MCAD values transfer students for the experience, insight, knowledge, and vigor they add to our creative community.

You are considered a transfer student if you have graduated from a high school program (or equivalent) and have enrolled at a post-secondary institution.

Make an appointment with an admissions counselor to determine your transfer credit eligibility. This initial review is not binding, but it will give you a good idea of what credits may transfer. Once you are accepted for admission, you will receive an official transfer-credit evaluation. 

Please note: Due to the decision of many institutions to move to an online Pass/Fail format for the COVID-19 crisis, MCAD will accept pass/fail, satisfactory/unsatisfactory, and credit/no credit courses, including online and remote learning classes, for transfer consideration.

"The head of my major, Natasha Pestich, is a very kind person and has helped me realize that this is the right program and place for me to be." –Olivia Saleh

Are you a San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) Memphis College of Art (MCA), Oregon College of Art (OCAC), or Watkins College of Art (Watkins) student? Find transfer information specific to your situation below.

Learn more about how your credits may transfer with Transferology. This free web-based network is designed to assist you throughout the transfer process by determining whether the credit from the courses you've taken—or plan to take—will be accepted. 

Transfer-Credit Evaluation

While we are selective with transfer credits, we may accept up to 30 liberal arts credits and up to 33 studio arts credits with a grade of “C” or better from other regionally-accredited post-secondary institutions and pre-college programs.

Liberal Arts Courses

Up to 30 liberal arts credits from courses comparable to those taught at MCAD will be considered, including art history, humanities, language, and social science courses. A course description is required to determine transfer eligibility.

Studio Arts Courses

Up to 33 studio arts credits may be transferred. A portfolio of work completed as part of each studio course is required for studio arts credit transfer (i.e. if you intend to transfer credits for three courses, three separate portfolios are required).

Pre-College Courses

We may accept transfer credits from advanced placement (AP), international baccalaureate (IB), post-secondary enrollment option (PSEO), and other pre-college programs. Our pre-college transfer guides below indicate specific courses that may meet our foundation curriculum requirements.

Community College Courses

To minimize loss of credit and duplication of coursework, it is recommended that students transfer to MCAD after one year of community college. Early communication with an admissions counselor is recommended.

Although MCAD does not participate in the Minnesota Transfer Curriculum (MnTC) or recognize the full transfer of the associate of arts (AA), many of the courses in the MnTC and the AA do fulfill our requirements. Our community college transfer guides below indicate specific courses that may meet our requirements.

Animation Major

Animation courses at MCAD are taught sequentially and have prerequisites. Due to the curriculum structure and intensity, transfer students who pursue the animation major will be required to complete a minimum of three and a half years (3.5) at MCAD. Students with previous animation experience from AICAD schools may be able to transfer in additional credits and will be evaluated individually. Transfer students, be aware that you may graduate with more than 120 credits. Please contact MCAD Admissions for more information.

Admissions Requirements

Transfer students must follow the undergraduate application deadlines and requirements. In addition, official transcripts, course descriptions, course syllabi, and course portfolios, when applicable, are required by the following deadlines:

Fall Semester Admission 
  • Official Transcripts
  • Transfer Portfolios
  • Course Descriptions
  • Course Syllabi
Last Friday in June


Spring Semester Admission 
  • In-Progress Artwork
  • Course Descriptions
  • Course Syllabi
Before December 1
  • Official Transcripts
  • Transfer Portfolios
First Friday in January


Contact an admissions counselor for guidance in the transfer process.

MCAD's New Product Design Major

Product design courses are taught sequentially and have prerequisites. Due to the newness of the program, transfer students who pursue the product design major will be required to complete a minimum of three years at MCAD. Students with previous product design experience from an AICAD school may be able to transfer additional credits and will be evaluated individually.

Contact MCAD Admissions for more information.

Transfer Credit Guides

Pre-College Courses:

Community College Courses:

MCAD Transfer Guidelines

Memphis College of Art (MCA) and Oregon College of Art (OCAC) Students

Are you a Memphis College of Art (MCA) or Oregon College of Art (OCAC) student looking to transfer to MCAD?

The MCAD community is saddened by the closing of these institutions, its effect on the students, and the loss for the national art and design community. We realize that the closing of a university is a stressful situation, and so we have streamlined the process for MCA and OCAC students to enroll at MCAD. Be sure to carefully follow the following guidelines and complete all steps by the posted dates to ensure a smooth transfer process.

Watkins College of Art (Watkins) and San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) Students

Are you current student at Watkins College of Art (Watkins) or San Francisco Art Institute (SFAI) interested in transferring to MCAD?

The MCAD community welcomes students from Watkins and SFAI seeking to transfer. Our goal at MCAD is to assist students with enrolling at MCAD while maintaining a high level of academic quality and student services. We have streamlined the process for Watkins and SFAI students to enroll at MCAD. Please carefully follow the process we have outlined and complete the steps by posted dates.