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Incoming Students


myRutgers Dashboard

Now that you have decided to enroll at Rutgers University, you will use this online resource to confirm that you have completed all the necessary steps for placement testing, course registration, housing and dining, financial aid, billing, final transcripts and other aspects of your enrollment. Information about student life and immunization procedures is also available via this resource. Your

Learn your RUID

Your RUID is a unique 9-digit number that Rutgers assigns to you during your admissions process and stays with you as your identification number as a student at the University. It is used in place of a social security number to identify you on class rosters and with most University departments. This number is VERY important to have handy (we suggest memorizing it!) for placement tests, advising, and ANYTHING Rutgers related. An easy way to remember your RUID is to note it is 9-digits with two “0”s in the center like the sample illustrated here: 555-00-5555.

NetID and Rutgers Email

It is imperative that all students set up their Rutgers Scarlet Mail account once enrolled. This email account will be the ONLY means of official communication with you from the University (advisors, financial aid, Dean’s Office, larger university community, financial aid, instructors). If you still wish to use a personal email account you may choose to have your scarlet mail forwarded to

another address you designate as a surrogate (gmail, yahoo, hotmail, aol, etc). In order to set up your Scarlet Mail please visit your myRutgers Dashboard or follow the instructions below.

All faculty, staff, students and guests are assigned a Rutgers unique identifier known as a NetID, comprised of initials and a unique number (e.g. jqs23). In order to access many of the electronic services available to you at Rutgers, you need to activate your Rutgers NetID through the myRutgers Dashboard. Your assigned NetID will appear on the activation screen. You may also activate and manage your NetID and email at

RU Connection Card

The RUconnection Card is the official photo identification card issued to faculty, staff, students, and guests on all Rutgers University campuses. This unified photo ID card serves as the primary form of identity verification throughout the university.
You can upload a photo for your ID card on your myRutgers Dashboard.

Your RUconnection Card is important to have so you will be granted access to the services such as:

  • Checkout privileges at any of the Rutgers University libraries
  • Access to recreation centers and computer lab facilities.
  • Entry to football games and other events.
  • Access to purchased meal plans and debit account options.
  • Access to assigned housing and other buildings.
  • Identification for transactions with the university cashier and registrar.
  • Attendance verification for classes and exams.

Additional Student Information

For additional resources and information (i.e. billing, financial aid, public safety, health, registrar, transcripts, catalogs, degree requirements) please visit the Current Students page.



University Undergraduate New Student Orientation Programs

New Student Orientation (NSO) is an important experience for all incoming undergraduate students, who have never attended Rutgers before, regardless of academic affiliation or major. At NSO, you will have the opportunity to become familiar with campus resources and make connections with current students, faculty, and staff before beginning classes in the fall.

Rutgers NSO offers programming for all undergraduate students with specific programing designed for First Year students as well as Undergraduate Transfer and Non-Traditional Students.

Learn more on the Rutgers University New Student Orientation programs.

Mason Gross New Student Welcome and Advisement Sessions

Required for all students who have never enrolled at Mason Gross before or are returning after an extended absence.  Before each fall semester, we host these events for undergraduate students (first year and transfer) and graduate students which include a welcome from the Dean, student affairs staff, and departmental advisement breakout sessions.

All new students at Mason Gross are required to attend.


You are a first-year (or freshman) applicant if:

  • You are currently enrolled in high school, even if you’ve completed college credits while in high school, or
  • You’ve graduated from high school and have never attended college, or
  • You’ve been enrolled in college but will have completed fewer than 12 academic post-high school graduation college credits by the time you enroll at Rutgers.

Advisement and Course Registration

All incoming students will be registered for their first-semester courses by their department advisors.

For questions, please contact

Pre-College Credit

Advanced Placement

Degree credit is awarded for advanced placement scores of 4 or 5 on the College Board Advanced Placement Exams. Credit is not given for grades of 1, 2, or 3. Credit earned by advanced placement is not computed in the cumulative grade-point average.

International Baccalaureate (IB) Examinations

Degree credit is awarded for IB scores of 7, 6, and 5 on Higher Level exams. Credit is not given for grades of 4 or lower or for Subsidiary/Standard Level Exams.

High School Course Work

Under New Jersey state law, certain approved courses in high school may be taken for college credit. Please note, first-year students are not eligible to receive credit for Expository Writing via college credit completed while in high school or during the summer prior to matriculation at Rutgers University.

Courses taken through NJ Community Colleges

For courses taken at New Jersey Community Colleges while the student is in high school or courses taken at the high school and recorded on a college transcript, cannot be used to determine course equivalencies. Some course may transfer as elective credit or may not transfer at all if taken while the student was in high school. It is important to have official college transcripts sent to the Mason Gross Dean’s Office for complete evaluation.

Courses taken through Rutgers University

Courses completed in high school through programs offered by Rutgers University may be counted for degree credit for students that matriculate at the Mason Gross School of the Arts. 

Courses taken elsewhere

Please have official transcripts sent from the college or University to the Mason Gross Dean’s Office for evaluation.

For questions about pre-college credit, please contact

Placement Testing

In order for you to be registered for classes, you must complete the English and math placement tests, unless you are exempt. Please see a list of placement text exemptions.

Transfer Students

You are a transfer student if:

  • You are a high school graduate/GED holder, and
  • You will have completed at least 12 college credits after leaving high school and a college transcript showing these courses and final grades earned will be submitted within the required due dates.

Advisement and Course Registration

All incoming students will be registered for their first-semester courses by their department adviser.

Transfer Credit

Mason Gross sets the following limits on the maximum number of degree credits transferable into the school:

  • No more than 60 credits from the two-year institutions
  • No more than 90 credits from four-year institutions
  • A maximum of 90 credits may be transferred from any combination of two- and four-year institutions.

Transfer reviews for incoming students are completed in the months of June and July. In order for credit to be awarded, you must submit official transcripts from the outside institution.

Liberal Arts (general education) credits are evaluated by the Liberal Arts Curriculum Advisor. Review of artistic credit is overseen by the department advisers.

For questions regarding transfer credit and/or reviews, please contact

Placement Testing

Transfer students are not advised to complete English or math placement testing until they receive their Liberal Arts Transfer Review.

School to School Transfer and Re-Enrollment

Students enrolling at Mason Gross via the School-to-School Transfer or Re-Enrollment applications will be registered for their first semester courses by their department advisors.


Students should contact and request a liberal arts review in order to determine how their previous general education curriculum (SAS Core, for example) can be applied to their degree at Mason Gross School.


Students should contact and their department adviser to confirm the remaining requirements for their BFA/BM degree.

Art & Design Transfer Policy

The Department of Art & Design warmly welcomes transfer students to our program. After enrolling, Art & Design transfer students will be reviewed for transfer credit and placement in two ways:

  • The first is an evaluation of liberal arts transfer credit, reviewed by the Mason Gross Advisement Office,
  • The second is faculty evaluation of art coursework completed at a previous institution, which is processed through Amee Pollack, Undergraduate Program Advisor,

Mason Gross Art & Design courses cover a very specific set of skills and concepts designed to ensure success in advanced level courses. Although you may have taken a course elsewhere that has the same or similar name, unless you have successfully covered the same material as the course required by Mason Gross, you may not be placed out of the course. Students who have completed an equivalent art course (grade B or better) and believe they have already mastered the content of specific Mason Gross course(s) may apply for a prerequisite waiver and try to place out. To be placed out of a course, area faculty must see evidence through a portfolio of work that indicates the same material was covered successfully.

Using SlideRoom, transfer applicants should submit a portfolio of work for each of the courses you are seeking to be placed out of. For three of our foundation courses, there are specific instructions to follow when submitting these portfolios for evaluation by drawing faculty:

  1. Drawing Fundamentals
  2. Visual Thinking A (2D Design)
  3. Visual Thinking B (Color)
  4. 4D Fundamentals (Time & Space)
  5. Studio Courses (Design, Media, Painting, Photography, Print, or Sculpture)

The lists outlined below should be used as checklists for complete waiver portfolio(s). We understand that you may have covered the material in a different manner than the specific assignments below; if so, please include what you consider to be an equivalent project that demonstrates similar objectives.

Drawing Fundamentals A

SlideRoom Link

General Objectives: Students should be able to demonstrate in a final portfolio that they have mastered the fundamental skills of observational drawing including accuracy in perceptual ability as demonstrated in the drawings, as well as: a sensitivity to line, an understanding of compositional strategies; a working knowledge of one and two point perspective; and an understanding of the different strategies of creating space on a two dimensional picture plane. They should be comfortable working in the materials of pencil, charcoal and pen and ink, and be able to work equally well in line and value. In addition, they should have developed a working vocabulary with which to assess their own work and the work of others.

Drawing Fundamental A waiver portfolio should include the following 15 examples, please note that Drawing Fundamentals A is an observational drawing course examining qualities of line.

  1. Observational drawing that shows accuracy in representation and sensitivity to line.
  2. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of positive/negative space.
  3. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of figure/ground relationships.
  4. Still life drawing that shows an accuracy and understanding of ellipses and circles in perspective.
  5. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of spatial relationships using only line (i.e. weight of line, scale shifts, use of overlap).
  6. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of one point perspective.
  7. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of two point perspective of an interior.
  8. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of invented two point perspective.
  9. Observational drawing of exterior architecture that shows an observed system of scale relationships in two point perspective.
  10. Observational drawing that shows a still life rendered in orthographic projection.
  11. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of volumetric contour line.
  12. Observational drawing that shows an understanding of concepts of composition and abstraction (ie: cropping, pressure, tension/release, movement/stasis, balance, rhythm, repetition, symmetry/asymmetry).
  13. A series of at least three observational drawings that show an exploration of a theme.
Visual Thinking A: Black and White

SlideRoom Link

General Objectives: Students should be able to demonstrate through a final portfolio that they have a basic, fundamental working knowledge of formalist design principles and basic compositional strategies in two and three dimensions. They should be able to demonstrate basic skill sets within a variety of materials and approaches. Specifically, students should be able to demonstrate the ability to transform ideas and materials and approaches. Specifically, students should be able to demonstrate the ability to transform ideas and materials from one form into another, to demonstrate/document the ideation process of a concept from idea to final execution, to convey time and motion, to use successfully: specific design strategies such as figure/ground; sequence and narrative; symmetry/asymmetry; modularity; etc. They must demonstrate the ability to conduct research which shows an understanding of both formal and conceptual concerns as well as a commitment to their studio work.

Visual Thinking A portfolio waiver should include the following 15 examples. Please note that Visual Thinking A examines various design strategies in black and white. All of the following examples must demonstrate the successful activation of the two-dimensional place and in addition, more specifically projects should:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the character/qualifies of “line.”
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the concepts of pressure, tension, speed, flow. 4 examples, one of each.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of equal figure/ground relationships.
  4. Demonstrate an understanding of the “gestalt” theory or specific relationships of parts to the whole.
  5. Demonstrate an understanding of the “gestalt” theory in relation to the structure of the grid.
  6. Demonstrate an understanding of various organizational methods as strategies for pictorial design, (ie: hierarchy, emphasis, structure, unity, proposition, symmetry/asymmetry) 5 examples, 1 of each.
  7. Successfully transform a two-dimensional image/object into a three-dimensional image/object with oppositional properties (ie: create a three-dimensional object using foam core that gives the feeling of weight, density, heaviness etc.) or using the same materials create a three-dimensional object that is strong, (ie: can hold, support weight).

Demonstrate the ability to visually communicate the concept of “time” within a variety of methods. To demonstrate the nuances of the concept of “time” as they relate to implied time, actual time, chronology, and narrative.

Visual Thinking B: Color

SlideRoom Link

General Objectives: Students should be able to demonstrate in a final portfolio that they have an ability to communicate via color relative to composition and formal visual dynamics, process, material, and concept. They must be able to differentiate between analytical and expressive aspects of color, demonstrate a knowledge of color perception, color interaction and color phenomena, and demonstrate an ability to work effectively with both additive and subtractive mixtures, in two and three dimensions. They must demonstrate the ability to conduct research which shows an understanding of both formal and conceptual concerns as well as a commitment to their studio work.

Visual Thinking B portfolio waivers should include the following 15 examples. Please note that Visual Thinking B is course that examines various strategies in approach to color.

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the difference between hue, value and intensity.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the basic color wheel.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of various color systems (Munsell, Pantone, Runge, Ostwald, etc.).
  4. Demonstrate color relativity (one color as two).
  5. Demonstrate reversed grounds (three colors as two).
  6. Demonstrate subtraction of color (two colors as one).
  7. Demonstrate illusion of transparency (in paper).
  8. Demonstrate an understanding of “mood of color” (ie; using the same “palette” of colors make them look different through different size, quantity, recurrence.
  9. Demonstrate Albers concept of “Color Relatedness.”
  10. Demonstrate an understanding of film color, optical mixture, spatial illusion (in paper).
  11. Demonstrate an ability to achieve parallel intervals in two different sets of 4 colors.
  12. Demonstrate an ability to accurately mix color in paint.
  13. Demonstrate an understanding of subtractive and additive process.
  14. Demonstrate an understanding of the “psychology” of color.
  15. Demonstrate an understanding of how to use color in three dimensions.
4D Fundamentals: Time & Space

SlideRoom Link

General Objectives: Working with the computer and with everyday technologies including smart phones, the internet, cameras, and audio recording devices, students learn fundamentals of time- and screen-based contemporary art practices. The class introduces students to a range of experimental techniques and approaches, working with photomontage, image sequencing, video recording and editing, and sound. The class includes screenings, demos, workshops, labs, readings, group discussions, and critiques. Students will develop their own creative and independent voices while working on a series of focused assignments. The course will culminate in a public screening of student artwork produced during the course.

4D Fundamentals does not have a specific checklist. Students who have taken a similar college-level course, should submit ALL time-based work for evaluation by Mason Gross media faculty.

Studio Courses

SlideRoom Link

Transfer students may also seek waivers from concentration studio courses by submitting individual subject portfolios for area faculty to assess.  The concentrations offered include: Design (Graphic), Media, Painting, Photography, Print and Sculpture. Design faculty will make an assessment on design portfolios; Painting faculty on painting portfolios; and so forth. There are no specific guidelines but students should submit 17-20 images in each subject area. If submitting darkroom photography work, please include contact sheets in your submission.


Adults whose formal education has been interrupted, students needing to pursue higher education on a part-time basis, post-baccalaureate students pursuing a second undergraduate degree or major, non-matriculating students, international students, and veterans.

Please see your department advisor and the Student Affairs Team for general advisement.

Second Degree

A second degree student is someone who earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university and is in need of implementing a complete change of their career path and who is willing to commit time and energy to their new academic endeavor.


Students currently studying in the United States or students who intend on entering the United States to study on a student visa (F-1 or J-1) in high school, college or an English Language Program.

For more information, please visit the Rutgers Global – International Student/Scholar Services website.


The Office of Veteran and Military Programs and Services (OVMPS) at Rutgers is dedicated to facilitating a smooth transition through a wide range of programming and services which address academic needs, promote wellbeing, and enhance the professional development of our military affiliated population.

For more information, please visit the Office of Veterans Services website.


You are a graduate student if you have earned a bachelor’s degree and you are pursuing a master’s degree, doctoral degree, or diploma in a specific field.

Advisement and Course Registration

All incoming students will be registered for their first-semester courses by their department advisor.

Transfer Credit

Occasionally students entering a graduate degree program must submit official transcripts for transfer credit evaluation to fulfill requirements of their graduate degree.  Please check with your department advisor for specific requirements and procedures to receive transfer credit as a graduate student.


Graduate students who would like to continue their course work after a period of  absence must meet with their department advisor for specific instructions on how to complete the reinstatement process.  Once reinstated you will be required to meet with your department advisor to register for classes and review the courses remaining to complete your degree.

Graduate Student Life at Rutgers

The Office of Graduate Student Life at Rutgers University – New Brunswick advocates and supports holistic services that advances a vibrant graduate student experience. We encourage the intellectual exchange of ideas to enrich personal development, life skills, leadership and global citizenship. The Graduate Student Life Office cultivates partnerships across disciplines where mental health, wellness, academic excellence, identities, inclusive communities and life pursuits intersect.

Please visit the Office of Graduate Student Life for a full list of Campus and University resources, as well as information on events and job opportunities.