Photography (MA)

Photography (MA)

The MA in Photography program provides professional practice and intensive study of the photographic medium. Core curriculum covers historical perspective, in addition to advanced theoretical and conceptual development in traditional, experimental and digital photography capture, post-production and output with a focus on the development of a signature portfolio in the student’s area of interest (Fine Art Photography, Documentary, or Art for Commerce).


Master of Arts (MA) Degree

Available Online

Major Classes

PH 601 Photography Concept Major/3
PH 603 The Language of Photography Major/3
PH 608 Lighting Major/3
PH 612 The Nature of Photography Major/3
PH 616 Photoshop and Lightroom for Photographers Major/3
PH 635 Digital Printing Techniques Major/3
PH 673 Portfolio: Concept and Development Major/3
PH 674 Portfolio: Capture and Critique Major/3


Unit Requirements

Major Coursework Units
Major 33
Graduate Liberal Arts 3
Total 36

Degree Requirements


  • Successful completion of Final Portfolio Review.
  • Minimum grade of C in all required 36 units.
  • Minimum 2.0 cumulative GPA and the following Academic Study requirement:
    1 Art Historical Awareness & Aesthetic Sensitivity course

Additional Information

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduate students will meet the following student performance criteria:

Conceptual and Design Skills

  • Make creative decisions that optimize conceptual impact, cohesiveness and personal style
  • Integrate conceptual and technical elements of photography to convey a story, idea, or emotion
  • Effectively deploy design elements within the composition and presentation of the imagery

Technical Skills

  • Utilize effective lighting styles, techniques and equipment appropriate to art for commerce, photojournalism/documentary, or fine art applications, as determined by projects and professional focus
  • Master exposure, lighting ratios, and post-production skills as appropriate to the project

Communication and Analysis

  • Communicate ideas and proposals clearly, verbally and in writing, including defending work and choices made during capture, output and presentation
  • Critique their photographs with an understanding of technical, aesthetic, and historical context

Professional Readiness

  • Produce a cohesive portfolio tailored to reflect career goals

Academy of Art University Learning Outcomes
Graduates of the Academy of Art University will demonstrate the ability to:

  1. Produce a body of work suitable for seeking professional opportunities in their chosen field of art and design.
  2. Solve creative problems within their field of art and design, including research and synthesis of technical, aesthetic, and conceptual knowledge.
  3. Communicate their ideas professionally and connect with their intended audience using visual, oral, and written presentation skills relevant to their field.
  4. Execute technical, aesthetic, and conceptual decisions based on an understanding of art and design principles.
  5. Evaluate work in their field, including their own work, using professional terminology.
  6. Recognize the influence of major cultural and aesthetic trends, both historical and contemporary, on art and design products.
  7. Learn the professional skills and behaviors necessary to compete in the global marketplace for art and design.
  8. Engage with a variety of communities beyond the classroom through internship opportunities, study abroad programs, athletics, student interest clubs as well as collaborative, civic and pro bono projects.

*Semester plans are subject to change at any time. Semester breakdowns displayed are suggested and additional options are available to help customize your educational experience. Speak to an admissions or student services representative for more information. Please see our catalog for more details at:

Academy of Art University Search Search Search Previous Next Previous Next Next Next Chat Quote Facebook Google Plus Instagram Pinterest Twitter YouTube LinkedIn TikTok WeHeartIt Download App Close