FAQs

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Is a Bachelor's degree required?

No. Applicants are not required to have a formal Bachelor’s degree. However, applicants must prove a combination of study and experience that is equivalent to a Bachelor’s degree. For more information on submitting proof of equivalency, please contact the Office of Admissions admissions@nyaa.edu

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Am I required to have an undergraduate degree in art?

No. Applicants are not required to have an undergraduate major in art. The Academy accepts applications from candidates with degrees in other majors and disciplines.

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Is a portfolio required for admission?

Yes. Each applicant must submit a portfolio of up to 20 original works of art. Five of the 20 portfolio images must be figure drawings from life.

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I took art classes at several colleges and/or art schools? Do I submit them all?

Applicants may submit transcripts or records of study from all institutions attended including non-degree granting.

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What if my transcripts are not in English?

If not English, applicants must submit an official evaluation of their transcripts. The Academy recommends using World Educational Services www.wes.org for the evaluation. Certified translations will also be accepted if submitted with the official transcript in the original language.

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Can I apply to begin in the spring semester?

No. Due to the structure of the MFA curriculum, accepted candidates must begin in the fall semester.

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Do you accept transfer students?

Yes. Applicants are required to declare their intended concentration during the admissions process.

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Can I change my intended concentration after acceptance?

To change the declared concentration after acceptance, the candidate must submit a written letter to the Admissions Committee outlining the reasons for switching. Proof must be provided that the applicant meets all admission requirements for the new concentration. This may require submission of new portfolio images.

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How many recommendations can I submit?

The Academy requires at least two letters of recommendation. Applicants may submit up to four.

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Who should the recommendations be from?

At least two of the letters should be from art instructors the applicant has studied with or an academic advisor. Additional letters can be from colleagues, gallerists, and instructors of other disciplines. We do not accept recommendation letters from family members.

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I took continuing education classes at the Academy. Can my recommendation letters be from an Academy faculty members?

Yes. Recommendations from Academy faculty members are accepted.

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I am taking continuing education classes at the Academy. Do I still need to do a full application?

Yes. Applicants currently enrolled in an Academy Continuing Studies class or program must still complete the full MFA application.

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What should I include in my personal statement?

Applicants are encouraged to discuss their backgrounds in art, the work in their portfolio, why they would like to attend the MFA program, what they hope to accomplish and how they connect with the Academy’s mission, philosophy and vision.

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May I submit an artist's statement instead of a personal statement?

No. Applicants must submit a personal statement as described above. You may submit an artist’s statement in addition to the personal statement.

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How long should the personal statement be?

Personal statements should be no more than one page (approximately 500 words or less).

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Do you require the GRE?

No. The GRE is not required for admission to the Academy.

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What should I include on my artists CV?

The CV should include educational background, professional experience, awards, residencies, exhibitions, etc. For more details on developing a CV or resume, please visit the College Art Association’s resource page.

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What is the Early Consideration deadline?

Those applying for the January 15 deadline receive priority consideration for the Academy’s merit scholarships. Early consideration at the Academy is non-binding.

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If I am rejected from Early Consideration, may I reapply in March?

No. Applicants rejected from the early consideration deadline may reapply again in the next admissions cycle.

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Can I submit original artworks to the Admissions Office?

No. We do not accept original works of art. All work must be photographed and submitted in digital format (uploaded through the Academy’s online application portal or mailed with the hardcopy application on a flash drive).

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Do you have a waitlist?

Yes. The Academy’s waitlist is ranked. The number of students accepted from the waitlist varies from year to year.

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If I am on the waitlist, can I submit supplementary materials to help my application?

Yes. Those on the waitlist may submit supplementary materials and documents to enhance the applications.

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If I was rejected, can I reapply next year?

Yes. The Academy also recommends applying to the CFA program.

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Can I defer admission? For how long?

Yes. Accepted applicants may defer for one year. The MFA deposit fee and contract must be submitted to defer. After one year, deferred applicants must reapply.