Calarts BFA Animation vs. USC BA animation/ visual arts

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    Calarts BFA Animation vs. USC BA animation/ visual arts

    I got accepted to Calarts Character Animation Fall '12 with a 6k scholarship and USC animation and visual arts.

    I've did my research on both schools, but there wasn't a lot on USC animation as a major.

    I enjoy drawing, but is interested in the computer side - visual effects and computer animation.

    I would greatly appreciate any insights on either of the programs! Thanks a bunch in advance.

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    I haven't heard much depth on USC's animation program, but they pretty much teach the same stuff everyone else teaches.

    for VFX gnomon is as good as it gets here in Cali.

    I don't remember cal arts being heavy on digital side either more drawing focused from what I remember.

    Don't wake me for the end of the world unless it has very good special effects

    Fresh2draw.co.cc
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    from what I hear, both are very good programs and incredibly difficult to get into. congrats on getting into USC's animation program, they only accept the top 1% of applicants. You'll be fine at either school, just choose the one that has the most convienant tuition payments. I'd probably choose USC if I were in your position, since it's an actual university and the tuition is probably a lot cheaper than CalArts (public university vs. private school).

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    Quote Originally Posted by SlowDaddie View Post
    I'd probably choose USC if I were in your position, since it's an actual university and the tuition is probably a lot cheaper than CalArts (public university vs. private school).
    ok i feel like i've gone mad... aren't they both private?
    i know USC is definitely private, and I assumed Cal Arts was...sorry I don't know much about either school!

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    Quote Originally Posted by SlowDaddie View Post
    from what I hear, both are very good programs and incredibly difficult to get into. congrats on getting into USC's animation program, they only accept the top 1% of applicants. You'll be fine at either school, just choose the one that has the most convienant tuition payments. I'd probably choose USC if I were in your position, since it's an actual university and the tuition is probably a lot cheaper than CalArts (public university vs. private school).
    You should do a little research first; CalArts is actually cheaper. (although not by a great deal.) You should check the course descriptions and see if you can talk to someone in each program to determine the best fit.

    Also, CalArts IS an accredited degree granting institution last I checked, so it is an 'actual university'. And yes, both are private. In California the California State University system is the public option, while UC's are private.


    http://calarts.edu/admissions/tuition-fees
    http://www.usc.edu/academics/classes..._and_fees.html

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    I was accepted to USC for animation this year and I went to Explore USC. My host was accepted to CalArts and got full tuition at USC. USC has a great program in Florence in which a professor over there told me was really good for computer animators. And they do share a lot of faculty with CalArts. From what I got while I was there was that USC was what you made of it. Two girls over there were set at working at Disney so they worked with a legendary Disney animator over there specifically and my host thought they were really set to get a job there. Other kids might get stuck in their style and therefore lack versatility drawing wise. And to the previous poster, the person before you wasn't saying that CalArts was not an actually school. They are most probably referring to the difference between an art school and a traditional school. You'll have a lot more general courses at USC and meet a lot of different majors. From some of the animators I talked to while I was there a big advantage of USC was the fact you were in the top film school in the nation. You can meet the producers, directors, and screen play writers of the next generation there, but youll meet a good deal of them at CalArts too. You'll also be able to minor in things like political science or biology at USC if you would like, and there are a variety of internships available but CalArts has them too. I think that your decision may simply come down to whether you want to go to a traditional school or an art one. CalArts will be more art focused and you'll find that at USC too but you'll have more variety in your courses. USC is also going to be a more diverse campus with a larger population of students. And USC's tuition may be a bit more, but they have a better record with providing aid. They are on a list of schools that will cover everything except you EFC, though that may be loans or grants or work study. I've heard of huge grants coming out of there, but if that isn't a concern than it doesn't matter as much.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alice Herring View Post
    You should do a little research first; CalArts is actually cheaper. (although not by a great deal.) You should check the course descriptions and see if you can talk to someone in each program to determine the best fit.

    Also, CalArts IS an accredited degree granting institution last I checked, so it is an 'actual university'. And yes, both are private. In California the California State University system is the public option, while UC's are private.


    http://calarts.edu/admissions/tuition-fees
    http://www.usc.edu/academics/classes..._and_fees.html
    Correction

    CSU as in california state university and UC's as in university of california are public institutions

    USC and Cal arts are private schools.

    Don't wake me for the end of the world unless it has very good special effects

    Fresh2draw.co.cc
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    Quote Originally Posted by ifemora View Post
    the person before you wasn't saying that CalArts was not an actually school. They are most probably referring to the difference between an art school and a traditional school. You'll have a lot more general courses at USC and meet a lot of different majors
    Yes, thanks for clearing that up. I, was in no way insinuating that CalArts wasn't an actual school. I was trying to point out that it's an art-focused private (and accredited) school, not a "traditional" school like USC. CalArts is definately a school one of the best ones at that.

    I was confused about USC. I thought that was a public university (like the UC schools). Either way, it's a very good school and again, if I had a choice, I would probably pick USC for the various reasons ifemora already listed.

    Anyway, good luck and sorry about the confusion.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SlowDaddie View Post
    Yes, thanks for clearing that up. I, was in no way insinuating that CalArts wasn't an actual school. I was trying to point out that it's an art-focused private (and accredited) school, not a "traditional" school like USC. CalArts is definately a school one of the best ones at that.

    I was confused about USC. I thought that was a public university (like the UC schools). Either way, it's a very good school and again, if I had a choice, I would probably pick USC for the various reasons ifemora already listed.

    Anyway, good luck and sorry about the confusion.
    USC does look like a traditional school on the surface, but once you go there and once you research yea you find that it's an atypical private school.

    Don't wake me for the end of the world unless it has very good special effects

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    USC is a traditional school in the sense of your GE courses. I was told that as an animation major you spend 50 percent of your time or courses with animation and the other time with your GE courses. Seniors are given decked out studio areas with I think a thousand dollar grant for their thesis which you will do the entire senior year. A lot of the freshmen I met there have collaborated on some animated shorts for contests and have actually won some awards. There are small class sizes there and students interact with grad students as well. My host as a freshman had a few friends who were grad animators. I met two people over there who had chose USC over CalArts without looking back and another CalArts grad in the graduate program. They do get a little of a bad rep on art fundamentals and versatility, but when I interviewed my interviewers talked about adding more anatomy courses for people interested. The animation program is small but they put a lot of money in the program. You'll be sure to have a lot of individual attention. I didn't choose USC but it is a great school. I never applied to CalArts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kysg View Post
    Correction

    CSU as in california state university and UC's as in university of california are public institutions

    USC and Cal arts are private schools.
    Hahahaha! Oh, the irony. You are totally right - thanks for the correction! Anyway, I'd still say check out each program - while both are probably great in their own right (and everyone makes salient points) an animation program may not have much in the way of special effects. So. YMMV.

    Also, Ifemora - ohh, thanks! I probably just misread the whole 'actual university' thing

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    you are correct. That's why you got places like gnomon

    Don't wake me for the end of the world unless it has very good special effects

    Fresh2draw.co.cc
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    We checked out both USC and Calarts. Thus, I will give you our take.
    Although USC has LOADS of money donated to them for the Cinematic Arts, frankly, we didn't like the program. The offerings were a bit spartan compared to that of CalArts. Moreover, a lot of their focus is the same as that of CalArts: 2d. If you check the background of the department head, she attended CalArts. If you get a tour of the Cinematic Art complex at USC, I think you will get the feeling that animation is the stepchild of the program. Again, this is my opinion based on my personal take. Your take upon investigating USC might be different.

    I thought Calarts had many more art and animation offerings that that of USC and had less GE requirements than that of USC. Also, in no way is animation a stepchild of their school. If anything, it is their premier program. Thus you can fit in more art offerings at CalArts.

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