Graduate Program: Funded MFA Program: Documentary Films at CU Boulder

International Application Deadline: December 1, 2015
Domestic Application Deadline: January 15, 2016


Within the newly established Department of Critical Media Practices (DCMP) at the University of Colorado, Boulder, the MFA in Interdisciplinary Documentary Media Practices addresses the changing landscape of electronic media making within a broader context of culture and history. The program provides graduate students with an immersive experience in documentary media practices from a variety of philosophical and cross-disciplinary perspectives, using both traditional and emerging media forms. With state-of-the-art production resources and a wide array of interdisciplinary faculty, the MFA equips students with analytical and practical skills so that they may situate themselves within an evolving documentary tradition.

The MFA in Interdisciplinary Documentary Media Practices is a terminal degree, which requires 60 credits of course work over a three-year period.Fellowships and other funding are available. The onsite Documentary Lab provides training in all phases of production and fosters an environment of investigation and collaboration with faculty in DCMP, Film, Anthropology, Media Studies, Art and Art History, and Journalism, and with the community of professional documentarians in the Boulder/Denver area. The program culminates in a thesis project of intellectual rigor that makes an innovative contribution to the field of documentary media practices.

Program Requirements:
The Interdisciplinary Documentary Media Practices MFA is a three-year degree program requiring 60 credit hours of course work, with first-year, second-year, and thesis reviews, and with public presentations of work each year.
  • Seven seminars are required, including Research and Methodologies, four Documentary, and two MFA Thesis Seminars.
  • One Production workshop
  • One Production Topic
  • One Documentary fieldwork course
  • One Contemporary Issues in Documentary Media course
  • One Media/Culture Studies elective
  • One Producing Practicum
  • Three self-directed research classes, under faculty supervision
  • Individual Thesis Research course

Each student’s thesis project will be presented in a third-year spring semester MFA Exhibition. A written thesis reflecting on the project is required. The MFA thesis project will focus on producing an intellectually rigorous and innovative contribution to documentary media. The MFA thesis project evolves throughout the course of the program as students develop their own distinct perspective.

Admissions Requirements:
  • Hold at least a baccalaureate degree, or its equivalent from an accredited college or university and provide transcripts from every institution attended
  • Have an undergraduate grade point average of at least 2.75
  • If international, TOEFL or IELTS scores
  • Provide three letters of recommendation
  • Provide a statement of purpose
  • Provide a portfolio of sample media work such as short video and audio work. Format preference is Vimeo, otherwise QuickTime files or DVD and / or links to website work
  • In the online application select IDMP-MFA as the academic plan

Financial Support:
Research or teaching assistantships and fellowships are available.  Please request one as part of the application.

Contact Information:
Department of Critical Media Practices
Armory 106,
 478 UCB
University of Colorado Boulder
Boulder, CO 80309-0478
Phone 303-492-5008
Fax 303-492-0969