About

Private

University Type

$84,310

Average Living Expenses

The Southern California Institute of Architecture (SCI-Arc) is a private, non-profit school of architecture located in the Arts District of Los Angeles, California. It was founded in 1972 by a group of faculty and students from the Department of Architecture at Cal Poly Pomona, who wanted to approach the subject from a more experimental perspective than traditional schools offered. Southern California Institute of Architecture has an enrollment of 500+ students, a student-to-faculty ratio of nearly 15:1, and an acceptance rate of 65%.

SCI-Arc offers undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate programs in architecture. The undergraduate program is a five-year Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) degree, while the graduate program offers Master of Architecture (M.Arch.) degrees in varied specializations. The average annual tuition fee at the Southern California Institute of Architecture for international students is nearly $48,416 per year.

SCI-Arc is known for its rigorous studio-based curriculum, which emphasizes experimentation and innovation. The school has a strong reputation for producing graduates who are creative, resourceful, and technologically savvy.

Top Reasons to Study in the Southern California Institute Of Architecture

  • Students at the Southern California Institute of Architecture are encouraged to collaborate on projects, helping them to develop their teamwork skills and learn from each other's strengths.
  • The curriculum at SCI-Arc is challenging, but it is also incredibly rewarding. Students are exposed to ranging ideas and perspectives, helping them develop their critical thinking skills.
  • Southern California Institute of Architecture students come from all over the world, bringing with them a wide range of cultural backgrounds. This diversity creates a vibrant and stimulating learning environment.
  • SCI-Arc has a strong alumni network that provides students with support and guidance throughout their academic careers. Alumni are also often willing to hire SCI-Arc students after graduation. 
  • Southern California Institute of Architecture has been ranked as one of the top architecture schools in the world by publications such as The Architectural Review, The New York Times, and The Guardian.

Courses

Cost of Studying at Southern California Institute Of Architecture

Average tuition fee

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Living expenses

Average living expenses (Bachelors)

$84,310

Average living expenses (Masters)

$84,310

Average on-campus living expenses

$33,420

Admissions at The Southern California Institute Of Architecture

Avg acceptance rate (Bachelors)

64%

Application Fee

$85


How to Apply at Southern California Institute Of Architecture

UNDERGRADUATE

Here are the steps on how to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture for undergraduate studies as an international applicant:

  • Complete the online application form: Be sure to provide accurate and complete information, as any omissions or inaccuracies may result in your application being rejected.
  • Submit English proficiency test scores.
  • Submit your portfolio: Your portfolio should include varied works, such as drawings, models, renderings, and photographs.
  • Write your statement: Be sure to be honest and genuine, and to highlight your strengths and accomplishments.
  • Request letters of recommendation: Ask two or three professors, employers, or mentors to write letters of recommendation for you.
  • Pay the application fee of 80-85 USD.

POSTGRADUATE

Here are the steps on how to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture for postgraduate studies as an international applicant:

  • Check the application requirements: The SCI-Arc website has a comprehensive list of the application requirements for international applicants. These requirements may change from year to year, so it is important to check the website for the most up-to-date information.

Submit your application materials: The application materials for international applicants include:

  • A completed online application form.
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • A portfolio of architectural work.
  • A personal statement.
  • A TOEFL or IELTS score report.
  • Pay the application fee of $85.
  • Schedule an interview.
  • Wait for the decision.

MASTER'S AND PhD

Here are the steps on how to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture for a master's or PhD as an international applicant:

  • Check the application requirements: The SCI-Arc website has a comprehensive list of the application requirements for international applicants. These requirements may change from year to year, so it is important to check the website for the most up-to-date information.

Submit your application materials: The application materials for international applicants include:

  • A completed online application form.
  • Official transcripts from all institutions attended.
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • A portfolio of architectural work.
  • A personal statement.
  • A TOEFL or IELTS score report.
  • Pay the application fee of $85.
  • Schedule an interview.
  • Wait for the decision.

Documents Required to Apply to Southern California Institute Of Architecture

UNDERGRADUATE

Documents needed to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture as an international undergraduate applicant are:

  • Common Application and Application Fee.
  • Official High School Transcript(s).
  • SCI-Arc Supplement Question.
  • Letter(s) of Recommendation.
  • English Proficiency Test Scores.
  • Personal Statement.
  • Portfolio (optional).
  • Official SAT I or ACT Test Scores (optional).

POSTGRADUATE

Documents needed to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture as an international graduate applicant are:

  • Online Application Form and Application Fee.
  • TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo.
  • College Transcript(s).
  • Personal Statement.
  • Letters of Recommendation.
  • Résumé/Curriculum Vitae.
  • Portfolio.
  • Official GRE Test Scores (optional).

MASTER'S AND PhD

Documents needed to apply to the Southern California Institute of Architecture as an international master's or PhD applicant are:

  • Online Application Form and Application Fee.
  • TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo.
  • College Transcript(s).
  • Personal Statement.
  • Letters of Recommendation.
  • Résumé/Curriculum Vitae.
  • Portfolio.
  • Official GRE Test Scores (optional).

Exams Accepted By Southern California Institute Of Architecture

The Southern California Institute of Architecture accepts the following English language proficiency tests and scores from international students:

  • TOEFL iBT: 92
  • IELTS: 7.0
  • DET: 115

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Rankings for The Southern California Institute Of Architecture

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Alumni at Southern California Institute Of Architecture

Some notable alumni of the Southern California Institute of Architecture are:

  • Frank Gehry, architect of the Walt Disney Concert Hall and the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao.
  • Claire Forrest has been instrumental in promoting diversity and inclusion in the architecture profession.
  • Daniel Libeskind, architect of the Jewish Museum Berlin and the World Trade Center Memorial.
  • Jenna Knudsen, co-founder of Design Earth, which focuses on creating buildings sensitive to the environment.
  • Renzo Piano, architect of the Shard London Bridge and the Whitney Museum of American Art.

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Campus life

Number of campuses the university has
1

Campus locations
California

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Transportation in the city

Los Angeles is a sprawling city, so there are many ways to get around. Here are some of the most popular options:

  • Public Transportation: The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) operates a bus, light rail, and subway system that can take you to most major destinations in the city. You can purchase a TAP card to pay for fares, which can be reloaded online or at any Metro station.
  • Taxis and Ride-Hailing Services: Uber and Lyft can be expensive, but more convenient, especially if you are travelling with a group or have a lot of luggage.
  • Biking: Biking is a great way to get around Los Angeles, especially if you are visiting some of the city's many parks and beaches. There are many bike-share programs available, such as Metro Bike Share and Lyft Bike.
  • Walking: Walking is a great way to explore some of Los Angeles's most popular neighbourhoods, such as Hollywood, Downtown, and Venice Beach, and see the city at a slower pace.

Services offered by the university

  • Public Programs: SCI-Arc offers varied public programs, including lectures, workshops, and exhibitions. They are designed to engage the community in discussions about architecture and design.
  • Library and Archives: Southern California Institute of Architecture has a large library and archives which are open to the public. The library collection includes books, journals, magazines, and other materials on architecture, design, and related topics. The archives collection includes architectural drawings, photographs, and other materials that document the history of SCI-Arc and the field of architecture.
  • Facilities: SCI-Arc has a state-of-the-art campus including classrooms, studios, workshops, and a library. The campus also includes several experimental facilities, such as the Magic Box and the Robot House.
  • Financial Aid: Southern California Institute of Architecture offers varied scholarships, grants, and loans to help students afford their education.

Student life at Southern California Institute Of Architecture

  • Extracurricular Activities: Southern California Institute of Architecture offers 30+ student clubs, so there is something for everyone. Some of the most popular organizations include the Architecture Club, the SCI-Arc Film Society, and the SCI-Arc Student Government. Students can also participate in research projects, internships, and community outreach projects.
  • Food: There are a few restaurants and cafes within walking distance of SCI-Arc, but students often cook for themselves in their apartments. There is also a student-run food co-op that sells groceries and prepared meals.
  • Transportation: SCI-Arc is located in the Arts District, which is easily accessible by public transportation. There is also a bike-share program that students can use to get around.
  • Social Life: Southern California Institute of Architecture students are known for being friendly and welcoming. There are always social events happening on campus, such as movie nights, game nights, and parties. Students also enjoy going to bars and restaurants in the Arts District and other parts of Los Angeles.

On campus accomodation at Southern California Institute Of Architecture

Southern California Institute of Architecture does not provide on-campus accommodation for students.

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Faculty Information

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FAQ

1.  What is the acceptance rate at the Southern California Institute of Architecture?
The acceptance rate at the Southern California Institute of Architecture is 67.3%.

2. What are the application fees at the Southern California Institute of Architecture?
The Southern California Institute of Architecture application fee is 85 USD (6,583 INR)

3. What GPA is required to be admitted to the Southern California Institute of Architecture?
Southern California Institute of Architecture requires a 3.5 GPA for admission. 

4. Is it possible for me to double major or declare a minor in the Southern California Institute of Architecture?
Yes, students can double major or minor in any degree provided by the Southern California Institute of Architecture.

5. Is the Southern California Institute of Architecture certified?
The Southern California Institute of Architecture has been accredited by the National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) and the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC).