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Academy Of Art University Reviews

Last Updated on November 13, 2022 by Fola Shade

Academy Of Art has been a pioneer, and continues to be one of America’s greatest art schools. The academy currently has three campuses all offering Bachelors, Masters, and Doctoral degrees in Art. There are numerous art schools available in the country, but none come close to what Academy of Art University can offer.

Collegelearners will provide you with all the relevant information you are looking for on is academy of art university worth it, is academy of art university expensive, is academy of art university accredited, and so much more.

Academy Of Art University Reviews



  • Reviewed: 8/18/2021
  • Degree: Video Game Design

“I’ve taken FASCU 632 OL1: Ecorche (FASCU 270) for this summer semester, and the class was the worst I ever had. Every week there were just dozens of tedious videos that weren’t easy to follow at all. The instructor didn’t provide any personal instruction in the beginning of every module. I had a hard time following the class and couldn’t post on time at all. Finally I failed even if I tried my best and submitted my work for the final. I was feeling very frustrated and depressed because of it. It was really the worst experience I ever had in a class in AAU. I have a bad feeling that the Ecorche class could once again ruin another of my semesters, and result in wasting money on another failed class. I can’t put all my effort into this one class and fail all the others. This class is too hard and also requires too much space, a bunch of tools and materials. I can’t imagine how worse it would be if I had to work onsite in my dorm on this assignment. It would make even a bigger mess and even interfere with other roommates’ living space. I know it is required for the degree and if I avoid this big “trouble” I eventually would be stopped from graduating by it. I would need to somehow pass this class, even though it already seemed too desperate to do so.”KW

  • Reviewed: 6/16/2021
  • Degree: Art & Design

“They lied and now 15 years later I’m still paying for it! This con artist school boasted a 90% job placement rate when I applied in 2000. By 2001 I was blindingly taking out student loans to attend this institution, believing them that upon graduation I would be ready and knowledgeable enough to work in the industry and begin to pay off the debt. 15 years later I still can’t believe what a bone headed choice that was. I applied to hundreds of jobs and over asked over 200 artist reps for their services. The only jobs I could get were low paying freelance jobs found on freelance websites and no artist reps would take me on as a client. 15 years later I’m married with 3 children, I have a job that earns me more than the average American and I’m still broke because I’m still paying off that debt ( and I have already re-financed my original loans to lower the monthly payments ). To pay this school I took out $100,000 in student loans. My return on investment was $400 from freelance work and what ever I made from stocking shelves in the fine arts department at AC Moore arts and crafts. That was as far as I could take my illustration career the first year after college. What a joke! To be fair the instructors I had were great and I was able to learn a lot about techniques and mediums and I enjoyed living in San Francisco. However the financial burden it has caused me thus far was not worth it. The school did not prepare me for what lay ahead they just wanted my money. DO NOT GO HERE!”Summer

  • Reviewed: 5/26/2021
  • Degree: Architecture

“In the Interior Architecture & Design course, you will learn the basics of design and how it plays a role in the real world. The course also includes hands-on activities such as creating a portfolio and presenting it in front of students. The faculty and staff are also relatively nice, so you can ask them anything if you have any questions. We also have students who are not from the U.S., so there are many opportunities to meet people.”Robyn

  • Reviewed: 5/25/2021
  • Degree: Art History

“I keep seeing really sucky comments about my college, how everyone says it’s a scam and teachers don’t actually provide any real learning information etc etc. They say everyone is set up for failure and that no one graduates because they want you to keep paying. I have had nothing but phenomenal professors. The director of art history took time to basically just chill and talk to me about art for an hour last semester. She cares that much. I have been so impressed by how much I have grown at this school, how supportive almost every professor has been, and how incredible all of the staff have been regarding disability access, which was granted and paperwork filed in less than three days- a record timing in my book. I don’t know about the other programs, but I’m absolutely in love with everything about this school and I truly have a hard time finding any downsides. The only one I can think of to bring up is the lack of 1st party scholarships, but they do accept 3rd party ones. A lot of people end up dropping out because of the price, and I know that other departments are probably very different, but my experience has been nothing short of perfect all the way through. I have had maybe two professors I disagreed with as far as the way they taught, but that’s not a problem with the school itself and I still finished with As in both classes. Which brings me to my last point, supposedly only 4% of students graduate. Besides the fact that many drop out from cost, I think some of it has to do with the fact that the professors don’t take bull crap. You MUST do the work assigned for you. You MUST show a willingness to learn. You MUST communicate with them if you need extensions. Most will grant them, in my experience. I put in the work and I have some of the highest scores (allegedly) of any student with accessibility. I firmly believe this college is only as good as what you put into it, and to learn you have to actually do what is asked of you. It is fast paced and you have to work ridiculously hard. But as an B+ average student with learning disabilities … it’s very doable. Anyways, just really mad that people are trying to get upset with this college that is obviously doing something right.”anonymous

  • Reviewed: 3/1/2021
  • Degree: Marketing

“I guess everyone has a different view of this school but in my experience, I feel like it’s been very good. My advisor was very attentive and the teachers have been good and easy to understand, the classes are a little hard and you do have to put in a little extra to get good grades. Because it’s 100% rate, there are a lot of people who have no idea what they are doing and don’t put in the work and their homework’s just sloppy and might not get as much attention from the professor as he gives students who actually participate, want to learn and follow instructions.”Elizabeth

  • Reviewed: 2/20/2021
  • Degree: Art & Design

“AAU is overall a decent school. I’m doing part time online classes, and I have found the classes to be hit or miss. It’s like that for many universities, however. The majority of instructors have been helpful, especially in the foundational classes. The school is fast paced, and you will have to put in a lot of work like any other school. Sometimes I wish the instructors were a bit more helpful, I had one instructor tell me that my work was just horrid without telling me what to improve. But I’ve attended schools with similar instructors. The biggest thing to consider is the price of the school. It’s not cheap. It’s a for profit school that requires deep, deep pockets. It’s excellent for part time learning. I’m attending because of the 100% enrollment (I started with no portfolio and no art experience) and because it offers online classes, which work for me since I have chronic health issues. I can also afford the classes. Are there better schools? Yeah. Is AAU a horrid place? Nope. Can you learn everything you need to know from YouTube videos and free tutorials? In a field where portfolio matters more than a degree, you don’t have to attend art school if you have the self discipline to learn. I’ve been doing part time classes since 2017 without any clear goals. I’m in the Personal Enrichment program. My art has definitely improved and some instructors are very very devoted to helping you learn! Another thing is to stand up for yourself if you are struggling in classes. The instructors don’t help unless you explicitly state your problems. They can see that you’re struggling but usually won’t comment unless you communicate clearly.”Corey

  • Reviewed: 2/12/2021
  • Degree: Architecture

“Reading these reviews, I am thoroughly surprised with the experiences these people have had. I work full time for a stand-alone healthcare facility as the in-house interior architect. To further solidify my position, the masters degree made sense and I have to say that each and every class I have had so far has been increasingly relevant to my career. The instructors are phenomenal and did a wonderful job during the Covid-19 crisis to keep me engaged. I am unsure how the other programs rate; however, I have taken a multitude of online webinars the school provides from different programs and each one seems to have their act together. I am confused with the negative response to this school – I have been nothing but impressed. For those saying the school is a money scam…all colleges and universities are in some sense a endless “money bag black hole” (welcome to America). Your frustrations should not deter young artists from pursuing these possibilities especially when FAFSA and other programs are there to help momentarily pay for a dream

Academy Of Art University Scholarships

Academy of Art University International Distance Learning Scholarship in USA

Academy of Art University’s International Distance Learning Scholarship is an initiative to provide financial aid to prospective international students.

This scheme holds a motive to encourage brilliant students from around the world to enrol in a distance learning program at the University.

Academy of Art University is the largest private art and design university located in the heart of San Francisco, California. It has more than 16,000 students from all over the world enrolled in 30 programs and various degree levels. The institution has always been dedicated to providing art school experience like no other.

Why would you like to study at the Academy of Art University? By providing students with a variety of programs and educational opportunities, the university prepares them for professional roles as artists and designers. Its staff includes some of the finest minds working in today’s creative and innovative industries.

Application Deadline: June 15, 2020

Brief Description

  • University or Organization: Academy of Art University
  • Department: N/A
  • Course Level: Undergraduate and graduate
  • Award: $2000 to $4000
  • Number of Awards: Limited
  • Access Mode: Online
  • Nationality: Any
  • The award can be taken in the US


  • Eligible Countries: All countries are eligible.
  • Eligible Course or Subjects Undergraduate and graduate degree program fashion, animation, graphic design, acting, jewellery & metal arts, architecture, advertising.
  • Eligibility Criteria: To be eligible, the applicants must meet all the given criteria:
  • Must be first-time enrolled online undergraduate or graduate students at the Academy of Art University beginning in the Summer 2020 semester.
  • Recipients need to fall under one of the following online groups: a) undergraduate, degree-seeking student (AA, AA2, BA, BA2, BS, BS2, BFA, BFA2, and BARCH); b) graduate degree-seeking (MA, MFA, MArch, MAT), Personal Enrichment students, Online Award of Completion students, and students earning a Certificate.
  • Must be an international citizen
  • The recipient must be a registered online student for Summer 2020 or Fall 2020 by the scholarship deadline to be eligible for the particular award amount.
  • Scholarship recipients must pass all courses with a grade C (2.0 GPA) or better to renew the scholarship.

How to Apply

  • How to Apply: If you have been enrolled in an applicable program, then you can apply for this application with the help of the university’s online portal.
  • Supporting Documents: Please provide the following documents at the time of admission: Pre-qualification degree, copies of academic transcripts and award, certificates of English language proficiency, a statement, and a copy of passport.
  • Admission Requirements: Applicants for bachelor degrees must hold a high school diploma and for master degrees, they must have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college and university.
  • Language Requirement: Language requirements vary from one course to another.

Benefits: The scholarship will provide students with an award of $2000 to $4000

is academy of art university worth it

Academy of Art University is ranked #1,961 out of 2,540 for value nationwide.

Based on our analysis of other colleges at similar price points, we believe Academy of Art University is overpriced for the quality education it provides. (This takes into account average financial aid and may not apply to you if you have further scholarships, grant or aid provided to you.)

National Value Ranking  1961 out of 2540


Great Value

National Value Score  23.87 out of 100


Great Value

Prices of Institutions with Similar Quality Scores

SchoolTotal PriceValue Grade

*Total price is determined by multiplying average annual cost by time to graduate.

is academy of art university expensive

That Degree May Cost You $214,681 in Total

The Academy of Art University time to graduate is about 5.08 years and will cost an estimated $42,260 per year. This brings the total cost to 214,681.

Average Yearly Cost$42,260
Average Years to Graduate5.08
Estimated Avg Total Cost of Degree$214,681

Many Factors Affect Net Price

There are many ways you can lower the cost of a college education. Consider taking advantage of in-state tuition, or shortening the length of your degree by taking summer classes. Learn more about Academy of Art University cost for other factors that may affect net price such as the financial aid you qualify for that is largely based on your family’s income.

Does This School Make Financial Sense To You?




Net price can vary based on your unique situation.

Look at the table below to determine your likely cost of a bachelor’s degree at Academy of Art University.

Nationwide Value by Aid GroupAvg Degree CostValue RankValue Grade
Students with no Aid$239,644#0F
All Students$214,681#1,961D-
Only Students Receiving Aid$189,718#2,369F
In-State Value by Aid GroupAvg Degree CostValue RankValue Grade
Students with no Aid$239,644#F
All Students$214,681#F
Only Students Receiving Aid$189,718#F

Note: the Value Grade for in-state students is calculated by looking only at other schools in the state of California.

About 73% of Academy of Art University students receive financial aid. Get more details on what Academy of Art University financial aid you may qualify for.