What areas of study do you offer?

Our MFA program is primarily centred on drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, video art and digital multimedia. But, in the tradition of contemporary art practice, we also recognize and encourage work that explores more than one of these categories. 

What facilities are available to MFA students?

All MFA students are assigned their own private, secure studio space with 24 hour access and extended access to the rest of the specialized studio areas. The Visual Arts Department has specialized workshop facilities for drawing and painting, photography (digital and analogue), sculpture (including metal, wood, and plastics), as well as digital media (including video, sound, projection, and other media).

How many students do you accept?

Five to six new graduate students are accepted every year, making the application process a competitive one.

Are there housing opportunities through the University of Victoria?

Yes. Most graduate students elect to live off campus. For more information, please see Campus Housing or Off Campus Housing.

How long is the academic program?

The academic program is 20 months long and students are enrolled for 5 semesters full-time:  Year 1: Fall, Spring, Summer; Year 2: Fall and Spring. We do not currently offer part-time enrollment or low-residency options.

Do I have to attend classes in the summer session?

There are no formal classes during this time but you are expected to continue your studio practice and research independently during the first summer of enrollment.  Students must remain enrolled for this semester of study.  Students will be assigned a grade for the summer semester after consulting with their supervisor early in the fall semester. Our graduate students may request the use of the larger teaching studios during this time.


What are the application deadlines?

For international students the deadline is December 15.
For domestic students the deadline is January 15.

Can I apply without a BFA?

Yes, we will consider all applicants with a minimum of a bachelors degree or equivalent, though a BFA is preferred.

Do I need to have a thesis committee supervisor before applying?

No. In Visual Arts, students choose their committee supervisors once they are accepted and classes begin. Please do not contact faculty regarding supervision prior to being notified of your acceptance to the program.

What images should be in my portfolio?

The portfolio is the most important aspect of your application. Include a range of what you consider to be your best work.  You may choose a specific medium to demonstrate your versatility.

As part of your portfolio you must also upload media in the form of either:

  • 20 digital images (jpg only) OR
  • 10 digital images and 5 links to video files (Vimeo or YouTube)

Please provide us with your images in chronological order (most recent to least recent work)

Example of image labeling (image number, last name, title, date):


You should have your media prepared before commencing the online application process.

Image Format:
– Submit JPG image files only
– Image resolution must be 72 dpi
– The maximum pixel dimensions of each image are 1920 x 1080 pixels – Submit RGB color-mode files only
– Use only alphanumeric characters for the file names.

Video Format:
You will have the ability to post a link to a video that you have published online.

Portfolio Examples:

Who should I talk to if I’m having trouble with my application?

Please direct your questions to  or to the 

I’m a printmaker. Can I apply to your program?

Yes, you may apply but you will not have access to a regular printmaking studio.

What is the admissions committee looking for in a successful application?

We are looking for artistic excellence and those applicants who display academic research potential.

When will I know about the application results?

The first round of admission offers circulate in mid-March. However, final admission decisions may extend past March and may take several weeks.

I received a letter of refusal from UVic Graduate Studies. Does this mean that my portfolio won’t be considered?

All portfolios are given our highest consideration regardless of refusal from Graduate Studies.

I received a letter of refusal from UVic Graduate Studies. Is this decision final?

Not necessarily. If you have applied with below a B average, or haven’t completed your undergraduate studies, or do not have a BFA, you may receive a rejection letter. However, if your portfolio, professional experience, and reference letters are exceptional, the Visual Arts Admissions Committee may appeal this decision on your behalf.

Is there a waiting list?

Yes. If you are on the waiting list you will be informed of your status by our Graduate Advisor.

You can also see if you are on a waiting list by checking your application status online by logging in here with the id and password you created at the time you applied.

How long is the waiting list active?

Until all accepted students have registered and completed the terms of their acceptance. In rare cases, this can be several months.

Can I reapply?

Yes, please do. It is expected that your studio work, related experience and portfolio will improve over time. A rejection one year does not preclude you from applying in the future nor will it affect how your application will be received the following year.

Can I get feedback on my application?

No. The decisions of the committee are final and held in confidence.

Can I appeal the decision of the committee?

No. The decision of the admissions committee is final.

What is the status of my application?

At any time you can check your application status by logging in here with the id and password you created at the time you applied.


I am an international student. How do I apply?

Please follow this link to Graduate Admissions and follow the steps in the application wizard for international students.

Is there special funding for international students?

Our international students receive the same funding as Canadian students. Refer to the questions and answers in the financial section. Learn about funding resources for international students.

What is the tuition for international students?

UVic maintains a tuition fee estimator.

Are there other international students in the program?

Yes, we currently have international students in our program.

What other resources are available for international students?

Please check our support page for a full list of support services for international students.


How much is tuition?

UVic maintains an up to date tuition estimator.

What kind of financial assistance is available for MFA students?

Generally, all of our graduate students are awarded Teaching Assistantships, and Graduate Funding (subject to grade point average*). For the first year, this amount was approximately $10,000. For the second year, our grads may be offered teaching roles as Sessional Instructors for one term, increasing the available funding to approximately $13,500. You will be notified of current financial support in your acceptance notification.

Learn about minimum requirements for graduate funding.

Are there additional scholarships available?

Is there financial aid for graduate students?

Yes, please check the information at our office of Student Awards and Financial Aid and remember to explore opportunities for financial aid in your home province, territory or country.

What's the cost of living in Victoria?

Victoria is an attractive destination city and the cost of living is relatively high (specifics are easily Googled). UVic offers housing and lifestyle options for those moving to the city.