Guided by the belief that artists perform an essential role in society, the MFA in Fine Arts program provides a dynamic, challenging environment in which students develop diverse studio-based practices and pursue interdisciplinary scholarship. Students come from many backgrounds and cultures and work in media including painting, drawing, sculpture, video, performance, digital media, installation, and photography.
This program is part of Parsons' School of Art, Media, and Technology (AMT). Learn about the
AMT community and explore our
blog to see what students, faculty, and alumni are doing in NYC and around the world.
MFA Fine Arts encompasses modes of study and practice ranging from rigorous formal and aesthetic investigations to social and political engagement. The two-year, full-time curriculum includes 27 studio, 12 academic, 6 professional practice, and 15 elective credits. Students
work independently in their own studios and participate in weekly critiques with an internationally acclaimed faculty of art professionals.
The program curriculum centers on one-on-one studio visits, group critiques, critical theory seminars, personalized classes, and writing and research for studio practice, as well as professional practices seminars. The Transdisciplinary Seminar reaches into the broader New School community and focuses on a range of topics such as art and feminism, art and science, and art and poetry. Academic classes expose students to global contemporary discourse on art and develop their critical abilities. Students interact with visiting artists of varied practices and cultural orientations. Recent visitors include Shirin Neshat, Paul Pfeiffer, Tehching Hsieh, Kara Walker, Fred Wilson, Mark Dion, and Ann Hamilton. Prominent curators guide students preparing for their thesis exhibitions.
Parsons’ industry and alumni connections yield abundant opportunities for collaboration and exhibition. Students have recently presented work at the Pulse Art Fair, The Kitchen, and Sydney College of the Arts at the University of Sydney and have held residencies at Skowhegan Institute and Jentel. MFA Fine Arts is housed in Parsons’ School of Art, Media, and Technology (AMT), alongside the Communication Design, Design and Technology, Illustration, and Photography programs. Shared faculty and collaborative projects allow students to explore the connections between art, technology, design, and social critique. Students can also draw on the extensive resources of The New School, a progressive urban university with a tradition of civic engagement and renowned graduate programs in the social sciences, media studies, and urban studies.
You graduate prepared for careers in fine art, arts administration, curatorship, museum management, art criticism, and teaching.
The Master of Fine Arts degree is awarded for completion of 60 credits. A maximum of six credits of graduate-level liberal arts coursework can be transferred from another institution. Students must maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade point average and fulfill all requirements in a timely manner.
Learn more about what Parsons students, faculty, and alumni are doing throughout the city and around the world.
Explore the Fine Arts Community
The application deadline is January 1. To be most competitive for admission and merit scholarship consideration, please apply before the deadline. We will continue to review applications submitted after the January 1 priority deadline pending space availability in the program. The Admission Committee will make a decision on your application only after all the required materials have been received. Spring term admission is not offered for this program. The fall term readmission deadline is August 1 (review
readmission information below).
Financial Aid Deadline
All applicants selected for admission into our program are considered for a merit scholarship award that is determined by the strength of their application. Scholarship award notification is communicated at the same time as the admission decision. International students are eligible only for merit scholarships. If you are a U.S. citizen or eligible noncitizen, we encourage you to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which can be found on the Web at
www.fafsa.gov. The FAFSA is available each year on October 1. You do not need to wait for an admission decision to apply for federal aid; we recommend submitting by our FAFSA priority deadline of February 1 for fall applicants. (The New School’s federal school code is 002780.)
All applicants are required to apply online. Save your work frequently and print a copy for your records. You must complete all required fields and uploads prior to submission.
Any additional supporting documents that need to be sent by mail must include an
Application Materials Cover Sheet. All supporting materials must be received before your application can be reviewed.
See below for additional information regarding submission of transcripts and recommendations.
Some of your required materials will be submitted through
The New School does not require TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE scores for applicants:
Application for Readmission (PDF) should be completed by students who wish to return after an absence of four semesters (fall and spring). Students must reapply to the program to which they were originally admitted. Readmission is only available for current New School programs. If you are looking to transfer 24 or more semester-based credits, you should apply for admission as a transfer student according to the instructions outlined above. The following materials are required of applicants seeking readmission:
Simone Douglas, Program Director
Art, Media, Tech