Courses of Study and Degree Requirements

The MFA in Experimental & Documentary Arts is a two-year degree program requiring 15 courses over 4 semesters: 10 required (Core) courses in prescribed sequence, and 5 electives. 

  • 5 Core Studio courses: Documentary Fieldwork, Experiments in the Moving Image, Genealogies of the Experimental, Thesis Writing Workshop, and Thesis Project Workshop.
  • 5 Core Seminar courses: Continuity and Change in Experimental and Documentary Arts, Critique I - IV.
  • Electives complete the degree requirement minimum, with one required as supporting thesis project ("Methods"), and one required in an emerging technology ("Comp Media").

Each student’s culminating project will be presented in a second year Spring MFA Exhibition. A written thesis on the project is also required.

YEAR 1 – FALL

  • Documentary Fieldwork (3 units) Exploration of the range of mediums and approaches to community-based documentary work that expresses both cultural/political realities through a personal point of view. Final project required.
  • Continuity and Change in Experimental and Documentary Arts (3 units) Conceptual survey of documentary studies with attention to experimental and artistic practices. Final paper required.
  • Elective: (3 units) 
  • Critique I (1 unit)

YEAR 1 – SPRING

  • Experiments in the Moving Image (3 units) Techniques and methodologies of experimental film and video production. Final project required.  
  • Genealogies of the Experimental (3 units) History of experimental expression in 20th and 21st century art. Final paper required.

  • Elective: (3 units) 
  • Critique II (1 unit)

SUMMER

  • Individual Thesis Research

YEAR 2 – FALL

  • Thesis Writing Workshop (3 units)
  • Elective: (3 units) 
  • Elective: (3 units) 
  • Critique III (1 unit)

YEAR 2 – SPRING

  • Thesis Project Workshop (3 units) Production and completion of thesis project.
  • Elective: (3 units) 
  • Critique IV (3 units)