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A Master of Fine Arts (MFA or M.F.A.)is a terminal degree in fine arts, including visual arts, creative writing, graphic design, photography, filmmaking, dance, theatre, other performing arts and in some cases, theatre management or arts administration. It is a graduate degree that typically requires two to three years of postgraduate study after a bachelor's degree, though the term of study varies by country or university. Coursework is primarily of an applied or performing nature, with the program often culminating in a thesis exhibition or performance. The first university to admit students the degree of Master of Fine Arts was the University of Iowa in 1940.
A candidate for an MFA typically holds a bachelor's degree prior to admission, but many institutions do not require that the candidate's undergraduate major conform with their proposed path of study in the MFA program. Admissions requirements often consist of a sample portfolio of artworks or a performance audition.
The Master of Fine Arts differs from the Master of Arts in that the MFA, while still an academic program, centers-on professional artistic practice in the particular field, whereas programs leading to the MA usually center on the scholarly, academic, or critical study of the field. Additionally, in the United States, an MFA is typically recognized as a terminal degree for practitioners of visual art, design, dance, photography, theatre, film/video, new media, and creative writing—meaning that it is considered the highest degree in its field, qualifying an individual to become a professor at the university level in these disciplines.
In European academic traditions, fine art is art developed primarily for aesthetics or beauty, distinguishing it from decorative art or applied art, which also has to serve some practical function, such as pottery or most metalwork. In the aesthetic theories developed in the Italian Renaissance, the highest art was that which allowed the full expression and display of the artist's imagination, unrestricted by any of the practical considerations involved in, say, making and decorating a teapot. It was also considered important that making the artwork did not involve dividing the work between different individuals with specialized skills, as might be necessary with a piece of furniture, for example. Even within the fine arts, there was a hierarchy of genres based on the amount of creative imagination required, with history painting placed higher than still life.
The School of Visual Arts New York City is a for-profit art and design college in Manhattan, New York. It was founded in 1947, and is a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design.
A Bachelor of Fine Arts is the standard undergraduate degree for students in the United States and Canada completing a professional education in the visual, fine or performing arts.
California College of the Arts (CCA) is an art, design, architecture, and writing school with two campuses in California, one in San Francisco and one in Oakland. Founded in 1907, it enrolls approximately 1,500 undergraduates and 500 graduate students.
The New York University Tisch School of the Arts is the performing, cinematic and media arts school of New York University, and is among the most competitive film schools in the world to enroll in. With many famous alumni having gone to work in the American film industry, Broadway theatre, and in entertainment industries around the world, Tisch is typically ranked among the top American film schools, as such with yearly consistency in notable industry publications such as THR and Variety, and is often considered as one of the top film and theater schools in the United States and the world.
The Columbia University School of the Arts, is the fine arts graduate school of Columbia University in Morningside Heights, New York. It offers Master of Fine Arts (MFA) degrees in Film, Visual Arts, Theatre and Writing, as well as the Master of Arts (MA) degree in Film Studies. It also works closely with the Arts Initiative at Columbia University (CUArts) and organizes the Columbia University Film Festival (CUFF), a week-long program of screenings, screenplay, and teleplay readings.
The Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) is a private fine arts and design college in Portland, Oregon. Established in 1909, the art school grants bachelor of fine arts degrees and graduate degrees including the master of fine arts (MFA) and master of arts (MA) degrees. It has an enrollment of about 500 students. PNCA actively participates in Portland's cultural life through a public program of exhibitions, lectures, and internationally recognized visual artists, designers, and creative thinkers.
The UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television, is one of the 12 schools within the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) located in Los Angeles, California. Its creation was groundbreaking in that it was the first time a leading university had combined all three of these aspects into a single administration. The undergraduate program is often ranked among the world's top drama departments. The graduate programs are usually ranking within the top three nationally, according to the U.S. News & World Report. Among the school's resources are the Geffen Playhouse and the UCLA Film & Television Archive, the world's largest university-based archive of its kind, celebrating its 50th anniversary in 2015. The Archive constitutes one of the largest collections of media materials in the United States — second only to the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. Its vaults hold more than 220,000 motion picture and television titles and 27 million feet of newsreel footage. The film, television, and digital media program is one of the most prestigious film programs in the world. It is the most selective film school as the film and television major selects about only 15 freshman out of thousands of applicants and a handful of transfer students.
A terminal degree is a university degree that can signify one of two outcomes. In some cases, it is the highest degree that can be awarded in a specific academic or professional track. In other cases, it is a degree that is awarded when a candidate completes a certain amount of coursework but does not go on to doctoral work. Some students enroll in a terminal Master's program with the goal of preparing to enter a PhD program. For certain professions and research grants it means the lowest degree to be considered qualified.
The Boston University College of Fine Arts (CFA) at Boston University consists of the School of Music, the School of Theatre, and the School of Visual Arts. Each school offers degrees in the performing and visual arts at the undergraduate and graduate level. Among the College of Fine Arts faculty are artists, scholars, and performers. Since the College of Fine Arts is integrated into Boston University, students at CFA may choose courses in the other undergraduate colleges at Boston University. CFA students can also apply for the Boston University Collaborative Degree Program (BUCOP), where students simultaneously earn undergraduate degrees at CFA and in one of 14 undergraduate colleges of the university. The college offers a study abroad program in London, England, and Dresden, Germany. Students can spend a semester at the Royal College of Music, the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, or at the Hochschule für Musik "Carl Maria von Weber".
Laguna College of Art and Design (LCAD) is a private college in Laguna Beach, California. With an enrollment of more than 700 students, the college offers Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in 11 majors and three Master of Fine Arts degree programs as well as a post-baccalaureate certificate program in Drawing and Painting.
The New Hampshire Institute of Art (NHIA) is a private college of creative arts in Manchester, New Hampshire. NHIA is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC). NHIA is also a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD). NHIA offers the Bachelor of Fine Arts as well as Master of Fine Arts and Master of Arts in Teaching.
Arts administration is a field in the arts sector that facilitates programming within cultural organizations. Arts administrators are responsible for facilitating the day-to-day operations of the organization as well as the long term goals by and fulfilling its vision, mission and mandate. Arts management became present in the arts and culture sector in the 1960s. Organizations include professional non-profit entities. For examples theaters, museums, symphonies, jazz organizations, opera houses, ballet companies and many smaller professional and non-professional for-profit arts-related organizations. The duties of an arts administrator can include staff management, marketing, budget management, public relations, fundraising, program development evaluation, and board relations.
Studio Arts College International (SACI), Florence, Italy, was founded by artist and director emeritus Jules Maidoff in Tuscany in 1975. SACI is an educational institution for undergraduate and graduate university-level students seeking fully accredited studio art, design, and liberal arts instruction.
The New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk University is a school of fine arts and design located in Boston, Massachusetts. The school offers undergraduate (BFA) and graduate (MA) degrees, as well as continuing education courses and programs. The School of Art & Design is accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD). The BFA program in Interior Design and MA program in Interior Architecture & Design are accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA). Suffolk University is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.
The USC School of Dramatic Arts —formerly the USC School of Theatre, is a private drama school at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, California. It is ranked one of the top 10 dramatic arts schools in the world, according to The Hollywood Reporter's Top 25 Drama Schools. The school offers Bachelor of Arts degrees in theatre and visual & performing arts; Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees in acting, design, sound design, stage management and technical direction; and Master of Fine Arts degrees in acting and dramatic writing.
A Bachelor of Design degree is usually an undergraduate academic degree in the field of design awarded for a course or major that generally lasts three or four years. It is the undergraduate equivalent of the Master of Design, MDes. Bachelor of Design degrees have been popular in Canada and Australia for several decades and are becoming increasingly popular in the United States as discipline-specific design education expands and becomes more specialized. There are several variants of the Bachelor of Design degree, including the Bachelor of Design Arts and the Bachelor of Design Studies.
Dodge College of Film and Media Arts is one of ten schools constituting Chapman University, located in Orange, California, 40 miles (64 km) south of Los Angeles. The school offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, with programs in film production, screenwriting, creative producing, news and documentary, public relations and advertising, digital arts, film studies, television writing and producing, and screen acting.
Paris College of Art (PCA) is an international college of art and design with U.S degree-granting authority and accreditation from the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD) located in Paris, France. PCA's mission is to provide the highest standard of art and design education, taught within an American pedagogical paradigm, while being influenced and informed by their French and European environment.
NIU College of Visual and Performing Arts is composed of three schools. The college also administers several university programs including, the NIU Art Museum, the NIU Community School of Arts, and NIU Huskie Marching Band.