Academy of Art University Reviews - Bachelor's in Art & Design
The teachers at Academy of Art are amazing most are working professionals. Most of them take the time to help student understand mediums and foundation. teachers are always willing to help. The financial aid, counselors are a bit of a mess, i felt like i was constantly being juggled and forgotten there were many glitches in the system and I was forced to take classes i dint want to take due to lack of communication. financial aid can be helpful and understanding of financial situations. I enjoyed the school and feel I have learned a lot. I would recommend this school for students who can financially afford the city/ bay area as well as supplies and classes. Working more than 1 job is difficult with work load of a full time student and you will fall behind quickly.
Overall I am happy with my choice of going to the Academy of Art. However if I had to choose what school to go today I would consider other choices first reason being the #1 the Cost second is the name and reputation of your instructors. I think the School of Visual Arts have way more well known instructors and connections then at AAC. I graduated with a BFA in Illustration in 1998 and the continued taking courses in Graphic Design for another 2 years so I could be a versatile designer. The instructor are a hit or miss. Out of all the years that I have attended there I could think of at least two instructors that I wished I have never met or taken there course. They were not helpful in anyway and I did not learn anything from. It was just a waste of money. I always come across a lot of negative postings about the school but I have to say unless your not willing to put 150% into your work you should not attend this school. There is a lot of completion from students from around the World. I am currently working as a Graphic Designer for the City of San Francisco. I have worked for both large and small companies. I've always been able to find design jobs but they did not come easy. The longest time I have been laid off was 2 years. You really need to hustle and get your face and portfolio seen rather then relying only on sending your resume online. My younger brother also attended school there and graduated in Computer Arts. He now works as a Art Director for Gap. I'm still paying off my school loan but I am proud of my accomplishments I was able to buy a house and put both of my daughter through private schools. It's a great feeling going to work knowing your going to go draw or design something. AGAIN NOT A EASY CAREER took many years to finally make it.
Please, please, PLEASE don't waste your time and money on this "university." I must admit that my skills have improved but it's mainly due to help from my peers and practice on my own, I've actually been in classes where the instructor have told us to avoid emailing them and to rely on our peers; I've even had instructors change the lesson plan or refuse to go over something because we should already know how to do it or because they don't feel like going over it. Is that how college is supposed to work? The instructor is paid to just babysit us while we try to teach each other? The classes are a big joke, I've taken classes that were almost exactly the same just with different titles, and even ones where the instructor just throws on some youtube videos and calls it a day. Sounds fun? Sure, until you realize you spend close to $3,000 for this class. Please do your research first if you're considering going to this school (or any art school in general), if you're already super talented basically professional artist with all the time and money to spend on this school then it's the place for you. If not and you're actually looking to be taught, then it's best to look elsewhere.
When I started my online classes at AAU C.P. was the director of the online education as well as the onsite. After attending about a year they brought in a new director named Lourdes Livingston. Since then I have noticed a steady downfall in quality. Another problem is if you have to repeat a class (which I did due to medical) the curriculum is exactly the same. It's as if the instructors really don't have the needed credentials to be our Professors. I have heard the onsite education is so much better, but I and the other online students feel that we should receive the same quality of education.
All of you listen. AAU is a little special school. It does not require any degrees or tests - SAT, TOEFL, nothing. If you got the money and will you are welcomed. Also it does not have a campus. There are buildings all over the San Francisco and you go here and there. What did I pay for then? Instruction and information only, my friends. To people who're saying "this school is expensive!" please... stop showing others your stupidity. You haven't got the opportunity to enroll to other "good schools," right? That's because you did not study and cannot afford the freakin money they charge you. Average "GOOD" art univs charge you at least 4 grand every year (or even one semester. Jesus) but AAU only charge you 2 grands. "It is still expensive!" You say? You are going to an art university mate. If you want to pay less than a grand per year and get a good quality class, please let me know. I wanna enroll too. I dare say AAU is cheap. It's one of the reasons that I signed up for this school. Well then, does the school have name value when you go out in the field? Not really. But I can tell you this; you will have the skills and connections to get a job when you graduate IF YOU DO YOUR BEST WHILE IN AAU. 90% of AAU's instructors are working in the field right now. They are not just school teachers - they are competitive real time workers as well. So they will give you some hot information about the field you would like to work. That is, if you communicate well with the instructors. You wanna sit back, take classes silently and go home fast? Well I won't stop you. But don't whine if you get nothing after you graduate, because you asked for it. I'd say AAU is like a self service restaurant. It provides a lot of opportunities and information. But they won't carry the dish in front of you. You gotta go get it. It's all over the notice board, internet, and school community. That is why it is little cheaper than other schools. If you can take advantage from all the opportunity that AAU provides, you'll get MUCH more than average art schools. Trust me. To keep it short, if you are willing you work your a** off and not dreaming for a beautiful campus life, AAU is not bad at all. But if you want the school that babysit you from the beginning to the end alongside with amazing campus, look for other places. For me, if I can graduate and get a job with the experience, I'd say money well spent.