Applicants for Elon University’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Art Program must submit a portfolio of works, an essay, two letters of recommendation, and participate in an interview. This information explains the portfolio review requirements, essay and letters of recommendation guidelines, along with the interview process.

Portfolio Review

There are a limited number of openings in the BFA program at each review. Portfolios become an important deciding factor for acceptance into this degree program. Applicants should submit artwork that demonstrates creativity, curiosity, ambition, technical skill, and the ability to convey ideas in an imaginative and personally engaging manner.

Portfolio Requirements

  • The portfolio must include 12 to 15 examples of works that best document the depth and breadth of the applicant’s art experience and potential.
  • All portfolios must be accompanied by an inventory list detailing the artist’s name, titles of work, medium(s), size, and date of the depicted works. (i.e. #1: Artist Name, Self Portrait, mixed media, 24″ x 36″, May 2021)

Digital photo documentation files should be formatted as JPEGs, with pixel dimensions of 3000 x 2500 at a resolution of 72 ppi (DO NOT use Powerpoint or any other program). Video clips and animations should be formatted as Quicktime files. Web works can be submitted as .html files. File names should correspond to the inventory list with your portfolio. Please check to see that the files are readable before submitting. Digital files that do not open compromise the viability of your application.


The essay provides an important place for the applicant to express his/herself as a creative, thoughtful student and individual. Write a two-page single-spaced essay that addresses the following topics:

  • Artists should create with intention so that their work has meaning and purpose for themselves and their audience. Discuss the reasons why you make art and some specific ideas or concepts your work communicates to you and your viewers.
  • Describe an experience, encounter, or class assignment that inspired further independent exploration or inquiry outside of the classroom. Where did it lead you and how did it impact your development as an artist?
  • Why are you attracted to a BFA program that places an emphasis on an integrated examination of the liberal arts?
  • What attribute(s) do you feel make you an especially strong candidate for our BFA program?

Letters of Recommendation

Applicants must submit two (2) letters of recommendation. If you are a current Elon student, at least one letter must be from an Art Department studio faculty member. References should have knowledge of the applicant’s accomplishments as a student and an artist. The letter should specifically address creative and intellectual curiosity, ambition, technical skill, and the ability to convey ideas in an imaginative and personally engaging manner.


Interviews offer a chance for prospective students to ask questions and get a sense of their potential within Elon University’s BFA in Art program. It also gives the faculty an opportunity to further understand applicant’s goals, ambitions, and creative ideas.  The schedule for the interview day is normally from 9am-2pm.

Applicants must indicate a preferred interview time on the BFA application form. It is crucial that your completed packet arrive by the appropriate due dates listed below (two weeks before your desired interview date). These interviews are essential for all applicants, however for those with special needs or residing outside of the continental United States, please contact Young Kim, BFA Review Coordinator, for information about alternative interviews.


If you have questions, or would like more information about the review process contact: