MFA: How to Apply
Applications to the School of Art are received by the Office of Graduate Admissions at the University of Tennessee. The School of Art requires supplemental application materials, which are also submitted to the Graduate School through the online application portal.
Apply by January 16, 2024 for GTA and fellowship consideration.
The School of Art accepts applications until all open positions are filled or until April 15 for the fall of 2024. Applications are considered only for fall entry (no summer or spring entry). Application materials are reviewed only after you have submitted a complete application.
School of Art Admission Requirements
In addition to the requirements of the Graduate School, the School of Art requires an undergraduate degree in art/design or equivalent proficiency as demonstrated in the portfolio and other application materials. The following instructions outline Graduate School application requirements in combination with the School of Art’s requirements and exceptions.
- Create your account on Slate, the Graduate School’s online application system.
- Scan and upload copies of transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate institutions you have attended. If you are a current or previous student at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, you do not need to upload a copy of your transcript. Our office will be able to access your transcript. However, you will need to include the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in your list of colleges/universities attended. Transcripts that are in a language other than English must be accompanied by English translations. For more information about transcripts, see the Graduate School’s instructions.
- Upload degree certificates (if applicable)
- Upload the following School of Art requirements (located on the signature page of the online application):
- Three letters of recommendation
- The following documents in PDF format:
- Portfolio with an inventory list – 15 to 20 images. **Time-based work, including video, sound, etc., may be submitted as web links.
- Artist/Designer Statement – discuss the content of your work.
- Statement of Purpose – What do you hope to accomplish in graduate school and what do you want the committee to recognize and consider when making an admission decision (education, life experience, etc.).
- Pay the $60 non-refundable application fee by credit/debit card or electronic check
Note: GRE scores are not required for admission to the MFA in Studio Art.
Applicants whose native language is not English must also:
- Submit official TOEFL scores directly from ETS to the University of Tennessee, Knoxville (code 1843) OR
- Submit official IELTS scores directly from the IELTS administrator to the Office of Graduate Admissions
See more information below for international applicants.
MFA Application Questions
School of Art
Acting as Director of Graduate Studies
UT Graduate School
Questions About Your Concentration
- Ceramics // Sally Brogden // email@example.com
- Painting + Drawing // Rubens Ghenov // firstname.lastname@example.org
- Printmaking // Beauvais Lyons // email@example.com
- Sculpture // John Powers // firstname.lastname@example.org
- Time-Based Art // John Kelley // email@example.com
We encourage international applications. The Graduate Admissions international application deadline is February 1, but applicants who wish to be considered for a GTA position must meet the January 16 School of Art deadline.
Evaluation and Acceptance
The faculty of the applicant’s designated concentration area evaluates the application materials listed above. The greatest emphasis is placed on the quality of the applicant’s portfolio, although academic success and letters of recommendation are very important to the overall assessment of potential. Notification of School of Art action will be sent as soon after this evaluation as possible.
The School of Art will consider transfer graduate students with the same procedures as outlined above. Specific regulations of the Graduate School limit the number of credits that will be accepted. Actual credit hours to be applied to the degree will be determined by the Graduate Committee and the faculty in the area to which the student has applied.
Diversity and Inclusion in the School of Art
The School of Art strives to be an inclusive community, defined by respect and civility, which are the required components for exploring, critical thinking, and the free exchange of ideas.
True diversity is defined not merely as differences in individual backgrounds, personal identities, intellectual approaches and demographics; it is also the removal of barriers and the creation of space that allows individuals to fully engage, freely think, and creatively explore.
We are responsible for ensuring that the School of Art is a welcoming environment for everyone without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, physical or mental disability, genetic information, veteran, immigration status, and parental status. Discriminatory behavior or treatment is unacceptable and jeopardizes our learning environment.
Students interested in topics relevant to diversity, or who would benefit from support, may visit the School of Art diversity page to use the “We Are Listening” student portal.
All qualified applicants will receive equal consideration for employment and admission without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, physical or mental disability, genetic information, veteran status, and parental status, or any other characteristic protected by federal or state law. In accordance with the requirements of Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, the University of Tennessee affirmatively states that it does not discriminate on the basis of race, sex, or disability in its education programs and activities, and this policy extends to employment by the university. Inquiries and charges of violation of Title VI (race, color, and national origin), Title IX (sex), Section 504 (disability), the ADA (disability), the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (age), sexual orientation, or veteran status should be directed to the Office of Equity and Diversity, 1840 Melrose Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37996-3560, telephone 865-974-2498. Requests for accommodation of a disability should be directed to the ADA Coordinator at the Office of Equity and Diversity.