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7650 Mission Valley Road
San Diego, CA 92108-4423
p. 858-598-1200
w. www.artinstitutes.edu/san-diego/

The Art Institute of California-Argosy University San Diego

The Art Institute of California-Argosy University San Diego Rating: 4.2/5 (5 votes)

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As one of 40 plus Art Institutes throughout North America, the Art Institute of California – San Diego stands out from the rest due to its location in the Mission Valley, near cultural attractions, entertainment areas and very well known beaches. The actual school is equipped with large classrooms and all of the professional equipment and amenities needed for students to explore their creativity and succeed, including but not limited to high-tech computer labs, an art supply store, a library and a student lounge.

With majors covering a wide range of associate and bachelor’s degrees, from advertising and fashion marketing to graphic design and visual & game programming, the school offers many fields of study not found at other schools. In fact, the culinary arts section of the school recently received an upgrade with the April 2004 opening of The Palette, a restaurant operated by both senior culinary students and the chef faculty.

Courses and degree programs are offered year-round, divided up into quarter systems, so students can attain their degree a lot faster than traditional universities. Students can normally complete a program and obtain a degree within 21 to 36 months, depending on the specific field.

Additionally, the staff and industry professionals constantly review and revise the school’s curriculum, guaranteeing that what is taught to students is applicable to the modern, changing work field. Because of this, graduates are always prepared for soliciting entry-level positions within their fields.

Also, the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges of Technology has accredited the Art Institute of California – San Diego.

Most Popular Fields of Study


Generally, the admission for the Art Institute of California – San Diego requires students to be high school graduates and have a minimum 2.0 GPA. For all applicants below a 2.0 GPA, an application requires two letters of recommendation.

Additionally, all applicants need to submit a 150-word essay describing how their goals will be attained with an education from the Art Institute. An in-person or phone interview is also required.

Since the school runs on a quarter system throughout the year, applications are thus accepted all year long.

Financial Aid

The school requires the completion of the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in order to determine the need for financial aid. Anyone can apply for financial aid, but the school will analyze overall costs and available resources in order to calculate the amount of student financial aid needed.

The enrollment packet received after institute acceptance includes many of the applications and directions needed for requesting financial aid. Additionally, financial aid officers are available to help with getting everything in order.

From there, federal grants and loans can become available to students as well as alternative loan programs through the student financial services department of the Art Institute.

With regards to actual scholarships, the Art Institute offers a variety of scholarships to high school seniors, such as the Best Teen Chef Competition, which awards tuition scholarships to the local and national winners of the three-part contest.

Student Financial Aid Details

Ranks 1582nd for the average student loan amount.
Secrets to getting the best scholarships and financial aid in California.


Since the student population hovers around 2100 and the faculty at around 300, small classrooms can be expected at the Art Institute of California – San Diego. Smaller classrooms equals more one-on-one time with an instructor and thus can allow creativity to flourish.

Although many live in private residences, school sponsored housing is available for students. Fully furnished apartments with all the necessary amenities are available, and all utilities are provided except for telephone service.

With regards to student life, San Diego provides a number of activities for everyone to enjoy. A few hours north or south of the school brings students to the Mexican border, Los Angeles, deserts and mountains. Additionally, San Diego itself has a number of outdoor activities available including mountain biking, golfing and jogging. Not to mention the famous beaches that liter the coastline of the city.

For more of the wildlife cravings, the area offers the San Diego Zoo, one of the best zoos in the United States, as well as Sea World and the Wild Animal Park. For a cultural twist, the San Diego Art Institute Museum showcases many of the areas up and coming visual artists, and the opera and theater district can provide some additional creativity when not in classes.

Student Enrollment Demographics

Student Graduation Demographics


With over 150,000 alumni and graduates from the entire network of schools, the Art Institute of California – San Diego participates in the tightly connected alumni network. In fact, a quarterly newsletter is released to keep everyone up to date on all alumni related news.

Additionally, the career services at the Art Institute of California – San Diego aids in the assistance of finding and providing entry-level jobs to all current students, graduates and alumni of the school. So, no matter how many years after graduating, the school will still help an alumni find a job within their chosen study field.

Information Summary

Ranks 329th in California and 3604th overall
See the entire top 2,000 colleges and universities list

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 College Building :: The Art Institute of California-Argosy University San Diego Computer lab :: The Art Institute of California-Argosy University San Diego

Campus Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 Students
Aggravated assault N/A N/A
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter N/A N/A
Rape N/A N/A
Robbery N/A N/A
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary N/A N/A
Larceny N/A N/A
Vehicle theft 2 0.10
Arrest N/A N/A

Local Crime Statistics

  Incidents per 100 People
Aggravated assault 3,317 0.25
Murder & Non-Negligent Manslaughter 38 0.00
Forcible Rape 293 0.02
Robbery 1,456 0.11
Arson N/A N/A
Burglary 5,840 0.44
Larceny 17,610 1.34
Vehicle theft 6,259 0.48

Demographics – Main Campus and Surrounding Areas

Reported area around or near San Diego, CA 92108-4423
Surrounding communityLarge city (inside urban area, pop. over 250,000)
Total Population11,640 (11,640 urban / N/A rural)
Households6,695 (1.72 people per house)
Median Household Income$42,626
Families2,026 (2.43 people per family)

Carnegie Foundation Classification

Special Focus Institutions — Schools of art, music, and design
Undergraduate PopulationN/A
EnrollmentExclusively undergraduate four-year
Size & SettingN/A

General Characteristics

Title IV EligibilityParticipates in Title IV federal financial aid programs
Highest offeringBachelor's degree
Calendar SystemQuarter
Years of college work requiredN/A
Variable Tuition
Religious AffiliationN/A
Congressional District653

Special Learning Opportunities

Distance LearningN/A
ROTC — Army / Navy / Air Force  —   /   / 
Study Abroad
Weekend College
Teacher Certification

Student Tuition Costs and Fees

Ranks 856th for total cost of attendance
  In District In State Out of State
Effective as of 2014-09-19
FT Undergraduate Tuition $18,648 $18,648 $18,648
FT Undergraduate Required Fees $100 $100 $100
PT Undergraduate per Credit Hour $518 $518 $518
FT Graduate Tuition N/A N/A N/A
FT Graduate Required Fees N/A N/A N/A
PT Graduate per Credit Hour N/A N/A N/A
Total Cost of Attendance — On-Campus $36,211 $36,211 $36,211
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus w/out Family $35,893 $35,893 $35,893
Total Cost of Attendance — Off-Campus with Family $29,251 $29,251 $29,251

Student Tuition Cost History and Trends

Prior year cost comparison
  In District In State Out of State
Published Tuition & Fees $18,748(N/C) $18,748(N/C) $18,748(N/C)
  Cost (regardless of residency)
Effective as of 2014-09-19
Books & Supplies $1,656 $1,800
On-Campus – Room & Board $11,652(N/C)
On-Campus – Other Expenses $3,096 $3,168
Off-Campus w/out Family – Room & Board $10,863 $10,962
Off-Campus w/out Family – Other Expenses $4,059 $4,158
Off-Campus with Family – Room & Board $4,080 $4,275

Admission Criteria

 = Required,   = Recommended,   = Neither required nor recommended
Open Admissions
Secondary School GPA / Rank / Record N/A /  N/A /  N/A
College Prep. CompletionN/A
Formal competency demoN/A
Admission test scoresN/A
Other testsN/A

Admission Credits Accepted

Dual Credit
Life Experience
Advanced Placement (AP)

Student Services

Remedial Services
Academic / Career Counseling
PT Cost-defraying Employment
Career Placement
On-Campus Day Care
Library Facility

Student Living

First-time Room / Board Required
Dorm Capacity117
Meals per WeekN/A
Room Fee$9,876
Board FeeN/A

Student Completion / Graduation Demographics

Total 21 174 29 4 93 203 524
Advertising 6 2 8 4 20
Apparel and Accessories Marketing Operations 1 9 1 1 3 6 21
Baking and Pastry Arts/Baker/Pastry Chef 38 1 4 45 88
Computer Graphics 3 11 7 1 7 12 41
Culinary Arts/Chef Training 2 41 2 5 75 125
Fashion/Apparel Design 3 5 1 2 4 15
Game and Interactive Media Design 7 2 17 8 34
Graphic Design 1 27 7 1 19 14 69
Interior Design 1 4 1 8 11 25
Recording Arts Technology/Technician 7 13 2 7 7 36
Restaurant, Culinary, and Catering Management/Manager 2 9 2 1 6 8 28
Web Page, Digital/Multimedia and Information Resources Design 1 4 1 7 9 22

Faculty Compensation / Salaries

Ranks 1530th for the average full-time faculty salary.
Effective as of 2014-09-20
Tenure system N/A
Average FT Salary $67,654 ($67,814 male / $52,894 female)
Number of FT Faculty 33 (21 male / 12 female)
Number of PT Faculty 138
FT Faculty Ratio 0.2 : 1
Total Benefits N/A

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