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Blur Lines. Break Conventions. Reinvent.

At the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), our interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to prepare you for life as a 21st-century artist and designer. Through our nearly 150-year history, we have recognized that you need the freedom to explore without boundaries in order to realize your creative vision. You will be encouraged to experiment whether you remain in a single discipline or move across departments to achieve your goals.

Your Vision, Our Assistance

At the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC), we understand choosing a college that is the right place for you is a significant endeavor. We also understand that as a visual scholar you have questions about how to discuss your work and organize your portfolio.

Applying to SAIC

So how do you apply to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC)? Even though our curriculum is unlike any other school, our application process is similar to other art and design schools. You will need to fill out an application and submit your standardized test scores, transcripts, and letters of recommendation. And most importantly, we require a portfolio of your best and most recent work—work that will give us a sense of you, your interests, and your willingness to explore, experiment, and think beyond technical art and design skills.

Meet with Us

We want to meet with you and assist you through this process. We invite you to attend our SAIC Days and National Portfolio Days and visit us on campus to have the opportunity to engage with our representatives about SAIC, your work, and our curriculum and get a better sense of what it is like to be a SAIC student.

We Are Here to Help

Our Office of Admissions understands that as a visual scholar you have questions about how to discuss your work and organize your portfolio. Admissions advisors are available to:

  • Help you understand SAIC's distinctive approach to educating emerging artists
  • Engage in thoughtful dialogue about your work
  • Provide feedback to help you develop new ideas and strengthen your portfolio
  • Assist you with details regarding deadlines, applications, and admission requirements

Our Admissions and Student Financial Services departments work closely together to provide you with the support you need to make your college ambitions a reality. They are here to have one-on-one conversations with you about your individual circumstances and concerns.

Every year, we have the pleasure of really getting to know our new students—individuals who come to us with diverse experiences and aspirations. We look forward to getting to know you.