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How to Apply - Penn State College of Arts and Architecture

Collage of cropped images showing A&A students acting, performing, building, designing, singing, and playing instruments.

Start your A&A story

Ready to build your future at Penn State College of Arts and Architecture? Fantastic! We are truly honored and delighted to have you join our college.

Whether you are applying as a first-year student, perhaps changing majors or transferring campuses, considering adding a minor, or returning for an advanced graduate degree, there are a number of steps to applying. General admission requirements, important dates, and other information are extremely well detailed on Penn State’s Undergraduate Admissions and Graduate School Admissions websites. And, in fact, you will have to submit new degree program applications through one of those two sites. Change of Major, Campus Transfer, and Minor students are encouraged to reach out to the A&A Advising Team for specific information about interleaving your current educational work with a new degree.

All students should look at the Program-Specific Admission Information section below to learn about specialized application requirements for many A&A degree programs.

Paperwork and forms rarely grab the limelight as the best part of the process, but step through, let us know if you have any questions along the way – we can help you step-by-step, and we will be cheering for you when you join A&A and help us grow!

Undergrad? Welcome!

You’re just steps from expanding your horizons!

The span of A&A’s degree programs across arts, design, and performance means you will find challenges, growth, and rewards throughout your undergraduate studies and experience. Find your passions. Change the world. Become your best self. Thrive. It all starts when you apply.


Visit Undergraduate Admissions

Want to add a minor?

Great idea! A&A minors are really rather major 🙂

The minors available in A&A don’t just fit perfectly with A&A majors, they dovetail beautifully with degree programs from across the University. The best way to learn more about these minors, and to see how to fit a minor into your degree plans, is to talk to one of the A&A Advising Team.


Contact A&A Advising Today

Grad study this way...

Advanced degrees in the arts + design fields

Scholars from around the globe choose the College of Arts and Architecture as the place to build and contribute to knowledge. As you make that choice, carefully review any program-specific information below, and then proceed with your application through the Graduate School website.


Apply to the Graduate School
Actress holding an oar in the foreground with another actor smiling in the background.

Program-Specific Admission Information

Due to the specialized nature of many programs within Arts and Architecture, there are program-specific requirements that are detailed in the sections below. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to the A&A Advising Team. We are happy to help!

Acting

B.F.A. in Acting, School of Theatre

2020-21 Audition Dates (Virtual + On-Campus – Locations subject to change)

  • Saturday, December 5, 2020 – Virtual
  • Saturday, January 16, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, January 30, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, February 6, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, February 6, 2021 – TBD

Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students
Apply for admission online through the Common Application, the Coalition Application or Penn State’s own application at admissions.psu.edu. Priority consideration for freshmen admission to University Park is given to complete applications filed by November 30. Your application must be complete to receive a prescreen decision. Log into your MyPennState account to check your application status.

To receive maximum consideration for all forms of financial aid, students are strongly encouraged to complete their academic application by November 30. The final deadline to apply and submit prescreens is December 31 of the calendar year preceding the intended start year.

Questions about the application process for the Acting B.F.A. degree can be directed to:

Do you need an application fee waiver? See the Fee Waiver section on this page.


Additional B.F.A. in Acting Requirements

Applications accepted beginning August 1. Applying  for Penn State’s B.F.A. in Acting is a two-step process:

Step 1: Prescreening Submission
All students interested in auditioning for the Acting B.F.A. must submit the following via digital upload via the GetAcceptd website.

  • Headshot/Photo
  • Resume
  • Essay Response: “Why do you want to be an actor?”
  • Video Requirements: Two contrasting monologues (each no longer than ninety seconds)

Step 2: Audition
Students who are invited to audition in-person will be contacted prior to their audition and informed which monologue they should have prepared for their audition date. Each audition will consist of:

  • Q&A session with current students and faculty
  • Full body warm-up
  • Group work session and individual auditions
  • Short interview

Submit your prescreen materials via the GetAcceptd website

Architecture

Section Links:
Undergraduate B.Arch. | First-Year | Change-of-Major | Transfer
Graduate Programs | M.Arch. | M.S. in Arch. | Ph.D. in Arch.


Undergraduate B.Arch. Program Information

The following sections provide details regarding undergraduate application for incoming freshmen, change of major, and transfer students. Direct any questions about the application process or the B.Arch. program in the Department of Architecture to:

Undergraduate Academic Adviser
Erica Quinn
Phone: 814.865.5985
Email: eaq5011@psu.edu


Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students

Important Application Dates
Priority deadline is November 30
Spots remain available until our freshman class numbers are filled.

(Applicants who have graduated from high school and attempted no more than 0-17 semester credit hours of college coursework after high school graduation.)
PENN STATE UNDERGRADUATE ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
First-year applicants must submit an online application found at www.admissions.psu.edu.

  • The Admissions Office will review and assess all applications to the B.Arch. program.
  • The Admissions Office will notify all applicants in writing on a rolling basis.
  • Students who are accepted will enter the program in the following fall semester.

The Undergraduate Admissions Office exclusively handles the application process to the Bachelor of Architecture program for first-year applicants. There is no portfolio requirement.

Note: Many Bachelor of Architecture students also qualify for the Schreyer Honors College. Please consider the requirements and benefits of the Honors College at www.shc.psu.edu Also note that many requirements in the B.Arch. program also satisfy honors requirements, such as a thesis book and semester abroad.


Change of Major/Assignment Students

Important Application Dates
Portfolio submission deadline is February 15

(Penn State students who are seeking to enter the Bachelor of Architecture program including the categories of Change of Major, Change of Assignment, Concurrent Major, and Re-enrollment.)

A candidate seeking entrance to a major or wishing to change from one college to another, or from one major to another, or from the Division of Undergraduate Studies to a college, may do so provided any enrollment ceilings of the college or major have not been reached and provided the candidate satisfies the following minimum academic requirements:

  • Demonstrates at least a C (2.00) cumulative average for all courses taken at the University subject to the conditions of Section 51-50.
  • Satisfies any additional academic requirements that have been proposed by the college or the major and approved by the dean of the college and the University Faculty Senate Committee on Undergraduate Education. Requirements for entrance to the B.Arch. program include a portfolio described below.

In addition to the minimum requirements for application to change majors or concurrent major, the Department of Architecture requires a portfolio review. Decisions regarding entrance to the Bachelor of Architecture degree program rest with both the College of Arts and Architecture Dean’s Office and the Department of Architecture.
PORTFOLIO SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Please submit a portfolio of creative and design work to the Department of Architecture via the SlideRoom online portfolio system. The portfolio should include original work that demonstrates the candidate’s potential as an architecture student. It can include examples of architectural design, drawing, construction, fine arts, and crafts. It may include drawings, sketches, paintings, photography, models, ceramics, sculpture, woodworking, crafts, video, etc. Selected examples of architectural and mechanical drafting certainly may be included in the portfolio; however, mechanical drafting alone does not constitute adequate material for evaluation.

The portfolio should include:

  1. Five to 10 creative design samples
  2. Personal statement – “How does the work in your portfolio best represent you, your talents, and your desire to study architecture?” (500 character limit)

USING SLIDEROOM

  1. Access SlideRoom (stuckemanpsu.slideroom.com) and create a user account.
  2. Select the “Bachelor of Architecture” category.
  3. Follow all SlideRoom instructions for uploading content. SlideRoom will prompt you to complete all necessary steps.
  4. Be sure to submit the materials detailed above.

Assistance is available from SlideRoom at support@slideroom.com.


Transfer Students

Important Application Dates
Application deadline is February 15
Portfolio submission deadline is February 15

(Transfer applicants, also known as advanced standing applicants, have graduated from high school and attempted 18 or more semester credit hours of college coursework after high school graduation.)

There is a two–part process for transfer applications. The Undergraduate Admissions Office handles the first portion of application to the Bachelor of Architecture program, followed by the Department of Architecture portfolio review. The admissions decision rests with the Undergraduate Admissions Office with recommendations from the Department of Architecture.
STEP 1: PENN STATE UNDERGRADUATE ADMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Transfer applicants must submit an on-line application to the Admissions Office found at www.admissions.psu.edu. Online applications are accepted from August 1 to February 15.

  • High school and college transcripts are required to complete a transfer application.
  • SAT or ACT scores are not required if you have completed more than one semester of full-time college coursework after your high school graduation.

STEP 2: PORTFOLIO SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS
Please submit a portfolio of creative and design work to the Department of Architecture via the SlideRoom online portfolio system. The portfolio should include original work that demonstrates the candidate’s potential as an architecture student. It can include examples of architectural design, drawing, construction, fine arts and crafts. It may include drawings, sketches, paintings, photography, models, ceramics, sculpture, woodworking, crafts, video, etc. Selected examples of architectural and mechanical drafting certainly may be included in the portfolio; however, mechanical drafting alone does not constitute adequate material for evaluation.

The portfolio should include:

  1. Five to 10 creative design samples
  2. Personal statement – “How does the work in your portfolio best  represent you, your talents, and your desire to study architecture?” (500 character limit)
  3. Syllabi for architecture courses previously taken

Using SlideRoom

  1. Access SlideRoom (stuckemanpsu.slideroom.com) and create a user account.
  2. Select the “Bachelor of Architecture” category.
  3. Follow all SlideRoom instructions for uploading content. SlideRoom will prompt you to complete all necessary steps.
  4. Be sure to submit the materials detailed above.

Assistance is available from SlideRoom at support@slideroom.com.


Graduate Programs Information

Important Dates
Fall admission: For consideration for admission, complete application materials should be received no later than January 15 of the preceding academic year. In special cases, applications may be considered after this date. To be considered for a Graduate Teaching Assistantship, a Graham Fellowship, or a Graduate School Fellowship, complete application materials must be received no later than January 15 of the preceding academic year and even earlier applications are recommended.

Spring admission: The program is structured to build on the methods and theory core courses that are offered only in the fall. Therefore, only under extraordinary circumstances are students considered for admission at mid-year, i.e. for spring semester. Students interested in applying for acceptance in the spring semester are advised to discuss the matter with the Graduate Programs Assistant prior to submitting the application.

Important Notes

  • The Department will not evaluate your application packet until all materials have been submitted.
  • Applications for entrance in a given academic year will be reviewed beginning January 15 of that calendar year.

Graduate Academic Advising
For questions regarding graduate programs or application, please contact:

Nina Bumgarner
Graduate Programs Assistant in Architecture
814.865.0345
ndb2@psu.edu

Rebecca Henn
Director of Graduate Studies in Architecture
814.863.5420
rlh53@psu.edu


M.Arch. Application Requirements

  1. Your application must be submitted to the Pennsylvania State University Graduate School at the following website: http://gradschool.psu.edu/graduate-admissions/how-to-apply/.
  2. Copies of transcripts, degree/study certificates and diplomas in the language of instruction from all institutions of higher education attended, both undergraduate and graduate, should be uploaded online as part of the Graduate School Application. If English is not the language of instruction, copies of all transcripts/documents in the English translation also must be uploaded.
  3. Once an applicant has accepted an offer of admission, he/she will be notified by the Graduate School that official/original transcripts/documents and their official English translation must be sent from the originating institutions for review by the Graduate School, in order to finalize an admission decision. Notarized copies are not sufficient.
  4. Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Please request ETS to electronically submit to: Penn State University (institution code 2660).
  5. TOEFL/IELTS scores from non-native speakers of English. Submit to Penn State University (institution code 2660). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the Internet-based test (iBT). The minimum acceptable composite score for the IELTS is 6.5. See the Graduate School website for more information; all test scores must be sent from ETS.
  6. Your portfolio (not to exceed 12MB) should include 5-10 creative design samples. The presented work should have been executed at the undergraduate level or under professional guidance or independently, provided the applicant can present evidence of ownership.  A minimum portfolio representation of one project for each year of academic undergraduate study, or its equivalent, is required. Applicants are encouraged to include other evidence of academic excellence, such as awards, design and scholarly achievements, and other recognition.
  7. Aside from a one-page CV, a statement of purpose is required that describes your professional goals and an explanation of how your previous education, academic background, and/or professional experience provide a foundation for pursuing graduate training. Within the statement, please elaborate on the following questions:
    •  Please identify a work of architecture that you find to be significant and explain the reasons.
    •  What skills would you like to acquire during your studies?
    •  What do you see yourself doing after completing your studies?

M.S. in Architecture Application Requirements

  1. Your application must be submitted to the Pennsylvania State University Graduate School at the following website: http://gradschool.psu.edu/graduate-admissions/how-to-apply/.
  2. Copies of transcripts, degree/study certificates and diplomas in the language of instruction from all institutions of higher education attended, both undergraduate and graduate, should be uploaded online as part of the Graduate School Application. If English is not the language of instruction, copies of all transcripts/documents in the English translation also must be uploaded.
  3. Once an applicant has accepted an offer of admission, he/she will be notified by the Graduate School that official/original transcripts/documents and their official English translation must be sent from the originating institutions for review by the Graduate School, in order to finalize an admission decision. Notarized copies are not sufficient.
  4. Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Please request ETS to electronically submit to: Penn State University (institution code 2660).
  5. TOEFL/IELTS scores from non-native speakers of English. Submit to Penn State University (institution code 2660). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the Internet-based test (iBT). The minimum acceptable composite score for the IELTS is 6.5. See the Graduate School website for more information; all test scores must be sent from ETS.
  6. Your portfolio (not to exceed 12MB) should include 5-10 creative design samples. The presented work should have been executed at the undergraduate level or under professional guidance or independently, provided the applicant can present evidence of ownership.  A minimum portfolio representation of one project for each year of academic undergraduate study, or its equivalent, is required. Applicants are encouraged to include other evidence of academic excellence, such as awards, design and scholarly achievements, and other recognition.
  7. Aside from a one-page CV, a statement of purpose is required that addresses your interest of study and how it relates to the research cluster in which you desire to work. Within the statement, please elaborate on the following questions:
    •  What is the particular research topic/problem that you would like to address in your studies at Penn State?
    •  What skills would you like to improve/acquire during your studies?
    •  With whom at Penn State do you see yourself working during your graduate studies?
    •  What do you see yourself doing after completing your studies?

Ph.D. in Architecture Application Requirements

  1. Your application must be submitted to the Pennsylvania State University Graduate School at the following website: http://gradschool.psu.edu/graduate-admissions/how-to-apply/.
  2. Copies of transcripts, degree/study certificates and diplomas in the language of instruction from all institutions of higher education attended, both undergraduate and graduate, should be uploaded online as part of the Graduate School Application. If English is not the language of instruction, copies of all transcripts/documents in the English translation also must be uploaded.
  3. Once an applicant has accepted an offer of admission, he/she will be notified by the Graduate School that official/original transcripts/documents and their official English translation must be sent from the originating institutions for review by the Graduate School, in order to finalize an admission decision. Notarized copies are not sufficient.
  4. Scores from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE). Please request ETS to electronically submit to: Penn State University (institution code 2660).
  5. TOEFL/IELTS scores from non-native speakers of English. Submit to Penn State University (institution code 2660). The minimum acceptable score for the TOEFL is 550 for the paper-based test or a total score of 80 with a 19 on the speaking section for the Internet-based test (iBT). The minimum acceptable composite score for the IELTS is 6.5. See the Graduate School website for more information; all test scores must be sent from ETS.
  6. The names, addresses, and e-mail addresses for three (3) people who will write letters of reference for you. Once you provide their names, addresses, and e-mail addresses, they will be contacted and prompted to file the letters.
  7. Aside from a one-page CV, a statement of purpose (Ph.D. essay) is required. The statement of purpose is approximately two pages long and provides the following information in a concise manner:
    • Your reasons for pursuing graduate training in terms of your career plans.
    • A clear research focus within your area of interest; articulate, in specific terms, the research topic on which you wish to focus and proposed methods to conduct this research.
    • An explanation of how your previous education, academic background, and/or professional experience provide a foundation for pursuing graduate training in this research field.
    • A demonstration that you have considered carefully our Ph.D. program and are aware of how your interests match faculty expertise and interests; please be sure to identify faculty with whom you are interested in working.

Visiting Ph.D./Visiting Scholar application forthcoming.

Graphic Design

Section Links:
First-Year | Change-of-Major | Transfer | Minor | Integrative Arts | M.F.A.


First-Year Applicants

Important Application Dates
Priority university admissions application date is November 30

First-year students may also qualify for the Arts and Architecture Talent Scholarship. In order to apply, submit a portfolio containing the required materials below, which will be evaluated by the Portfolio Review Committee.

This portfolio is designed to give the committee — which is comprised of graphic design faculty — insight into how you observe, think, and communicate via visual information. This insight can be derived from a wide variety of visual techniques — do not feel constrained by methods, materials, or styles that you consider to be “design-y.” Do what you do best to make the most impactful interpretation of the portfolio requirements.

Portfolio Requirements

  1. Examples of Visual Work
    Submit three (3) samples of your best work. These pieces do not need to be created specifically for this submission; however, it is important to show work that represents your current skills and experiences. Visuals may be graphic design or images from related disciplines such as photography, illustration, drawing, painting, reproductions of 3D media, time-based work or animations, etc. Please limit time-based submissions to a duration of 90 seconds.
  2. Original Poster Design
    An effective poster should attract attention, appeal to the intended audience, communicate a message to the viewer, and imprint itself upon his or her memory.
    Topic: Select a subject that relates to a particular social or environmental issue that you feel strongly about. Examples include: energy, pollution, deforestation, hunger, health care, education, racism, animal rights, etc.
    Medium: You may execute your design either digitally or in traditional media. You may use a computer program (Photoshop, Inkscape, InDesign, etc.) or create your poster using conventional approaches like drawing, painting, collage, photomontage, cut paper — it’s up to you.
    Submission Requirements: Images must be no larger than 8.5 x 11″ and 5 MG in size (10 MG for PDF files). PLEASE NOTE: You must orient your pictures so that the design is on the right side when you submit it.
  3. “Breakfast Analysis”
    Consider your breakfast from this morning. How did it get there? What systems, structures, and processes were necessary to produce the result that was your breakfast? Visually document these underlying relationships. This is an open-ended project, with room to interpret exactly what is being asked — what will you make of it? Format, materials, and medium are up to you.
    Submission Guidelines: If you create a single image, it must be no larger than 8.5 x 11″ and under 10 MG. For a multipage document, save it as a PDF file under 20 MG. Timed media pieces, such as video or animation, must be kept under 90 seconds. If you make use of a format that does not fit any of these specifications, please use the above as guidelines for file size.
  4. Statement of Intent
    Write a brief statement (no longer than one page) that explains your interest in the discipline of graphic design, and the intent and strategy behind your original poster and “Breakfast Analysis.”

PORTFOLIO SUBMISSION
Once the portfolio is completed, upload the digital files to Slideroom.

There are a number of different applications that can help you resize your images. For example, Photoshop, PaintShop Pro, and PixResizer all have the capability to resize images and manipulate file sizes. SnipShot is a tool that can be used to resize and crop images online for a minimal fee. Photosize is a free tool that can be used to resize and crop images online.

Note: Many graphic design students also qualify for the Schreyer Honors College. Please consider the requirements and benefits of the Honors College at www.shc.psu.edu. Also note that many requirements in the B.Design in Graphic Design program also satisfy honors requirements, such as study abroad.


Change of Major Applicants

Submission deadline is February 15
Note: Applicants must have a 2.5 or greater cumulative GPA. The graphic design major is a four-year program beginning the fall semester of acceptance.

Step 1. Submit a design portfolio that includes 3-5 pieces of work. Select three to five (3-5) samples of your best work for submission. These pieces do not need to be created specifically for submission, however it is important to show work that represents your current skills and experiences. Visuals may be graphic design or images from related disciplines, such as photography, illustration, drawing, painting, reproductions of 3-D media, time-based work, animations, etc. Please limit time-based submissions to a duration of 90 seconds.

Save still visuals in JPG, PNG, GIF, or PDF format. Videos should be saved as .m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, or .mkv files.

Step 2. Essay (500 word max) Write a brief essay (500 word maximum) that explains one of your samples of submitted work. Please include what you are trying to communicate with your design/art and how your design inspired you to consider the graphic design discipline as a career. Save the essay in PDF format.

Step 3. Upload to SlideRoom Once your portfolio and essay are completed, upload the digital files to Slideroom. Please create an account and follow instructions. Slideroom accepts videos that are up to 60MB in size in the above-listed format.


Transfer Applicants

Submission deadline is February 15
Note: Applicants must have a 2.5 or greater cumulative GPA. The graphic design major is a four-year program beginning the fall semester of acceptance.

Step 1. Undergraduate Admissions Application
If you are enrolled in another university, you must submit an application to Undergraduate Admissions.

Step 2. Submit a design portfolio that includes 3-5 pieces of work.

Select three to five (3-5) samples of your best work for submission. These pieces do not need to be created specifically for submission, however it is important to show work that represents your current skills and experiences. Visuals may be graphic design or images from related disciplines, such as photography, illustration, drawing, painting, reproductions of 3-D media, time-based work, animations, etc. Please limit time-based submissions to a duration of 90 seconds.

Save still visuals in JPG, PNG, GIF, or PDF format. Videos should be saved as .m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, or .mkv files.

Step 3. Essay (500 word max) Write a brief essay (500 word maximum) that explains one of your samples of submitted work. Please include what you are trying to communicate with your design/art and how your design inspired you to consider the graphic design discipline as a career. Save the essay in PDF format.

Step 4. Upload to SlideRoom Once your portfolio and essay are completed, upload the digital files to Slideroom. Please create an account and follow instructions. Slideroom accepts videos that are up to 60MB in size in the above-listed format.


Minor Applicants

Important Application Dates
Minor application deadline is February 15

  1. Submit a design portfolio, poster, and statement of intent as detailed below.
  2. Upload your materials to SlideRoom. Please create an account and follow instructions.
  3. If you are an applicant from Integrative Arts and you have begun taking the Graphic Design sequence of approved courses, please check “advanced standing” in Slideroom when applying

Please feel free to contact our pre-minor adviser Joel Priddy with any questions you may have.

The Design Portfolio for Minor Applicants

The minor portfolio will be evaluated by the Portfolio Review Committee which is comprised of graphic design faculty. The portfolio must consist of the three items listed below:

1. Examples of Visual Work
Submit three (3) samples of your best work. These pieces do not need to be created specifically for this submission, however it is important to show work that represents your current skills and experiences. Visuals may be graphic design or images from related disciplines such as photography, illustration, drawing, painting, reproductions of 3-D media, time-based work or animations, etc. Please limit time-based submissions to a duration of 90 seconds.

2. Original Poster Design
“An effective poster should attract attention, appeal to the intended audience, communicate a message to the viewer, and imprint itself upon their memory.”

Topic: Select a subject that relates to a particular social or environmental issue that you feel strongly about. Examples: Energy, Pollution, Deforestation, Hunger, AIDS, Health Care, Education, Racism, Animal Abuse, etc.

Medium: You may execute your design either digitally or in traditional media. You may use a computer program (Photoshop, In Design, Quark Express, etc.) or create your poster using conventional approaches like drawing, painting, collage, photo montage, cut paper; it’s up to you.

Submission Requirements: Images must be no larger than 8.5″ x 11″ and 10 Megabytes in size (20 Megabytes for PDF files). PLEASE NOTE: You must orient your pictures so that the design is right side up when you submit it.

There are a number of different applications that can help you resize your images. For example, Photoshop, PaintShop Pro, and PixResizer all have the capability to resize images and manipulate file sizes. SnipShot is a tool that can be used to resize and crop images online for a minimal fee. Photosize is a free tool that can be used to resize and crop images online.

3. Statement of Intent
Write a brief statement (no longer than one page) that explains your interest in the discipline of graphic design. How has design inspired you to consider the discipline as a career? What area of design most fascinates you?

Submit your visuals and written statement to the . Please create an account and follow instructions.

Submit a digital copy of your visuals in JPG, PNG, GIF, or PDF format.

SlideRoom accepts videos that are up to 60MB in size in the following file formats: .m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, .mkv.


Integrative Arts Students

It is recommended that IA students wishing to incorporate graphic design coursework first confer with the IA adviser, then submit the materials listed below.

Important Application Dates
Submission deadline is February 15

Step 1. Cover letter (1 page)
Write a cover letter addressed to the graphic design faculty. Introduce yourself, briefly describe why you wish to incorporate graphic design coursework into your Integrative Arts program. You may also wish to reference the accompanying essay and how it supports your application.

Step 2. Essay (3-4 pages)

Write a succinct and compelling essay telling us:

  • What aspects of this diverse profession most interest you
  • What traits and accomplishments (skills, creativity, advocacy, innovations) you possess that show why you’re suited to pursuing graphic design

Step 3. Upload to SlideRoom
Once your letter and essay are well-crafted, create separate PDF files and upload to Slideroom. Submit your materials to Slideroom. Please create an account and follow instructions.

Information for Integrative Arts Students Wishing to Incorporate Graphic Design Coursework

  • Courses available for approved Integrative Arts students: GD 100, GD 101, GD 102, GD 200, GD 201, GD 202
  • Integrative Arts students approved to take the 100-200 level Graphic Design sequence of courses do not have to complete the spring portfolio gateway for Graphic Design pre-major students.
  • Integrative Arts students approved to take the 100-200 level Graphic Design sequence of courses may be interested in the Graphic Design minor. Please speak with your adviser and contact our pre-minor adviser Joel Priddy for further details.

Questions?

Graphic Design Adviser
Erica Quinn

Graphic Design Pre-Minor Adviser
Joel Priddy


Additional Assistance

Technical assistance is available in SlideRoom. If you are unable to supply digital images through SlideRoom, or if you have questions about the portfolio, contact Erica Quinn or Joel Priddy.


MFA Graduate Applicants

In addition to the steps and materials detailed on the Graduate School website, you will need to submit the following materials as part of your Graphic Design MFA application.

1. Portfolio: Submit a portfolio for review using the Slideroom web application at https://psu.slideroom.com/ The portfolio should consist of 18-20 examples of the applicants original artwork presented in a digital format. The majority of the work should be in the area of the applicant’s interest with a lesser emphasis on related areas. If you are unable to supply digital images through Slideroom or if you have questions about the portfolio process, please contact the Penn State School of Visual Arts by calling 814.865.6570.

2. Statement of Professional Aims: Submit a Statement of Professional Aims for review using the Slideroom web application at https://psu.slideroom.com/ The Statement of Professional Aims should include your intentions for proposed study, an indication of your personal philosophy, beliefs, and goals in regard to education and art, and evidence that you are prepared to undertake graduate level work in the Master of Fine Arts program.

For additional MFA program information, contact:
Jean Sanders, Associate Professor of Art
Studio Graduate Program Officer
210 Patterson Building
University Park, PA 16802
jms31@psu.edu

Landscape Architecture

Section Links:
Undergraduate B.L.A. | First-Year | Change-of-Major | Transfer
Graduate Programs | M.L.A. | M.S. in L.A. | Geodesign


Undergraduate B.L.A. Program Information

The following sections provide details regarding undergraduate application for incoming freshmen, change of major, and transfer students to the B.L.A. program. Direct any questions about the application process or the B.L.A. program in the Department of Landscape Architecture to larch@psu.edu.

Undergraduate Academic Adviser
Erica Quinn
Phone: 814.865.5985
Email: eaq5011@psu.edu


Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students

Important Application Dates
Priority deadline is November 30
Spots remain available until our freshman class numbers are filled.

Admission Requirements
First-year applicants must submit an online application found at https://admissions.psu.edu

Students with no prior collegiate work are selected by the admissions office to enter directly into the major based on high school performance and SAT scores. On Penn State’s application form, high school students must specifically designate landscape architecture. Freshman admission applications are submitted during the fall, as processing starts in September for those seeking entry the following fall. Applicants are encouraged to submit a completed application by November 30, though spots remain available until our freshman class numbers are filled.

Materials needed to support freshman applications are specified by the admissions office,
201 Shields Building
University Park, PA 16802
Phone: 814-865-5471
Fax: 814-863-7590

Note: Many Bachelor of Landscape Architecture students also qualify for the Schreyer Honors College. Please consider the requirements and benefits of the Honors College. Also note that many requirements in the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture program also satisfy honors requirements, such as study abroad.


Change of Major/Assignment Students

Important Application Dates
Rolling application period: October 1 – February 15. Review of applications begins February 15.
Applications received after this date may be considered in a second round of reviews.

Admission Requirements
If you are already enrolled as a Penn State student, and you are applying for Change of Major/Change of Campus, please select: Bachelor of Landscape Architecture (B.L.A.) – Change of Major/Change of Campus.

Step 1. Cover letter (1 page)
Write a cover letter addressed to Eliza Pennypacker, Department Head. Introduce yourself, briefly describe what your major is, and why you are considering a change. You may also wish to reference the accompanying essay and how it supports your application.

Step 2. Essay (3-5 pages)
Write a succinct and compelling essay telling us:

  • What aspects of this diverse profession most interest you
  • What proven traits and accomplishments (skills, creativity, advocacy, innovations) you possess that show why you’re suited to becoming a landscape architect
  • Why you’re choosing to study landscape architecture at Penn State specifically

Step 3. Submit all Materials
Once your letter and essay are well-crafted, create separate PDF files and email to larch@psu.edu


Transfer Students

Important Application Dates
Rolling application period: September 1 – February 15. Review of applications begins February 15.
Applications received after this date may be considered in a second round of reviews.

(Transfer applicants, also known as advanced standing applicants, have graduated from high school and attempted 18 or more semester credit hours of college coursework after high school graduation.)

There is a two–part process for transfer applications. The Undergraduate Admissions Office handles the first portion of application to the Bachelor of Landscape Architecture Program [B.L.A.], followed by the Landscape Architecture Department portfolio review. The admissions decision rests with the Undergraduate Admissions Office with recommendations from the Department of Landscape Architecture.

Admission Requirements
Step 1. Undergraduate Admissions Application
If you are enrolled in another university, you must submit an application to Undergraduate Admissions. For further information, visit their website: https://admissions.psu.edu

Step 2. Cover letter (1 page)
Write a cover letter addressed to Eliza Pennypacker, Department Head. Introduce yourself, briefly describe where you’ve been going to college, what your major is, and why you are considering a change. You may also wish to reference the accompanying essay and how it supports your application.

Step 3. Essay (3-5 pages)
Write a succinct and compelling essay telling us:

  • What aspects of this diverse profession most interest you
  • What proven traits and accomplishments (skills, creativity, advocacy, innovations) you possess that show why you’re suited to becoming a Landscape Architect
  • Why you’re choosing to study landscape architecture at Penn State specifically

Step 4. Submit all Materials
Once your letter and essay are well-crafted, create separate PDF files and email to larch@psu.edu.


Graduate Programs Information

Applying to the graduate program is a multi-step process. For consideration for admission for the fall semester, complete application materials should be received no later than January 15 of the preceding academic year. Prospective candidates are strongly advised to contact the graduate program coordinator to discuss his/her intended area of graduate study.

Landscape Architecture Graduate Program Professor in Charge
Stuart Echols
Phone: 814.865.9511
Email: spe10@psu.edu

In addition to the materials to be submitted to the Penn State Graduate School, the Department of Landscape Architecture requires submission of applicant information specific our programs. The materials detailed below should be submitted via the Graduate School website with your other application materials. If you have any questions, or if you are unable to submit a portfolio electronically and need to make arrangements to submit a physical portfolio, please email: dbs115@psu.edu.


M.L.A. Application Requirements

  1. GRE scores.
  2. Evidence of analytical ability (research paper or other).
  3. Individual M.L.A. application statement from the applicant describing why they wish to pursue a career in landscape architecture at Penn State, how it relates to their previous academic experience and how it will enhance their professional interests and goals in the future.
  4. Evidence of creative work, either through a digital portfolio or through examples of writing or some other creative outlet. (See Crafting a Quality Portfolio.)
  5. Three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic history; employer recommendations are also welcome.

M.S. in L.A. Application Requirements

  1. GRE scores.
  2. Evidence of analytical ability (research paper or other).
  3. Individual M.S. in L.A. application statement from the applicant stating why they wish to enroll for the M.S. in L.A. at Penn State and describing their professional interests, goals, and proposed area of concentration related to one of our research centers/initiatives – the Stuckeman Center for Design Computing, The Hamer Center for Community Design, or WATERxDESIGN. Students are encouraged to contact individual faculty members whose research interests intersect their own.
  4. Evidence of creative work, either through a digital portfolio or through examples of writing or some other creative outlet. (See Crafting a Quality Portfolio.)
  5. Three letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with the applicant’s academic history; employer recommendations are also welcome.

M.P.S. or Certificate in Geodesign

Application information is available at World Campus’ Master of Professional Studies in Geodesign page

Music

Music Programs

School of Music Audition Requirements

2020-21 Audition Dates

  • Saturday, December 5, 2020
  • Saturday, January 23, 2021
  • Saturday, January 30, 2021
  • Saturday, February 6, 2021 – Voice auditions only

The application process for music degrees will include standard Penn State admission steps plus an audition. Additional detailed information regarding 2021 program admissions will be forthcoming.

Questions about the application process for all degrees in Music can be directed to:

A&A Admissions Coordinator
Kelly Praskovich, kjp137@psu.edu

Musical Theatre

B.FA. in Musical Theatre, School of Theatre

2020-21 Audition Dates (Virtual + On-Campus – Locations subject to change)

  • Saturday, December 5, 2020 – Virtual
  • Saturday, January 16, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, January 30, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, February 6, 2021 – TBD
  • Saturday, February 20, 2021 – TBD

2021 Unified Audition Dates – VIRTUAL/ONLINE

  • January 23–24, 2021
  • February 8–11, 2021
  • February 13–14, 2021

Questions about the application/audition process can be directed to:

Do you need an application fee waiver? See the Fee Waiver section on this page.


Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students
Apply for admission online through the Common Application, the Coalition Application or Penn State’s own application at admissions.psu.edu. Priority consideration for freshmen admission to University Park is given to complete applications filed by November 30. Your application must be complete to receive a prescreen decision. Log into your MyPennState account to check your application status.

To receive maximum consideration for all forms of financial aid, students are strongly encouraged to complete their academic application by November 30. The final deadline to apply and submit prescreens is December 31 of the calendar year preceding the intended start year.


Additional B.F.A. in Musical Theatre Requirements

Applications will open August 1.
Applying  for Penn State’s B.F.A. in Musical Theatre is a two-step process:

Step 1: Prescreening Submission
All students interested in auditioning for the Musical Theatre B.F.A. must submit the following via digital upload via the GetAcceptd website.

  • Headshot/Photo
  • Resume
  • Video Prescreen (Penn State Musical Theatre is a participant in the Musical Theatre Common PreScreen for the 2020-2021 cycle)

Video Requirements

Overall
Each piece should be filmed/uploaded as a separate piece of media. No continuous videos.

Slate

  • There should not be a separate “slate” video, rather slates are to appear at the beginning of each piece.
  • The proper slate for a song is to share your name, the song title, and show in which it appears.
  • The proper slate for a monologue is to share your name, the title of the play, and the playwright.

SONGS
Students should prepare 2-contrasting pieces.

  • One song should be a ballad and one song should be an uptempo
  • Each song file should be 60-90 seconds (this time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds)
  • Songs should be filmed in a ¾ shot which means the top of the head to the knees should be visible in the frame.

-Option A

  • One song should be written prior to 1970. This song can be either the uptempo or the ballad (student’s choice).
  • One song should be written after 1970 and contrast the style of the first.

MONOLOGUES

  • Monologue must be from a published play.
  • Monologue cannot be from musicals, television shows, or movies.
  • Each monologue file should be 60-90 seconds in length (this time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds)

– Option A

  • 1, 60-90 second contemporary monologue (written during the 20th Century-present) from a published play. This time limit includes the slate at the beginning of the piece and is strictly adhered to; please do not upload media files longer than 90 seconds.
  • The contemporary monologue should be filmed in a “close-up” shot which means the top of the head to the chest should be visible in the frame.

DANCE

  • All dance media should be filmed in a “full body” shot taking care to keep the student’s entire body in the frame at all times.
  • Applicants do not need to slate in any dance media.
  • Regardless of which style of dance you execute, the choreography and the movement should be story-driven and connected to the music where the applicant is dancing with a sense of purpose.
  • HELPFUL HINT: Applicants are encouraged to keep a full-length mirror behind the filming device so as to see themselves as they execute choreography.

-DANCE OPTION

  • 30-60 seconds of dance, in whatever dance discipline you are most comfortable with: jazz, ballet, modern, African, hip hop, lyrical, or contemporary.
  • No barre. A ballet solo is acceptable.
  • Please use steps, movement, and physical vocabulary that you are familiar with and can execute well.
  • Dance media can be self-choreographed, but must be a solo video of you. This can include a show, competition, or other performance so long as you are clearly featured on your own.
  • All choreography must be performed to music; no “a cappella” dance media please.


Wild card video – Optional

  • Submissions should be no more than 60 seconds.
  • This media can be ANYTHING you want: a special skill, an interesting story about yourself, a passion speech, an instrument that you play, etc. “What do you want us to know about you?” and “What makes you unique?”

Step 2: Audition
Students who are invited to audition should be prepared for their audition date. Each audition will consist of:

  • Full body warm-up
  • Dance audition
  • Two vocal selections
  • One monologue

Submit your prescreen materials via the GetAcceptd website


Audition Tips and Advice

Your first decision is whether you actually want to pursue a BFA degree. The BFA is meant for highly focused individuals who wish to train for the professional theatre. It is a highly competitive, challenging degree program meant for students with intense discipline, motivation, stamina, physical, mental, and emotional strength, and of course – talent. Admission is extremely competitive – and based on both academics and artistry. Artistically, you need to demonstrate professional potential at the audition. Academically, you need to be admissible to the Penn State University system.

Preparing During your High School Years
Here are some suggestions on how you can best prepare for the rigors of a BFA Musical Theatre degree…
1. Focus extra time on lessons and classes – voice lessons, acting class, and dance class can only improve your readiness. Even if you have never had any classes in musical theatre, you would be surprised what even a few months will do for you.
2. Choir, piano, and music theory will all help you increase your musicality.
3. Be as healthy as possible. We do not believe that there is only one appropriate body-type for work in professional musical theatre. On the other hand, strength, stamina, health, and flexibility are all important attributes for musical theatre students. Cardiovascular work and strength building can be of value. 4. See as much musical theatre as possible. The more theatre you see, the better. In addition to musicals, seek out plays, dance, and opera.

The Audition Material
Since admission is based on a successful audition, it makes sense to thoroughly prepare and present yourself as your best. The successful audition begins with careful, intelligent material selection. Here are several suggestions…

1. Pick material that is appropriate for you. Do not try to impress us with your worldliness or edgy selections. Pick songs and monologues that fit your age bracket and experience.
2. Pick material that you do well and that you are passionate about. This is very different than picking material based on a belted high note or series of skills you are looking to showcase. You’ll notice that we don’t publish a list of “do not sing” material – we are happy to hear anything you prepare. We do suggest that you try to avoid material that is either currently on Broadway or has been “stamped” very specifically by a well-known artist.
3. Think of the two songs and the monologue as an introduction to who you are as a young artist and person. Remember, we aren’t looking for the perfect casting decision. We are looking for talented and curious artists – people with whom we will spend a great deal of time and effort over four years.
4. Pay careful attention to cutting and editing your selections. The audition songs don’t need every repeat; the monologue should be one minute at a maximum.
5. The up-tempo and ballad should contrast and demonstrate different aspects of your performance capabilities. One song needs to have been written before the 1970s.
6. Find a way to rehearse with someone who can play the music that you will provide our accompanist. Singing the first time with an accompanist at an audition can be difficult. Remember, the accompanist will play what you provide.

The Audition Day
Here are several things you can do to help yourself on the day of your audition…

1. Give yourself the best chance for success. You are a busy person. You’re probably juggling your Penn State audition with other auditions, school shows, lessons, a job, an attempt at a social life, and school work. HOWEVER, we can’t over-emphasize the importance of the audition to your future. If at all possible, plan to arrive on campus the day before. That way you can familiarize yourself with the campus, take a tour, look for the audition location, etc. We invite you to observe classes and meet current majors. Above all else, arrive at the audition well rested and focused.
2. Understand the audition process. After a group physical warm-up, you will be taught a dance combination. You can expect elements of ballet, jazz, and other physical storytelling in the combination. In small groups (3 or 4), you will present this combination to members of the musical theatre faculty. After the dance portion of the audition you will be given an opportunity to change clothes. After a group vocal warm-up you will privately present your songs and monologue. You will present in the order that you reserved an audition spot.
3. Manage your energy. Many people in our field think of auditions as difficult, frightening events and performances as exciting, fun events. We invite you to think about your audition as a great opportunity to share your work with us as it stands in your young life and career. A time to introduce yourself and your passions to a group of people who are on your side in that process. If you are able to do this, you may find that nervous excitement (a constructive energy) will replace nervous fear (a destructive energy). Also, keep in mind that you and the people sitting behind the table want the exact same thing – for you to do great and exciting work.
4. Be ready for the unexpected. We may stop you and work with you on a piece; we may cut you off and ask you to move to your next piece; we may vocalize you, or we may ask you to do something unplanned. Do not let these requests distract or upset you. We have a short time to get to know as much about you and your work as possible. If we’ve seen what we need to see, or feel that we need to see something different, our request will only help us assess you in the most complete and accurate way possible. This will be mutually beneficial.

Best of luck!


Connect with Penn State Musical Theatre

Theatre (BA, BFA, MFA)

Section Links:
Undergraduate | B.A.| B.F.A.
Graduate Programs | M.F.A.


Undergraduate Theatre Programs

Questions about the application process for all Theatre undergraduate degrees can be directed to:

Do you need an application fee waiver? See the Fee Waiver section on this page.


B.A. in Theatre

Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students
Apply for admission online through the Common Application, the Coalition Application or Penn State’s own application at admissions.psu.edu.

To receive maximum consideration for all forms of financial aid, students are strongly encouraged to complete their academic application by November 30. The final deadline to apply and submit materials is April 30 of the intended start year.

Additional B.A. in Theatre Requirements
In addition to completing the Penn State undergraduate application process, students applying for the BA in Theatre must submit the following via digital upload via the GetAcceptd website.

  • A one-page resume
  • A statement of interest: In two or three thoughtful paragraphs, tell us what interests you about pursuing a theatre studies degree; include an overview of your experience with (and/or desire to know more about)  scholarship, dramaturgy, directing, playwriting, dramatic literature, devising, design, performance, or any combination of these.
  • Samples of your artistic work. These might include an original play; a scholarly essay or performance review; design sketches or plans; photos of design work; a production book; video of two contrasting monologues and/or a song.
  • A headshot or photo (optional)

Submit your prescreen materials via the GetAcceptd website 


B.F.A. in Theatre

2020-2021 Interview Dates
All interviews for 2020-2021 will take place virtually
December 5, 2020
December 11, 2020
January 16, 2021
February 27, 2021

(Stage Management and Design + Technology options)
Incoming Freshmen/First-Year Students
Apply for admission online through the Common Application, the Coalition Application or Penn State’s own application at admissions.psu.edu. Priority consideration for freshmen admission to University Park is given to complete applications filed by November 30.

Admission to the B.F.A. program in the Penn State School of Theatre include both a talent review and an academic review by Penn State Undergraduate Admissions. Both must be favorable to gain admission into the program. All students are required to interview to be considered for our program.

To receive maximum consideration for all forms of financial aid, students are strongly encouraged to complete their academic application by November 30. The final deadline to apply and submit materials is April 30 of the intended start year.

Additional B.F.A. in Theatre Requirements
In addition to completing the Penn State undergraduate application process, students applying for the BFA in Theatre must submit the following via digital upload via the GetAcceptd website.

  • Resume
  • Contact information for two artistic references
  • (Stage Management Option) A portfolio of production notes, pictures, paperwork and/or process documentation of productions and projects you’ve participated in that show your stage managing and production experiences
  • (Design + Technology Option) A portfolio that displays your artistic and/or technical abilities.
    The Design + Technology option requires a prescreen before officially scheduling an interview.

All materials must be submitted via the GetAcceptd website at least two weeks prior to your preferred interview date.

All interviews for the 2020-2021 Admissions year will be held virtually. Students applying for the Design and Technology option will have their work evaluated by the faculty and students will be selected to interview. If you are not selected to interview, you will be notified and contacted by Undergraduate Admissions.


Graduate Theatre Programs

Questions about the application process for all Theatre graduate degrees can be directed to:

  • Head of Costume Design: Richard St. Clair, contact: rhs18@psu.edu
  • Head of Costume Technology: Laura Robinson, contact: lkr13@psu.edu
  • Head of Scene Design: Dan Robinson, contact: dir2@psu.edu
  • Head of Directing for Musical Theatre (until June 2021): Susan Schulman. Co-heads of Directing for Musical Theatre (June 2021 and beyond) Steve Broadnax III and Rick Lombardo, contact:  jcd5665@psu.edu
  • Head of Music Directing for Musical Theatre: Dan Riddle, contact: danriddle@psu.edu

M.F.A. in Theatre

Options: Design + Technology, Music Directing, Directing

Application Information

Assistantships:
Accepted students will be eligible for a graduate assistantship that will cover all tuition plus a stipend. Graduate students in acting and directing may teach Theatre 100 and/or Theatre 102 in addition to other assignments.

 

Visual Arts

Change of Major/Assignment Students

Current Penn State University (PSU) students who would like to change to SoVA’s pre-major (AAART) from another PSU major or campus location must submit a portfolio for review.  The portfolio should include 10-12 images of the applicant’s work and a statement (500 word maximum) describing one of the artworks.  Portfolios are reviewed as they are received and applicants are notified within one month by Penn State Admissions via email.  If admitted to SoVA, entrance to major (ETM) requirements must be completed before declaring a major.

Application Deadline
Rolling


Transfer Students

Transfer students (those who have completed 18 or more college credits at another institution) must apply to Penn State University for admission and submit a portfolio for review. The portfolio should include 10-12 images of the applicant’s work and a statement (500 word maximum) describing one of the artworks. Portfolios are reviewed as they are received and applicants are notified by Penn State Admissions via email.  If admitted to SoVA, entrance to major (ETM) requirements must be completed before declaring a major.

Application Deadline
Rolling

Portfolio Submission

  • Go to psu.slideroom.com to upload your portfolio submission.
  • Create an account and login to SlideRoom.
  • Select your category: Current PSU Student.
  • Upload your digital images and statement.

Technical assistance is available in SlideRoom (support@slideroom.com)

For questions about portfolio submission contact Jeremy Fisher.
Ph: (814) 865-6570
Email: jhf149@psu.edu

For advising questions, contact Angela Rothrock, Undergraduate Coordinator.
Ph: 814-863-5349
Email:  arb184@psu.edu


Application Fee Waiver

Fee Waiver Details

All Undergraduate Programs

Penn State honors College Board and ACT fee waivers, Coalition fee waivers, and requests from school counselors documenting extreme financial hardship for the applicant.

Copies of College Board or ACT fee waivers can be:

Faxed to:
814-863-7590

Mailed to:
Penn State Undergraduate Admissions
201 Shields Building
University Park, PA 16802

All other fee waiver requests should be sent to admissions@psu.edu.

Please include the student’s PSU ID number (if known), date of birth, and address to ensure that the waiver is applied to the correct application.

Please note that a student must start an application in order for a fee waiver to be applied. Penn State is not able to refund an application fee once it has been paid. Students who receive fee waivers will be able to bypass the application payment screen.

Theatre Programs

Students with the above documentation of financial need should also email their fee waiver request to support@getacceptd.com to have the opportunity to upload their required materials at no charge.

Consider Schreyer

Penn State’s Schreyer Honors College is consistently ranked as one of the nation’s top honors programs. Arts and Architecture students frequently are leaders in their communities and in academics.

Joining the Honors College means that you will join a group of students who define the best in academic achievement, but who are also committed to changing their communities, their workplaces, and the world for the better. Incoming A&A undergraduates are strongly encouraged to also apply to the Schreyer Honors College.


Find out more about Schreyer
Close-up shot of four Schreyer Honors College medals on a rich blue background. Photo by Steve Tressler.