MFA

2-Year Program

The MFA Program in Music is designed to enable students to acquire the multiple skillsets that will empower them to stake out their own, unique, career pathways to success. The program of study is designed to be a stimulating and challenging, collaborative learning environment, in which music and sound artists can refine and perfect their already distinctive voices to reach the highest levels of professional practice, while simultaneously exploring new and inspiring, creative territories.

About the Specialization

At the MFA level, students concentrate on developing and refining advanced creative engineering skills while working toward a Music Technology MFA Thesis Project, required for completing the degree. The coursework covers topics in creative technology, programming for electronic music and other digital media, sound art, interface design, audio signal processing, interactive systems, software development and music technology pedagogy, as well as numerous elective subjects, such as robotics, machine learning and mobile music computing.

MFA students also take part in digital performance ensembles, either in standing groups such as the Machine Orchestra, Sonic Boom, Creative Electronic Ensemble, and Improvisation Ensemble, or groups formed specifically in connection with classes.

Full Curriculum

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

View Curriculum Requirements


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.

Integrated Media

The Integrated Media concentration is designed specifically for MFA students whose creative use of technology—in particular digital media—goes beyond their primary areas of study.

Integrated Media

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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