Mason School of Art | Graduate Programs
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Graduate Programs

Master of Fine Arts in Visual and Performing Arts

Application Deadline: February 15

The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) is a terminal degree that prepares students to become professional artists, work in technology or arts-related fields, and teach at the university level. Candidates are required to complete 60 credits, culminating in a Thesis Exhibition of the student’s work in George Mason’s Fine Arts Gallery.  Of those credits, 45 credits are made up from both core and studio requirements, and an additional 15 credits are based on comprehensive experience.  MFA students may choose an emphasis in graphic designnew media artpainting+drawingphotographyprintmaking, or sculpture. For course information, please visit the University Catalog.

George Mason University’s School of Art MFA Program seeks to develop in students a self-directed studio practice, derived simultaneously from an earnest personal search and an engagement with contemporary discourses and practices.

Housed in a small communities of studios, the MFA program offers an environment that fosters the deepening of a student’s individual practice in the context of shared experience and dialogue with peers. Daily studio practice is supplemented by courses in research, writing, and contemporary critical theory. Regular formal critiques with peers and faculty track student progress, while training them to articulate ideas relevant to the production of their work. Visiting artists, monthly trips to New York galleries, and suggested supplementary lectures at local venues contribute to the student’s ability to contextualize his or her own work and process within the larger conversation of contemporary studio practices.  MFA students have numerous opportunities to collaborate and exhibit their work in local galleries; including but not limited to the Workhouse Arts Center.

Graphic Design, Master of Arts

The Master of Arts (MA) in Graphic Design offers students a comprehensive study and preparation for the graphic design profession. This 36-credit professional program, started in 2010, is the only graphic design graduate degree in the Washington, D.C. region.  The curriculum includes courses in typography, web design, image making, and brand design.  The broad range of study is intended to develop professionals prepared for an ever-expanding graphic design field.  For course descriptions, please visit the University Catalog.

Graduate Art Education Programs

Application Deadlines: March 1; October 15
Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT)

The Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) program is a pre-service graduate degree for students that already have an undergraduate degree in a related field. At the culmination of completing coursework and a semester of student teaching, students satisfy Commonwealth of Virginia requirements to attain licensure in PreK-12 Art. The 30-credit degree program includes studio components, site observations at surrounding public schools, contemporary theory and curriculum design. In the past three years, 100% of our job-seeking graduates have attained a contracted position in regional public schools within a year of graduation.