Graduate Programs

Master’s Degrees

Paris College of Art offers American degree programs. On the graduate level these include Master of Fine Arts (MFA) and Master of Arts (MA) degrees. All of our degree courses run for 15 weeks in the fall and 15 weeks in the spring.

In addition to the specific learning outcomes for each degree, all graduate students at PCA are expected to acquire five general competencies. At degree completion, students will be able to:

  • Define a pertinent (relevant and novel) research topic in the discipline of choice
  • Present concepts clearly orally and in writing
  • Identify and apply pertinent research methodologies
  • Identify and execute visually relevant illustrations / outcomes of the chosen research topic
  • Disseminate research findings to a variety of audiences

The American Credit System

In the American educational system students earn credits for each course they complete. The number of credits required for graduation varies by program, as do the distribution requirements. Please check the department curriculum for detailed information. Graduate programs may have specific skill and competency prerequisites. The most commonly used conversion rate to transfer U.S. credits into ECTS credits is to multiply by 2, i.e. a 3-credit (American) course would count as 6 ECTS credits.

Credit Definition

One credit requires one hour of direct face-to-face instruction per week over the course of 15 weeks, and at least double that time of independent work outside direct instruction time. Within that general framework, we distinguish between studio credits, non-studio credits, independent study credits and summer credits.

Credit Hour Assignments

Credit hour assignments are made based on time requirements and levels of achievement expected from the student, and must be consistent with the learning objectives, syllabus content and assignments for each course. Credit is earned only when curricular, competency, and all other requirements are met and the final examination is satisfactorily passed and the final grade is passing.

Types of Credit


Studio credits are attributed in classes requiring the creation of artwork, and because such creation typically involves specific tools, equipment, and space needs, the amount of direct instructional time in the classroom is longer and the amount of independent work expected outside of class shorter, than for non-studio credits.


Non-studio credits require more outside student work than do studio classes: independent library research, reading and writing assignments, data collection, visits to exhibits on which students write reviews and reports, etc.

PCA Catalogue

Learn more about Paris College of Art's programs.

View the Catalog