Fall 2022 Applications are open as of November 15, 2021

February 15, 2022 - 1st priority deadline. Submit by February 15th at 11:59pm PT for guaranteed review. ​After this date, some programs may be full and only interview for waitlist spots or not be able to further review applications.

March 15, 2022 - 2nd application deadline: pending program space availability. Applications after this date are considered on a space-available basis and may not be considered if you miss this deadline.

April 15, 2022 - 3rd application deadline: pending program space availability (after the priority deadline). After this date, some programs may be full and only interview for waitlist spots or not be able to further review applications. Applications will be considered on a space-available basis and may not be considered if you miss this deadline.

May 15, 2022 - 4th application deadline for programs still accepting applications (after the Feb 15th priority deadline). After this date, some programs may be full and only interview for waitlist spots or not be able to further review applications.

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Application Requirements

Prospective students will need to submit the following materials:

Online Admissions Application: Begin the application process by submitting an online application and paying the non-refundable $65 application fee.

Minimum GPA: A GPA of 3.0 or higher in previous coursework is required. However, a GPA below 3.0 does not automatically disqualify an applicant and CIIS will consider a prospective student whose GPA is between 2.0 and 3.0. These individuals are required to submit a GPA Statement and are encouraged to contact the Office of Admissions to discuss their options.

Transcripts: Official transcripts from all accredited academic institutions attended where 7 or more credits have been earned. If transcripts are being mailed to CIIS, they must arrive in their official, sealed envelopes. Transcripts from institutions outside the US or Canada require a foreign credit evaluation through World Education Services (WES) or CIIS will also accept foreign credential evaluations that are in a comprehensive course-by-course format from the current members of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES).

Degree Requirement: An undergraduate degree (BA, BS, or the equivalent) from an accredited college or university.

Autobiographical Statement: A five-to-seven-page essay incorporating some or all of the following questions:  What experiences, interests, goals, and preparation do you bring to the MFA at CIIS? What projects are you currently working on? How would you describe yourself as a writer, artist, performer, community arts activist or inter-artist?  What influences and experiences have been central for you? What prepares you for undertaking the MFA now?

Art sample: For writers, 15 to 30 pages of poetry, prose, script, or mixed genre work. For visual, performing, sound or interdisciplinary artists: please provide links or URLs (or you may submit CDs or DVDs). Artists working in more than one form may submit samples in multiple forms.

Vision/Goal Statement: A one-page statement speaking to the following: What do you hope to accomplish during your time with us and how do you hope to develop professionally? What do you hope to achieve artistically and professionally in the next five years? How is the MFA important to helping you achieve these things?

Two letters of recommendation: One from an academic advisor or someone familiar with your ability to do academic work, and one from a professional artist in your general field. Alternatively, one of the letters may be from a supervisor in a recent professional or volunteer setting.

Candidate Selection

You must complete your bachelor's degree before beginning the programs; there is no requirement as to the field of study of the undergraduate degree. You can demonstrate appropriate levels of accomplishment and commitment to your art by means of work samples and personal statements. We welcome students from all backgrounds; however, the Admissions Committee may ask students with limited arts or writing experience to supplement their degrees with some additional CIIS coursework.

Questions? Contact us.

We are here to help! If you have any questions about applying to a program or registering for an Info Session, please contact the Admissions Office at 415-575-6154 or .

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