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troublemaker
05-06-2007, 02:52 PM
Hello everyone,
I recently decided that I want my Master's in Art. I have a BA in English with a minor in art. Unfortunately, my grades are far from stellar.

I'm trying to find some advice on what I need to get into school. I'm interested in NSCAD, and they take a total of 14 people a year. So I need to get my booty in gear and put together the best application I possibly can.

I would like to take a class to help bump my GPA, but the Uni. in my town doesn't have night courses, and the community college doesn't have upper level courses, which I don't think will make my transcripts look strong. I was figuring on an online course, but was having trouble finding one and wasn't sure if they'd look good on a transcript.

Also, looking for info on what kind of portfolio I should put together. Things to look to highlight, things to avoid, stuff like that.

Basically any and all advice is welcome and sought out!

Thanks everyone!

Enchanted
05-06-2007, 08:25 PM
Hello everyone,
I recently decided that I want my Master's in Art. I have a BA in English with a minor in art. Unfortunately, my grades are far from stellar.

Masters in WHAT BRANCH of art? Can't provide definitive answers without knowing what your area of concentration would be.

The only definitive advice I can think to offer at this point is to contact the school you're interested in attending to find out what their entrance requirements are. Most in the USA require a passing grade in the Graduate Records Exam, which you should have taken immediately after finishing your undergrad studies while all that was fresh in your mind. Since you don't have a BA or BFA in one of the arts, your chances of getting into a school that accepts limited applicants is going to be minimal, IMHO. Looking around for schools that are "student poor" can up your chances if they are less discerning about taking non-art majors.

:)

troublemaker
05-06-2007, 09:33 PM
Planning on Master of Fine Arts, concentration in painting.
I want to teach, but don't want to take the education route as I don't want to focus on the ed aspect and find focussing on the ed aspect would hinder my ability to accept varying styles.

Enchanted
05-07-2007, 11:51 AM
Planning on Master of Fine Arts, concentration in painting.
I want to teach, but don't want to take the education route as I don't want to focus on the ed aspect and find focussing on the ed aspect would hinder my ability to accept varying styles.
Addressing the last first - the 'education' route usually certifies one to teach at the pre-college levels (El-Hi). You come out of college with a BA degree in "Art Ed." For teaching art at the college/univ levels, you need an MFA degree and a tremendous amount of both good luck and CONNECTIONS (networking)!

Getting into an MFA program as a painting major is the MOST difficult, IME. I made sure to spend my undergrad years taking printmaking classes, and then spent an entire summer after getting my BFA working on more printmaking using the school's print labs in order to have a solid portfolio for presentation to those schools I applied to for my MFA - a portfolio of prints, even though I intended to concentrate my MFA years in painting. Most schools will allow you to "change your mind" about your major, or don't care what you major in at the MFA level since it's a different system from the BFA program.

As for your particular situation, whether or not you'll be able to get accepted to a graduate program will depend entirely on the requirements of the schools you apply to. If a BFA degree is required, you'll have to return to school and satisfy the course requirements for the BFA before even being considered for graduate school. Some schools might permit you to enter as a "provisional" student - on the condition that you take the required BFA course work before being eligible for their MFA program.

So your first step is to contact those schools where you hope to apply for a graduate degree and find out what is required. And good luck in fulfilling your wishes.

:wave:

troublemaker
05-07-2007, 03:03 PM
Thank you for your help Enchanted. I appreciate it a lot. I know I have a rather largely uphill battle, but I think I'm determined at this point. Barring a change in choice, I will just have to work my little butt off!

I did contact NSCAD and I'm thinking maybe now about seeing what it would take to get a BFA from somewhere and how long it might take. Unfortunately, I can't go to NSCAD for 2 years in the MFA, if I get my BFA from them.

Thanks again!

Enchanted
05-08-2007, 12:04 PM
Unfortunately, I can't go to NSCAD for 2 years in the MFA, if I get my BFA from them.

Thanks again!
I presume by that you're speaking of the same problem I ran into when I decided to go straight from my BFA to an MFA. I was not allowed to enter the MFA program where I obtained my BFA - for the stated reason that I'd be repeating with the same faculty. The idea is to force you to broaden your educational experience. I did in fact apply, in spite of being told my chances were slim for acceptance, because I knew a very few students who had been accepted. And I was told that out of the 400+ applications received, mine made the short list of ten being considered - but in the end I went elsewhere, albeit in the same Texas univ. system - just a different campus - and I never regretted doing that since the grad studios where I did my MFA were newer and more spacious than those where I did my BFA.

Good luck on your future. :thumbsup:

beautifulfreak
05-10-2007, 08:56 AM
If you think a painting MFA program is hard try geting into a Ceramic/Clay MFA program, most schools only have one or two positions open a year.

If your local college doesn't have night classes so you can get your BFA and you are determined to get your MFA you might need to see about rearranging your work to make you available during the day. Since you already have a minor in art go see a counsilor and see what additional classes you would need to get your BFA. At the college I went to just cause you wanted to get your BFA didn't mean you got into the BFA program. You'd start fulfilling the BA art requirements and get reviewed periodically by the faculty and be voted into the BFA program and then complete the BFA requirements.

Another route you might want to explore is a masters in Interdisciplinary Humanities.

Keith Russell
05-15-2007, 03:24 PM
troublemaker:

Your say your grades were far from stellar, but--

--how is your portfolio?

troublemaker
05-21-2007, 03:10 PM
troublemaker:

Your say your grades were far from stellar, but--

--how is your portfolio?

technically, its non-existent.

Keith Russell
05-21-2007, 05:55 PM
technically, its non-existent.

Well, you're going to need a good portfolio to get into an MFA program.

To get into the BFA program I'll graduate from this December, I needed to submit slides of 8 - 12 photographs, 8 - 12 life drawings, and 15 - 20 paintings.

I expect the portfolio for grad school to be similar, perhaps 15 life drawings, 15 photographs, and 20 - 30 paintings.

Good luck...

Enchanted
05-24-2007, 11:15 AM
To get into the BFA program I'll graduate from this December, I needed to submit slides of 8 - 12 photographs, 8 - 12 life drawings, and 15 - 20 paintings.

In the USA, it varies from school to school for the BFA or BA degrees in art.

I have noticed that private schools and those that accept a very limited number of new students each semester have stricter entrance requirements.

OTOH, most if not all state schools forego the portfolio requirement. One advantage in such cases is that you MIGHT be able to "test out" of first semester requirements with a solid portfolio - I tested out of the freshman year of painting by showing my painting portfolio to the faculty board. "Testing out" means you receive a semester of credit for the particular course you test out of without ever having to take the course.

I think that in the USA it's impractical to expect students coming directly from high school to have any kind of portfolio, since art classes are not even offered in some public school systems. Also, not all entering freshmen are committed to following through with their choice of majors and may well either drop out or change their major or college after the first semester.

:)