MFA Application Requirements

Applicants must submit all the following materials to the Graduate Division by the deadline of January 10, 2018.

1. Application and $50 application fee

LMU offers an easy online application. Please visit the Graduate Division website to get started.

NOTE: Applicants may apply to only ONE graduate program per year. Applicants may not apply simultaneously to two different SFTV programs.

2. Personal Statement

Your personal statement should be a story about you. How have your life experiences, choices, and values shaped you as a storyteller? What has influenced your unique voice? Tell us about three films, TV shows or plays that had an impact on you and why. Describe the last three books you read. Why do you want to attend the MFA Production program at Loyola Marymount University?

3. Creative Samples

Applicants to the graduate program in Production must submit four creative samples:

  1. One film or video work in which you performed a primary creative role (5-10 minutes maximum). The work may be fictional, animation, or a documentary. We prefer complete films. We are most interested in your storytelling ability and are less concerned with your technical skills. SFTV considers thoughtful applicants who are in the early stages of their filmmaking careers, as well as more experienced applicants.
  2. One 1-page outline of a film or video project you would like to create. This should be in treatment form. Give us a sense of the kind of filmmaking that interests you.
  3. You telling a true story based on a personal experience that mattered to you (2 minutes maximum). Simply record yourself telling this story on-camera. The emphasis is on the content of the story, so carefully think through the structure before you begin. Do not script it, nor 'perform' the event. The recording will not be viewed past 2 minutes.
  4. "The Unforgettable Moment": Write a single-spaced, single page describing an unforgettable moment you either experienced or witnessed. Concentrate on the basics of good storytelling: character, mood and the dramatic arc.

Combine all your written work into a single PDF file. U.S. applicants are required to submit a URL for the visual sample, preferably on Vimeo or YouTube. To ensure committee access, we suggest that you do not password protect your visual samples. International applicants are encouraged to submit their creative materials via a URL, but if this is not possible, they may submit NTSC DVDs.

4. Portfolio List

The portfolio list is a written record of the applicant's creative material; it does not need to be film or TV-related. It should include the title and a logline (if appropriate), the year of completion, and the applicant's creative role in the production. The material should give an idea of the range and depth of applicant's creative ability. Formal recognition–such as awards, publications, jobs and exhibitions–should be noted. The name of the institution or publication should be included when listing creative materials prepared for a class or publication. Please do not submit any of these materials to us; this is just a list of your work.

An example of the Portfolio List is:

  1. July 2014, A Day in the Life, digital video, 12 minutes. Position: writer/director. A documentary on a homeless Iraq vet who has lived on the streets since his return from the military. Created for senior-year multimedia project, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI.
  2. March 2013, Doorways, a series of 5 black-and-white photographs. Position: photographer. "Second Prize Winner" in the Des Moines Sunday Journal photo contest.
  3. February 2011, Cellomorphosis, short story. Position: writer. A variation on the novella by Franz Kafka: published in Writing, vol. IV, 2010, at Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts.

5. Resume

6. Two Letters of Recommendation (required for all programs)

Select your recommenders carefully, as this is a critical portion of your application. Each recommender must have supervised your work. Do NOT send letters from colleagues or friends. We suggest that you provide at least one academic letter and one professional letter. Applicants must submit their letter electronically through the online application. If your recommender prefers to mail the recommendation letter, please provide them with the recommendation form available from the Graduate Admissions web page. Applicants are responsible for making sure the letters have been received.

7. Official Transcripts (required for all programs)

We require two official sealed transcripts supplied by all schools you attended. These letters should be included in your application packet or mailed separately by the school. We recommend you send your transcripts to the Office of Graduate Admissions at least 3 weeks prior to the application deadline. Transcripts should be sent to:

Graduate Admissions
Loyola Marymount University
1 LMU Drive, Suite 1840
Los Angeles, CA 90045-2659

All international applicants must submit a transcript evaluation before their application can be reviewed. Please visit the Graduate Admissions page for more information.

8. GRE Scores

The GRE is required for all applicants with an undergraduate GPA below 3.0. However, we strongly recommend that all applicants submit GRE scores as further evidence of their academic performance.

If you need more information or need assistance, please contact Mary Abshire, Sr. Administrative Coordinator for SFTV Graduate Programs, at or 310.338.5991.