Application Deadline: January 15

If you are ready to apply to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s (SAIC) dual degree program for the Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Art History and Master of Arts in Arts Administration and Policy, you will need to build two portfolios, gather all of your application materials, and complete the electronic application by January 15 for the fall semester (spring admissions are not accepted).

Completed Online Application

SAIC requires applicants to apply online. Filing an online application requires a valid credit card and a current email address. You may apply to up to three programs with one application and fee. If you are applying to either the MFA in Studio or the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Studio you may select up to three departments of entry. Applications must be submitted prior to 11:00 p.m. (CST) on the appropriate deadline.

Start your application here: Graduate Online Application.

Questions? Contact the Office of Admissions at gradmiss@saic.edu or 800.232.7242.

Nonrefundable Application Fee

When you click the "submit" button on your online application, you will be prompted to enter credit card information to pay the application fee. Your application is not fully submitted until you have entered your credit card information. Under no circumstances will an application fee be waived or refunded.

Domestic application fee: $80
International application fee: $100

Application fees will be discounted by 50 percent from September 1 through November 30.

Official College Transcripts

Submit one official transcript from each college you have attended. If transcripts are issued directly to you, forward them to SAIC with the seal unbroken and the registrar's signature intact. A transcript request form is available for download from the online application, but is not required. If you are in possession of unofficial copies of your transcripts you are welcome to upload them to the Attachments section of your ePortfolio, but you are not required to do so.

If you are in the process of completing a bachelor's degree when you apply, a transcript showing your first three years of study is acceptable. If admitted to SAIC, you must submit a final, official transcript verifying the completion and award of your degree directly to SAIC's admissions office prior to your matriculation.

Address transcripts to:
SAIC Graduate Admissions
36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1201
Chicago, IL 60603

Statement of Purpose

To apply for the dual-degree program, please submit a statement for BOTH the Master of Arts in Arts Administration and Policy and the Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Art History.

For each department, write a 500- to 750-word statement of purpose that describes you work or research. Discuss how you came to focus on the medium, body of work, or academic area that you wish to pursue at the graduate level. Also discuss future directions or goals for your work and describe how each program is suited to your professional goals.

Upload these statements to your the Attachments section of your ePortfolio. Please be sure to indicate which statement is for which program.

Letters of Recommendation

You are responsible for securing three letters of recommendation from persons who are qualified to write about your potential for success at SAIC. If you are currently a student or are a recent graduate, we recommend you request letters of reference from current or former instructors.

Letters of recommendation should be submitted electronically via SAIC's ePortfolio. When completing the References section in your ePortfolio, you will be asked to provide the names and other information associated with each of your references. Once you click "send request," an email will be sent to each of your references with instructions on how to submit their recommendations through the ePortfolio.

If your recommenders prefer, they may submit recommendations by mail. Be sure to supply your recommenders with addressed, stamped envelopes and ask them to sign across the seal.

Address recommendations to:
SAIC Graduate Admissions
36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1201  
Chicago, IL 60603

ePortfolio

The Admissions Committee reviews portfolios for clear direction and potential for development. Applicants are required to submit an ePortfolio. You must submit a separate ePortfolio for each program or studio department to which you apply. Instructions for submitting ePortfolios will be sent either to the email address associated with your SAIC application, or to the email address associated with your ePortfolio account, if you already have one. You will receive the link to your ePortfolio 24 to 48 hours after you save the first page of the online application.

For the Master of Arts in Arts Administration and Policy program, submit a sample of your critical writing, up to 2,000 words in length. This can be either an essay assignment from a previous course of study, an excerpt from a longer research paper, or a recently published article.

For the Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Art History program, submit a 15- to 25-page critical writing sample that demonstrates knowledge of the field, ability in research, and clarity of argumentation. Submissions should be written on a topic in modern or contemporary art history from the 19th century to the present, but papers dealing with earlier historical eras will be accepted if they are in dialogue with current debates and methods. Additionally, topics dealing with relevant theories and philosophies, visual studies, and film studies will be considered.

  • Images: .jpg, .gif, .pdf (up to 5 MB each)
  • Text documents: MUST be in .pdf format (up to 10 MB each)

Direct all inquiries regarding the ePortfolio to admiss_portfolio@saic.edu, 800.232.7242, or 312.629.6100.

GRE

Applicants are required to submit scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test. The Institution Code for SAIC is 1713. For more details, visit here.

Interviews

A small number of applicants will be invited to participate in an interview. This will normally be conducted by telephone. Candidates may elect to use Skype, or may attend a meeting in person at SAIC.

Alternative arrangements can be made if you are unable to arrange for access.

Résumé

A current résumé is required. Upload your résumé to the Attachments section of your ePortfolio.

International students

Students whose native language is not English, or who do not have a degree conferred by a U.S.-accredited university, are required to submit evidence of English language proficiency. Submit Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) results with your application. The Institution Code for SAIC is 1713.

Minimum Required Scores

TOEFL: 100
IELTS: 7.0
For more information about the TOEFL, please visit here.
For more information about the IELTS, please visit here.

Academic Records

Transcripts are records of your studies that list the courses you completed, the grades received, and provide evidence of degree conferral. They may include grade sheets, exam results, final diplomas, degrees, or graduation certificates. Official copies are issued in the original language directly by your university. Copies must bear the official stamp or seal of the institution, as well as the signature of the appropriate official such as the dean, rector, registrar, controller of examinations, or office of teaching affairs. Photos, notarized copies, facsimiles, or email transmissions are not acceptable.

Official translations are expected for all educational documents issued in a language other than English. A translation agency or university language department should issue official translations typed on official stationary and the translator must attest proficiency in the original language and indicate their translations are accurate word-for-word.

Prerequisites

A conferred four-year baccalaureate degree or its equivalent is required for admission to all graduate programs at SAIC. 

All applications are evaluated on a case-by-case basis and are encouraged from those candidates who have completed substantial coursework in art history and the humanities.

See Also

Dual degree: Master of Arts in Modern and Contemporary Art History and Master of Arts in Arts Administration and Policy program

Arts Administration and Policy department

Art History, Theory, and Criticism department