May 30, 2024  
2015-2016 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog 
2015-2016 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Certificate in Fine Arts

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Certificate in Fine Arts

Intended for students without a bachelor’s degree, the Certificate in Fine Arts is a 36-credit credential awarded by the College of Visual and Performing Arts. This interdisciplinary program centers on acquiring mastery of skills and concepts in one or more of the following fields: Drawing, Painting, Printmaking, and Sculpture. It also provides not only coursework in art theory and practice but also a foundation in art history and literature or composition.

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 adjunctive studio requirement.

Certificate students are integrated into regularly-scheduled undergraduate classes. They are expected to perform on an equivalent 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.


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:

  • a statement of the subject area desired 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

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 depend 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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