art sculpture installation

What does it cost?

Check out our cost calculator or visit student financial services for information on estimated costs.

How long will it take?

Minimum of 72 semester hours of graduate coursework must be completed

Where will I take classes?
Atlanta Campus

Application Deadlines View Admissions Requirements

  • Fall: February 1
  • Spring: Does not admit
  • Summer: Does not admit

Ceramics, M.F.A.

The Georgia State Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.) in Ceramics program emphasizes professional skills and achievements and fosters personal direction, diversity, technical proficiency and professional presentation. The Ceramics program offers a highly progressive curriculum that considers ceramics as a broad-based, interdisciplinary practice while providing a strong foundation in the history of the discipline and fostering technical mastery of the material. The individual direction of each student is further developed and focused through intensive time in the studio, group interaction across disciplines and periodic critical reviews. Sensitive handling of material, the integrity of craftsmanship and depth of inquiry are the unifying characteristics of work made in the ceramics M.F.A. program.

The program emphasizes group seminars and critiques to provide a variety of settings for the development and exchange of ideas relevant to the arts in general and ceramics in particular. In the final two semesters of the graduate program, the student completes a thesis exhibition and writes a supporting thesis paper.

A strong component of the graduate program involves assistantships in either studio work or in teaching undergraduate-level courses. Students may teach a variety of courses during their studies, from Foundations to Introductory Ceramics. These experiences in conjunction with the acquisition of professional skills such as resume writing, job application skills and self-promotion prepare the student with the tools to be a professional artist once studies are complete.

Students also gain the experience of organizing events and marketing through their involvement with the student organization, Student League of Independent Potters. The organization is responsible for managing a budget, participating in fundraising through two annual sales of work and coordinating two annual visiting artist workshops.

Program Highlights

The Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design features an internationally active faculty and a rigorous curriculum that prepares students for professional careers in art and design. The programs foster critical thinking and dynamic artistic production in an interdisciplinary environment. The school offers an M.A. in Art History, M.A. in Art Education, M.A.T. and M.A.Ed. in Art Education and an M.F.A. in Studio Art with concentrations in Ceramics, Drawing and Painting, Graphic Design, Interior Design, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture and Textiles.

  • M.F.A. degree that is NASAD accredited
  • We are proud to offer a range of funding opportunities to our MFA candidates, with the majority of students receiving scholarships or full funding for their master's degree journey. Students may also apply for extra, internal grant funding for research, travel, and materials twice a year.
  • Our largest funding opportunity is the competitive Welch Fellowship which provides monthly stipends and funds students for the entire three years of study.
Program Details

Applicants for the M.F.A. degree must submit the following items:

  • Three letters of recommendation: No form is required.
  • Statement of purpose: A one-to-two-pages describing academic interests, proposed area of specialization and long-range career goals. The statement should also explain how the graduate program would serve those interests and goals. Please also submit a one-page artist statement that describes your current body of artwork and your studio practice. The Statement of Purpose should be a Word or PDF document.
  • Portfolio: A successful application portfolio demonstrates creativity and commitment in a cohesive body of work. Portfolios should be submitted via the online application and can include still images, video files, audio files or any combination. A numbered "List of Works" should be uploaded to the art portfolio submission page. Please use the following format for your list: 1. Title, medium, dimensions in height x width x depth (if applicable) and time (if applicable), date of completion. Include a digital portfolio of 20 high-resolution jpeg images of recent work, including details if necessary, at 2MB per file. Video or audio files may be included as part of the 20 work examples. (Note: URLs may not be uploaded but may be included on the "List of Works" for time-based works.) Applicants may show work in diverse media as long as all of the work demonstrates the pursuit of cohesive ideas. Please format to 150 dpi, 1500 pixels on the greatest dimension. Please limit each video or audio link to no more than 5 minutes. If the video or audio link requires a password, be sure to list it.
  • Unofficial transcript from all other schools that you have attended for your application. If accepted, you will be required to submit one official transcript from each school.
  • A curriculum vitae (CV).
  • The online portion of the application (physical applications are not accepted).

In general, the requirements for an M.F.A. are as follows:

Category of Work Units Required Description
Professional Development 12 Pedagogy, Teaching Practicum, Professional Practices and Thesis Writing.
Studio-Specific Courses 30 Graduate Studio/Design Seminars and Graduate Studio/Design Practice
Electives 6 Variable – must be outside area of specialization, can be outside School of Art & Design
Art History 12 Graduate-level courses in Art History
Thesis 12 Intensive work with a thesis committee to prepare your written thesis and exit show, lecture, presentation or screening
Total 72

Each academic school in the College of the Arts offers opportunities for students who have been accepted into one of the graduate degree programs to work as assistants. Graduate assistants work as tutors, aid faculty members in research projects, supervise laboratories and teach undergraduate courses. Assistantships normally are awarded only to students enrolled full time in their degree programs. For the expected level of enrollment, see “Courses and Course Load” in section 10100 below. Students interested in graduate assistantships should contact the director of graduate studies in their school for specific information.

Students receiving assistantships as well as financial aid should be aware that receiving an assistantship can reduce the amount of financial aid awarded.

Art & Design Scholarships & Fellowships

Goals and outcomes upon completion of an M.F.A. program include:

·       Ensuring comprehensive exposure to an array of perspectives as represented by the various faculty approaches to media, content, imagery and teaching styles.

·       Exploring the continuing traditions of art-making in pursuit of new forms and with contemporary issues.

·       Encouraging multidisciplinary approaches with other studio areas.

·       Developing pedagogical skills and strategies with teaching assistantships for undergraduate-level courses.

·       Preparing students for a professional arts career through development workshops that range from exhibition and art fair training, marketing and art handling, critique and artistic discourse, etc.



The graduate programs at the Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design prepare students for competitive careers in contemporary art, art education, design and art entrepreneurship.

Highlights include one-on-one mentorship with an internationally acclaimed faculty, access to art institutions and creative publications, networking with high-profile artists, scholars and businesses, experience from conference to international art fair participation, artist residencies, as well as assistantships to develop practical skills and garner teaching experience.

The graduate program leads students to career paths such as graphic, interior and Web designers, multimedia artists, curators, gallery directors, museum and non-profit arts managers, art administrators, K-12 art teachers, art educators, art historians and writers, creative directors at advertising and marketing firms, props and set design fabricators, and art appraisers, among others.


Graduate Coordinator
Wesley Harvey
[email protected]

Ernest G. Welch School of Art & Design
10 Peachtree Center Avenue SE
117 Art & Humanities Bldg.
Atlanta, GA 30303

College of the Arts Logo35 Broad St., 4th Floor
Atlanta, GA 30303

The information shared provides an overview of Georgia State’s offerings. For details on admissions requirements, tuition, courses and more, refer to the university catalogs.