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MFA / MDes as a Web Designer and Grad School Portfolio Questions


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I'm a web designer by trade (have been for 11+ years) and currently work as a Social Media Strategist for a large corporation within a digital media department, still keeping my hands in web (and some graphic) design work, etc.


I'm finishing up my BFA in Vis Comm (specialization in web design) and graduate this upcoming May and currently have a 3.85 GPA. I've decided I want to go for my Masters as I want to teach at the collge level. Even though I am in my mid-30's, married with kids, my husband is on board with relocating our family if necessary depending on gaining acceptance to a school offering a TA or GTA. I am also open to online schools providing they are legit.


Most of my graphic related work has been web-related... I do want to pursue a terminal degree, so it seems a MFA or a MDes is the route for me to go. I've got a list of schools I'm interested in, but here's my dilemna. There doesn't appear to be any programs that specifically deal with web design for an MFA other than Academy of Art. I have found some Digital Media / Visual Arts programs, but they seem to be more generally focused on graphic design or illustration. While I do have some graphic design and illustration work I've done, my strongest stregnths are in web design and my portfolio peices speak to that.


I want to apply to grad schools that have a good reputation so that when I am ready to teach I'll have a degree from a well respected program. However, I have no idea what my chances will be in submitting a portfolio heavily strong in web design examples. Just about everything I have seen in the way of grad school design porfolios are completely print, drawing or illustration based.


Schools I'm considering applying to:


Rhode Island School of Design - MFA in Digital Media

Virginia Commonwealth University - MFA in Design / Visual Communications

George Mason University - MFA in New Media

Champlain College - MFA in Emergent Media

IIT Institute of Design - MDes / MBA (Dual Degree)

Pratt Institute - MFA in Communications Design

Vermont College of Fine Arts - MFA in Visual Art

University of Chicago - MFA in Visual Arts

Eastern Michigan University - MFA in Graphic Design

School of Visual Arts - MFA in Design

Academy of Art University - MFA in Web Design & New Media

Carnegie Mellon University - Mdes

Savannah College of Art & Design - MFA in Graphic Design

University of Massachusettes Dartmouth - MFA in Digital Media


  • Can anyone give some advice and/or guidance to a web designer that wishes to obtain an MFA (or MDes) in regards to the schools best to focus on for acceptance?
  • And also, will a web design based portfolio be okay or hurt me in relation to acceptance? Thank you.
Edited by brathjens
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