Graduate Applications

The Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies at PNCA welcomes applications from motivated students. Here you will find information on how to apply and the particular application requirements for each of our seven graduate programs. 

STEP BY STEP

How to Apply

Application materials vary depending on the program, but consist of materials such as portfolio, essays, references, and transcripts. Specific requirements are listed below.

Please note that you can only apply to one graduate program at a time.

We accept applications through pnca.slideroom.com.

  • 1

    Read the application requirements below for the program to which you'd like to apply. 

  • 2

    Prepare your portfolio items and other materials.

  • 3

    Submit your Application form and materials, and pay the PNCA graduate application fee of $65 at PNCA.Slideroom.com.

International Students

We welcome students from around the world. There are additional application requirements for international applicants.

International students are eligible for merit scholarships upon acceptance. Minimum GPA requirement for International applicants is 2.7.

Learn more

Application Requirements

MFA in Applied Craft and Design

Applications for 2018 are now being accepted.

Jointly offered by Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Art and Craft.

The MFA program welcomes applications for review for fall term admission. Applications will be made online starting September 1, 2017. The portfolio, resume, proposal and copy of transcript(s) are required to be uploaded as part of the online application process. Application requirements include:

  • Online application and payment of non-refundable application fee
  • Current resume
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Transcript(s) from the institution granting the applicant's bachelor's degree
  • Proposal in 500 words or less
  • Portfolio of 12-20 pieces.

Applicants apply online. The portfolio, resume, proposal and copy of transcript(s) are required to be uploaded as part of the online application process. Candidates with admissions or financial aid questions are welcome to contact the Admissions Office for assistance at tmackie_admissions@pnca.edu . 

Proposal
The applicant should write and submit a typed proposal of 500 words or less which describes what he or she hopes to learn and accomplish in the AC+D program, where the applicant hopes their studies will lead, and why they are interested in this particular program.

Transcripts
Transcripts from the institution where the candidate’s bachelor’s degree was earned are required to be uploaded as part of the online application process. The applicant should submit a scan of the document. The uploaded document is considered unofficial. Official transcript(s) from the institution granting the bachelor's degree is required for those admitted to the program. Official transcript should be requested and sent from the former institution in a sealed envelope to PNCA / Graduate Admissions, 511 NE Broadway, Portland OR, 97209.

Recommendations
Letters of recommendations should note the applicant’s name and be mailed in sealed envelopes from each recommender to PNCA / Graduate Admissions, 511 NE Broadway, Portland OR, 97209. Strongest recommendations are those who are familiar with the applicant’s studio practice. Recommendations from an applicant’s relatives or personal friends are not acceptable. Applicants are asked to enter the name, title, organization and relationship of the recommenders selected as part of the online application process.

Portfolio
Submission of art and design work for review is required. The portfolio should consist of 12-20 images of the candidate’s work. It is recommended that work be recent and represent the applicant’s strongest work. The work is uploaded as part of the online application and each piece should be labeled and given a description in slideroom.com. For technical assistance with upload, please contact support@slideroom.com.

Resume
The resume should be up to date and include professional experiences as well as related activities such as awards and exhibitions.

Interview
Candidates may be asked to interview with the department. Interviews are typically conducted by phone with the chair of the program after a completed application has been received and reviewed.


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MFA in Collaborative Design / MA in Design Systems

Applications for 2018 are now being accepted.

Application Checklist:

  • PNCA Online Application Form at Slideroom
  • Graduate Application Fee ($65 US)
  • Application Materials:
    • Current Resume
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
    • Projects of Interest
      • In a document, please provide 3 URLs of interesting work or projects that have been documented in some way on the web (video documentation, artist's portfolios, blog coverage, news articles, etc.) These links will allow us to better understand your interests, preferences, and the kind of precedent work that may inspire you. This is also an opportunity to re-articulate or expand your interests and goals in a form besides the essay and portfolio. For students from backgrounds other than art and design this can help us understand why you have identified collaborative design, design thinking, and making as your area of study for a masters degree.
    • Proposal Essay
      • In 2000 words or less, describe one project you are interested in pursuing and accomplishing, or identify a problem area you are interested in exploring. Use the following questions as prompts; you do not need to answer all of them.
      • What is the emerging problem or wicked problem you are interested in? How does this relate to or differ from your previous professional, academic, or artistic engagements? Who are the human or non-human clients, partners, communities or stakeholders you will need to engage? Can you identify any unmet or underexplored needs or desires within these communities? What are your specific goals and objectives? What materials and processes will you utilize to achieve them? What skills can you currently bring to the table, what are the skills you will look for when identifying collaborators? What does collaboration look like to you? What skills will you seek to learn? What role does design thinking play in facilitating efforts to address the emerging problem you are interested in? What facilities, locations or geographies will be necessary for your investigations? How will your work contribute to ameliorating the problem, establishing a process or institution, or serving your end users? How does your work related to larger issues of social and environmental responsibility, and the current dialogue between art, design, and technology?
      • Please submit your response as a PDF file that is less than 5MB. Any combination of text, images, charts, diagrams, etc., is acceptable as long as your ideas are self-explanatory.
    • Portfolio
      • Optional but recommended. In a document, please provide 1-3 URLs to webpages or digital files that contain examples of your recent work. You can submit image galleries or time-based examples of recent visual work, professional writing, blog posts or your Twitter feed, abstracts of peer-reviewed articles, etc. Links to PDF, PPT, or other common filetypes are acceptable. Your portfolio is an important part of your application and is an opportunity to present previous experiences, interests, and interactions in any field, including but not limited to art, design, science, journalism, economics, engineering, technology, business, etc.
      • Web-based content is preferred. Under certain circumstances digital files can be submitted in other ways with the consent of the Admissions Office (admissions@pnca.edu) if content is not publishable on the web for technical and legal reasons.
    • Transcript
      • Submit the transcript from the institution that granted your undergraduate degree. This can be a scan of a paper transcript or a digital file downloaded from your degree-granting school. If admitted to PNCA, your official transcript in its original sealed envelope will need to be submitted to PNCA before starting classes.
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MFA in Visual Studies

Applications for 2018 are now being accepted.

Application Checklist:

  • PNCA Online Application Form at Slideroom
  • Graduate Application Fee ($65 US)
  • Application Materials:
    • Current Resume
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
    • Statement of Purpose
      • Please use this statement to address the focus of your work and the direction you wish to pursue in the MFA in Visual Studies program.
      • Discuss your reasons for applying to PNCA's MFA in Visual Studies Program and the artistic goals you wish to achieve during your time in the program.
      • Be specific as to your focus of research and how you see this evolving or changing during your time in the Visual Studies program.
      • Describe the pathway you envision for yourself as part of the program.
      • Discuss the issues, concerns and influences in your work. Please reference three contemporary artists that inspire your practice.
    • Portfolio
      • Your portfolio is an extremely important part of your application and the opportunity to present your best and most recent work. The portfolio review is used to assess the artistic potential of the student.
      • Include up to 20 examples of your recent work.
      • If you are including video/audio, no more than six minutes of moving image or sound.
    • Transcript
      • Submit the transcript from the institution that granted your undergraduate degree. This can be a scan of a paper transcript or a digital file downloaded from your degree-granting school. If admitted to PNCA, your official transcript in its original sealed envelope will need to be submitted to PNCA before starting classes.
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Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies

Applications for Summer 2018 are now being accepted.

Application Checklist:

  • PNCA Online Application Form at Slideroom
  • Graduate Application Fee ($65 US)
  • Application Materials:
    • Current Artist's Resume/CV
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
    • Statement of Purpose
      • Please use this statement to address the focus of your work and the direction you wish to pursue in the Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies program.
      • Discuss your reasons for applying to PNCA's Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies program and the artistic goals you wish to achieve during your time in the program.
      • Be specific as to your focus of research and how you see this evolving or changing during your time in the Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies program.
      • Describe the pathway you envision for yourself as part of the program.
      • Discuss the issues, concerns and influences in your work.
    • Portfolio
      • Your portfolio is an extremely important part of your application and the opportunity to present your best and most recent work. The portfolio review is used to assess the artistic potential of the student.
      • Include 5 to 20 examples of your recent work.
      • If you are including video/audio, no more than six minutes of moving image or sound.
    • Transcript
      • Submit the transcript from the institution that granted your undergraduate degree. This can be a scan of a paper transcript or a digital file downloaded from your degree-granting school. If admitted to PNCA, your official transcript in its original sealed envelope will need to be submitted to PNCA before starting classes.
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MA in Critical Studies

Applications for 2018 are now being accepted.

Application Checklist:

  • PNCA Online Application Form at Slideroom
  • Graduate Application Fee ($65 US)
  • Application Materials:
    • Current Resume/CV
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
    • Writing Sample
    • Portfolio (Optional)
      • Include up to 10 examples of your recent work.
    • Transcript
      • Submit the transcript from the institution that granted your undergraduate degree. This can be a scan of a paper transcript or a digital file downloaded from your degree-granting school. If admitted to PNCA, your official transcript in its original sealed envelope will need to be submitted to PNCA before starting classes.
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MFA in Print Media

Applications for 2018 are now being accepted.

Application Checklist:

  • PNCA Online Application Form at Slideroom
  • Graduate Application Fee ($65 US)
  • Application Materials:
    • Current Resume
    • Two Letters of Recommendation
    • Statement of Purpose
      • Please use this statement to address the focus of your work and the direction you wish to pursue in the MFA in Print Media. (500 -750 words)
      • Discuss your reasons for applying to the MFA in Print Media and the goals you wish to achieve during your time at this program.
      • Be specific as to your focus of research and how you see this evolving or changing during your time in the Print Media program.
      • Discuss how the "print matrix" informs the outcomes of your work and reference the influences and issues that shape the context for your creative practice.
    • Portfolio
      • Your portfolio is an extremely important part of your application and the opportunity to present your best and most recent work. The portfolio review is used to assess the artistic potential of the student. See how to prepare your portfolio below.
      • Include 15 examples of your recent work.
    • Transcript
      • Submit the transcript from the institution that granted your undergraduate degree. This can be a scan of a paper transcript or a digital file downloaded from your degree-granting school. If admitted to PNCA, your official transcript in its original sealed envelope will need to be submitted to PNCA before starting classes.
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Portfolio Preparation

How to prepare your portfolio

Your portfolio is your best opportunity to show us who you are as an artist or designer. 

Prepare images or files of your best recent works. For internet-based projects, submit a screenshot of the URL.

For each piece you will upload to your portfolio on Slideroom, you will need

  • Title
  • Medium
  • Dimensions (2D/3D artwork) / Length (Time-based work)

File format guidelines:

File Type

Size

Extension

Images

Up to 5MB

.jpg, .jpeg, .png, .gif, .tif, .tiff, .bmp, .tga

Video

Up to 60MB

.m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, .mkv

Audio

Up to 30 MB

.mp3, .wma, .ogg, .flac

Documents

Up to 10 MB

.pdf


Next Steps

Notification of Acceptance

The individual Graduate Program Enrollment Committees review applications once they have received all required materials from the applicant. You will be notified by email, as well as hard copy via USPS, of PNCA’s admissions decision.

Tuition Deposits

If you accept PNCA’s offer of admission, a nonrefundable $350 tuition deposit is required to secure a place in the incoming class and gain registration privileges. The tuition deposit is due on the date indicated in your acceptance letter. The $350 deposit is credited to your student account upon registration.

Deferred Enrollment

Accepted students who wish to defer admission to a subsequent semester may submit a request for deferment in writing to the Admissions Office. Students may not defer more than one year from their original acceptance semester. All deferment requests are reviewed by the individual Graduate Program Enrollment Committee and the Director of Graduate Admissions.

Get in touch

For any questions about your application or the application process, please contact Office of Graduate Admissions M-F, 9am-5pm PST.

Tyler Mackie
Director of Graduate Admissions
tmackie_admissions@pnca.edu
503.821.8975

Email