The John C. Hench Animation & Digital Arts Admission Committee reviews applications for originality, clarity, personal insight and artistic excellence. Considerable importance is placed on the Cinematic Arts personal statement, portfolio and letters of recommendation. There are no admission interviews. By limiting the evaluation to the items listed, the committee ensures that all applicants are judged by the same criteria.
The following items must be submitted to be considered for admission to the Animation & Digital Arts BA program.
- The Common Application
- SlideRoom Application
- Cinematic Arts Supplemental Materials
- Cinematic Arts Personal Statement
- Letters of Recommendation (3)
- Official High School Transcripts
- Official SAT or ACT Test Scores
- Official TOEFL Test Scores (International Students Only)
All matters relating to admission are the applicant's responsibility. When submitting an application, make sure you have completed all screens of the online process. The application system allows you to check your application to verify your application materials have been uploaded and submitted. Incomplete applications, or applications not submitted, will not be considered.
- Fall Admission: December 1
View all Application Deadlines.
USC Application Process
In an effort to streamline the application process, USC now uses the Common Application exclusively. Students wishing to apply for admission to the 2014-2015 academic year should submit the Common Application and the SlideRoom Application, both of which can be accessed at The Common Application website.
Under the "Questions" section in the USC Supplemental Application, please be sure to indicate that you will be submitting an art supplement. Once you indicate that you will be submitting an art supplement, a link to SlideRoom will appear on the left menu bar.
For additional information please visit USC's Undergraduate Admission website.
Cinematic Arts Supplemental Materials (Clearly title all documents)
As part of the application process, all students looking to be considered for admission to the Animation & Digital Arts program are required to submit supplemental materials to support their application. These supplemental materials must be submitted via the SlideRoom Application.
The following supplemental materials are required for admission consideration to the Animation & Digital Arts program:
- Cinematic Arts Personal Statement - please upload under the "Forms" section in PDF format
- Portfolio - please upload under the "Media" section
- Letters of Recommendation (One letter must be an academic reference)
The Cinematic Arts personal statement should reflect the applicant's individuality and explain why he or she would like to study Animation and Digital Arts at USC. The Animation Admission Committee will review this statement as a measure of the applicant's creativity, intelligence, self-awareness, determination and vision. The statement should be a page and a half, and it should give the committee a sense of the applicant's long-term goals and artistic ambitions.
All portfolio materials must be placed in the "Media" tab of the SlideRoom application. The portfolio may consist of life drawing or painting examples, 2D organic and digital art work as well as traditional and/or 2D/3D digital animation, integrated live action or motion graphics work or any other samples that represent the applicant's aesthetic sense and capabilities. Please ensure that the portfolio is no longer than 15 minutes in length (12-15 still pieces). If submitting a joint project, please clarify your role in the production. It is required that an applicant submit his/her portfolio online via SlideRoom. Any materials that are sent by mail will not be considered.
Three letters of recommendation (no particular format) are required. Any letters submitted as part of your University application can be used towards the three letters of recommendation required for the Cinematic Arts application. Please submit any letters of recommendation online via the Common Application. If your recommender is unwilling to submit their letters online, please have them mail your letters to USC's Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Applicants are responsible for verifying that letters of recommendation have been received by USC.
High School Transcripts
Official transcripts from all High Schools attended must be submitted to USC. Request official transcripts to be sent directly from your High School to USC's Office of Undergraduate Admissions at:University of Southern California
Office of Undergraduate Admissions
University Park Campus
Los Angeles, CA 90089-0911
English Proficiency Criteria (International Students Only)
International students are required to take the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) unless you fulfill the one of these two conditions:
- Your native language is English. This applies to native English speakers from countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Canada (except Quebec) where English is both the only official language of the country and the language of instruction.
- You receive a 600 on SAT Critical Reading, or 27 on ACT English. Applicants that meet either of these scores are presumed to be proficient in English and are exempt from completing the TOEFL exam.
If you are unsure if you need to take the TOEFL, please check with the USC Office of Undergraduate Admissions.
The minimum required TOEFL score is: 250 on the CBT (Computer Based Test), 100 on the IBT (Internet Based Test). Official scores must be received directly from the testing service and date no earlier than 2 years (24 months) prior to the start of your intended first term at USC.
When sending the TOEFL scores, please indicate the institution code for USC, which is 4852 (no department code is required).
SAT or ACT Test Scores (Required of all Freshmen Applicants)
USC requires scores from the SAT or the ACT (with the optional writing component) from all freshmen applicants, including International Students. For students who take the SAT more than once, USC records the highest scores for each section - Critical Reading, Mathematics, and Writing -- even if achieved in different sittings. For students taking the ACT, USC will record the highest composite score.
Financial Aid & Scholarships
Many financial aid and scholarship processes run concurrently with the admissions process. Be sure to research and apply for financial aid and scholarships as you are applying for admission. There are many grants and scholarships that are available through the University of Southern California. Please feel free to email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for specific information or if you have any questions.