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Campus Visits

Appointments to visit the Los Angeles campus can be arranged via the Admissions Office where you can discuss any questions about the admissions process. If you are unable to visit the campus we can also arrange a telephone appointment if more convenient. To schedule either a visit or telephone appointment, please call +1.909.607.1186 or email

Master's Program

The Sotheby's Institute-Los Angeles Master's Program is available in collaboration with Claremont Graduate University.

Now accepting applications for Fall 2019 Master’s programs. Apply Now.

Admissions Deadlines Entrance Requirements Documentation Requirements & Evaluation Tuition and Fees Fellowships International Fellows Program Contact After You Apply Apply Now


Sotheby’s Institute of Art operates a rolling admissions process, which means that applications are processed as soon as they are submitted. Therefore, it is advisable that applicants apply as early as possible to ensure places are still available.

Entrance Requirements

Criteria for admissions include the high probability of the student’s success in graduate study and their potential to thrive in subsequent professional careers following graduation. In keeping with the philosophy of Claremont Graduate University and Sotheby’s Institute of Art, the admission decision is individualized and based on a wide range of information about the applicant, rather than on rigid, pre-selected criteria.

To prepare for graduate study at Sotheby’s Institute of Art, there are select Online, Summer, and Semester Courses that will enable incoming MA students to secure a strong foundation, especially for those who do not have an art history background. These courses are recommended for students looking to improve their art history knowledge, or who receive an offer of enrollment contingent upon gaining foundational knowledge in a key area.

GRE Test Scores

Sotheby’s Institute of Art is pleased to accept the GRE test. The GRE is not a required element of our application process, however we will factor in test scores as part of our decision process for those candidates who have taken the test. The code for Sotheby’s Institute of Art is 4161.

Documentation Requirements & Evaluation

Applications will be evaluated based upon the following:

  • Quality of previous undergraduate and, if applicable, graduate work. CGU requires applicants to submit proof of a completed a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university. The school also requires a minimum standard of a B average in undergraduate coursework (3.0 on a 4.0 scale). Applicants with international credentials must submit academic records in both their original language and literal English translation.
  • A writing sample. The writing sample helps the Admission Committee understand how a prospective student develops ideas, creates a theme or a position, communicates and defends the work in writing. Please submit one of the following:
    • A graded paper of no fewer than 1000 words from an undergraduate or graduate course, completed within the last 5 years. These may be course papers, published articles, professional reports, or other materials that exhibit the candidate’s capacity for written communication. An emphasis on business, performing/visual art, or communications is preferred.
    • A 500-word original review of a current performance or visual art exhibition (modeled on a standard newspaper or magazine review). Please address some or all of the following: analysis of the work, information on the artist and his/her career, profile of the organization hosting the piece.
  • Strength of CV/resume. Candidates are required to submit a resume as part of the application.
  • Candidate’s personal statement of his or her academic career objectives and their relation to the intended program of study. The personal statement allows the faculty to gauge whether the candidate’s research will thrive with the goals of the department and greater University.
  • Strength of letters of recommendations from individuals competent to judge the candidate’s probable success in graduate coursework. These letters are usually from individuals the candidate knows well including former professors, mentors, supervisors or those who can give an in-depth evaluation of the candidate’s strengths and weaknesses in regard to his or her preparedness for graduate study. All applicants are required to submit two letters of recommendation. A third is recommended, but not required.
  • Interviews. All applicants that are invited for an interview will be notified via email. Interviews are required for admission. It is highly recommended that applicants conduct their interviews on the CGU campus or at SIA-NY or London. However, special accommodations will be made for applicants who must interview over the telephone or via Skype.
  • Other evidence of potential success in graduate studies. Candidates may submit additional materials that they think are relevant to their application to CGU.
  • A non-refundable application fee of $100 (USD).
  • Portfolio (only applicable to MA Art Business + Fine Art applicants). Applicants must electronically upload a portfolio of representative work for evaluation. Portfolios will only be accepted through the online service provided by SlideRoom, Portfolios should consist of 15 images of recent artwork that represent a cohesive body of work. Performance and/or video artists may submit work that is no longer than 3 minutes in length.
  • TOEFL/IELTS (Only Applicable to International Students) The Institute does require an English language Proficiency Exam for non-native English speakers. We require the following exam scores for Masters and Certificate programs: IELTS level 7: TOEFL 100 IBT for the internet based exam; If you have received an undergraduate degree from an Institute where you were taught in English it may be possible to waive the English language Proficiency Exam, upon review of your application.

Tuition and Fees

Course Fees 2019-20 tuition per semester: $27,040

Tuition is calculated on students taking 16 units per semester. The program requires 48 units of academic credit for the degree. The 2019-2020 unit cost is $1,940, and the aggregate tuition-per-semester listed above includes a standard merit-based fellowship of $4000 a semester (granted to applicants that meet all of the admissions criteria).

Applicants who demonstrate higher than average levels of prior academic excellence and whose professional experience and backgrounds are exemplary and will enhance the profile of the student body may be considered for additional fellowships. These fellowships are awarded by the admissions committee based upon submitted application materials. The program does not offer needs-based fellowships at this time.

Student fees, per semester: CGU Student fee: $200 Technology fee: $100

Travel fee, semesters 1 &2: $3400** Both the Art Business and the Arts Management programs require travel in semesters one and two, which includes visits to arts institutions and events both domestic and international. These fees allow The Institute to buy tickets and make programming reservations in advance. Travel costs for the academic program are calculated and charged at the beginning of each semester.

** Individual courses that include their own field study component may require additional travel fees.


The Squire Foundation Fellowship for Field Study

This fellowship is awarded to one academically-motivated student with 3.5 GPA (or higher) and a demonstrated commitment to the arts. The award of up to $2950 per semester will go toward subsidizing travel fees to allow for LA students to experience art in different global markets and contexts.

The Squire Foundation is committed to the advancement of artists, curators and all manner of creative individuals through elevating the arts from the community level up. Its Executive Director, Ashley Woods Hollister, is an alumna of the Sotheby’s Institute of Art- London (SIA).  Ashley’s own experiences on field study trips, during her time with SIA, are a driving force in her work advancing the mission of the Squire Foundation. The Squire Foundation is pleased to award this fellowship to one student of high merit with an exemplary record of dedication to the arts and creative expression.

For more information regarding these fellowships please contact

International Fellows Program

The International Fellows Program is academically rigorous and tailored to the Sotheby’s Institute of Art – Los Angeles curriculum. The program is offered by Claremont Graduate University. It provides incoming non-native English-speaking international students an excellent opportunity to refine their language and participation skills, so that they may succeed in their graduate-level courses and adapt to the expectations of American academic and business culture.

Although some students are required to participate in the program, all are welcome–and recommended–to join. The program begins in June, with ten intensive weeks in the summer and one course during the fall semester. Upon successful completion of the program in December, students will receive an International Fellows Certificate.

The goals of the program are to help students:

  • Develop sophisticated spoken and written English for academic and professional purposes.
  • Gain a deeper understanding of American culture-in particular, business and academic cultures.
  • Build confidence for success in the classroom and beyond
  • Become bilingual and bicultural managers in their fields

Admissions Procedures to the International Fellows Program

Application to the International Fellows Certificate Program is automatically made upon applying to Sotheby’s Institute of Art - Los Angeles.

Some students are admitted to this program as a condition of their acceptance to Sotheby’s Institute of Art - Los Angeles. Others may volunteer to take the program as a complement to their graduate studies. Students who enroll in the International Fellows Program must complete all required courses.

Summer 2017
Module 1: TOEFL iBT 75-84 / IELTS 6.0
Module 2: TOEFL iBT 85-94 / IELTS 6.5-7.0
IELTS scores of 7.0 with no sub section lower than 6.5 are eligible for direct entry.

Module 1: May 15 – June 30
Module 2: July 5 – August 19

Fall 2017
Module 1: August 28 – October 20
Module 2: October 23 – December 15

Module 1: $6,250
Module 2: $6,250
Semester Program: $12,500

For more information regarding the International Fellows Program please contact


For further information, please contact:

1017 North Dartmouth Avenue, Claremont
California, 91711 USA

Recommenders may address their letters or recommendation for applicants to:
Sotheby's Institute of Art-Los Angeles Admissions Committee
c/o Jodi James
1017 N. Dartmouth, Claremont, CA 91711

After You Apply

Applicants will receive an email from the admissions team acknowledging receipt of their application within 24 hours. This email will include an update on any documents or required information that may still be outstanding. These should then be sent directly to the campus at which the application was submitted.


After the admissions team has received sufficient documentation, eligible candidates will be contacted for an interview.

Admissions Decisions

The admissions committee reviews and processes applications on a “rolling basis.” This means that applications are considered throughout the year as long as space is available. Applicants whose documentation is complete generally receive an admissions decision within two weeks of their interview.

Confirmation of Attendance and Deposit

Admissions Committee decisions will be sent by email. A deposit of $1,000 is required of accepted applicants and must be returned with the Admissions Reply Form in order to hold a place in the department and campus of choice. Accepted applicants who require additional time to make this decision and deposit must contact the Office of Admissions to request an extension.


Applicants who require visas are advised to apply through their appropriate consulate or other government agencies at least 10 weeks prior to the start of classes in order to ensure sufficient time for processing. Students who require visas will receive visa documentation after they confirm their intention to enroll by returning their reply forms and deposits.

Apply Now

Now accepting applications for Master's programs starting Fall 2019. Apply Now.

For more information about the Los Angeles program, please review our Frequently Asked Questions.