California College of the Arts

Overview

At a Glance

School type

Private, not-for-profit, 4-year or above

Faculty

418 Faculty Members | 4:01 student faculty ratio

Religious affliation

Not applicable

Mission Statement

California College of the Arts educates students to shape culture and society through the practice and critical study of art, architecture, design, and writing. Benefitting from its San Francisco Bay Area location, the college prepares students for lifelong creative work by cultivating innovation, community engagement, and social and environmental responsibility.

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cost & financial aid

Annual tuition & fees

Undergraduate

In state

$51,137

Out of state

$51,137
Graduate

In state

$53,795

Out of state

$53,795

Financial Aid: Undergraduates

Received financial aid
77%
Did not receive aid
23%
Type of aid % of students recieving aid Average amount
Federal grants 23.0% $5,529
State/local grants 13.0% $3,704
Institutional grants 77.0% $23,545
Loans 33.0% $6,286

Financial aid resources

Paying for college

Learn about different ways to cover costs, incluing financial aid, GI Bills, grants and scholarships

Applying for financial Aid

Review this step-by-step guide on everything you need to do to complete your application.

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Academics

Most Popular Undergraduate majors

  • Illustration
  • Animation, Interactive Technology, Video Graphics, and Special Effects
  • Graphic Design
  • Human Computer Interaction
  • Industrial and Product Design
Full List of Majors

Undergraduate Majors X

  • ARCHITECTURE AND RELATED SERVICES
    • Architecture
      • A program that prepares individuals for the independent professional practice of architecture and to conduct research in various aspects of the field. Includes instruction in architectural design, history, and theory; building structures and environmental systems; project and site planning; construction; professional responsibilities and standards; and related cultural, social, economic, and environmental issues. Examples: [Architecture (BArch, BA/BS)], [Architecture (MArch/MA/MS)], [Architecture (PhD)] See other colleges that offer this major
  • COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGIES/TECHNICIANS AND SUPPORT SERVICES
    • Animation, Interactive Technology, Video Graphics, and Special Effects
      • A program that prepares individuals to use computer applications and related visual and sound imaging techniques to manipulate images and information originating as film, video, still photographs, digital copy, soundtracks, and physical objects in order to communicate messages simulating real-world content. Includes instruction in specialized camerawork and equipment operation and maintenance, image capture, computer programming, dubbing, CAD applications, and applications to specific commercial, industrial, and entertainment needs. See other colleges that offer this major
  • ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE/LETTERS
    • Creative Writing
      • A program that focuses on the process and techniques of original composition in various literary forms such as the short story, poetry, the novel, and others. Includes instruction in technical and editorial skills, criticism, and the marketing of finished manuscripts. See other colleges that offer this major
  • MULTI/INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES
    • Human Computer Interaction
      • An interdisciplinary program that focuses on the study of the interaction between people and technology and how that technology impacts society, and combines disciplines within the fields of computing and information science (information systems, software engineering, artificial intelligence and design), engineering, and the behavior sciences (cognitive science, cognitive psychology, sociology, organizational psychology, and social psychology). Includes instruction in information technology, cognitive and behavioral sciences, and systems design. Examples: [Human Factors Psychology] See other colleges that offer this major
  • PRECISION PRODUCTION
    • Furniture Design and Manufacturing
      • A program that prepares individuals to apply technical knowledge and skills to prepare and execute furniture design projects, assemble and finish furniture articles or subassemblies, repair furniture, and use a variety of hand and power tools. See other colleges that offer this major
  • VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS
    • Industrial and Product Design
      • A program in the applied visual arts that prepares individuals to use artistic techniques to effectively communicate ideas and information to business and consumer audiences via the creation of effective forms, shapes, and packaging for manufactured products. Includes instruction in designing in a wide variety of plastic and digital media, prototype construction, design development and refinement, principles of cost saving, and product structure and performance criteria relevant to aesthetic design parameters. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Fashion/Apparel Design
      • A program that prepares individuals to apply artistic principles and techniques to the professional design of commercial fashions, apparel, and accessories, and the management of fashion development projects. Includes instruction in apparel design; accessory design; the design of men's', women's', and children's' wear; flat pattern design; computer-assisted design and manufacturing; concept planning; designing in specific materials; labor and cost analysis; history of fashion; fabric art and printing; and the principles of management and operations in the fashion industry. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Interior Design
      • A program in the applied visual arts that prepares individuals to apply artistic principles and techniques to the professional planning, designing, equipping, and furnishing of residential and commercial interior spaces. Includes instruction in computer applications, drafting, and graphic techniques; principles of interior lighting, acoustics, systems integration, and color coordination; furniture and furnishings; textiles and their finishing; the history of interior design and period styles; basic structural design; building codes and inspection regulations; and applications to office, hotel, factory, restaurant and housing design. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Graphic Design
      • A program that prepares individuals to apply artistic and computer techniques to the interpretation of technical and commercial concepts. Includes instruction in computer-assisted art and design, printmaking, concepts sketching, technical drawing, color theory, imaging, studio technique, still and life modeling, multimedia applications, communication skills and commercial art business operations. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Illustration
      • A program that prepares individuals to use artistic techniques to develop and execute interpretations of the concepts of authors and designers to specifications. Includes instruction in book illustration, fashion illustration, map illustration, rendering, exhibit preparation, textual layout, cartooning, and the use of various artistic techniques as requested by clients. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Cinematography and Film/Video Production
      • A program that prepares individuals to communicate dramatic information, ideas, moods, and feelings through the making and producing of films and videos. Includes instruction in theory of film, film technology and equipment operation, film production, film directing, film editing, cinematographic art, film audio, techniques for making specific types of films and/or videos, media technologies, computer image making, multi-media production, and the planning and management of film/video operations. Examples: [Cinema Production] See other colleges that offer this major
    • Photography
      • A program that focuses on the principles and techniques of communicating information, ideas, moods, and feelings through the creation of images on photographic film, plates, and digital images and that may prepare individuals to be professional photographic artists. Includes instruction in camera and equipment operation and maintenance, film and plate developing, light and composition, films and printing media, color and special effects, photographic art, photographic history, use of computer applications to record or enhance images and applications to the photography of various subjects. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Fine/Studio Arts, General
      • A program that prepares individuals to generally function as creative artists in the visual and plastic media. Includes instruction in the traditional fine arts media (drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, CAD/CAM) and/or modern media (ceramics, textiles, intermedia, photography, digital images), theory of art, color theory, composition and perspective, anatomy, the techniques and procedures for maintaining equipment and managing a studio, and art portfolio marketing. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Art History, Criticism and Conservation
      • A program that focuses on the study of the historical development of art as social and intellectual phenomenon, the analysis of works of art, and art conservation. Includes instruction in the theory of art, art history research methods, connoisseurship, the preservation and conservation of works of art, and the study of specific periods, cultures, styles, and themes. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Intermedia/Multimedia
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions in either two or three dimensions, through simultaneous use of a variety of materials and media. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Painting
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by the application of paints and related chemical color substances to canvases or other materials. Includes instruction in color and color mixing, surface preparation, composition, oil and acrylic media, watercolor media, painting techniques, and personal style development. Examples: [Painting (Fine Art)] See other colleges that offer this major
    • Sculpture
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by creating three-dimensional art works. Includes instruction in the analysis of form in space; round and relief concepts; sculptural composition; modern and experimental methods; different media such as clay, plaster, wood, stone, and metal; techniques such as carving, molding, welding, casting, and modeling; and personal style development. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Printmaking
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by rendering art concepts onto surfaces and transferring images, via ink or dyes, onto paper or fabric. Includes instruction in monochrome and color printing; tonality; chemistry; equipment set-up and maintenance; techniques such as serigraphy, lithography, intaglio, woodcut, block, stencil, relief, etching, and composite; and personal style development. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Ceramic Arts and Ceramics
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by producing art works out of clay and similar materials. Includes instruction in handbuilt and wheelthrown techniques; molding; slips and glazes; trimming and decorating; firing and kiln operation; oxidation; mixed media; ceramic murals; and personal style development. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Fiber, Textile and Weaving Arts
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by constructing art works from woven or non-woven fabrics and fibrous materials. Includes instruction in weaving techniques and loom operation; non-woven techniques such as knitting, coiling, netting, and crocheting; quilting; dyeing and pigmentation; printing and other finishing techniques; pattern design; tapestry; and personal style development. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Jewelry Arts
      • A program that prepares individuals creatively and technically to express emotions, ideas, or inner visions by fashioning jewelry from gems, other stones, and precious metals. Includes instruction in design concepts, electroforming, enameling, gemology, lapidary technique and art, metal and non-metal casting and molding, metal coloring, metalsmithing and finishing, personal style development, photo etching, and stone cutting and polishing. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Fine Arts and Art Studies, Other

Most Popular Graduate programs

  • Design and Visual Communications, General
  • Human Computer Interaction
  • Fine/Studio Arts, General
  • Business Administration, Management and Operations, Other
  • Architecture
Full List of Programs

Graduate ProgramsX

  • ARCHITECTURE AND RELATED SERVICES
    • Architecture
      • A program that prepares individuals for the independent professional practice of architecture and to conduct research in various aspects of the field. Includes instruction in architectural design, history, and theory; building structures and environmental systems; project and site planning; construction; professional responsibilities and standards; and related cultural, social, economic, and environmental issues. Examples: [Architecture (BArch, BA/BS)], [Architecture (MArch/MA/MS)], [Architecture (PhD)] See other colleges that offer this major
  • BUSINESS, MANAGEMENT, MARKETING, AND RELATED SUPPORT SERVICES
  • COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGIES/TECHNICIANS AND SUPPORT SERVICES
    • Animation, Interactive Technology, Video Graphics, and Special Effects
      • A program that prepares individuals to use computer applications and related visual and sound imaging techniques to manipulate images and information originating as film, video, still photographs, digital copy, soundtracks, and physical objects in order to communicate messages simulating real-world content. Includes instruction in specialized camerawork and equipment operation and maintenance, image capture, computer programming, dubbing, CAD applications, and applications to specific commercial, industrial, and entertainment needs. See other colleges that offer this major
  • ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE/LETTERS
    • Creative Writing
      • A program that focuses on the process and techniques of original composition in various literary forms such as the short story, poetry, the novel, and others. Includes instruction in technical and editorial skills, criticism, and the marketing of finished manuscripts. See other colleges that offer this major
  • MULTI/INTERDISCIPLINARY STUDIES
    • Museology/Museum Studies
      • A program that focuses on the attitudes, knowledge, and skills required to develop, prepare, organize, administer, conserve, store and retrieve artifacts, exhibits and entire collections in museums and galleries, and that prepares individuals to assume curatorial, technical and managerial positions in museums. Includes instruction in institutional management, acquisition, exhibit design, conservation, packing techniques, and public relations. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Human Computer Interaction
      • An interdisciplinary program that focuses on the study of the interaction between people and technology and how that technology impacts society, and combines disciplines within the fields of computing and information science (information systems, software engineering, artificial intelligence and design), engineering, and the behavior sciences (cognitive science, cognitive psychology, sociology, organizational psychology, and social psychology). Includes instruction in information technology, cognitive and behavioral sciences, and systems design. Examples: [Human Factors Psychology] See other colleges that offer this major
  • VISUAL AND PERFORMING ARTS
    • Design and Visual Communications, General
      • A program in the applied visual arts that focuses on the general principles and techniques for effectively communicating ideas and information, and packaging products, in digital and other formats to business and consumer audiences, and that may prepare individuals in any of the applied art media. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Cinematography and Film/Video Production
      • A program that prepares individuals to communicate dramatic information, ideas, moods, and feelings through the making and producing of films and videos. Includes instruction in theory of film, film technology and equipment operation, film production, film directing, film editing, cinematographic art, film audio, techniques for making specific types of films and/or videos, media technologies, computer image making, multi-media production, and the planning and management of film/video operations. Examples: [Cinema Production] See other colleges that offer this major
    • Fine/Studio Arts, General
      • A program that prepares individuals to generally function as creative artists in the visual and plastic media. Includes instruction in the traditional fine arts media (drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, CAD/CAM) and/or modern media (ceramics, textiles, intermedia, photography, digital images), theory of art, color theory, composition and perspective, anatomy, the techniques and procedures for maintaining equipment and managing a studio, and art portfolio marketing. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Art History, Criticism and Conservation
      • A program that focuses on the study of the historical development of art as social and intellectual phenomenon, the analysis of works of art, and art conservation. Includes instruction in the theory of art, art history research methods, connoisseurship, the preservation and conservation of works of art, and the study of specific periods, cultures, styles, and themes. See other colleges that offer this major
    • Visual and Performing Arts, Other

Types of Degrees Offered

  • Certificate
  • Associate's degree
  • Bachelor's degree
  • Master's degree
  • Doctoral degree
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Admissions

Undergraduate acceptance rate

Acceptance rate
85.45%
  • Apply 2,625
  • Accepted 2,243
  • Attend 191

Application Fee

Undergraduate
$70
Graduate
$70

Undergraduate application requirements

  • High school transcript

    Required
  • High school GPA

    Required
  • Recommendation letter

    Required
  • Admissions test
    (SAT or ACT)

    Not applicable
  • TOEFL
    (international students)

    Required
  • Completion of college
    prep program

    Recommended
  • Demonstration of
    competencies

    Required
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Student Life

Student Demographics

Female Students
63%
Male Students
37%

Student Ethnicities
  1. Two Or More Ethnicities43.17%
  2. Caucasian17.37%
  3. Asian16.32%
  4. Hispanic/Latino13.09%
  5. Black4.84%
  6. Not Specified4.22%
  7. American Indian/Alaska Native0.68%
  8. Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander0.31%

Student body breakdown

Total students enrolled

1,957

Undergraduate students

1,555

Graduate students

402

Attendance breakdown

Full time
92%
Part time
8%

Student services

  • Meal plan
  • Counseling services
  • Remedial services
  • Work-study
  • Placement services
  • Study abroad
  • Weekend/evening classes
  • On-campus day care for student's children
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