What are the top west coast illustration schools for 2023?
|1||ArtCenter College of Design||California|
|2||California College of the Arts||California|
|3||Otis College of Art and Design||California|
|4||San Jose State University||California|
|5||Academy of Art University||California|
|7||Laguna College of Art and Design||California|
|8||California State University, Fullerton||California|
|9||California State University, Long Beach||California|
|10||California State University, Northridge||California|
Our 2023 rankings of the Top 10 illustration schools on the west coast. For an explanation of ranking criteria, click here.
1. ArtCenter College of Design, Pasadena, California
ArtCenter College of Design (ArtCenter) has an Illustration BFA Program that allows students to choose from six Tracks including Illustration, Entertainment Arts, Motion Design, Surface Design, Fine Art Painting, and Entertainment Arts Consumer Products. The Illustration Track prepares students for a wide range careers from Storyboard Artist to Children’s Book Illustrator. In the Entertainment Arts Track, students develop animation skills and product development for the entertainment industry.
The Motion Design Track prepares students for success in the fields of Advertising, Film, VFX, Music Videos, and Public Service Announcements (PSAs). In the Surface Design Tracks, students develop the skills needed to pursue careers in Textile Design and Graphic Illustrated Imagery. And finally, the Fine Art Painting Track focuses on craft and technique as a precursor to the conceptual process. Students in the Entertainment Arts Consumer Products Track will develop product development, animation, graphic design, and children’s book illustration skills, among others.
The Illustration BFA, including the Track, consists of 120 credit hours. Across Tracks, course examples include Digital Illustration, Consumer Products, 3D Motion Graphics, Sketching for Entertainment, Image and Idea, Studio Practice, Illustration for License, and Gouache Techniques.
Graduates of the Illustration BFA Program at ArtCenter College of Design may continue their studies by enrolling in the school’s Interdisciplinary MFA Program, which allows students to customize the degree to support any medium. Other program features include individual studio spaces; access to state-of-the art facilities, software, galleries, and project studios; and study abroad opportunities in Paris, Cologne, Berlin, and Mexico City.
Thanks to partnerships with major companies and studios across the U.S., BFA and MFA students at ArtCenter College of Design have interned with or been hired at Amazon, Nike, DreamWorks, Google, Walt Disney Imagineering, Apple, Blizzard Entertainment, Riot Games, Ford, Microsoft, WB, Facebook, Mattel, BMW, and Netflix.
ArtCenter College of Design was established in 1930. This private, nonprofit design school has a main campus in Pasadena, with additional campuses in Los Angeles and Downtown Pasadena. Approximately 2,250 ArtCenter students also have access to satellite studios in Petersen Automotive Museum (LA) and Berlin, Germany. Programs include 11 undergraduate and 10 graduate options ranging from Illustration to Transportation Systems and Design. ArtCenter College of Design is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
2. California College of the Arts, San Francisco and Oakland, California
The Illustration Program at California College of the Arts (CCA) has an Illustration BFA pathway that emphasizes Drawing and Painting. This 120 credit-hour program also explores emerging animation, AR/VR, and imaging technologies as well as storytelling, 3D modeling, screenprinting, and hand-lettering. Courses are taught by courses taught by professional Illustrators, Designers, and Fine Artists, and include Digital Media, Illustration Tools, Media History: History of Illustration; Illustration Studios 1-3; and Drawing 2D, 3D, 4D.
Other BFA Program features include access to industry-standard software and digital tools; a Professional Practice course that teaches students how to start and run a freelance or small business; studio projects; access to state-of-the-art computer labs, printing studios, workshops, and painting studios; lectures; and classroom critiques (individual and group).
During the Senior year of the CCA Illustration BFA Program, students will complete a semester-long thesis project and participate in the Senior Show, which attracts local and national design professionals.
Graduates of the Illustration BFA Program at California College of the Arts are prepared to seek careers in areas such as traditional publishing (book illustration, editorial illustration), exhibition design, comics, advertising, motion design, storyboard art, surface design, game design, animation, printmaking, retail design, and education. Potential job titles include Concept Artist, Exhbition Designer, Graphic Novelist, Textile Designer, Printmaker, Freelance Illustrator, Muralist, Surface Designer, Fine Artist, and Educator.
Established in 1907 as the School of the California Guild of Arts and Crafts, California College of the Arts had just three teachers and 43 students when it opened. Today, CCA employs 420 faculty members that serve just approximately 1,620 students enrolled in more than 40 undergraduate, graduate, minor, and dual degree options. California College of the Arts is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC), the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), and the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB).
3. Otis College of Art and Design, Los Angeles, California
Otis College of Art and Design (OTIS) houses the Communication Arts Department, home to the Illustration Program. Two pathways are available: the BFA and a Minor. BFA students have the opportunity to focus in a specific area (or two) by choosing from more than a dozen Minors. Examples include Book Arts, Entrepreneurship, Advertising Design, Digital Media, Printmaking, Community Arts Engagement, Product Design, and Contemporary Clay. Other BFA Program features include experiential learning opportunities such as internships, participation in conventions and field trips, student exhibitions, and interactions with visiting artists.
The Illustration BFA at OTIS consists of 120 credit hours. During the first year of the program, students will take Foundation Studio, Creative Action, and Liberal Arts and Science courses. Course examples include Connections through Color and Design, Drawing and Building Form, Writing in the Digital Age, Drawing Studio – Expanded Practices, and Ways of Knowing.
Upon completion of the first year, students will move on to courses such as Illustration Communication Studio I-IV, Advanced Illustration Applications, Typography for Illustrators, Creative Action Lecture, Drawing + Painting I-III, Alternative Materials and Procedures for Illustrators, Practicum I-III, and Professional Practice.
In the final year of the OTIS Illustration BFA Program, students will complete five upper division studio electives, Senior Entrepreneur 101, Senior Thesis/Research Paper, Senior Project/Seminar, and the Capstone course.
Graduates of the Illustration BFA Program at OTIS have been hired by a variety of major companies, brands, publications, agencies, studios, and museums. Examples include Nike, Conde Nast Publications, Hallmark, Interscope Records, GUESS?, Mattel, Target, Ogilvy Worldwide, Disney, Apple, LA Weekly, Hurley International, Chronicle Books, Disney Consumer Products, Sony Music, Twentieth Century Fox, WB Network, Quicksilver, Sony Music, Young & Rubicam, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and Von Dutch.
Established in 1918, Otis College of Art and Design is Los Angeles’ oldest professional school of the arts. This private, non-profit college serves more than 1,200 students enrolled in 11 BFA and MFA degree programs in the Fine Arts, Graphic Design, Public Practice, and Writing. A variety of minors and certificate programs are also available. Programs and courses at OTIS are led by more than 430 professors—all active professionals in their respective fields.
4. San Jose State University, San Jose, California
San Jose State University (SJSU) houses the College of Humanities and the Arts, home to the Department of Design. Within the Department are two paths to study Illustration: the Animation & Illustration (A/I) BFA and the Design Studies BA with a Specialization in A/I. Students in both programs benefit from the Department’s close relationships with major companies, networks, and studios such as Industrial Light & Magic (ILM), DreamWorks, Hallmark, Bento Box Entertainment, Nickelodeon, Cartoon Network, Pixar, and Warner Bros. Animation. In addition, the Department provides workshops, seminars, and internship opportunities at these and other studios throughout California and across the U.S.
The A/I BFA at SJSU is a professional degree that explores both traditional and 3D animation, visual development, storyboarding, physics of motion, character design, and modeling. Upper division courses allow students to specialize in an area of interest. Participation in the Professional Internship Program is highly recommended, but not required. The A/I BFA culminates with the Capstone Seminar and Project.
Graduates of the Animation & Illustration Program at San Jose State University are prepared for careers in areas such as feature film animation, television, game design, and other industries that require Animation and Illustration skills.
The SJSU Design BA with a Specialization in A/I is a Liberal Arts degree that combines foundation studies with Film, Design, Photography, and Theater Arts. Students in this program have opportunities to work on projects in multidisciplinary teams and develop skills in Visual Development, Animation, Modeling, Storyboarding, and Short Film Production. Graduates are prepared for entry-level positions in the entertainment industry or for direct entry into the SJSU A/I BFA Program.
Graduates of the Illustration Programs at San Jose State University have been hired at more than 135 animation, film and game design studios. They have worked on films such as Monsters, Inc. Shrek, Finding Nemo, and A Bug’s Life. Program alumni have taught at major colleges and universities, and they work in a variety of positions at NBCUniversal Studios, Lucasfilm Animation, Zynga, Sony/Columbia, Pixar Nickelodeon, Disney Interactive, Electronic Arts (EA), Blizzard Entertainment, Cartoon Network, 20th Century Fox, and Disney Animation.
Established in 1857, San Jose State University is Silicon Valley’s Public University. Serving approximately 36,000 students, the school offers more than 250 areas of study at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels. Programs at SJSU are housed across nine colleges and dozens of departments and schools. San Jose State University is accredited by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).
5. Academy of Art University, San Francisco, California
The School of Illustration at Academy of Art University (Academy of Art) has programs leading to a Certificate, AA, BFA, MA or MFA. The Illustration Certificate must be completed on campus however all other Degree programs can be completed entirely online. All courses in the BFA 120 credit-hour program and MFA 63 credit- hour programs are taught by professional illustrators.
There are three areas of focus in illustration. Stylistic and Realistic freelance, as well as Comic or Graphic Novel.
Graduates of the Illustration Programs at Academy of Art University go on to establish successful careers and become gold medal winners as Freelance Illustrators, working as Book Cover Artists, Interactive motion graphic artist, Children’s Book Illustrators, surface art designers, editorial illustrator‘s, package design artist, advertising illustrator’s and Comics / graphic novel artist’s. Examples of companies that work with Academy of Art Illustration alumni include National Geographic, Marvel Comics, The New York Times, Penguin Publishing Group, Wired, The Atlantic, and Chronicle Books.
Students work with industry-standard software and digital tools in state-of-the-art computer labs; take a Professional Practice course that teaches students how to start and run a freelance business; Every student has access to free workshops and receive lectures and classroom critiques in portfolio classes and in live model drawing and painting studios; All students can summer study abroad in Florence, Italy, and enter portfolio work in the annual Spring show where industry come to seek potential talent.
Across programs, students will take courses such as; Vector Illustration & Motion, Perspective for Characters & Environment, Children’s Book Illustration, Digital Manipulation and painting, Sketching the Clothed Figure, Writing for Picture Books, Editorial illustration, Fantasy Illustration, Book illustration, The Rendered Figure, Writing for Comic Books & Graphic Novels and history of Illustration and Comic. All portfolio classes are market driven where students acquire their own voice or style.
All School of Illustration students can work with WRiTE BRAiN BOOKS, which produces illustrated, textless books designed to help kid’s self-author their own books.
Academy of Art University is a family-owned private university located in San Francisco—one of the world’s top cities for animation careers. Established in 1929 and serving more than 7,000 students, Academy of Art is of the nation’s largest private art and design schools. Divided into 22 schools, Academy of Art University offers more than 129 degree programs in 40+ areas of study. Programs lead to the AA, BA, BFA, BS, B. Arch, MAT, MA, MFA and M. Arch degrees.
The Academy is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
6. Willamette University, Portland, Oregon
Willamette University is home to Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA). Serving nearly 500 students, PNCA houses an Illustration Program that leads to a BFA. One of the top undergraduate options at PNCA, the Illustration BFA explores traditional studio media, the creation of visual messages, and emerging technologies. Program features include internships with companies such as Microsoft, Wieden+Kennedy, Nike, Dark Horse Comics, and Nintendo; mentorship programs; professional practices instruction; and portfolio preparation.
All students in the PNCA Illustration BFA have access to state-of-the-art labs and studios such as the WACOM Lab, the Professional Digital Fine Art Printing Lab, Animation Lab, Printmaking Studio, and Photography Lab. PNCA is also home to Albert Solheim Library, which houses more than 30,000 books and computer workstations. Make+Think+Code—a technology lab that hosts workshops and classes—provides access to additional facilities, digital tools, and technology.
Course examples for the PNCA Illustration BFA Program include Exploring Visual Culture, Drawing for Illustration, Advanced Illustration Studio, 3D Design, Cultural Marketplace, Design & Image, Digital Media Strategies, Visual Techniques, Time Arts, Social Science Seminar, Visual Elements: Digital Tools, Painting for Illustration, and Word & Image. In the Senior year of the program students will complete a Thesis competed across two courses: Design Arts Thesis Development and Design Arts Thesis.
Upon completion of the Illustration BFA Program at Willamette University-PNCA, graduates will have the opportunity to present their work at the school’s Annual End-of-Year Showcase. Hosted by the Illustration Department, the Showcase takes place at a Downtown Portland gallery.
Willamette University was established in 1842, making it the oldest university in the West. This private Liberal Arts college serves approximately 2,400 students enrolled in dozens of programs across the College of Arts & Sciences, the College of Law, Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA), and Atkinson Graduate School of Management. Willamette University and PNCA merged in 2021.
Pacific Northwest College of Art, which remains an independent college within Willamette, was established in 1909 and serves approximately 490 students. The school offers 11 BFA degrees, eight minors, and eight graduate MA and MFA degrees within the PNCA Hallie Ford School of Graduate Studies.
Willamette University and Pacific Northwest College of Art are accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). PNCA is also a member of the Association of Independent Colleges of Art & Design (AICAD) and the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (NAICU).
7. Laguna College of Art and Design, Laguna Beach, California
Laguna Beach College of Art and Design (LCAD) has an Illustration BFA Program led by professional artists who are active in the Illustration, Publishing, and Retail Industries. Credits include Gap, Toyota, McDonald’s, Warner Bros., Mattel Toys, Oxford University Press, Hilton Hotels, Sega Games, IBM, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH), Dannon, PepsiCo, Mitsubishi, The Kraft Heinz Company, and Pfizer, among others.
In addition to educators who are active industry professionals, the LCAD Illustration BFA Program features small class sizes, mentorship programs, internship opportunities, guest speakers, and hands-on design projects with LCAD partners such as Nike, Sony, and UCI. Course examples for the Program include History of Illustration, Materials + Techniques 1: Illustration, Advanced Perspective for Illustration, Graphic Illustration, Children’s Book Illustration, Digital Painting for Illustration, Illustrated Book, Comic Book/Graphic Novel Illustration, and Editorial Illustration.
In the final year of the Illustration BFA Program at LCAD, each semester, Seniors will participate in a portfolio critique with leading industry professionals. In 2022, participants included Michael Humphries (clients include Disney Feature Animation and Sony Pictures), Greg Spalenka (clients ranging from Rolling Stone Magazine to Forbes), and James Martin (DreamWorks Animation).
Graduates of the Illustration BFA Program at Laguna College of Art and Design will have the skills needed to work in Advertising, Boutique Print Design, Children’s Book Publishing, Gallery Art, Product Design, Comics, Industrial Design, Entertainment, Fashion Design, Editorials, Medicine, Music, and Science. Program alumni have been hired at places such as Blizzard Entertainment, Google, Obsidian Entertainment, DC Shoes, Microsoft, Applied Medical, Hurley, Warner Bros., KCET, Quicksilver, Disney Interactive, Marvel Entertainment, 686 Clothing, Last Rites Galleries, and High Moon Studios.
For Illustrators seeking an interdisciplinary degree, Laguna College of Art and Design has two additional options including BFAs in Drawing + Painting and Graphic Design + Digital Media (GD+DM). Both Programs allow students to add an Illustration Emphasis. An 18 credit hour Illustration Minor and a 30 credit hour Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Drawing + Painting are also available. The Minor provides the opportunity to create a variety of portfolio pieces, and the Certificate prepares students for positions in the field or for entry into the LCAD Studio Art MFA Program.
The Drawing + Painting BFA provides the unique opportunity to participate in a Spring Professional Mentorship where students have a chance to work with a professional mentor in the areas of museum administration, art conservation, or gallery exhibition. Students also have the option to work one-on-one with an independent artist advisor. Through the LCAD Career Services Office and Internship Coordinator, students will also have the opportunity to Students apply for an internship in their junior year.
The Illustration Emphasis explores traditional and mixed media art. Students will work on projects that focus on branding, exhibition design, murals, print, and more. In the Professional Practices course, students will learn about gallery operations, publications, and artist branding. In the senior year of the program, students will have access to their own private studio space, where they will benefit from individual mentoring, and interactions with peers and guest artists.
Course examples for the program include Illustration 1, Fundamentals of Illustration, Pictorial Design for Illustration, History of Illustration, Artistic Anatomy, Fundamentals of Digital Painting, Pop-Surrealism, Experimental Drawing, Mural Painting, and Exhibition Design. The LCAD Drawing + Painting BFA Program culminates with the Senior Portfolio + Senior Capstone and Thesis Defense.
Graduates have been represented at galleries or worked with partners such as Art Miami, LA Art Show, European Museum of Modern Art (MEAM), Salmagundi Club, Art Renewal Center, Laguna Art Museum, Poets + Artists, Portrait Society of America, Sue Greenwood Fone Art, Gallery 1261, Arcadia Contemporary, Laguna Plein Air Painters Association (LPAPA), and Koplin Del Rio Gallery, among others.
The LCAD Graphic Design + Digital Media (GD+DM) BFA is a multidisciplinary, 122 credit-hour program that explores traditional and emerging areas such as 3D, iPad development, package design, advertising, print, video, photography, motion, user experience and interfaces, action sport design, mobile apps, the web, virtual reality applications, social media, and motion.
The Illustration emphasis allows students to choose electives that match their goals. Examples include Images & Ideas, Pictorial Design for Illustration, Rendering, 3D Design (ZBRUSH), Animal Drawing, Color Illustration, Words, Figure Drawing, and Painting. Examples of required courses and studios include Motion Graphics + Visual Effects, Typography, Computer Imaging, Digital Photography, Graphic Design, Fundamentals of 3D, User Interface Design, 3D-1: Animation for Motion Graphics, Brand Strategy, Communication Design, Digital Videography, and Exhibition Design.
Students in the LCAD GD+DM BFA Program have the opportunity to complete an internship and develop a professional portfolio before graduating. The program culminates with a Senior Capstone and Thesis Defense.
Nearly 100% of recent Graphic Design + Digital Media graduates from Laguna College of Art and Design work in their chosen field, with most securing employment through LCAD prior to graduation. Program alumni have been hired at some of the world’s top companies and studios. Examples include Adobe, Coca-Cola, Sony Pictures, Saatchi & Saatchi, Red Bull, Lexus, Fox Entertainment, Warner Bros., Maserati, Vans, Disney Interactive, IKEA, Nike, Razorfish, Pixar, Amazon, Capitol Records, Hurley, Sony Music, Meta, AT&T Entertainment Services, Live Nation, R/GA, and Taco Bell.
Laguna College of Art and Design opened in 1961 as Laguna Beach School of Art (LBSA). The school has a main campus in Laguna Beach and educational affiliates locally and around the world including Florence Academy of Arts in Florence, Italy, Los Angeles Academy of Figurative Art, and NHTV Breda University of Applied Sciences (NHTV), Netherlands. Laguna College of Art and Design serves around 770 students enrolled in dozens of degree and minor programs. The school is regionally and nationally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC) and the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD).
8. California State University Fullerton, Fullerton, California
The College of the Arts at California State University Fullerton (Cal State Fullerton, CSU Fullerton or CSUF) houses the Department of Visual Arts, home to the Illustration Program. Degree options include Art BFA, MA, and MFAs with a Concentration in Illustration. All programs feature unlimited access to state-of-the-art production studios, labs, and equipment; workshops and seminars; study abroad experiences; visiting artists; and internship opportunities at local, regional, and nationwide companies.
Across programs, students will take courses such as Digital Narrative Illustration, Visual Development and Background Painting, Children’s Book Illustration, Animal and Wildlife Drawing, Special Studies in Sequential Art, Landscape Painting and Location Drawing, Special Studies in Illustration, Seminar on the Context and Method of Art History, The Digital Studio, and 3D Team Production.
The Art BFA Program at Cal State Fullerton culminates with the BFA Capstone Project, which may include works in animation, games, VR, visual effects, exhibitions, and others. The MA Program requires a Project and Thesis (P/T) to graduate. The MA P/T consists of the development and presentation of a creative project in the concentration beyond regularly offered coursework. The CSUF MFA Program culminates with a solo Art Exhibit (MFA Project Exhibition).
Graduates of the Art Programs at Cal State Fullerton have worked with or been hired by major companies and studios such as The Walt Disney Company, Nickelodeon, Lucasfilm Ltd. DreamWorks, and Cartoon Network.
Founded in 1957, California State University, Fullerton is part of the 23 campus California State University (CSU) system. Serving more than 40,000 students, the school offers 55 undergraduate and 55 graduate degree programs in eight academic colleges. California State University, Fullerton is Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
9. California State University, Long Beach, Long Beach, California
The College of the Arts at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) is home to the School of Art (SoA), which has several paths to study Illustration. Options include an Art BFA with Illustration and Animation Tracks, and a Studio Art Concentration within the Art MFA Program, with an Animation/Illustration Track.
In partnership with the Department of Biological Sciences, the SoA has an interdisciplinary 30-unit Certificate in Biomedical Illustration that can be completed in one year, full-time. The Certificate Program can be added to an undergraduate degree program or taken post-graduation. Course examples include Biomedical Illustration, Computer Animation, Illustration 2, Anatomy for Artists, and Special Studies in Illustration.
The Art BFA at California State University, Long Beach consists of 132 units. Students in this program have the unique opportunity to take courses from both the Animation and Illustration Tracks. Students will also work with peers across Tracks in the Digital Lab. Course examples include Intro Studio: Illustration – Rendering, Writing About Visual Art, Core Studio: Illustration I and 2, Production for Fine Art, Storyboarding for Film and Television, Drawing with Perspective, and Illustration Senior Project—the culminating experience for the Art BFA.
Other program features include courses taught by industry professionals; participation in workshops led by faculty and visiting artists; opportunities to complete an internship at local, regional, and national studios; and study abroad experiences in places such as Ireland, Germany, and Spain.
The Art MFA-Studio Art Program at California State University, Long Beach is an interdisciplinary program that requires 60 units of study, including 21 units of graduate coursework in the SoA and 39 approved units in the Animation/Illustration Track. All MFA students will participate in the Final MFA Exhibition.
Graduates of the Art Programs at California State University, Long Beach are prepared to pursue positions in fields such as Live Action Film, Advertising, Graphic Design, Animation, Games, Gallery Exhibition Production and Design, Educational Illustration, Biomedical Illustration, Editorial Art, Graphic Novels, Comics, Newspapers, Magazine Publishing, Book Art, and Textile Design.
California State University, Long Beach was established in 1949 as Los Angeles-Orange County State College. One of the 23 campuses of the California State University System, CSULB serves more than 38,000 students enrolled in over 300 programs across eight colleges. California State University, Long Beach is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).
10. California State University-Northridge, Northridge, California
California State University, Northridge (CSUN or CSU Northridge) houses Mike Curb College of Arts, Media, and Communication, home to the Department of Art. within the Department are several paths to study Illustration including the Art BA Program, and MA and MFA options in Visual Arts. All programs provide the option to specialize in Illustration.
Accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design (NASAD), the CSU Northridge Department of Art features opportunities for overseas studies, internships, club events and guest speakers, portfolio reviews, exhibitions, and the opportunity to join the CSUN Illustration Society and other campus-based organizations.
The CSU Northridge Art BA combines Art and Design coursework with Liberal Arts studies. Course examples include Illustration Materials and Techniques, World Arts: Asia, Illustration I-III, History of Contemporary Art, Digital Illustration, Beginning Three-Dimensional Design, Core Art Studio, Drawing I, and Senior Projects and Lab.
The Visual Arts MA at California State University, Northridge is a 30 unit program that can be completed in one to two years. Course examples for the program include History and Philosophy of Art, Advanced Studio Problems: Illustration, and Art Analysis and Criticism. The Visual Arts MA Program culminates with the Graduate Project, which consists of the Spring Group Exhibition and/or Performance of the students work.
The CSU Northridge Visual Arts MFA is the highest degree awarded in the field. Consisting of 60 units of study, the program can be completed in two or three years depending on the student’s course load. All MFA students have access to private, on-campus studios. Course examples for the program include Art Analysis and Criticism, Studio Problems or Advanced Studio Problems in Illustration, Drawing, Video/Digital Art, Graphic Design, MFA Seminar, and Graduate Directed Research.
Visual Arts MFA students have the opportunity to develop skills in other disciplines through electives outside the Concentration area. The MFA program culminates with the Graduate Project.
Graduates of the Art and Visual Arts Programs at California State University, Northridge are prepared to pursue careers in all areas of Art and Design.
Founded in 1958 and serving approximately 38,390 students, California State University, Northridge is one of the largest universities in the U.S. and one of the youngest in the 23 campus California State University System. This Liberal Arts school comprises eight academic colleges, The Tseng College, and University Library. Programs include bachelor’s degrees in 69 disciplines, master’s degrees in 73 fields, 24 doctoral degree programs, and 19 teaching credential programs. California State University, Northridge is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).