190.200 – Progress Reviews

Revised: November 2019

POLICY
During the Gateway Review, the MFA Committee determines whether students, at the time of the review (after one year in the program), have completed credits (18-20 minimum), properly distributed between studio and academic work, to graduate within a three-year period from the date of matriculation. The Committee also determines whether all documentation (paperwork) required for transcripts is up-to-date. Upon successful completion of the Review, students are permitted to advance to the subsequent semester. Should the Committee determine that a Candidate is not making adequate progress in earning credits to complete the degree within three years or is not producing work of acceptable quality; the Candidate may either be placed on academic probation or be dismissed without formal warning from the program, at the discretion of the MFA Committee.

During the Penultimate Review the MFA Committee evaluates students’ progress in light of a number of factors and rubric items as listed in the Student Handbook including achievement in individual art practice, development of creative vision, and capacity for self-evaluation, critical thought and discourse, to determine students’ preparedness to begin thesis work. Typically, students must have earned, at minimum, 50 credits prior to beginning thesis work. Should the Committee determine (by majority vote) that a student is prepared to undertake thesis work, they may register for the thesis semester. Should the MFA Committee find as a result of the Penultimate review that a student is not prepared to undertake thesis work or if the quality of work is determined to be substandard, the following steps may be taken:
If a student’s work is not deemed to be of sufficient quality or quantity, a student may be required to do remedial work to be presented to the MFA Committee at a specified time. 
If a student fails to complete remedial work to the satisfaction of the MFA Committee, the student may be dismissed from the program.

The MFA Committee determines by majority vote whether or not students pass or fail these reviews. Findings are documented. Students’ advisors communicate results of these reviews to students.

PROCEDURE
The following issues are considered during reviews:

Gateway

● Has a Candidate completed enough credits, properly distributed between studio and academic work, to complete the program within the required 3-year time frame? Is all required paperwork completed?

● Does a review of Mentor project evaluations show that a candidate has been producing work of sufficient and sufficiently improving quality?

Should the advisor and MFA Chair find as a result of the Gateway review that a candidate is not making adequate progress through the program, or is delinquent in completing paperwork, the following steps may be taken:

● If a Candidate is not earning enough credits or maintaining the proper distribution of credits to graduate on schedule, the advisor and Candidate re- evaluate the credits planned for the current and future terms to re-align the pace of the program.

● A Candidate is required to rectify documentation problems within a timeframe specified by the MFA Committee. No Candidate is permitted to graduate until such time as all documentation is complete.

Penultimate

Growth in Individual Art Practice:
Self-reliance and confidence within the creative process
Skills and techniques
Professional and creative goals

Development of Creative Vision:
Problem finding and solving
Engagement with new technologies
Consistency and focus

Capacity for Self-Evaluation, Critical Thought and Discourse:
Intentions, concepts, syntax
Historical, social and cultural context
Relationship to Art History and other disciplines relevant to the chosen medium

Initial thoughts regarding the Thesis Project itself
Clarification of a Candidate’s vision of the discrete body of work to be presented as the thesis project.
Discussion of the forthcoming written thesis, an explication of meaning of the work, an outline citing the historical influences and appropriate critical contexts for the proposed work.
Rationale for the project describing what a Candidate expects to learn and its significance.

Should the MFA Committee find as a result of the Penultimate review that a Candidate is not prepared to undertake thesis work or if the quality of work is determined to be substandard, the following steps may be taken:

● If a Candidate’s work is not deemed to be of sufficient quality or quantity, a Candidate may be required to do remedial work to be presented to the MFA Committee at a specified time.

● If a Candidate fails to complete remedial work to the satisfaction of the MFA Committee a Candidate may be dismissed from the program.