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View our current Graduate Students.

The Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Graphic Design at Oklahoma State University (OSU) is the only graduate program specializing in a unique combination of Interaction Design, Motion Design and Visual Communication in Oklahoma and in any other Higher Education Institution in the region. Interaction Design and Motion Design in particular are among the most rapidly expanding areas in the field of graphic design. This is a three-year, sixty credit hour, and terminal degree that will develop students’ expertise as graphic designers in Interaction Design and Motion Design, while developing their research, presentation and writing skills. MFA graduates will be able to respond to both the creative demands of the graphic design profession and the research and teaching requirements of academia.

The OSU MFA Program in Graphic Design offers the terminal degree in this discipline required to teach at the university level. Graduate students must remain in residence at Oklahoma State University for the duration of the program.
There are three primary focus areas in the M.F.A. in Graphic Design:

  • Interaction Design (sometimes referred to IxD, User Experience Design, or UX Design) offers a diverse range of research areas to explore through the practice of graphic design. The study of interaction design considers the role of graphic design within human-computer interaction, the ever-shifting role of the participant (user/consumer/participant), and design strategies for interface design and development. Other research areas explore the nature of design, communication and information in the context of crafting two-, three-, and four-dimensional experiences.

  • Motion Design (sometimes referred to as motion graphics) brings the function and principles of graphic design and visual craft to sequential media and screen-based experiences. A focus in motion design includes animated typography, graphic elements, video in film and television, advertising, information graphics, music video, and new media where elements of graphic design are set into motion, synced with sound, and in dialogue with audiences.

  • Visual Communication Visual Communication invites interdisciplinary critical perspectives into visual media, considering the broad range of traditional as well as dynamic media. Emphasis is placed on innovative approaches to the communication of ideas and information within spectrum of existing and speculative environments, experiences and frameworks. The array of applications of interdisciplinary visual communication include branding, information design, navigation and environmental graphics systems, media design, amongst other broader less-charted realms.

All three focus areas aim to deepen a candidate’s engagement in professional practice and design research while building a robust area of expertise within graphic design. Supported by an emphasis on research, presentation, and critical writing skills, the M.F.A. program is crafted to prepare graduates to contribute to the future of creative practices and design education through teaching, critical pedagogy, and outreach.

Sample Graduate Courses:

Graphic Design Graduate Studio
Motion Design Graduate Studio
Interaction Design Graduate Studio
Teaching Practicum
Off-campus Summer Internship
Graduate Seminar

Graduate Graphic Design Faculty:

Pouya Jahanshahi, MFA
307 Bartlett Center
Assistant Professor, Graphic Design Student Group Advisor, & Graduate Coordinator
Research Interest: Motion & Integrated Media, Curatorial Design, Hybrid Visual Culture
Education: M.F.A. (California Institute of the Arts)

Justen Renyer, MFA
406 Bartlett Center
Associate Professor & Undergraduate Coordinator of BFA Program in Graphic Design
Research Interest: Motion Design, Lettering and Type Design
Education: M.F.A. (University of Oklahoma)

Nick Mendoza, MFA
308 Bartlett Center
Assistant Professor in Graphic Design
Research Interest: Design for Good, Screenprinting, Poster design, Branding
Education: M.F.A. (University of Utah)

Ting Wang-Hedges, MFA
306B Bartlett Center
Assistant Professor & Graphic Design Student Group Co-Advisor
Research Interest: Cross-Culture Design, Programming (Processing) for Type, Information Design,
Education: M.F.A. (Kansas State University)

James Ewald, MFA
306 Bartlett Center
Assistant Professor, Graphic Design Student Club Co-Advisor
Research Interest: Sensory Design, Graphic Novels, Independent Publishing
Education: M.F.A. (Iowa State University)


How to apply:

You may download and view our MFA guideline for the current year.

Submit the following to OSU’s Graduate College:

• OSU Graduate College Application
• Official Transcripts
• Resume
• Portfolio (15- 20 Examples of work)
• Statement of purpose (One or two page)
• Three (3) letters of recommendation
• Official TOEFL scores are required for international students.
• No GRE scores are required.
Graduate Assistantships
The MFA program awards several assistantships to support graduate students.
• Graduate Research Assistant (GRA)
• Graduate Teaching Assistant (GTA)
• Graduate Teaching Lab Assistant (GTLA)
Assistantship appointments that are half-time (50%) include, in addition to the monthly stipend, full non-resident tuition waiver, full resident tuition waiver, and health insurance benefits. To be considered for the graduate assistantship, you must indicate your interest during your graduate college application process.
You may be required to provide additional information. These are available on a competitive basis and may be not awarded to all graduate students. More information about assistantship can be found at

Contact Information:

Graduate Coordinator
Pouya Jahanshahi, MFA
307 Bartlett Center