• Curriculum

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    Margot Bouman, Program Director

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  • The Bachelor of Fine Arts degree is awarded for completion of 120 credits as designated by the program. A maximum of 60 credits may be transferred from another institution. Students must maintain a 2.0 cumulative GPA and fulfill all requirements in a timely manner.

    Your BFA begins with Parsons’ first-year curriculum, which serves as the first-year course of study for all undergraduate programs at Parsons. The first year immerses you in an exploration of art and design concepts, skills, and critical practices, training students to become flexible thinkers, proficient makers, and lifelong learners.

    At the core of the Design History and Practice major is a series of Making + Meaning courses and a capstone project, in which students integrate the knowledge acquired from studio and seminar experiences.  In Making + Meaning courses, students develop skills (such as writing, accessory design, and printmaking) while exploring theoretical and historical aspects of art and design (such as the history of the prison-industrial complex and geography in relation to cultural theory and photographic history).

    Throughout your studies, art and design history and theory courses develop essential research, writing, and critical reasoning skills as well as the conceptual foundations for creative inquiry.  

    Parsons’ position within a major university — The New School — informs our interdisciplinary approach to scholarship and practice. University electives broaden your skills and perspectives with a wide range of liberal arts courses in the humanities, the social sciences, media studies, and business.

    To view degree requirements from prior years, visit the Academic Catalogs archive. For a complete listing of courses and course descriptions, visit the university course catalog.

    PUFY 1000 Integrative Studio 1 3 -
    PUFY 1010 Integrative Seminar 1 3 -
    PUFY 1100 Sustainable Systems 3 -
    PUFY 1020 Space/Materiality 3 -
    PUFY 1030 Drawing/Imaging 3 -
    PUFY 1040 Time - 3
    PUFY 1001 Integrative Studio 2 - 3
    PUFY 1011 Integrative Seminar 2 - 3
    PLHT 1000 Objects as History - 3
    - 3
    Subtotal 15 15
    PLHT 2010 Making + Meaning: Proseminar 3 -
    3 -
    PLxx 2xxx History of [Pathway] Lecture 0 -
    PLxx 2xxx History of [Pathway] Recitation 3 -
    3 -
    3 3
    PLHT 3010 Making + Meaning: Materials** - 3
    PLxx 2xxx Intro to [Pathway] Lecture - 0
    PLxx 2xxx Intro to [Pathway] Recitation - 3
    - 3
    - 3
    Subtotal 15 15
    PLHT 3015 Making + Meaning: History** 3 -
    3 -
    3 3
    6 3
    PLHT 3020 Making + Meaning: Theory** - 3
    - 3
    - 3
    Subtotal 15 15
    PLHT 4010 Professional Development Practicum 3 -
    3 -
    3 3
    3 3
    3 6
    PLHT 4020 Making + Meaning: Capstone - 3
    Subtotal 15 15
    Total Credits

    *At least two studio pathways at the 3000 or 4000 level.

    **The three sections of Making + Meaning—Materials, History, and Theory—may be taken in any order.

    Objects as History and Sustainable Systems can be taken in either sequence, one in the fall semester and one in the spring.

    The three first-year studio courses—Drawing/Imaging, Space/Materiality, and Time—can be taken in any sequence, two in the fall semester and one in the spring.

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To apply to any of our undergraduate programs (except the Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs) complete and submit the Common App online.

Undergraduate Adult Learners

To apply to any of our Bachelor's Program for Adults and Transfer Students and Parsons Associate of Applied Science programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.


To apply to any of our Master's, Doctoral, Professional Studies Diploma, and Graduate Certificate programs, complete and submit the New School Online Application.