Design


Opportunities for graduate studies

By pursuing a graduate degree in Design at the University of North Texas, you’ll become part of an innovative design community where scholarship, research and creativity flourish.

Our graduate Design programs offer you the opportunity to:

  • Acquire conceptual, aesthetic, analytical and technical skills that allow you to collaborate with other dynamic artists and designers, as well as professionals in other disciplines
  • Develop critical thinking and problem solving abilities
  • Discover your creative potential to innovate and re-invent real-world design solutions
  • Learn from award-winning faculty members with real-world experience

You can pursue either a Master of Fine Arts degree or Master of Arts degree in Design in one of four different concentrations.

Our M.F.A. program

U.S. News & World Report consistently ranks our M.F.A. program among the best in the nation. M.F.A. concentrations are available in:

  • Design Research
  • Fashion Design
  • Interior Design

The curriculum is divided into two sequences so you gain a deep understanding of pedagogy and studio/research.

In the pedagogy sequence, you’ll learn basic education practices such as the development of outcome objectives, grading criteria and university practices. The studio/research sequence involves identifying and developing a research agenda necessary for success professionally and in a university environment.

Our M.A. program

The M.A. degree features concentrations in Design Research or Interior Design For Sustainability. The program adds to the knowledge you’ve gained through professional activities and other academic disciplines. We teach you how to blend those experiences with evidence-based research that supports design processes. This results in new ways of:

  • Teaching (using design processes to improve learning outcomes for K-12 students and beyond)
  • Managing (innovative business practices, civic initiatives, health and well-being endeavors)
  • Facilitating (communications between disparate groups, educational strategies and tactics, fundraising efforts)
  • Planning (neighborhood- and community-based improvements, technological introductions, environmental protections)

The new Interior Design For Sustainability concentration is the only M.A. program of its kind in the state. It provides you with a variety of proficiencies and understandings that address sustainable project management practices, research methods, problem solving, critical thinking, graphic and written communication, ethics and social responsibility.

The College

The College of Visual Arts and Design is one of the most comprehensive arts and design programs at a public university in the U.S. It’s also considered one of the best art schools in the American south and Southwest. Our state-of-the-art facilities include:

  • A powerful computer network for creating visual design projects
  • A total of 150,000 square feet of specialized classrooms, studios and galleries
  • A 90,000 square-foot Art Building
  • The UNT Art Gallery, which offers 2,500 square feet of exhibition space
  • The 2,500 square-foot Design Research Collaborative lab space in the downtown Dallas business district

Other educational assets include the Jo Ann (Jody) and Dr. Charles O. Onstead Institute for Education in the Visual Arts, the Print Research Institute of North Texas, an extensive art and library collection, and the Texas Fashion Collection.

In addition to exceptional studio, exhibition and campus resources, you can participate in a wide variety of cultural and career options available throughout Dallas and Fort Worth. An active visiting artists/ scholars program will expose you to artists and design professionals from around the globe. We also offer opportunities to study and travel in foreign countries.

Attending UNT

Admission requirements

You’ll need to apply to both the Toulouse Graduate School ® and the Department of Design. Admission requirements for the graduate school are available at the grad school website or the UNT degree catalog . The department’s admission requirements are outlined below.

The department’s application deadline is Jan. 5 for the fall semester and Oct. 1 for the spring semester. Please note that the application deadline for the graduate school is different so visit the grad school site for its application deadline.

M.F.A. program

  • Have two to three years of professional experience in your area of study
  • Submit a Statement of Purpose (500 to 750 words)
  • Provide a current résumé listing all relevant work experience and affiliations
  • Supply three reference letters from people familiar with your academic or professional work
  • Submit a portfolio of work relevant to your concentration area that exhibits your design knowledge and skills

M.A. program

  • Submit a Statement of Purpose (500 to 750 words)
  • Provide a minimum of one writing sample (Two writing samples are preferred.)
  • Supply three reference letters from people familiar with your academic or professional work
  • Submit a portfolio of work relevant to your concentration area that exhibits your design knowledge and skills in your area(s) of expertise and shows how this expertise might extend into other areas

Degree requirements

M.F.A. degree

Design Research

  • 21 credit hours of design research courses
  • 9 credit hours of art history courses
  • 9 credit hours of interdisciplinary courses
  • 9 credit hours of pedagogy courses
  • 6 credit hours of practicum
  • 6 credit hours of electives

Fashion Design or Interior Design

  • 30 to 21 credit hours of fashion design or interior design courses
  • 15 to 9 credit hours in a minor area
  • 12 credit hours of art history courses
  • 9 to 0 credit hours of electives
  • 3 credit hours in research methods
  • 6 credit hours of Problem in Lieu of Thesis

M.A. degree

Design Research

  • 21 credit hours of design research courses
  • 9 credit hours of interdisciplinary courses
  • 6 credit hours of a practicum

Interior Design For Sustainability

  • 24 credit hours of interior design courses
  • 6 credit hours in a minor area (selected with faculty approval)
  • 6 credit hours of practicum

Financial assistance

The college offers teaching fellowships, teaching assistantships and scholarships to help you pursue your graduate degree.

The Academic Achievement Scholarships are available to M.F.A. and Ph.D. students during their first year of study and qualifies them for in-state tuition rates. The scholarships are renewable for a second year.

For more information about assistantships and fellowships, contact the design department. Information about other financial aid is available at the financial aid website