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Master Degree

DeAvin Mitchell


"When I was in the process of selecting what graduate programs to apply to, Ohio State separated itself from other degree programs because the program made clear and explicit connections between art education and arts policy"

DeAvin Mitchell, Arts Policy and Administration MA student

Read more about DeAvin's experience


Arts administration is a growing field that has applications in a variety of exciting venues, both in the nonprofit and for-profit sectors. Understanding the powerful role of arts and culture in society today is the cornerstone of this degree. Integrating theory and practice, the APA degree gives students the most comprehensive and rigorous training available anywhere. You will learn effective smart practices in administration, entrepreneurship, policy, and governance.

Based in one of the largest universities in the U.S., this program combines a rigorous academic focus with meaningful community engagement. Underlying the tenets of the APA program is the commitment to equity and inclusion, as well as a focus on cultural and creative sustainability and resilience. Graduates of the program have flourished in their careers, finding opportunities worldwide for meaningful positions in the arts and culture sector and beyond.

When you graduate from the APA program, you will be able to:

  • Master management, policy, and economic theories in the realm of the creative economy in order to contribute to the advancement of scholarship in the field (Theoretical Foundations)
  • Assess and evaluate the smart practices and key dilemmas facing the creative sector and its proponents on the global stage. Program graduates will have a comprehensive knowledge of the variety of research methodologies available to evaluate quantitative and qualitative data. Students will have the skills to apply data-driven solutions to the wide range of challenges in the creative sector today (Assessment, Research and Evaluation)
  • Understand the importance of a commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, both in the creation and dissemination of creative outputs. (Equity and Inclusion)

Career Paths

The MA in Arts Policy and Administration prepares leaders in the creative sector to comprehend organizational structure, provide adaptable and sustainable strategic planning for changing times, offer insight into global production and consumption trends, demonstrate cultural sensitivity, and continue to leverage important research tools and knowledge to address issues at hand in the rapidly-shifting world of the arts. Professionals with the MA in Arts Policy and Administration will go on to hold influential positions in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors as leaders, managers, and consultants, enjoying exciting career trajectories including:

  • Municipal Cultural Policy Advisor
  • Public Art Consultant
  • VP in a fashion design company
  • Operations Manager of a symphony orchestra
  • Marketing and social media specialist in a music industry corporation
  • CEO of a recording industry startup
  • Artist or craftsperson with a flourishing practice
  • Managing director of a theatre company
  • Director of institutional advancement in an art museum

What to know before applying

Deadline to Apply: November 30th (to be considered for funding opportunities). March 1st is the final application deadline
Program Start: Autumn semester
Prerequisites/Pre-major Requirements: Bachelor's degree, undergraduate courses in American government, economics, and statistics
Minimum Program Hours: 43-46 credit hours
Coursework: Creative sector, arts/cultural institutions, organizational theories, management practice, public policy formulation and implementation, public affairs program evaluation, public and nonprofit management, policy practice, and arts management
Other Requirements: Thesis examination, non-thesis research project, or Capstone
Specializations Available: Museum Education and Administration
Funding Opportunities: Most students are admitted with a funding package. Applicants are able to apply directly for a GTA position or the Barnett Fellowship. Every year, the AAEP Graduate Studies Committee nominates outstanding applicants to the University Fellowship competition. Students are not eligible to apply directly for a University Fellowship or Graduate Enrichment Fellowship.

Meet the Faculty

Joni Acuff, PhD, Associate Professor and Graduate Studies Chair
Christine Ballengee Morris, PhD, Professor
Tiffany Bourgeois, PhD, Assistant Professor
Dana Carlisle Kletchka, PhD, Assistant Professor
Richard Fletcher, PhD, Associate Professor
Shoshanah Goldberg-Miller, PhD, Associate Professor
JT Richardson, PhD, Associate Professor
Jim Sanders, PhD, Associate Professor
Shari Savage, PhD, Associate Professor and Interim Department Chair
Rachel Skaggs, PhD, Lawrence and Isabel Barnett Assistant Professor of Arts Management