You are here: American University Game Center Master of Fine Arts Degree Requirements

Program at a Glance

Format
Weekday
Offered Part-Time
Yes
Start Date
Early August
Duration
3 Years
Credit Hours
54 Credits
Tuition
Calculate based on current cost per credit hour
Boot Camp
Summer
Application Requirements
Statement of purpose
Resume
Transcripts from all previous post-secondary institution
Two letters of recommendation
Portfolio (optional)
How to Apply

The catalog copy below including program and application requirements are updated once per year. For clarification and questions, email GradComm@american.edu.

Games and Interactive Media (MFA)

Offered by the School of Communication, the Games and Interactive Media (MFA) develops leaders in the creative practice of engagement through interaction. Students bridge divides and use the power of playful engagement to further the goals of other disciplines. Through implementing games in the game lab studio and independent work, the program stretches students' capacities as designers, developers, consumers and administrators.

Admission to the Program

Applicants must meet the minimum university requirements for graduate study. Admission to the program requires a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university with at least a 3.00 (on a 4.00 scale) grade point average in last 60 hours of undergraduate coursework. International students whose first language is not English should take the TOEFL examination to demonstrate proficiency in written as well as spoken English. The Graduate Record General Examination (GRE) is required, but may be waived by the division director.

An undergraduate degree in one of the visual media or game design is desirable, but applications from candidates who have majored in other fields will also be considered. Applicants with prior experience in the visual media should submit a portfolio illustrating relevant professional experience. Students without prior experience in film, video, photography, or digital media production or who do not demonstrate through their portfolio a level of minimum proficiency in media production will need to reconcile their deficiencies with additional coursework.

Official transcripts, two letters of recommendation, and a 1,000-word essay on the applicant's commitment to pursuing graduate study in the program are submitted with the application.

Incoming students must complete the summer "boot camp" courses of COMM-610 Principles of Video Production and COMM-663 Techniques and Aesthetics of Editing. The faculty committee retains discretion over student advancement to fall courses even if they pass either, or both, of the required courses.

Applicants with prior experience in visual media, who wish to be considered for a substitution of the required COMM-610 Principles of Video Production and/or COMM-663 Techniques and Aesthetics of Editing courses, should submit a written request illustrating relevant coursework or professional experience. Those requesting a substitution of either or both of these required courses will be required to take and pass an exam. Students granted substitutions for either, or both, of these required courses take advanced coursework in the field in order to fulfill those academic credits.

Qualified undergraduate students may apply to a combined bachelor's/master's program and utilize up to six credit hours of 500-level or select 600-level cross-listed coursework to satisfy the requirements of both degrees.

Degree Requirements

Course Requirements

Boot Camp (6 credit hours)

Complete 6 credit hours from the following, or other approved courses, with grades of B or better:

Required (33 credit hours)

Capstone (6 credit hours)

Electives (9 credit hours)

Complete 9 credit hours from the following, or other graduate level courses approved by program director:

Note: Students are encouraged to work with their advisor to choose a related set of electives that will help cohesively position them for thesis work in a given area.