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Admissions Deadline Eligibility Required Documentation Tuition Scholarships After You Apply Contact


The final application deadline for Fall 2020 programs is Monday, May 18, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. (Eastern Time). Applications submitted after this deadline will be considered on a rolling basis, if space is available.


To be eligible for admission, applicants must have earned a bachelor's degree or its equivalent from an accredited institution by the date on which they enroll at the Institute.

Applicants should demonstrate the following skills:

  • The ability to perform at a postgraduate level, as indicated by academic achievement and recommendations.
  • Knowledge of art history. Applicants without an art history background might receive conditional offers based on completing pre-requisite coursework.
  • Excellent verbal and written communication and analytical skills. For international students, an IELTS score of level 7, TOEFL 100 IBT, or its equivalent is required.
  • Professional experience is not a required element of our application process, however relevant employment and/or internships enhance a student’s application.

Required Documentation

All prospective students must apply using the online application. A complete application includes:

  • Academic transcripts/mark sheets: from all undergraduate and post-secondary academic institutions attended. An official copy of the transcript, indicating that the degree has been awarded, must be sent directly from the student’s institution to Sotheby’s Institute in a sealed envelope.
    • Unofficial copies of transcripts are sufficient for the application process and for issuing decisions. The documents must be in English. The admissions department will require an official transcript once you enroll in the program.
    • Official international transcripts must be accompanied by certified course by course credential evaluations. The evaluation will convert the grades and GPA into the United States grading scale. For more information, please visit the World Education Services website:
  • Two (2) letters of reference: References from an academic or professional contact. For those candidates with work experience, at least one reference should be professional.
  • A personal statement (1,000 words maximum): Please tell us about yourself, your reasons for your choice of program, any relevant academic or art related experience, and your future career goals.
  • A writing sample: A graded paper of no fewer than 1,000 words from an art history or art-related course or 1,000-word original essay or mock review written for an art publication or website. Footnotes are required for any citations.
  • A curriculum vitae or résumé
  • An English language proficiency exam (required for non-native English speakers): A minimum score of IELTS level 7 or TOEFL 100 IBT will be considered. If your undergraduate coursework was conducted in English or if you have extensive English-speaking professional experience, it may be possible to waive the English language proficiency exam, upon review of your application. Note: TOEFL and IELTS scores expire two years after the test date.
  • Payment of the application fee: A nonrefundable fee of $100 (USD) is required for the 2020 online application. Applications are not considered complete until the fee has been paid.

GRE test scores are not required, but are accepted. The GRE code for Sotheby’s Institute of Art is 4161.


Tuition and Fees for Master’s Degree 2020-2021

Semester 1: $23,300
Semester 2: $23,300
Semester 3: $13,300 (offsite*) or $23,300 (onsite**)

*Offsite: capstone (thesis or project), can be undertaken remotely or while working
**Onsite: includes a third semester of coursework, capstone, and field study

Deposit: $1,500
Field Study: $3,400 per semester (required in Semester 1 and 2)
Materials & services fee: $850
International student fee: $500

Sotheby's Institute of Art tuition and fees are updated annually based on the curriculum and field study destinations. Course work is completed in semesters 1 and 2 for 30 credit hours, the minimum necessary for a Graduate Certificate. For students pursuing a Master’s degree, a thesis or capstone project is required and represents a total 36 credit hour requirement for the MA. This is undertaken in the third semester, either independently off-campus or alongside continued coursework on campus, which includes a third field study opportunity.

Field study is required of all students in semesters one and two and is non-refundable. The fee covers all transportation, accommodations, and privileged access to venues and events.

The materials & services fee allows Sotheby’s Institute to operate as a fully-fledged and independent academic center including our library, full technology resources, student and academic advising, and career services.

The international students fee is required of students who are not United States citizens to ensure support for the unique needs of our international population.

A non-refundable deposit of $1,500 upon acceptance is required to secure your place on all programs. The deposit will be applied to your Semester 1 tuition.


Sotheby’s Institute of Art offers partial-tuition scholarships towards full program tuition to qualified domestic and international candidates. Scholarship awards are based on need and merit. In order to be considered for Scholarships, candidates must submit a Master’s or Graduate Certificate program application and indicate they would like to be considered on the application form. The scholarship application will require filling out a basic form, sending in required documentation. Merit will be based on program application materials submitted. Scholarship awards are not guaranteed.

Scholarship Application includes:

  • Domestic Students: Scholarship Form, FAFSA, Two consecutive years of IRS tax forms (additional documentation may be required including parents’ IRS tax forms)
  • International Students: Scholarship Form, Equivalent of proof of income (additional documentation may be required including parents’ financial information)

Applicants will receive scholarship decisions along with their admissions decision for the program if all applications are completed before the following deadlines:

  • Regular Decision: March 2

Scholarship applications submitted after the early and regular decision dates will receive notification of their award within 2 weeks of submitting the completed scholarship application materials.

After You Apply

Our admissions team will follow up with you within one working week about any outstanding documentation or required information. Applicants whose documentation is complete will receive notification if they will be offered an interview.

If you receive an offer, a non-refundable deposit of $1,500 is required to secure your place.

Visas: Applicants who require visas are advised to apply through their appropriate consulate or other government agencies at least 10 weeks prior to the start of classes in order to ensure sufficient time for processing. Please refer to the Information for International Students page for additional questions.


Please note: Materials should not be mailed to the Institute unless specifically requested by the Admissions Office. Transcripts and other supplemental application materials should be uploaded through the online application system.

Admissions Office
Sotheby's Institute of Art
570 Lexington Avenue, 15th Floor
New York, NY 10022 USA