Continuing Education


Academy of Art University’s Upskill program offers flexible courses that let you explore your interests and design a unique, personalized experience. Take courses for personal enrichment, professional development, or pure fun. You can also transfer Upskill credits into a degree program when you’re ready.

ANM 101
ANM 101 Introduction to Computer Graphics Animation & Visual Effects

This course is designed to introduce students to the basic concepts and terminology of computer graphics as it is used in film, visual effects, games, and animation. Students will have a better understanding of the different disciplines that collectively make up computer graphics production.

ANM 202
ANM 202 Introduction to 3D Production Animation & Visual Effects

This course covers the basic concepts of 3D modeling and animation. The fundamentals of computer geometry are taught by looking at the basic elements that make computer models. Modeling, animation, lighting, texture mapping and rendering are introduced in a production setting. Students will work on several hands-on animation projects.

ARH 110
ARH 110 Studio 1: Conceptual Design Studio Architecture

Learn design principles for creating spaces for people. You will utilize design, methodology, and space-making principles to gain fundamental knowledge in environmental design. This will prepare students for the future architecture and landscape architecture studios.

Prerequisite: ARH 170 and on campus English as a second language students must pass EAP level 4 (ARH 170 may be concurrent).

FSH 100
FSH 100 Drawing for Fashion Fashion

Drawing is visual communication. Students will learn this oft-forgotten yet essential language by through practical experience by drawing objects, interiors, exteriors, and the nude figure. Gain skills in shape and silhouette, proportional accuracy, negative and positive space, and perspective. Onsite homework includes a mandatory three-hour drawing workshop.

FSH 120
FSH 120 Color Science & Fabric Technology Fashion

Color is a powerful tool. You’ll use color schemes, proportion, and the physical and psychological effects of color to your advantage by observing collections, fabrics, and our everyday world.

FSH 140
FSH 140 Introduction to Costume Design Fashion

Put fashion marketing theory to practice. You’ll develop marketing research techniques to determine consumer wants and to create fashion marketing strategies. You’ll learn to conceive, produce, promote, and move new fashion goods and services to consumers.

FSH 164
FSH 164 Fashion Sewing Techniques Fashion

Gain cutting and sewing skills for work in the apparel industry. You’ll learn both hand finishing and machine sewing techniques in wovens, and create a notebook documenting your new skills.

FSH 184
FSH 184 Styling Fashion

You will be provided the foundation of a styling portfolio as you gain hands-on experience developing concepts and assembling compelling outfits for photo shoots. Fashion culture, working with a model, photographer, and a make-up artist will be covered.

FA 220
FA 220 Watercolor Fine Art

This course is a technical, historical, and practical survey of watercolor and provids students with the background necessary to make informed painting choices based on techniques and materials introduced. The emphasis is on transparent application, valued underpainting techniques, flat wash, dry brush, and wet-on-wet technique.

FND 110 Analysis of Form Foundation

Study classic drawing principles to achieve heightened realism. You’ll use the 5-value system to analyze light and shadow and apply edge distinctions using charcoal. Gain skills in perspective, composition, and value pattern concepts.

FND 112 Figure Drawing Foundation

Draw the human figure with accuracy. You’ll work with the nude model to develop an understanding of gesture, proportion, rhythm, balance, structure, and musculature.

FND 113
FND 113 Sketching for Communication Foundation

Communicate your ideas through drawing. You’ll draw objects, figures, and environments to scale and in perspective, and create drawings using compositional strategies and camera angles that can be used in sequential imagery.

FND 116
FND 116 Perspective Foundation

Use your perspective skills to your advantage. You’ll gain the quick sketch and storyboard skills to accurately integrate figures into scenes using plot light, shadows, and reflections.

FND 125 Color and Design Foundation

Use your perspective skills to your advantage. You’ll gain the quick sketch and storyboard skills to accurately integrate figures into scenes using plot light, shadows, and reflections.

GAM 105
GAM 105 Introduction to Maya Game Development

This course introduces students to the fundamentals of creating 3D assets for games. Students will manage asset files, create textures in Photoshop, UV unwrap map, rig, animate, and render a model. The pipeline of concept and design process will discussed.

GR 102
GR 102 Design Technology: Digital Publishing Tools Graphic Design

Get to know Photoshop and InDesign – the technical tools of the trade. You’ll learn to work with these and similar tools that the pros use to produce visual communications.

GR 122
GR 122 Typography 1: Hierarchy & Form Graphic Design

This introductory studio course covers the fundamentals of typography: its theory, practice, technology and history. Topics will include letterforms, proportion, hierarchy, legibility, structure, composition, aesthetics, and the syntactical, semantic and pragmatic aspects of typography. Students will utilize basic typographic principles to solve typographic design problems, employing appropriate production methods.

GR 150
GR 150 Introduction to Visual Communication Graphic Design

This course introduces students to the visual communication design process and culture common in Advertising, Graphic Design, and Interaction and UI/UX Design firms and agencies. Students will gain hands-on interdisciplinary practice with creative projects that emphasize ideation and creative problem solving. The role of collaboration and creating solutions that engage the audience will be emphasized.

ILL 133
ILL 133 Digital Media: Digital Manipulation Illustration

The successful use of a camera to record reference and inspiration is an essential tool for artists, as in an understanding of Photoshop for manipulation of images. This course merges these two essential skills in a fun yet challenging environment, allowing artists to gain skills and creative narrative content to further skills in respective majors. A digital camera and access to a computer are required for this class.

IXD 105
IXD 105 Design Technology: Visual Design Tools Interaction & UI/UX Design

You will cover a wide range of fundamental technologies involved in professional digital design and production. Topics include: preparing graphics and emphasis on the use of vector graphics, font technologies and typography, color manipulation, the MacOS, production efficiencies, presentation and output methods.

IXD 205 Motion Graphics 1 Interaction & UI/UX Design

Whether it’s movie titles, commercials, teaser videos, or sports scores, you’re constantly experiencing motion graphics. You’ll learn basic 2D animation – of type, symbols, shapes and color – that opens the door to mastery of industry-leading motion software.

JEM 110
JEM 110 Jewelry & Metal Arts 1 Jewelry & Metal Arts

You will create fine metal arts objects and learn basic fabrication, stone setting, metal forging, chasing, simple sinking, and die forming      

LA 219 History of the Built Environment 1: Ancient to Gothic Liberal Arts

This course provides a critical investigation into major developments in architecture from approximately 3000 B.C. through the start of the 15th century. Students will study Egyptian, Mesopotamian, Greek, Roman, Pre-Columbian, Indian, East-Asian, Islamic, South American, African, Byzantine, and Gothic architecture.

MUS 120
MUS 120 Music Production 1 Music Production

You will learn traditional music composition principles and apply them to 21st century production tools to create original musical sketches. You will also use digital audio workstations (DAW), virtual instruments and loops to sync music to video with SMPTE time code.
Onsite Only

PH 108
PH 108 Photography Principles & Techniques Photography

Professional photography requires technical skill and creativity. You will get caught up on recent digital technologies, study the operations of digital SLR, and get an introduction to professional lighting, exposure, and composition.

Prerequisite: On campus English as a second language students must pass EAP level 3.

PRO 314 Social Media Content Development Social Media

You will focus on producing content for cross-platform social media channels utilizing text, video, audio and visula iamges. Emphasis will be on developing a unique social media voice and footprint for established, such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram, and emerging social media channels.

PRO 315 Social Media Strategies Social Media

This course focuses on developing social media strategies to meet client expectations. Emphasis will be on clarifying business social media goals, ROI (Return on Investment) benchmarks, auditing current social media footprint, and developing key content strategies. Topics will include target audience, frequency, production teams and effective promotion tactics.

PRO 316 Social Media Data Analytics Social Media

This course provides a deeper understanding of social media data insights including tracking online performance, A/B testing, segmentation, context and conversion attribution, defining KPI (Key Performance Indicators) and other metrics. Emphsis will be placed on interpreting data to evaluate social media performance.


If you’d like to take a class that has a prerequisit, please contact an admissions representative by calling 1-800-544-2787 or 1-415-274-2222. Your rep will work with you to demonstrate equivalent knowledge or completion of a similar course so you can register. Undergraduate and graduate tuition rates apply. Please visit our Finances page for more information on cost. Current Continuing Education students should visit the Course Catalog to register for class.

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