We welcome your interest in our unique, creative community. 

Below is a step-by-step guide to applying to California Institute of the Arts. These steps can be completed relatively quickly or over the course of several months.

All programs are currently accepting applications for fall 2023.

If you have any questions along the way, please reach out to our Office of Admissions at admissions@calarts.edu or +1 800 545-2787. We’re here to help.

We encourage you to start your process of applying to CalArts by creating an application account. 

Create an Application Account

Create an application account to register your interest and to receive communication from us about your application-in-progress. 

The email address you use to create your application account will be the primary method we will use to communicate with you. You should select an email account you plan to check regularly throughout the application process.

When you apply to CalArts, you must select a specific program in one of our six schools – Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, or Theater – in which to study. (We do not offer a general program of study nor a “foundation year” program.)

Programs of Study

Research and identify the program or programs at CalArts you would like to join.

You can also find out more about CalArts, our unique creative community, and your program of interest by attending an admissions information session or visiting our Explore webpage for prospective students.

Your next chance to attend CalArts as a full-time student will be for this coming fall semester.

Application Deadlines & Fees

Note our application deadlines, in addition to associated fees.

Start an application for your program of interest. (It's okay to start one now and submit before the deadline.) Starting now will allow us to best help you as you prepare your application materials.

Start Your Application

It is also possible to apply to more than one program at CalArts. To do so, simply start two applications, one for each of your programs of interest.

A critical part of the application is the audition and/or portfolio of creative works, as well as the accompanying artist statement. Each program at CalArts has its own specific requirements: some programs require an audition, some a portfolio, and some require both. 

Portfolio / Audition + Artist Statement Requirements

It may take you some time to prepare these materials. You can find out more about preparing these creative and written materials by reaching out to your admissions contact or attending an event.

Within the online application, you will:

Finish & Submit Your Application

Complete your online application form and attach all required materials.

You made it! Thank you for your patience as our faculty review committee considers your application and supporting materials. Applications often take several months to process.

Check Application Status

After you apply, you can check your application status at apply.calarts.edu/apply/status. If you have any missing materials be sure to send them to us.

You are also welcome to connect with us on social media or to subscribe to 24700 for news from CalArts.

Thank you for applying to CalArts!


Contact the Office of Admissions at admissions@calarts.edu, 800-545-ARTS (800-545-2787).


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