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    Alaiyo Bradshaw, Program Director

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  • Your first year at Parsons is a time of exploration and discovery that prepares you for your major, the rest of your education, and even life after Parsons. The two semesters bring together making and reflecting on your studio work, immersing you in a range of art and design concepts, skills, and critical practices. You learn to apply systems thinking and problem solving methods to all of the creative challenges before you. All bachelor’s students at Parsons follow a first year curriculum, which provides a rigorous and dynamic launchpad for the rest of your creative life at the school.

    Program Highlights

    • Framework for Success

      Gain broadly relevant art and design concepts, tools, and methods — including 2D and 3D processes, drawing, and digital design — along with liberal arts capacities and insights.

    • Shared Learning Experience

      Study and interact with fellow students who are passionate about all kinds of art, design, and strategic processes and who will one day forge new paths in an array of disciplines. 

    • Dynamic Core

      Examine traditional disciplines and intersections of fields in core courses that introduce you to essentials and expand the boundaries of art, design, and strategic thinking.

    • Future Options

      Many students enter Parsons with a declared major, but you'll be encouraged to explore options for your future studies. You may be inspired to switch majors or plan a career path that expands established categories.

    • Purposeful Perspectives

      Develop skills and curiosity that can inform a variety of paths through your undergraduate studies and your future as a skilled and socially aware collaborator.

  • Curriculum

    Parsons’ first year curriculum, which focuses on critically engaged approaches to art, design, and strategic thinking, provides a common experience for all incoming students.  All students take most of the required courses together, with some variation for BFA and BBA students depending on their degree type. First year students at Parsons can tailor their study path within those requirements by selecting from thematic options available for many of the required courses.

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  • Parsons faculty represent a broad range of expertise and are acknowledged as leading practitioners and scholars in their fields.

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    Submit your application


    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.