MFA Dual Degree Programs

Aug 07, 2019

Do you want to go further than just an MFA? Find out what kinds of dual degrees are available when you combine an MFA with another program, and what you can expect to study after you successfully gain admission into two graduate departments.

Dual degrees with a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) could take a number of different paths. You could choose two similar programs, or combine two unrelated areas into one continuous plan of study. You'll typically finish a dual degree in less time than it would take to earn two master's degrees separately.

Types of MFA Dual Degree Programs


These programs combine the creativity of a Master of Fine Arts with the financial side of a Master of Business Administration. Within the MFA, you may specialize in such areas as film and television, studio art, theater and design. The MBA allows you to learn about the business side of production, including courses in such topics as leadership, marketing and social media. You might take courses over the summer to complete the program in less time than a normal combined degree schedule.


If you want to integrate intense research into your terminal MFA, you could choose to study a subject like critical studies and earn a Master of Arts (MA) at the same time. Pairing these options together also gives you additional time to work on your thesis, the culminating project behind many master's degrees. If you plan on teaching, you may select a dual degree that combines a fine arts degree, such as dance, with a master's that focuses on teaching that same subject. Either way, you'll split your time between the studio and classroom, studying topics such as theory, technique and collaboration.


With the increasing proliferation of digital media, a Master of Science in Library and Information Science (MSLIS) combined with an MFA puts you in a great position to apply your creative side to the preservation of media. You'll get to study courses in computer science and creative arts while preparing for a career in settings like museums, archives, or libraries. Some of your course topics during this dual degree program will include 3D computer modeling, digital culture, and art collections.

Admissions Requirements for MFA Dual Degree Programs

If you want to enter a dual degree program, you'll need to meet the standards of admission for both degrees. This universally requires you to have a bachelor's degree, which can usually come from any field related to either degree you are seeking. Seeking an MFA means you'll need an existing portfolio of your work, which can be hosted online and submitted directly to each school where you apply. If possible, balance your recommendation letters so that you can appeal to the admissions department for both degrees. When writing your personal statement, explain your interest in each of the two programs. Check each school to see their standardized test requirements; typically, schools do not require the GRE or GMAT for the MFA, but you may need one or the other for the joint degree, particularly the MBA.

A dual degree that combines an MFA with another field is your chance to market yourself to a wide number of employers. Your specialization in business or information, along with earning a terminal art degree, could make you an asset to a library, production studio, or government facility.

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