Portfolio Preparation

Portfolio Prep for Transfer Students

The portfolio is the most meaningful indicator of serious artistic commitment, ability, and potential to succeed in MICA's rigorous studio environment. The Admission Committee assesses the way you express your ideas and concepts visually. Your previous training in the visual arts and your technical skills and ability are also evaluated.

Transfer portfolios are reviewed on an individual basis, in the context of your specific educational background and experience, and in relation to the program of study you wish to pursue. Your portfolio will be an important factor in determining admission to the College. It will also be used in the review of your post-secondary art experiences in order to evaluate course equivalency and the transfer of credit.

It is expected that students transferring to MICA will have had formal art instruction prior to application and will be able to demonstrate ability in the fundamentals of drawing, design, and color. In preparing a transfer portfolio, no matter what your intended area of study, you should include examples of drawing from observation. If you need to gain additional experience before applying to the College, consider enrolling in a two-year community college program for a year. If you live in Maryland or nearby, consider beginning your studies in MICA's Open Studies Program.

Your portfolio will determine your standing as a freshman-, sophomore-, or junior-level transfer student. Choose pieces for your portfolio that best represent the level of work you have accomplished in college to date.

To receive credit for coursework equivalent to MICA's first-year Foundation Program, your portfolio should include examples of post-secondary work completed in drawing, 2D design, sculpture, and painting. Please note that many students transferring to MICA have not yet completed the full equivalent of our Foundation Program and are therefore placed in a combination of first- and second-year courses.

To receive credit for coursework equivalent to MICA's sophomore-level courses, your portfolio should include examples of artwork you completed in 200- and 300-level courses, including work that demonstrates any specialization in such areas as sculpture, painting, graphic design, photography, or digital art. In assembling your portfolio, review the description of MICA courses similar to those you have completed. For example, a course titled "Typography I" is required of MICA sophomores in graphic design. If you have completed a similar course be sure to include work that demonstrates your mastery of the subject.

To ensure the most accurate assessment of your artwork in relation to your experience, we suggest that you include the following with your portfolio:

  • A list that describes each artwork and the name and number of the course in which it was produced. Be sure to include size, medium(s), and the date the work was completed.
  • A list of courses in which you are currently enrolled.
  • Copies of course descriptions representing all classes you wish to have considered for transfer credit evaluation. (If you wish to receive advanced standing for job-related artwork, include a description of each project and your specific contribution to the conceptualization, project management, and creation of the work.)
  • Indicate on the admission application your intended major area of study.