Profiles of Schools/Colleges in California (CA) Offering Animation, Design, Gaming, and Media Related Programs

Our 2015 rankings of the Top 20 schools on the West Coast for game design and development. We define the West Coast as California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii. 

For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

11. University of Southern California (USC), Los Angeles, California

The University of Southern California was established in 1880. It is home to 43,000 students enrolled in more than 200 undergraduate programs, 300-plus graduate programs, and more than 150 minors. The school features a variety of game design programs at multiple degree levels. USC Games offers a BA in Interactive Entertainment and an MFA in Interactive Media through the School of Cinematic Arts, and a BS in Computer Science (Games) and an MS in Computer Science with a Specialization in Game Development through Viterbi School of Engineering. Minors include Game Animation, Game Audio, Game Design, and Game Entrepreneurism.

Continue reading »

 Our 2015 list of the Top 50 Animation School Programs in the US. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

1. 1. California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), Valencia, California (top 5% of schools considered)

Established in 1961, California Institute of the Arts is home to 1,489 students enrolled in more than 70 programs at all degree levels. The nation's first postsecondary institution to offer graduate and undergraduate degrees in both the visual and performing arts, CalArts attracts a large population of aspiring filmmakers and animators. Around 26.9 percent of the schools population is enrolled in the School of Film/Video. The School offers a BFA degree in Character Animation, and BFA and MFA degrees in Experimental Animation.

Continue reading »

Our 2015 list of the Top 50 Public Animation School Programs in the US. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

1. University of California Los Angeles (UCLA), Los Angeles, California

Founded in 1919 as the Southern Branch of the University of California, the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA) is home to 43,239 students enrolled in more than 220 programs across five schools and 109 academic departments. UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and Television is home to the Animation Workshop.

Founded in 1948 by Disney Animator William Shull, the Animation Workshop is a three-year MFA program that accepts just 12 new students each year. Before applying to the program, students typically earn a BA in Film and Television. The BA program gives future MFA students the opportunity to study all facets of Digital Media, Film, and Television, as well as a full year of Animation studies, followed by an internship. 

Continue reading »

Our 2015 list of the Top 50 Private Animation School Programs in the US. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.


11. California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), Valencia, California

Established in 1961 by Walt and Roy Disney, CalArts is the nation's first postsecondary institution to offer graduate and undergraduate degrees in both the visual and performing arts. Home to 1,489 students, with 26.9 percent enrolled in the School of Film/Video, CalArts offers a BFA degree in Character Animation, and a BFA and MFA in Experimental Animation.

Continue reading »

Our 2015 rankings of the top 25 animation school programs on the West Coast. 

We define the West Coast as California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii.

For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.

11. California Institute of the Arts (CalArts), Valencia, California

California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) was established in 1961 by Walt and Roy Disney. It is the nation’s first postsecondary institution to offer undergraduate and graduate degrees in both the visual and performing arts. This visual and performing arts school is home to 1,489 students enrolled in more than 70 programs across six schools and one center. Around 26.9 percent of CalArt’s students are enrolled in the School of Film/Video. The School offers several programs for aspiring animators. Offerings include a BFA degrees in Character Animation and Experimental Animation. The School also offers an MFA in Experimental Animation.

Continue reading »

Not every university with an animation program can tout its connections to the industry. Geography plays an integral role in terms of developing studio relationships, faculty connections and alumni networks. Location can also determine students’ access to internships, lectures, film festivals and even post-graduate employment. For those eager to find all of the above, California State University- Northridge (CSUN) has an expanding animation program that might just tug at your heartstrings.

Continue reading »
Illustration Schools in California

With nearly 39 million residents, California has the largest population in the U.S. It is home to three of the nation’s top ten largest cities—Los Angeles, San Diego, and San Jose, and it is home to more artists than any other place on the planet.

Continue reading »
California

In 2014, Robert Morris University-Illinois made League of Legends a varsity sport. It was the  first school in the U.S. to place eSports in the same league (no pun) as basketball, football, and hockey. To those who are familiar with the booming gaming industry, RMU’s move isn’t surprising. For everyone else, this came as quite a surprise. Just so the next big thing to happen in gaming won’t surprise you, here’s why academic institutions (and everyone else) are jumping on the gameplay bandwagon.    

Around 67 percent of U.S. households play video games and most of these gamers are not kids. According to the Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB), the average age of a gamer is 34 and the most frequent game purchaser is often around 39. In 2010, 49 percent of gamers were 18-49 years of age and twenty-six percent were over 50. Just 25 percent of gamers were under 18. Even more amazing is, around two out of every five players are female.

Continue reading »

Anyone interested in understanding our brave new world that blends art and technology need not look any further than the work of UCLA’s Rebecca Allen. As returning Chair of the university’s Design Media Arts department (a department which she founded in the 1990s), she presides over one of the nation’s premier interactive design programs that offers both B.A. and M.F.A. degrees.

Continue reading »

Tracy Fullerton is not your average game designer. Instead, she turns traditional game narrative and motivation on its head (evident in her work-in-progress Walden, a Game). She isn’t the typical gamer, either. She’s drawn to games that experiment with player choice and present complex dilemmas. And she’s anything but your average faculty member. After all, how many college students have the opportunity to learn from someone who has produced games, started her own venture-backed company, and acts as a thought-leader in the industry and academia?

Fullerton does all of this as Director of USC Games and Game Innovation Lab, one of the nation’s preeminent game programs that consistently snags the top spot in the rankings. Offering a B.A. and B.S. from two of USC’s most prestigious departments (the School of Cinematic Arts and the Viterbi School of Engineering), USC Games also lures majors from other departments with its minor degrees in addition to its M.F.A. and M.S. graduate programs.

Continue reading »