The state of New Jersey is home to a few universities that offer MFA programs in painting, or in a larger discipline like visual art in which students could pursue painting. This article will highlight three of those programs in greater detail by focusing on curriculum requirements, what types of topics could be covered in courses, and admissions requirements.
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Overview of MFA Painting Programs in New Jersey
New Jersey City University
New Jersey City University offers an MFA program in art in which students can pursue a concentration in painting and drawing. This program requires the completion of 60 credit hours, which are split across various categories. Eighteen credit hours are completed through studio art courses, 12 hours are completed through critique courses, nine hours are completed through art history and theory courses, nine credits are completed through elective courses, and six additional hours are completed through open electives and cooperative education courses. Students must also complete a thesis, entailing both research and an exhibition, to earn six credit hours and complete the degree requirements.
The MFA program in Visual Arts offered at Rutgers University allows students to explore a variety of sub-disciplines as they do not require students to pursue a specific concentration, though students can focus their studies on painting if they wish. This program requires the completion of 60 total credit hours and students can select from any of the offered graduate courses within the art department, as well as from other graduate departments at the university. Any student who is admitted to this program will automatically receive a graduate fellowship that covers the cost of tuition. This program also offers each student a private studio space which they are able to access at any time, in addition to the various labs and studio spaces at the school.
William Patterson University
Another option is the MFA in Visual Arts that is offered by William Patterson University. This degree program can either be completed on a full-time basis in three years or on a part-time basis in five years. After completing 24 hours of required core curriculum courses, which cover topics like imagination and creativity as well as studio practice, and three hours of an art history or contemporary studies course, students can fulfill the remaining 33 credit hours through elective courses. If interested in painting, students have a number of courses to choose from, including advanced projects in painting, painting studio, and ink painting.
Admissions Standards for MFA Painting Programs in New Jersey
In order to gain admission into an MFA program in painting in New Jersey, there are a number of prerequisites that students must fulfill. Students can expect to be asked to submit a portfolio that displays their artistic ability and previous work. Schools may often specify how many images or pieces should be included in the portfolio. While MFA programs like this may not always require that students have previously completed a B.A. or B.F.A program in a field related to painting or the arts, many applicants will likely have this background and will draw from it when compiling their portfolio. Other materials that students will need to supply admissions committees with include a completed application, letters of recommendation, academic transcripts, and a personal statement which may outline some of the student's artistic and research interests.
To summarize the information above, there are several programs students can choose from when seeking to enroll in an MFA program in painting in New Jersey. These programs will provide students with advanced instruction in painting, as well as other artistic disciplines, and generally require the completion of a final project or thesis.