Interdisciplinary Arts, MFA

Students in the Master of Fine Arts in Interdisciplinary Arts use creative work to inquire and intervene in today’s most pressing social and ecological concerns. Positioned at the intersection of the visual arts, architecture, music, visual and media studies, and the expanded field of design, the curriculum supports the development of ambitious projects by a diverse, international group of creative practitioners. 

Our students use the tools and insights of contemporary creative practice to intervene in public discourse and the social imagination through media, research-, and/or community-based approaches. The curriculum centers around a series of core critique seminars that provide a foundation and home base. Students then customize their education from a wide range of studio and academic courses. Regular workshops with visiting faculty emphasize hands-on engagement in the creative process of leading artists, while summer residency or co-op experiences allow students to complete self-directed projects, supported by faculty and peer mentoring. The MFA degree requires a thesis project and companion paper, as well as a minimum 3.000 GPA over 60 semester hours of study.

Over the course of the two-year program, successful students learn to articulate their goals, context, and audience and develop the professional skills necessary to sustain their practices. Successful graduates are prepared to forge their own paths as publicly engaged artists working independently or in arts organizations, social entrepreneurship ventures, the nonprofit sector, and as faculty in academic institutions.

Complete all courses and requirements listed below unless otherwise indicated.

Core Requirements

Seminars
Enrollment in a section of each course is required each term. The format of the course is critique-seminar.16
Art, Context, Action 1
Art, Context, Action 2
Art, Media, Participation 1
Art, Media, Participation 2
Research Methods
In consultation with your faculty advisor, complete one course from the following:4
Research Methods for Design
Research Methods for the Creative Arts
Mixed Research Methods for Games
Project
ARTD 5301Independent Research Project 14
Thesis and Exhibition
ARTE 7100Thesis Proposal4
ARTE 7990Thesis4
ARTE 7996Thesis Continuation0

Electives

Studio Electives
In consultation with your faculty advisor, complete four courses from the following:16
Collaborative Video and Community Engagement
Special Topics in Art and Design Studio
Information Design Studio 1: Principles
Visual Cognition
Visualization Technologies 1
Notational Systems for Experience
Information Design Studio 2: Dynamic Mapping and Models
Visual Ideation
Studio
Studio Continuation
Art History Electives
In consultation with your faculty advisor, complete three courses from the following:12
Contemporary Art Theory and Criticism
Issues in Contemporary Art
Contemporary Visual Culture
Special Topics in Art and Design History

Program Credit/GPA Requirements

60 total semester hours required
Minimum 3.000 GPA required

Sample Two Years, One Internship or Co-op (Optional)  Plan of Study

Year 1
FallHoursSpringHoursSummer 1HoursSummer Full SemesterHours
ARTD 50014ARTD 50024ARTD 53014Internship or co-op (optional) 0
History, theory, and critical studies elective4History, theory, and critical studies elective4 Note: Many art residencies can be pursued not as internships but for credit as independent research, ARTD 5301, or ARTD 6301.
Studio elective4Research methods4  
Studio elective4Studio elective4  
 16 16 4 0
Year 2
FallHoursSpringHours  
ARTD 60014ARTD 60024  
ARTE 71004ARTE 79904  
History, theory, and critical studies elective4   
Studio elective4   
 16 8  
Total Hours: 60

Sample Two Years, No Co-op Plan of Study

Year 1
FallHoursSpringHoursSummer 1HoursSummer 2Hours
ARTD 50014ARTD 50024Studio elective orStudio elective or
History, theory, and critical studies elective4History, theory, and critical studies elective4ARTD 53014ARTD 63014
Studio elective4Research methods4  
Studio elective4Studio elective4  
 16 16 4 4
Year 2
FallHoursSpringHours  
ARTD 60014ARTD 60024  
ARTE 71004ARTE 79904  
History, theory, and critical studies elective4   
 12 8  
Total Hours: 60