SAIC BFA Admission Requirements

Screen Shot 2013-10-09 at 12.21.06 PMChecklist:

  • Application Form
  • Application fee
  • SAT or ACT test scores
  • TOEFL / IELTS
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Transcripts
  • Letter of Recommendation
  • Portfolio

Deadline: February 1

School of the Art Institute of Chicago

36 South Wabash, Suite 1201
Chicago, IL 60603

Phone: 800.232.7242; Toll free 312.629.6100
Fax: 312.629.6101
Email: admiss@saic.edu

First-time Freshmen Application Deadlines*:

You can apply for either the fall or spring semesters.

Deadline Fall Spring
Early Action and Priority Merit Scholarship December 1  NA
Final Merit Deadline February 1 November 1
Final Application Deadline May 1 January 15

Transfer Application Deadlines

You can apply for either the fall or spring semesters.

Deadline Fall Spring
Early Action and Priority Merit Scholarship December 1 NA
Final Merit Deadline March 1 November 1
Final Application Deadline June 1 January 15

2ASHCAN STUDIO STUDENT WORK for SAIC Admissions by Hira

Common Application

You may submit your application via the Undergraduate Common Application. The Common Application allows you to apply to any of its 456 member schools by inputting your general information only once so you can focus your time on the individual requirements for each school application.

In addition to the Common Application’s general questions, you MUST submit SAIC’s supplement to be considered for admission to SAIC.

Submitting the Common Application provides you access to an ePortfolio link within 48 hours of completing the entire application (including supplement and fee).

Fee Payment

When submitting an application, you must pay the nonrefundable application fee as a credit card payment. If you do not submit the fee, your application cannot be processed.

International applicants: $85
U.S. applicants: $65

TEST SCORES 

If you will graduate from high school in the year in which you are applying for admission, you must submit standardized test scores to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC).

If you are a U.S. resident or English is your first language, you are required to submit scores from either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or the American College Test (ACT). You may select to have your scores sent to SAIC when you are taking either test or send us scores via an official transcript.

Minimum scores required by SAIC:

SAT Verbal or Critical Reading: 500
ACT Reading: 21

Applicants who score below the minimum SAT or ACT requirements may not be offered admission to SAIC.

As a transfer or prior degree student, you may be exempt from the standardized test requirements if you have successfully completed English requirements and/or a significant amount of liberal arts coursework at an accredited college. Contact the Admissions office atugadmiss@saic.edu or 800.232.7242 for more information.

4ASHCAN STUDIO STUDENT WORK for SAIC Admissions by Hira 

For transfer students needing to submit test scores:

If you are a U.S. resident or English is your first language, submit scores from either the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) or the American College Test (ACT). You may select to have your scores sent to SAIC when you are taking either test or send us scores via an official transcript.

Minimum scores required by SAIC:

SAT Verbal or Critical Reading 500
ACT Reading 21

Test scores may be sent to:
School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Undergraduate Admissions
36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1201
Chicago, IL 60603

SAIC’s ACT Code: 1136
SAIC’s SAT Code: 1713
SAIC’s TOEFL Code: 1713

International Students

If you are not a native English-speaking applicant, please visit the International Admissions: International Applicant Test Scores section for information about test score requirements.

Summer English for International Students (EIS) program:

It is STRONGLY recommended that international students admitted to SAIC with an Internet-based TOEFL score below 96 or an IELTS score of 7.0 enroll in an intensive summer English for International Students program. Each July, SAIC provides an opportunity for students to get an early start on their EIS requirements, as well as to gain the knowledge and confidence needed to fully take advantage of SAIC’s challenging academic environment.

Through the Summer EIS Program, students register for two EIS classes, begin living in the residence halls several weeks before other students arrive, and become familiar with SAIC and Chicago through a set of planned activities.

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE 

Writing is an important component of being an artist. As part of your application, you will be required to upload a statement of purpose, which we will use to assess your ability to compose an essay, as well as the manner in which you use text as a tool.

Use your statement as your way to represent yourself and your work. We are interested in finding out more about you, your art-making practices, and why you are a strong candidate for the School of the Art Institute of Chicago’s (SAIC) undergraduate program. Please also include information about community service projects, exhibitions you have participated in, or any other activities that contribute to the making of your work.

If you are applying to the Bachelor of Fine Arts with an Emphasis in Writing, your statement needs to also address how you imagine a studio arts environment will impact your writing practice.

If you are applying through SAIC’s application, you will upload your statement of purpose with your ePortfolio. If you are applying through the Common Application, you will upload your statement of purpose in the Common Application.

Transcripts

You will need to submit one official, sealed high school transcript from each high school you attended or your General Educational Development (GED) transcript.

Transcripts should be mailed to:

School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Undergraduate Admissions
36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1201
Chicago, IL 60603

If your high school diploma(s), certificate(s), or transcript(s) are in a language other than English, please include officially translated transcripts.

If you are transferring to SAIC without a bachelor’s degree, you must submit a high school transcript. Students with a prior degree are exempt from submitting high school transcripts.

To request that transfer credit from previous study be applied toward a SAIC undergraduate degree, you must submit an official transcript from each college attended.

Only those courses in which you have earned a grade of “C,” or better are eligible for transfer. If your diplomas, certificates, or transcripts are in a language other than English, please include official translations. Please note that Physical Education and Nutrition courses will not transfer.

Letter of Recommendation 

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) requires one letter of recommendation written by an instructor or other professional that can evaluate your motivation, commitment, maturity, and potential to succeed at SAIC.

An official letter of recommendation must include:

  • Your full name
  • Date of birth

Select a professional reference, preferably a studio art or academic instructor who is qualified to write a letter of support on your behalf. If you are currently not in school and cannot locate an instructor or guidance counselor, you can ask an employer or an individual capable of assessing you from a critical perspective.

Your recommender may submit in the following ways:

  • If you are applying through SAIC’s application, you will provide your recommender name through the ePortfolio
  • If you are applying through the Common Application, you will provide your recommender information through the Common Application

Fax to: 312.629.6101

Mail to:

School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Undergraduate Admissions
36 S. Wabash Ave., suite 1201
Chicago, IL  60603

References may contact the Admissions office at ugadmiss@saic.edu, 800.232.7242, or 312.629.6100 with any questions.

15ASHCAN STUDIO STUDENT WORK for SAIC Admissions by Hira

Portfolio

Your portfolio should be a collection of 10-15 pieces of your best and most recent work and should reflect your interests, skills, and willingness to explore, experiment, and express yourself. We are most interested in how you communicate ideas and demonstrate your use of processes and materials. We encourage you to take risks and be inventive.

ePortfolio:

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) requires all applicants to upload their work electronically. You will receive a secure link to SlideRoom, our ePortfolio provider, once you complete and save the first page of your SAIC application OR have submitted the Common Application in its entirety (including the supplement and application fee). Please make sure your web browser has been updated to its latest version.

Guidelines for submitting work:

  • Each digital image file must be saved as a JPEG and must be smaller than 5MB each.
  • Film, video, and animation and/or sound portfolios may not exceed five minutes. You can include multiple clips of different projects within this five-minute limit.
  • Original work portfolio—Actual work should be brought with you only when you are interviewing in person at the SAIC Admissions office, Immediate Decision Option (IDO) Days, SAIC Days, or National Portfolio Days. Do not mail portfolios of original work to the Admissions office.
  • Do NOT upload PowerPoint presentations of your work.

We strongly encourage you to meet with us at one of our events or on campus for individualized feedback about your portfolio.  

Visit Portfolio Requirements by Degree Program for more detailed information regarding portfolios.

Interviews are required for Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Critical Studies applicants only and can be scheduled by contacting Admissions at 800.232.7242 or 312.629.6100

Interviews are strongly recommended for all other undergraduate applicants, and admissions counselors are available throughout the year to conduct interviews and portfolio reviews and to assist with the application process. Portfolio reviews held at any of our events are also considered interviews.

Undergraduate Merit Scholarships

The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) awards merit scholarships to students who demonstrate exceptional levels of thoughtfulness, skill, conceptual capabilities, and academic groundedness. Scholarships are financial awards that do not need to be repaid.

SAIC annually awards a substantial number of undergraduate, merit-based scholarships to new students. Students are considered for these scholarships when they first apply to the school, and there is no separate application. Recipients are selected through a holistic review of each student’s academic history, portfolio, and statement of intent.

Students considered for a merit scholarship may receive one of the scholarships listed below.

  • Presidential
  • Distinguished
  • Honors
  • Recognition
  • Incentive
  • Enrichment

If you are awarded a scholarship, and you defer admission to a later term, you forfeit the scholarship and will need to resubmit an updated portfolio, statement of intent, and recent transcripts to be considered for future merit-based scholarships.

Please contact the Office of Admissions at 800.232.7242 or by email at admiss@saic.edu for more information about merit-based scholarships and the scholarship review process for new students.

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ASHCAN STUDIO STUDENT WORK for SAIC Admissions by Hira

 

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