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Master of Fine Arts

The Department of Digital Art and Design of the College of Arts and Sciences offers graduate coursework in three areas: computer graphics and animation, graphic design, and fine arts and technology.

In these M.F.A. programs, we integrate a historical perspective within the context of emerging technologies blended with a critical relationship to art via theory, technology, and practice. Our mission is woven into the mission of NYIT, providing career-oriented professional education and access to opportunity for all qualified students. We support applications-oriented research that benefits the larger world.

Our M.F.A. programs foster creativity and curiosity in convergent technologies in the arts. Our focus is to support students in the creation of their work and to help students create comprehensive documentation of their work at NYIT. We will encourage students in this studio research environment to create original works of art and design.

It is not enough to be technically proficient in the creation of art and design; nor is it enough to be theoretically engaged without studio practice. It is a critical perspective that mediates these two sensibilities in an advanced degree. This criticality manages our rich technological environment but allows it to be governed by the arts and aesthetics. To use technology in the arts is to work within a physical philosophy that is at once concrete and abstract, theoretical and embodied. To use computers, with the intent to make art, is to combine physical philosophy into an intuitive system, a unique, non-repeatable content—a work of art or design.

See below for information on how to transition from the NYIT Communication Arts, M.A. program to the M.F.A. Department of Digital Art and Design

The Department of Digital Art and Design offers the following degrees: M.F.A. Computer Graphics/Graphic Design, M.F.A. Computer Graphics/Animation, and M.F.A. Computer Graphics/Fine Arts and Technology.

Computer Graphics/Graphic Design

The Graphic Design M.F.A. specialization prepares graduate students to engage complex problems and creative research in design content, print design, web design, interactive design, exhibition design, and interface design. This creative research will result in the actualization of innovative design solutions to real world design problems. This will include extensive preparation of professional workflow from concept logistical development, logistical planning, technical development and final production of the design thesis project.

Thesis design projects will be presented in a final exhibition that will include: a visual exhibition of an ambitious design solution, a written critical evaluation of the thesis project, and a comprehensive book that includes the process and documentation of the realization of the thesis project. Graduates will also be expected to make a successful oral presentation of their final thesis to their thesis advisor.

Computer Graphics/Animation

The Animation M.F.A. specialization prepares graduates to pursue a career in animation or self-directed creative research in animation as it relates to the areas defined in the Art and Technology M.F.A. track. Graduate courses, group discussion, critiques, and consultation with thesis advisors emphasize creative thinking, character, storytelling, and storyboard development, digital compositing and special effects experimentation, and computer programming. The program exposes students to both 2-D and 3-D computer animation.

The results will be in a complete portfolio of innovative computer animation. The student who plans to prepare for a career in computer animation will most likely create a portfolio of commercially-based animated shorts, each with strong characters, a well-defined story, with a strong sense of beginning, middle, and end. The student who plans to prepare for a career in self-directed creative research in animation will create a portfolio of innovative computer animation that is self-expressive, ready for gallery exhibition or animation festival presentation.

Animation projects will be presented in a professional thesis exhibition including photographic documentation of the animation stills in a thesis book complete with written critical evaluation of the thesis project. The animation must also be submitted upon completion. Graduates will also be expected to make a successful oral presentation of their final thesis to thesis advisor.

Computer Graphics/Fine Arts and Technology

The Fine Arts and Technology M.F.A. specialization prepares graduates to pursue self-directed creative research in any related concentration, such as digital imaging, experimental media, digital sculpture, performance art, installation art, physical computing, time-based art, robotics, web-based information art, and/or any approach to the creation of artistic content outside static disciplines.

This creative research will result in the actualization of innovative digital art projects after exhaustive preparation throughout the standard professional workflow of concept development, logistical planning, technical development and final production of the digital art thesis project.

Graduate courses, group discussion, critiques and consultation with thesis advisors emphasize critical thinking, development of aesthetic concepts, historical perspectives of art theory, philosophical questions relative to creation and context of imagemaking, content as end experience as well as product, fine arts application of computer technologies/digital media, and preparation to function professionally as well as socially within the art world structure of galleries, museums, dealers, curators, and art critics.

Thesis art projects will be presented in a professional thesis exhibition including photographic documentation in a thesis book complete with written critical evaluation of the thesis project. Graduates will also be expected to make a successful oral presentation of their final thesis to thesis advisor.

Transition Requirements to M.F.A. (Department of Digital Art and Design)

Any student with an earned NYIT M.A. in Communication Arts may transition into the M.F.A. Digital Art and Design program with the following three conditions:

An earned NYIT M.A. can be transitioned in the following M.F.A. tracks:

  • M.F.A. Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Animation
  • M.F.A. Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Graphic Design
  • M.F.A. Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Art and Technology

M.F.A Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Animation

34 credits come from CA
20 credits must come from Thesis courses

  • ARTC 801 Grad Crit/Thesis, 3 credits
  • ARTC 851 Thesis Proposal, 2 credits
  • ARTU 862 Thesis: Grad Std I, 6 credits
  • ARTU 872 Thesis: Grad Std II, 6 credits
  • ARTC 871 Thesis: Paper Ex, 3 credits

10 credits will be recommended by the M.F.A. faculty advisor from ARTA, ARTB, ARTC, ARTH, and/or ARTG series courses above 600.

M.F.A Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Graphic Design

34 credits come from CA
20 credits must come from Thesis courses

  • ARTC 801 Grad Crit/Thesis, 3 credits
  • ARTC 851 Thesis Proposal, 2 credits
  • ARTU 862 Thesis: Grad Std I, 6 credits
  • ARTU 872 Thesis: Grad Std II, 6 credits
  • ARTC 871 Thesis: Paper Ex, 3 credits
  • ARTB 751 Professional Critiques, 2 credits

8–10 credits will be recommended by the M.F.A. faculty advisor from ARTA, ARTB, ARTC, ARTH, and/or ARTG series courses above 600.

M.F.A Digital Art and Design, Computer Graphics/Art and Technology

34 credits come from CA
20 credits must come from Thesis courses

  • ARTC 801 Grad Crit/Thesis, 3 credits
  • ARTC 851 Thesis Proposal, 2 credits
  • ARTU 862 Thesis: Grad Std I, 6 credits
  • ARTU 872 Thesis: Grad Std II, 6 credits
  • ARTC 871 Thesis: Paper Ex, 3 credits

Ten credits will be recommended by the M.F.A. faculty advisor from ARTA, ARTB, ARTC, ARTH, and/or ARTG series courses above 600.


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Admission Requirements

  • B.F.A. degree or its equivalent from an accredited college or university
  • Minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0

Application Materials

  • Completed application
  • $50 nonrefundable application fee
  • M.F.A. Supplementary Application: digital portfolio, description sheet describing the contents of the portfolio, résumé/CV, and three letters of recommendation. Applicants must submit their portfolio after applying to NYIT. They will then receive an NYIT ID number, can contact the Office of Admissions for their ID number to upload their portfolio online.
  • Copies of undergraduate transcripts for all schools attended. All final, official transcripts must be received prior to the start of your first semester.
  • Copy of college diploma or proof of degree
  • International student requirements: English proficiency, I-20, and transcript evaluation

For additional information, please contact the Department of Digital Art and Design at 212.261.1796 or 516.686.7542 or visit the department website.

The M.F.A. program does not accept transfer credit. See the M.F.A. description for information on transition from the NYIT Communication Arts, M.A., degree to the M.F.A. (Fine Arts) degree.