The Master of Fine Arts program in film and video production requires a minimum of 59 s.h. of graduate credit, of which 24 s.h. must be earned at the University of Iowa. Students must earn a minimum g.p.a. of 3.00.

Graduate credit is typically acquired through advanced production courses, graduate colloquia, and advising-centered thesis courses taken over three years. With a focus on expanded documentary, experimental, hybrid, and narrative media forms, the curriculum combines creative and scholarly coursework with the aim of producing a body of innovative, artistic work in film, digital media, multimedia installation, and/or animation. Degree requirements include advanced coursework in film/media theory or history, annual public presentations and critiques, the development of an artist statement, a thesis paper, and a creative thesis project.

Listed below are the general categories of coursework required to earn the degree; for more specific information on courses, curriculum, and requirements of the Master of Fine Arts in film and video production, visit the UI General Catalog.

Degree Requirements
Title Hours
CINE:4890 Media Production Workshop 4
CINE:5890 Colloquium in Film and Video Production 8
Advanced production courses 12
Two mid-level graduate courses in film theory/history 6
Two courses from related areas outside Cinematic Arts 6
Additional Upper-Level Electives 5
MFA Thesis Project (see below) 12
Additional Electives (after thesis clearance) 6
Total Hours 59

Important Deadlines

Application Deadline: January 15th (for Fall semester enrollment)


A faculty committee chaired by the head of film and video production evaluates applications to the M.F.A. program. Application materials should include undergraduate and/or graduate transcripts, a personal statement, three letters of recommendation, samples of creative work, test scores, and writing samples when relevant. Admission decisions are based on the full range of an applicant's accomplishments and evidence that the applicant will thrive in the department's program. Previous academic experience in moving image production is desirable but not required.

Applicants for admission to the graduate program must meet the admission requirements of the Graduate College; see the Manual of Rules and Regulations of the Graduate College on the Graduate College website. For more information, see the Graduate Admissions Process page.

MFA Thesis Project

Looking forward to the final year, the committee reviews the candidate’s work to date along with a written proposal for the MFA Thesis project. This year-long project should both extend the candidate’s artistic concerns and contribute to a coherent body of work.