Photo by Megan Bayley.

Our academic programs support creative practitioners who strive for a world that’s brighter, more inclusive, relentlessly innovative, and ecologically resilient.


Learn how CCA makes an impact in the Bay Area and beyond

Immerse yourself in our creative culture

Pursue your passions at California College of the Arts, where diverse practices meet and inspiration is at every turn. With access to the Bay Area’s creative communities and thriving industries, you’ll take part in exciting collaborations, deepen your practice, and learn from art and design leaders, including our renowned faculty. You’ll learn to make work that makes a difference.

Attending CCA is your time to discover your voice, listen to other voices, refine your skills, or completely reinvent yourself. Explore our current Course Schedule.

Shop manager helping a student safely use equipment in the woodworking studio

Dedicated studio managers

The right tool or material is often exactly what you need to achieve a breakthrough. Our creative spaces, overseen by experienced studio managers, support your work in traditional craftsmanship, digital fabrication, and hybrid practices. Artists and designers themselves, studio managers are available to help you master the fundamentals and safely use equipment and tools.

With a high level of overlap across disciplines, students use studios and shops to collaborate with friends from other programs and take their own projects in unexpected directions. Check out a few of our favorite spaces for cross-disciplinary work below.

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Model Shop

Specializing in foam, plastic, and wood, the Model Shop is open to all students. Required shop safety and skills orientations cover best practices for sanders, drill presses, lathes, various saws, and our vacuum forming machine for 3D molding. Students also have access to commonly used hand tools and a dedicated sanding area.


Dogpatch MFA Studios

Studio spaces for MFA in Fine Arts students are in the nearby Dogpatch neighborhood. Surrounded by alternative artist spaces and cultural organizations, such as Minnesota Street Project and Workshop Residence, graduate students experience and contribute to one of the most exciting creative communities in San Francisco. From industrial sewing machines to workstations for digital media and sound editing, on-site resources support a range of practices.

A student works on a model in the Digital Craft Lab.

Digital Craft Lab

Open to all undergraduate and graduate architecture students, the Digital Craft Lab (DCL) is a collaborative space for advanced research, digital fabrication, data visualization, and material experimentation. Students explore the future of architecture with our state-of-the-art KR AGILUS, a lightweight industrial robot for precise automation and assembly.


For middle schoolers who love art class

The Young Artist Studio Program (YASP) is a one-week summer intensive where sixth-, seventh-, and eighth-grade students complete various projects in their selected subject area and present their work at a culminating exhibition for family and friends.

Summer Atelier student working on some colorful comics

For high schoolers finding their voice

Named after the French word for “workshop,” Atelier is a one- or two-week program where high school sophomores and juniors concentrate on a specific practice area of art and design, such as drawing, painting, comics, screenprinting, or photography.

A student works on a painting in their CCA studio.

For high schoolers dreaming of art and design school

Pre-College is a four-week on-campus or five-week online program designed for rising high school juniors and seniors and recent high school graduates. Students experience what it’s like to live and learn at an art and design school, earn three college credits, and create high-caliber work suited for any admissions portfolio.

American Vision Awards Nominee Arihant Jain from Mountain View, Condolences, Mixed Media on Paper.

American Vision Awards nominee Arihant Jain from Mountain View, Condolences.

For young artists ready to showcase their accomplishments

Young artists and writers in grades 7–12 can submit to the Bay Area Scholastic Art and Writing Awards, presented in partnership with CCA by the Alliance for Youth Artists and Writers — the nation’s longest-running, most prestigious recognition program for creative teens. Award winners, exhibition opportunities, and scholarship recipients will be announced in January, with local celebrations in the spring.

Key dates

  • September: Submission portal opens
  • December: Submission deadline
  • March: Regional award winners and celebration event date announcement
CCA student at 9h nine hours hotel in Kyoto while on their Kyoto Study Abroad

Pursue your passions overseas

Current CCA students can expand their worldview and skills by participating in one of our summer study-abroad programs, which vary in theme each year. The course "European Design Capitals," for example, takes students to Berlin, Amsterdam, and Milan to explore design culture and history from multiple perspectives. In another study-abroad program, titled "In Search of Emptiness and Wabi Sabi," students investigate traditional Japanese aesthetic values in Tokyo and the ancient capitals of Kyoto and Kamakura.

Two people stand in the Jewelry & Metal Arts studio holding hammers.

For adults who want to keep growing

CCA’s year-round, non-credit classes for adults cover a wide variety of design and fine arts disciplines. Coursework is designed for individuals interested in exploring something new as well as those wishing to further develop an existing skill or practice. Custom programming and skill development for companies, organizations, and teams is also available.

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