CalArts Commitment to International Students

CalArts has a long and rich tradition of attracting and welcoming the most talented international students in the world. One out of every five students at CalArts is international, representing nearly 50 different countries. Many of CalArts distinguished faculty are also international, adding to the artistic and academic diversity of our community.

International Student Application Requirements

In addition to the general application requirements, international students must submit officially translated international transcripts and proof of English language proficiency to be considered for admissions.

International students who are accepted to the Institute will receive additional instructions for completing the Declaration of Finances form which is required to complete the I-20, and begin the student visa application process.

CalArts offers merit scholarships to international students, providing important support to ensure a high quality arts education.

International Academic Transcript

Credentials, diplomas and certificates of secondary-school and college-level work must be presented in English translation. International students who have completed prior university-level courses from accredited institutions outside of the United States must provide an official course-by-course evaluation . The Office of Admissions requires you to use evaluated transcripts to determine if your undergraduate coursework is the equivalent to courses required for a U.S. bachelor's degree. 

International students applying to MFA programs must submit evidence of receipt of an undergraduate degree and the issued certificate of completion or its equivalent. If the undergraduate degree awarded is from a college or university outside of the United States an official course-by-course evaluation must be provided with the official transcript. All records submitted must clearly state the date of completion (or the anticipated date of completion) and the level of education received with notations as to the number of hours attended per week and the total number of weeks completed.  

High School transcripts do not need to be evaluated.

The professional credential evaluation services from which CalArts will accept evaluations, are listed below.

World Education Services

Educational Credential Evaluators

International Education Evaluations

International Baccalaureate

CalArts awards credit for IB courses with Higher-Level examination results of 5 or higher. Standard-Level results are not considered for credit. In order to be awarded credit, students must request an official transcript from the IBO to be sent directly to the CalArts Office of the Registrar. Any score reports not received directly from the College Board are considered unofficial and will not be used to award credit. Transcripts must be requested in mail from the IBO with a paper transcript request form. Please visit the IBO website for more information.

A Levels: 

Students with superior ‘A’ level results may petition the appropriate department of the University for up to two credits (the equivalent of two semester courses) for an ‘A’ level passed.

Submission of Transcripts

Scan and upload copies of transcripts for all institutions attended and order transcript evaluation(s) to be sent to CalArts if required for foreign university transfer credits and/or awarded degrees. In the online application, you will be prompted to upload a PDF of your scanned documents. Please upload both the front and back sides of the transcript, even if the back side is blank.

Uploaded transcripts should be recent and include the following: your name, the institution name, dates of attendance, grades/marks received, credits, and grading legend. If no transcript is available, please upload a PDF document with a statement explaining the circumstances.

Do not mail hard copies unless from the following countries.

  • Bulgaria

  • Colombia

  • Cuba

  • India

  • Iran

  • Kazakhstan

  • Palestine

  • Russia

If you have transcripts from these countries, we require that you submit official documents directly from the issuing institutions. Please arrange to have them sent as soon as you decide to apply to give plenty of time for their arrival. Please contact if you have any further questions.

Graduate Applicants from India with a Three-Year Bachelor's Degree

Graduate Applicants from India with a Three-Year Bachelor’s Degree

CalArts will accept a three-year Bachelor's degree from India as equivalent to a Bachelor's degree in the US on the basis of specific criteria:

University Quality - University accredited by the NCAA with a grade of "A"
Student Performance - The degree was earned in the Division/Class I

Here are the minimum education admission documents required for a graduate program for students from India:

  • Final or Provisional Degree Certificate (send legible copy of document to CalArts)
    Examples: Bachelor Degree, Master Degree, Postgraduate Diploma, Doctorate

  • Annual Statement of Marks / Academic Transcript

This is an official document issued by the institution responsible for conducting the examinations (e.g. university, constituent or autonomous college). It lists all subjects/papers taken and marks earned for each year of study. This document should be sent directly from university or autonomous college responsible for conducting examination to CalArts.

Upon Admission to CalArts

Official transcripts can be submitted electronically using any credentialing service (Naviance, Parchment, National Student Clearinghouse, Scribbles, eTranscript) or by physical mail. Official transcript evaluation(s) can be submitted electronically 

Official transcript evaluations can be ordered and submitted electronically. 

Applicants from Chinese institutions may request and submit official transcripts directly through CHESICC. Requests are processed by CHESICC and will be sent electronically to the CalArts Office of Admissions. Do not submit a paper copy of your transcript if you have requested transcripts through CHESICC. Get started.

International Baccalaureate score reports must be received directly from the College Board. Transcripts must be requested in mail from the IBO with a paper transcript request form. Please visit the IBO website for more information.


English Language Proficiency

Applicants are expected to be proficient in the English language before applying for admission. In the online application, you will be asked about native language (the language you speak at home) and your experience with English in an academic setting. Please follow the prompts in the online application in order to be considered for a language proficiency waiver. Applicants with a native language other than English, and who have not attended a school where the language of instruction is English for at least three years prior to graduation, must take the internet based version of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL ibt), the academic version of the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) the PTE Academic: Pearson English Language Test or the Duolingo English Test. Minimum scores for admissions are 80 TOEFL ibt, 6.5 IELTS, 53 PTE, or 105 Duolingo for undergraduates and 100 TOEFL ibt,  7 IELTS, 63 PTE, or 120 Duolingo for graduates.  The TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo score must be received by the Regular Application Deadline. Applications from international students with a native language other than English may not be reviewed if they do not include a TOEFL, IELTS, PTE or Duolingo score.

Please note that CalArts reserves the right to ask you to take the TOEFL, IELTS, PTE, or Duolingo English Test at any point during the application process if your English proficiency is in question.


The Institution code for CalArts is 4049. The Department code is 99. 

CalArts accepts "MyBest" scores delivered directly from ETS. 


CalArts only accepts IELTS results delivered to our Electronic Download account by the IELTS test center. An institution code for IELTS is NOT required. Please contact the test center directly where you took the IELTS test and request that your test scores be sent to our E-Download account using the IELTS system. All IELTS test centers worldwide are able to send scores electronically to our institution. You must provide the following information to the test center where you took the test when requesting your scores:

California Institute of the Arts
24700 McBean Parkway
Valencia, CA 91355


As of March 2020, CalArts is accepting Duolingo verified test scores during the COVID-19 situation.

Declaration of Finances

All students who are not U.S. Citizens or permanent residents of the U.S. must complete the online Declaration of Finances form after they have been accepted and submitted their Statement of Intention to Register (SIR) form. This form is to verify that you have sufficient financial resources to pay all educational and living expenses while attending the California Institute of the Arts. The U.S. consular office in your home country or the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (if you are already in the U.S.) will require this document when you apply for a student (F-1) visa.

We encourage international students to be fully prepared to fund their education and living expenses for the entire length of their time at CalArts. International students coming to the U.S. on a student visa are expected to demonstrate that they have sufficient funds available to them to support their living costs as well as their educational expenses while in the U.S. 

Financial aid for international students is available in the form of merit scholarships. Since they are not eligible for federal or state financial assistance, international students are only eligible for a CalArts scholarship and/or CalArts work-study, if they qualify.

Visit the Student Visa and 1-20 page to learn more.

Official CalArts Naver Blog!

CalArts now has an official blog in Korean on the website Naver!

You can find the blog here:>"