Newsweek/Daily Beast Ranks CalArts as Nation’s Most ‘Artistic’ College


From this year's BFA graphic design show at CalArts.

The latest edition of Newsweek/The Daily Beast puts a spin on traditional college lists—breaking down the best schools in the country—for 25 different “types” of students. While future politicos and CEOs may opt for Harvard or the party-inclined can choose West Virginia or Alabama, when it comes to the arts, CalArts is the place to be.

The Institute was named the number one most artistic school in the country, followed by Emerson College and Berklee College of Music.

From the magazine’s statement of methodology:

To rank colleges across the country based on how imaginative their study body is, as well as how much the college fosters a creative atmosphere, we considered two metrics that quantify both: the percentage of students majoring in visual or performing arts and the number of official campus clubs devoted to artistic pursuits. We only looked at 4-year schools that admit less than 50% of applicants, to screen for the most selective of the creative colleges. Universities were ranked based on the percentage of undergrads in visual/performing arts (66%), as well as if the campus included any of the following 8 clubs (33%): drama, music ensembles, dance, film society, literary magazine, musical theater, student newspaper, and television station. All data is according to College Board.

The entire list of Newsweek/The Daily Beast’sArtistic list:

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  1. Jean // //

    The DB’s never heard of Art Center (Pasadena), UCLA and CCA (SF)?

    Go back to school.

  2. Leila // //

    Don’t get me wrong, I love CalArts but this can’t be right! RISD at no. 20? And where is SAIC? The article leaves much to be desired. I always think CalArts is number one, of course- but c’mon! Give credit where credit is due.

  3. Lily // //

    @Jean: Not only did the DB selected the colleges based on a creative criteria, they also only selected colleges with an acceptance rate of lower than 50%. I don’t know about UCLA’s school of art acceptance rate, but Art Center (Pasadena) has a 60% acceptance rate and CCA(SF) has a 75% acceptance rate.

  4. Trey // //

    Art Center is about the furthest thing from artistic despite what the name suggests…

  5. Pete // //

    The study explains it’s methodology people. The list was not created randomly.

  6. submadreamgun // //

    Notice: the website here is CALARTS.EDU. This is direct propaganda from California’s biggest money maker in the field of education.

  7. Graham // //

    The Art Center kids can’t be arguing with us on a CALARTS forum…you are our rivals haha

  8. xpez // //

    you people whining about art center rankings… Cal Arts is an ART school…the Arts! you know music, acting, drama, dance, Art center has a a fine art department, and fillmmaking (for commercials!!) but its missing a huge part of all the other arts that Cal arts has that make a huge part in altering the experience of the kind of schools they are discussing in this article…

  9. adzohu // //

    I go to school here and I am a little confused is this list not including performance arts? Is it strictly fine art that this list is for because where is Julliard, NCSA, USC, and FSU. If your looking for a school visit it first CalArts is over priced and just like anything else it is a corporate business. Its hard to collaborate with other schools even though you think going in that you will be able to but you have to make that time appear on your own if you want it. With anything there are pros and cons make sure you do your research and don’t just look at one resource. Just because something is listed as the best people become jaded and loose sometimes the real meaning behind what they are trying to pursue and the different people they want to create with. Don’t become a stuck up fucking artist amazing art comes from the soul.

  10. Micaela Amato // //

    Cal Arts is great but the criteria is totally arbitrary and indicates nothing of the quality of professional after graduation. Yes,what about Bennington, and Maryland Art Institute and Penn State! Micaela

  11. Kshitij Paraswar // //

    i m from india n i want to learn n get educated in ur institute so wat should i do for it?
    n calification i requier for the admission?

  12. dubblespeak // //

    Calarts is a nonprofit educational institution, not a corporation.
    Art Center is not the school’s competition; there is no competition.
    This list exists no more than just a list, of colleges, out of many, across the nation.
    Subjectivity roots through the [read] term ‘artistic’, thus ceasing this list solipsistic.

    Decipher wholeheartedly, for you can produce no Other.

  13. John Mabry '72 & '75 alum // //

    Aw com’mon! The name “Art Center School of Design”…..Get it? Art Center is a shortened description for a DESIGN ACADEMY that poops out more students that enter into the design fields than any other school around L.A., but it is NOT A FINE ART SCHOOL. Arguably, art and design are connected endeavors, but they are soundly different. Art Center grads like to pick on Cal Arts students because no “technique” is taught, per se, at Calarts, but as another commentator pointed out, Calarts is about acting, singing, dancing, film, photography, graphic design, fine art, composing, writing, performance of every kind and THINKING. Compare the portfolios of Art Center and Calarts grads and you’ll see that the AC grads may as well swap their books…they all look the same! The admission fees are both comparable, altho the education is vastly different. Notice that no mention of OTIS was made by anyone…Does anyone wonder why?

  14. CalArts Alum // //

    @ submadreamgun – sour grapes. Note: ‘Calarts is a nonprofit educational institution’ – and pretty embattled from the looks of my last visit. Don’t talk trash “.”

  15. Jude // //

    Does any one have an idea bout the good schools of Art for a masters Program in Fine Art where TOFEL isn’t required??? tks!!

  16. Jim Wiseman // //

    Got my BFA with Nam June Paik and Shuya Abe in video art (synthesizers) at CalArts in 72, MFA 74 at School of the Art Institute of Chicago, video art. That SAIC is not even mentioned is absurd. Stan Brakhage’s lectures on film history there were the best in the country. Granted complete freedom and support. I would place it interchangeably in first place with CalArts. Different experiences, both life molding.