MFA Application Requirements

Applicants must submit all the following materials to the Graduate Division by the deadline of December 10, 2018.  These guidelines will be updated for the next admissions cycle by September of each year.


1. Graduate Online 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. Two Letters of Recommendation

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 prefer that you provide one academic letter and one professional letter, or two academic letters. Applicants must submit their letter electronically through the online graduate application. Applicants are responsible for making sure the letters have been received.

3. Official Transcripts

We require two official sealed transcripts supplied by all schools you attended. These transcripts should be mailed separately by the school(s). We recommend you send 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, Charles Von der Ahe Building, Suite 235
Los Angeles, CA 90045-2659

4. Transcript/Credit Evaluation (International Applicants Only)

International applicants who have completed their postsecondary education from an institution outside the U.S. must hold a degree from a university recognized by the Ministry of Education as a degree-granting institution. Transcripts must be translated and evaluated by a U.S. transcript evaluation service (e.g. Global Services Associates, Educational Credential Evaluators,
International Education Research Foundation or World Education Services) before the application is considered for admission.

The purpose of the evaluation is to verify that your postsecondary degree is the equivalent of a U.S. Bachelor's degree. A course-by-course transcript evaluation identifying your GPA must be submitted along with the application for the School of Film and Television.

5. TOEFL/IELTS Test Scores (International Applicants Only)

All applicants must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) unless they received a high school diploma or a bachelor's degree in the United States. Exceptions to this rule may be made for students from countries where English is one of several official languages, as well as at the discretion of the program director. The minimum TOEFL score for admission into most graduate program is 100 internet-based (IELTS Overall Band Score of 7).

Note: If, after admission to a graduate program, the applicant's proficiency in English should prove inadequate, the Univeristy reserves the right to require additional proficiency in English. Failure to comply will result in disqualification from the graduate program. Please request that ETS send your scores to LMU Graduate Admissions. The Institution Code for LMU is 4403.

6. GRE Scores

The GRE is required for all applicants with an undergraduate GPA below 3.0.


1. 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? (fewer than 1000 words).

2. Creative Samples

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

  1. A visual sample of 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. Provide this visual sample as a URL link.
  2. A 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. Create up to a two-minute video telling us who you are and why you want to tell stories. Simply record yourself telling your story on-camera. Do not script it, nor 'perform' the event. The recording will not be viewed past 2 minutes.
  4. "The Unforgettable Moment": Write one single-spaced 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 four creative samples into a single PDF file. Applicants are required to submit a URL for the visual samples, preferably on Vimeo or YouTube. To ensure committee access, we suggest that you do not password protect your visual samples. If you encounter any issue submitting visual samples via URL , please contact us for an alternative option.

3. Portfolio List

The portfolio list is a written record of the applicant's creative material, including but not limited to film or television. 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 the 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.

4. A One-Page Resume


If you need more information or need assistance, please contact Jenny Vasquez, Assistant Director of Graduate Recruitment & Admissions, at or

For Undergraduate Admissions, please contact