Graduate Application Instructions
All Boston University School of Visual Arts graduate programs require a complete application for consideration. This includes a portfolio. All materials will be submitted electronically. Please see the sections below for full instructions.
Should you have questions that aren’t addressed here, please email the School of Visual Arts or call us at 617-353-3371.
Steps to Apply
- Complete your online application form. Be sure to enter all of your personal and academic information as well as the contact information for your recommenders. Begin your application here.
- Upload forms: You’ll upload transcripts from all colleges attended (unofficial copies are acceptable), your current résumé/CV, and essay in the online application form. Please scroll down to see “Requirements for All Applicants” for more details.
- Please do not send physical transcripts. Transcripts should be uploaded electronically to your application. Remember that unofficial transcripts are acceptable for the application.
- Submit your portfolio: The fourth quadrant of the online application form links to bucfa.slideroom.com where you will submit your portfolio. This section must be completed before you can submit your application form. For more details and tips about submitting your portfolio, please scroll down to “Portfolio Requirements.”
- Submit application: Please pay the application fee using your credit card. Only when the fee is paid will your completed application be sent to Boston University. If the application fee represents a financial hardship please email email@example.com inquire about a fee waiver.
All School of Visual Arts graduate programs require a portfolio submission along with the CFA graduate application. All portfolios must be submitted digitally at bucfa.slideroom.com. Please click here to learn more about individual program requirements.
If you are interested in a preliminary portfolio review of your work, please seek us out at a Graduate National Portfolio Day. You may find the details for these events as well as the event schedule at nationalportfolioday.org.
Requirements for All Applicants
- Completed application online for graduate admission to the College of Fine Arts.
- Portfolio digitally submitted — please note specific portfolio requirements for each major
- Non-refundable application fee of $95 submitted using the online application. If you require assistance with the BU application fee due to financial hardship, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to request a fee waiver code.
- Two letters of recommendation from professionals/educators. These must be submitted online through your application.
- Transcripts from all colleges/universities attended uploaded to your application. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable for the application.
- A one-page personal statement indicating the applicant’s purpose in pursuing graduate work, career objectives, and particular interest in BU. Please note that there is a similar question and prompt in Slideroom. Applicants are welcome to use the same response in each location should they choose to.
- Current resume and/or CV.
Graduate International Students
For answers to frequently asked questions, please check out the resources of the International Students & Scholars Office. Please know that our graphic design program is not a STEM-designated program, and graduate international applicants must prove English proficiency in one of two ways.
- By completing a bachelor’s degree and submitting an official transcript from an institution in which English was the language of instruction before the time of enrollment at BU.
- Submitting one of the English proficiency tests listed here with a score that meets or exceeds the minimum requirement.
Tuition and Financial Aid
Click here to learn more about the tuition, fees, and aid opportunities: https://www.bu.edu/cfa/admissions/graduate/graduate-financial-aid/
- The application deadline for all MFA, On-Campus MA, and Certificate applications
- This includes supporting materials and portfolio, and for international students TOEFL or IELTS scores.
Early to Mid-March
- Final admission decisions are released
Graduate Information Sessions
Join faculty and current students to learn more about the graduate offerings at BU School of Visual Arts. We also encourage prospective graduate students to connect with us at a Graduate National Portfolio Day to receive preliminary feedback on your portfolio.
Previous Session Recordings
- MFA Sculpture – Fall 2021 • Recording
- MFA Print Media and Photography – Fall 2022 • Recording
- MFA Painting – Fall 2022 • Recording
- MFA Graphic Design Current Student Panel – Fall 2021 • Recording
- MFA Graphic Design Alumni Panel – Fall 2021 • Recording
- MFA Graphic Design Inquiry Lecture – Fall 2021 • Recording
- MA Art Education Alumni Panel – Fall 2022 • Recording