Apply for Admission

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Curious about applying to art school? Don’t be shy. Reach out to New Hampshire Institute of Art's Admission Office. Our admission staff include NHIA alumni happy to answer any questions you might have, from where to get the best coffee in town to providing guidance on filling out your application. They’ll welcome you into the NHIA community right from the start, taking the time to get to know you as an individual, paying special attention to your strengths, passions, artistic ability and academic potential. We enthusiastically welcome applicants from all walks of life, and those accepted will find themselves part of a vibrant community of students with diverse personal, artistic, cultural and educational backgrounds.


Early action deadline: December 1
Priority deadline: February 15
Rolling deadline: July 15
for all applicants including transfer and non-traditional. Accepted rolling admissions students are treated on a first come, first served basis regarding registration and housing assignments.


How to Apply

In order to complete the application for admission to the BFA program or the dual degree program (BFA/Master of Art in Teaching), the Admissions Office requires:

  • Application Form: Online applications for admission may be completed here.
  • Application Fee: There is an undergraduate application fee of $50, which must be paid at the time of application.  Fee discounts are available for Early Action and Priority Action applicants!
  • Official Transcripts: Official transcripts should be sent to the Admission Office directly from the high school you attend or attended. A GED is accepted in lieu of a high school transcript. If you have earned college credits, official records should be sent directly to the Admission Office from the Registrar's Office at the school(s) you attended. 
    • Students wishing to transfer college credit into NHIA must indicate their desire to do so as part of their application and submit all official college transcripts as part of their application materials.
  • Portfolio/Writing Sample: Please refer to the portfolio requirements for what to put in your visual arts portfolio or creative writing sample. NHIA asks that all applicants submit a reference portfolio on Slideroom. 
  • 500 Word Essay: Essays should be uploaded to Slideroom along with your portfolio submission and should be a response to one of the following prompts. 
    • What and/or who inspires you to be creative?
    • After graduating from college, what sort of impact do you hope that your artwork/writing will have?
    • What kind of conversations do you want your work to provoke or inspire?
  • ACT/SAT scores: ACT/SAT scores are optional for applicants to the BFA Program. Applicants to the dual degree program are required to submit test scores in reading, writing and mathematics demonstrating that you have scored nationally at the 50th percentile or higher in all three tests. Official scores must be sent to NHIA.

To supplement the above required materials, the NHIA’s Admission Office encourages:

  • Letters of recommendation: Letters can be submitted from teachers, school or guidance counselors, employers, and/or professionals in the art or writing field.
  • Applicants who have not attended school within the past year are urged to describe what they have been doing since leaving school and how their experiences have affected their passion for art/writing.


A notification of the decision regarding a student’s application is usually made within three weeks and the candidate is notified in writing by the Vice President of Enrollment Services. Notification of the decision for transfer or international applicants may take up to four weeks.


If you’re accepted to NHIA, you will find an enrollment deposit form included with your acceptance letter. This form must be completed and returned to the Institute with a $200 enrollment deposit no later than the due date listed on the acceptance letter. The enrollment deposit reserves your space in the next semester’s class, is applied directly to that semester’s tuition, and is non-refundable after May 1, 2017. A separate $200 deposit for housing is required if you would like on-campus housing.


NHIA welcomes nontraditional student applicants and the diversity of experiences that they bring to the studios. If you graduated from high school more than a few years ago and personal or business demands prevented you from following your dream of pursuing a degree in the arts, or maybe you have recently discovered a passion for art, you are encouraged to discuss your pertinent life experiences in your application essay. Nontraditional applicants are asked to follow the same admissions procedure as traditional students.


Please visit our Veteran's Page for more information.


A student with exceptional life or work experience, documented by art work, his or her exhibition history, or published or unpublished writings, may apply for a maximum of nine credits to be transferred toward studio or liberal arts requirements or electives.


  • International applicants for admission follow the same application requirements described above and must, if appropriate, also provide proof of English language proficiency.
  • All applicants whose native language is not English are required to submit the results of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Test System (IELTS) as evidence of English proficiency. Official scores are required to be submitted directly from TOEFL/IELTS. Minimum score requirements are: TOEFL 71 IBT or 197 CBT, and IELTS 6.0.
  • Upon approval, the Institute will issue the Sevis I-20 entitling you to apply for the F-1 student visa. International students who have been accepted must provide official, certified documentation of funding available to support one year of study at the Institute. Although the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) requires documentation of funding sources for only one year of study, we encourage you to plan funding for each year of study.
  • All submitted documents must be in English.


Admissions Office 
148 Concord Street 
Manchester, NH 03104 
Toll Free: 866-241-4918 
Local: 603-836-2589

Get started at NHIA today - Apply Now