Jun 17, 2018  
2010-2011 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog 
2010-2011 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Certificate in Fine Arts

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The Certificate in Fine Arts is a 36-credit credential awarded by the College of Visual and Performing Arts at UMass Dartmouth. This interdisciplinary program centers on development of skills and concepts in the areas of Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, and Sculpture.

This certificate is intended for students without a bachelors degree. It provides not only coursework in art theory and practice but also a foundation in art history and literature or composition.

It is expected that students who complete the Certificate will have gained mastery of certain specific technical skills in one or more areas, an awareness of current trends and various historical precedents of that media area, and an understanding of their own focus and the professional paths available to them.

A maximum of 15 of the credit requirements can be met through transfer of prior educational experience, which can include advanced prior learning at a recognized institution or workshop venue where no formal university credit was available, i.e., Haystack, Arrowmont, Penland, Vermont Studio School, Skowhegan or an internationally-located center of learning.

At least 21 credits must be taken in residence at UMass Dartmouth including part of the introductory studio requirement, all intermediate and advanced-level studio requirements in the student’s chosen field and the adjunct Fine Arts studio course requirement.

Certificate students are integrated into regularly-scheduled undergraduate classes. They are expected to perform on a technical and aesthetic level, work within the established curriculum, comply with the semester schedule of class meetings and participate in projects, field trips, critiques and student exhibitions. Certificate course requirements may be completed on a full- or part-time schedule.

Student Profile

The Certificate student will enroll in a series of studio and academic courses to develop appropriate technical skills and a personal aesthetic for sustained professional work. Certificate Program students work alongside BFA degree students and are expected to perform on similar technical and creative levels. The program is designed to include the following students:

  • second degree art/design students wishing to pursue experience in one or more areas of the Fine Arts as an adjunct to their prior arts education,
  • art/design professionals wanting to retrain, augment or update their skills and creative directions,
  • second career students with personally-gained skills in Fine Arts but little or no previous formal arts education,
  • those for whom the existing degrees offered by the university are not deemed necessary or feasible,
  • art educators who wish to return to a learning environment and develop their skills in the Fine Arts.

Application Procedure

To apply to the Fine Arts Certificate program, applicants submit a letter of request to the Dean of the College of Visual and Performing Arts, 285 Old Westport Road, North Dartmouth, MA  02747-2300.

The letter should include:

  • the subject area and goals in pursuing the Certificate,
  • transcripts of any undergraduate work completed and records of related non-credit experience at recognized national workshops, residencies or international centers of learning.

Additionally, 10 images of work must be submitted electronically at http://umassd.slideroom.com, a web-based viewing platform. 

Application materials and images will be reviewed within two weeks of receipt and applicants will be notified promptly.  During the review process, applicants may be requested for an interview.  For those accepted into the Certificate program, the Dean’s Office will notify the Office of the Registrar to create a non-degree student file.

If an applicant is judged to be insufficiently prepared in technical areas, or lacks clear focus but is judged to have potential for learning and personal growth, the applicant may enroll in one or more courses as a non-certificate special student and re-apply to the Certificate program.

Registration for Certificate students will take place after the close of the registration period for degree students.  Because Certificate students are placed in regularly-scheduled classes, admission may be dependent on the availability of space.


Students in the Fine Arts Certificate Program will be required to take the following sequence of courses. If proof of prior credits earned is provided through transcripts, several courses and credits can be waived at the discretion of the faculty. Courses for which transfer credit is allowed are noted below.

Introductory Studio: 6 credits

  • (200-level course in chosen area)
    3 transfer credits allowed, e.g.,Sculpture 1 or Painting 1

Intermediate Studio: 6 credits

  • (300-level course in chosen area)

Advanced Studio: 6 credits

  • (400-level course in chosen area)

Drawing: 6 credits

  • (300 level)
    Students who have made drawing their chosen area will take 6 credits in another area, e.g., Painting, Printmaking. 3 transfer credits are allowed

Art History Electives: 6 credits

6 transfer credits allowed

English Lit. or Composition Electives: 6 credits

6 transfer credits allowed

Total credits for Certificate in Fine Arts: 36

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