Explore what's possible as a graduate student

You’re ready for graduate school. Now the big decision is where to go. In CCA’s distinguished programs, you’ll expand the possibilities of your practice, grow as an individual, and uniquely connect with professionals who can help you take your work to the next level. Here, we’ll show you how.

Why CCA?

Join a group of scholars empowered by action

Architecture students gather in the Nave for a critique

CCA graduate students engage aesthetic issues and cultural challenges amid a community of scholars intent on making meaningful work. Our pedagogy values both theory and practice, so we spend as much time in essential critical discourse as we do in the studios, labs, and workshops.

The added benefit of this hands-on education? It all happens in the Bay Area, the global center of culture, technology, and innovation, and a destination for the most forward-thinking minds in myriad fields.

What We Do

Pursue purposeful work in a city leading global innovation

Going to graduate school affords you the time and space to develop your work and accelerate your skills. At CCA, you’ll have distinctive opportunities to make the most of this investment: expert guidance, professional connections, hybrid-making opportunities, raw materials, and hands-on experiences.

Learn from a diverse faculty of professional practitioners

Our professors are accomplished educators, scholars, professional practitioners, and researchers. Just like our student population, diversity of faculty is important to us: 40% of tenure-track and tenured faculty identify as people of color, and 47% of tenure-track and tenured faculty are female-identifying (as of fall 2022).

Events & Lectures

Connect with internationally acclaimed talent in your field

Visiting practitioners complement curricular work

CCA fosters a vibrant environment for graduate students to collaborate, network, and socialize. Our programs are also designed to encourage students to explore the opportunities and resources uniquely available in the Bay Area.

More than 150 art shows, talks, exhibitions, and events on campus each year foster meaningful dialogue among students and the wider community, and many graduate programs host their own events, exhibitions, and lecture series, including those at CCA’s premier exhibition space, Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts.

Graduate admissions events

Register now for valuable informational events for prospective graduate students, including Q+As with program chairs, current students, alumni, and faculty and discussions with admissions and financial aid counselors.

Presenters at the 2020 here+now DMBA event

CCA Public Programming

Many upcoming lectures, screenings, and events in our virtual spaces are free and open to the public, including weekly chats with faculty from various divisions. View the exhibitions and public programming calendar.

National Portfolio Day

At National Portfolio Day, admissions professionals from art and design colleges across the country meet with you individually and give valuable feedback on your application portfolio.


Get support throughout the application process

Front of the San Francisco campus at night.

Graduate Admissions

+1 415-548-2271 (call, text)

[email protected]

Connect one-on-one with a graduate counselor

We can answer your questions about CCA, provide information about your graduate program of interest, arrange a campus visit, explain the application process, and much more. Reach out anytime! Schedule an appointment.

Access support through live chat

We’re available to answer your questions via live chat on Discord. Every Friday from 9 am-11 am PT, we’ll be hosting live chat "office hours," when you’ll be able to get answers to your questions in real time from a CCA admissions counselor.

Post your questions during our office hours to get immediate answers to your questions about CCA's graduate programs and the admissions process or post your questions for response at a later time. If you can't make our normal admissions appointment hours or just have a quick question, this is a great way to get your questions answered and see what other students are asking.

To access chat, you can request access with this form, and we’ll follow up with the link to join.

More to explore

Learn about attending CCA as a graduate student

Explore our campus and curriculum

Get application deadlines and details

Join a studio culture focused on innovation

Request more info