FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. Can I apply to more than one program?
Applicants are allowed to apply to one graduate program per year. If you are unsure about which program to apply for, we recommend that you attend the Information Sessions and contact each department to identify which program is the best fit for you.
2. Can I apply to the spring semester?
Entry into the SVA graduate programs takes place primarily in the fall semester. Graduate transfer students may apply to the spring semester on a case-by-case basis, with permission from the department chair.
3. Is there a paper application?
All graduate applicants are required to complete the online application and submit the nonrefundable $80 application fee using a credit card. To begin the online application process, please click here.
Please note: The online application is not officially submitted until valid payment information has been supplied. Upon completion of this, an e-mail confirmation is sent. We strongly recommend that applicants print this out and keep it with their records.
4. I submitted a graduate application in a previous year. Are my documents still on file?
Graduate Admissions does not hold onto application files or materials from previous years. You must submit a new application, application fee, and all required materials to the Office of Graduate Admissions by the appropriate deadline.
5. I am currently enrolled in a graduate program at a different institution. Can I transfer credits?
Transfer applicants should apply to the program and be accepted first. Upon acceptance, the Graduate Committee on Admissions and the Graduate Department Chair will evaluate submitted transcripts for possible transfer credits. Applicants are encouraged to include a note with their application letting the Committee know that they would like their transcripts to be considered for transfer credits.
6. How do I submit letters of recommendation?
Applicants to all programs (except MFA Design for Social Innovation) are required to submit letters of recommendation from instructors or practicing professionals. Online submission is now available through the online application. Applicants will be required to provide the email address and full contact information of their references. Letters can also be mailed or delivered with all other supplementary application materials. Each envelope must be sealed and signed by the recommender in order to be considered official. SVA does not provide letter of recommendation forms.
7. How can I submit my application materials?
Please refer to our Application Procedures.
8. Can I submit my portfolio online?
Only applicants to the following twelve (12) programs may submit portfolios online using the Graduate Admissions SlideRoom account:
- MAT Art Education
- MFA Art Practice
- MPS Art Therapy
- MFA Design
- MFA Design for Social Innovation
- MPS Directing
- MPS Fashion Photography
- MFA Fine Arts
- MFA Illustration as Visual Essay
- MFA Photography, Video and Related Media
- MFA Social Documentary Film
- MFA Visual Narrative
All applicants are encouraged to carefully review the department requirements section of their chosen program.
9. English is not my primary language. Do I need to prove my English proficiency?
Applicants need to provide proof of sufficient English proficiency. For more information about the types of English proficiency exams and the scores required, please click here.
10. What is the CEEB code for School of Visual Arts?
The CEEB code is 2835. This is the code that must be supplied to educational testing agencies such as ETS in order to have scores mailed to SVA.
11. I completed/am in the process of completing my undergraduate degree at an institution outside the United States. How do I know if I am eligible to apply for graduate study?
Applicants who have attended institutions outside of the United States must prove that their educational background is equivalent to a U.S. bachelor's degree. Transcripts must be translated and evaluated by an official evaluation agency. We recommend using ECE or WES. For more information about this requirement, please click here.
12. My undergraduate degree was not earned in an artistic discipline. Am I still eligible to apply?
Applicants must have a bachelor's degree or its equivalent from an accredited college or university. SVA's Graduate Program applicants come from a variety of degree programs (BFA, BA, BS, etc.), and they are expected to have strong, competitive portfolios and academic backgrounds. Some departments may require specific coursework and/or technical proficiency. Please refer to the department requirements section of your chosen program for more information.
13. When will I receive an admission decision?
Applicants who have completed the application process by January 15, 2016, will receive an admission decision, in writing, by April 1, 2016. The College does not disclose admissions decisions via phone. All admission decision letters are sent to the mailing address on file. To avoid delays in notification, applicants who move or change addresses during the application process should contact Graduate Admissions via email at email@example.com to update their contact information.
1. I have been accepted into the graduate program and wish to pay the nonrefundable $1,000 enrollment fee. How do I make this payment?
There are five (5) ways to pay the enrollment fee: online (credit/debit card); through the mail (check, money order or credit card); in-person (drop off a check, money order or credit card to Admissions); over the phone (call Graduate Admissions and provide credit/debit card); bank wire transfer. Detailed instructions will be included in your acceptance package. All enrollment fees and housing deposits should be sent to the Office of Graduate Admissions. These payments are processed on a first-come, first-served basis, as space remains available in each program.
2. I have been accepted into the graduate program, but cannot attend. Can I defer my admissions? If I was accepted to the program in a previous year, is my acceptance still valid?
Unless special arrangements were made, admission is not usually deferred from one year to the next. Applicants who delay enrollment must reapply to the program by submitting a new application and fee, as well as all required application materials.
- Financial Aid
1. What are the tuition and fees of each graduate program?
To review a complete list of tuition and fees, please click here.
2. How do I know if I am eligible for financial aid?
Only United States citizens and legal permanent residents are eligible for federal and state need-based aid.
3. How do I apply for financial aid?
All students must submit a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) as the first step in the application process. The fastest way to apply is online at FAFSA on the Web. Don't forget to appropriately sign the certification page when you have finished the online application.
4. When should I file the 2015-16 FAFSA?
Graduate applicants should consider filing the FAFSA as soon after January 1st as possible. The recommended priority filing date for new students is February 1, 2015. Please note that the FAFSA can be filed prior to receiving an admission decision.
5. What type of financial aid is available for graduate students?
For more detailed information, please click here to view the Office of Financial Aid's online resources.
6. I am an international applicant. Can I apply for financial aid?
Students who are attending college on a student visa do not qualify for federal and state Financial Aid. There are some alternative loans that you could apply for with a co-signer who is a U.S. Citizen. We also recommend applying for scholarships. You may research scholarship opportunities at IEFA, a scholarship search engine which focuses on international students.
7. Does SVA offer scholarships and assistantships to graduate students?
Scholarships are awarded to qualified new students after acceptance to certain graduate degree programs. Students may apply for assistantships once they have entered the program. These awards are based upon individual merit and performance and vary by department. All applicants are encouraged to do their own research into outside scholarships and other sources of funding.
8. Is there a form that graduate students must fill out in order to be considered for scholarship?
Merit-based, partial-tuition scholarships are offered by many of the graduate departments. Applicants are automatically evaluated for these scholarships during the review process.
9. Can graduate applicants apply for the Silas H. Rhodes scholarship?
The Silas H. Rhodes scholarship and the Chairman's Merit Award are only offered to applicants applying to the undergraduate program at SVA.
- Getting to Know SVA
1. How can I get a copy of the current Graduate Brochure?
There are three ways to get the brochure: in person, via mail or downloading a PDF. If you are in the New York City area, you can pick up a copy from the Admissions Office located on the first floor of the 209 East 23rd Street building (between Second and Third Avenues). It is open Monday through Friday, from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm. If you wish to have a bruchure mailed to you, please fill out the following online request form: click here. If you would like to view or download a PDF copy of the catalog, see the Downloads module on this page.
2. When can I visit the campus?
Graduate Program Information Sessions are held throughout the fall season. Please contact the department directly to find out about weekly tours or appointments that may be available. For the contact information for each graduate department, please click here.
3. Where is Graduate Admissions located?
The main Admissions Office is located at 209 East 23rd Street (between Second and Third Avenues). If you have specific questions about the application process, please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 212.592.2107. If you have questions about a graduate program curriculum, courses, instructors or technology, we recommend that you contact the department of your desired program. We strongly encourage applicants to visit their prospective department prior to submitting their application materials. To find out about tours or appointments that may be available, please contact the appropriate graduate program directly. For a complete list of the contact information for each graduate department, please click here.
4. How can I find out about current events at SVA?
To sign up to receive SVA’s monthly e-calendar and the Visual Arts Briefs weekly e-mail newsletter, please click here.
2016 Graduate Catalog
PDF [8.14 MB]
2016-2017 Undergraduate and Graduate Registration Book
PDF [5.18 MB]
Graduate Application Materials Cover Sheet (2016)
PDF [55.26 KB]
Graduate Declaration of Finance Form (2016-2017)
PDF [64.59 KB]
- 2016 Graduate Catalog
Featured Events & Exhibitions
School of Visual Arts presents the third annual “Digital Short Story: Small Bytes / Big...05/21/2016 - June 11
Tuesday, April 19, 2016