college-level educators.
Required courses are offered at least once per year. Most graduate-level studio courses are offered on alternate semesters. Most academic seminars rotate over a one-year or two-year cycle.