BFA

4-Year Program

The BFA program of study is uniquely designed around the concept of the "Music Artist." Unlike a traditional conservatory approach, it allows each student to cultivate a far-ranging musical skillset while also providing specialized training best suited to meet individual goals.

About the Specialization

Undergraduate guitar players develop wide-ranging instrumental skills through major lessons, guitar workshops and more specialized guitar classes covering blues, flamenco, lute, studio projects, arranging, fretboard theory, figured bass and analysis of guitar repertoire. Coached small ensemble work includes performing with chamber music groups, student-faculty jazz ensembles, and the School’s Multi-Focus Ensembles.

The curriculum also requires classes in composition, creative skills and pedagogy, and the faculty encourage students to incorporate non-Western traditions, improvisation, experimental forms, digital media and interdisciplinary performance as part of their individual studies.

All BFA candidates are required to pass a Mid-Residence Recital and a Graduation Jury and Recital in order to obtain the degree.

Full Curriculum

Detailed curriculum and academic requirements can be found in the online course catalog.

View Curriculum Requirements


The Undergraduate Experience

CalArts is committed to providing a broad program of general education designed to enable students to consider aesthetic questions within larger socio-cultural, ethical and political contexts.

Learn more about the General Education curriculum


Interdisciplinary Opportunities

In addition to CalArts' rich and diverse community and naturally collaborative atmosphere, the Institute provides several programs of study that can be pursued concurrently with a student's chosen metier.


Music Theory Minor

The Minor is intended for undergraduate students who wish to receive advanced training and accreditation in Music Theory as a supplement to their major.

Music Theory Minor

Digital Arts Minor

The Minor is designed to help undergraduate students grasp the knowledge to build, engineer and design innovative custom systems.

Digital Arts Minor

Interschool Degree

This option is available to a small number of graduates and advanced third- and fourth-year undergraduates whose skills and artistic interests warrant pursuing a degree in more than one School.

Interschool Degree


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