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

The BFA curriculum features a network of courses that offer core theory and skills studies, songwriting, arranging, rock and pop history, recording, producing and individual lessons. Students are highly encouraged to add classes in non-Western music, experimental composition and music technology in order to broaden the creative and technical reach of their individual musical voices.

From the beginning and throughout their residency, students build and develop a cumulative portfolio of creative work in close collaboration with their mentor. This portfolio is periodically reviewed. In order to obtain the degree, this portfolio must be evaluated and approved by faculty in the student’s final year.

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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