Welcome, applicants!

All undergraduate applicants to the College of Fine Arts must apply through the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and meet the standards of admission to Boston University.In addition to completing an application to Boston University, all prospective CFA students must have an artistic evaluation by the College of Fine Arts. All portfolios must be submitted digitally at bucfa.slideroom.com.

Portfolio Requirements

The portfolio is a critical part of the admissions process for SVA applicants. Portfolios are to consist of at least fifteen (15) and not more than twenty (20) samples of work. The portfolio review committee is especially interested in seeing examples of the applicant’s ability to work from observation, and therefore a minimum of three (3) of those pieces should be drawings from life.

The faculty committee is interested in reviewing recent work that shows off your creativity and personality as well as your technical ability and craftsmanship. It is this combination that yields the strongest portfolios. We want to see how you are engaging with ideas as well as materials. Ask yourself, “does this piece represent my highest level of execution?” “Does this piece say something about how I’m thinking within my practice?” “Do the faculty at BU need to see this piece to understand who I am and what I can do?” If the answer is yes, then it should go into your portfolio.

Your portfolio is one piece of the holistic admissions process and will be considered along with all other aspects of your application when making an admissions decision.

Applicants to the undergraduate program in the School of Visual Arts at Boston University must upload their portfolio online. Portfolios consisting primarily of photography are not acceptable, and portfolios that feature composite pages comprised of multiple images are discouraged.

Preliminary Portfolio Reviews


Boston University School of Visual Arts is a proud member of the National Portfolio Day Association and will be attending many events around the country this year. Please check the National Portfolio Day Association websiteto find out if we will be at an event near you.


Students who are unable to connect with us at a NPD event may reach out to Jessica Caccamo (jcaccamo@bu.edu) to schedule an individual virtual portfolio review by appointment.

Transfer Admissions

Students interested in transferring to the School of Visual Arts should refer to the University’s transfer policies and guidelines on the BU Admissions website. Transfer applicants must submit a portfolio that meets the undergraduate portfolio requirements and submissions will be made via Slideroom.

All applicant portfolios will be evaluated for first semester standing. Students may enter the program at a higher studio level should their transcript and portfolio reflect an adequate amount of studio practice at the collegiate level. This will be contingent upon a transcript evaluation performed on a case-by-case basis. The highest level that a student may enter the program is as a first-semester junior.

Questions about transfer credit evaluations can be directed to Beth Zerega, Assistant Director for the School of Visual Arts at bzerega@bu.edu.

Read More About the Transfer Process

Declaring a Minor

BU School of Visual Arts offers minors in Printmaking and Visual Arts. Interested students can send questions to Beth Zerega at bzerega@bu.edu.