Applying to FAA

Romeo and Juliet, Illinois Theatre, March 2017, Photo by Darrell Hoemann

Any incoming student interested in enrolling in an undergraduate program in the College of Fine and Applied Arts must first complete the online application from the university's Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Those interested in pursuing an advanced degree should apply to the Graduate College directly.

Get More Information

We'd be glad to answer your questions and provide you with details to help you make your college decisions. Submit a form to request additional information today. You'll hear from us shortly.

Step 1: Apply Online

Complete the online application from the university's Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Make sure you meet all requirements.

Submit one essay of 300 words with your application to tell us why you're interested in your major. You may want to describe an experience related to this area of the arts or write about what you plan for your life as a creative professional. If you're applying to the Division of General Studies, focus on your academic strengths or career goals, and you can include any majors or general areas of the arts that you're considering for your future degree.  

You will automatically be considered for scholarships once you submit your materials. No separate scholarship application is needed.

The application filing period is August 24–December 1, 2017. Early action applications will be accepted August 24–November 1, 2017.

Step 2: Fulfill the Additional Requirements

All visual and performing arts programs require an audition, portfolio review, or interview in addition to an application to the University of Illinois. Only the application is required for students interested in architecture, landscape architecture, or urban planning. Find your major below and follow the next part of the process.

Wait to hear about your admission status. You're done!

If you've settled on your degree path, you may apply directly for admission to your major's program: art education, art history, crafts: metal, graphic design, industrial design, new media, painting, photography, or sculpture. If you haven't decided what area fits best with your talents, you may apply to the Art Foundation program and choose your major when you're a sophomore. A portfolio is required to complete your application.

Get the Portfolio Requirements

Submit a Portfolio

We want to see you in action! You must audition to join Dance at Illinois.

Get the Dance Audition Requirements

Request a Dance Audition

Submit an Online Dance Audition

Your application is complete. You'll hear from the Office of Admissions soon.

1. The first thing you need to do after finishing your university application is submit the supplemental music application.

Get the Supplemental Music Application

2. Next you will need to fulfill some requirements for your area of interest. Find your specific major. You'll be sent to the School of Music's site for the details.

  • Instrumental Performance
  • Jazz Performance
  • Vocal Performance

Get the Music Performance Audition Requirements

  • Music Education

Get the Music Education Requirements

  • Music Composition
  • Music Composition-Theory
  • Music Technology

Get the Music Composition and Theory Requirements

  • Musicology (Music History)

Get the Musicology Requirements

  • Open Studies

Get Information on the Open Studies Major

If you aren't able to come to campus for an audition, you can submit a recording. You will need to set up an online account and then follow the additional instructions from the School of Music.

Submit an Online Audition

If you've settled on your degree path, apply directly to your major's program: acting, costume design and technology, lighting design and technology, scenic design and technology, sound design, stage management, or theatre studies (directing, playwriting, and criticism). If you haven't decided what area to focus on, apply to the Theatre Foundation program and choose your major when you're a sophomore. A portfolio is required to complete an application to all design and technical programs. An audition is required for prospective acting students. An interview is required if you intend to pursue theatre studies. If you apply to the Theatre Foundation program, choose your strongest talent and fulfill the appropriate requirement—audition, interview, or portfolio—for that degree program when you apply. If you can't make it to campus, you can submit an online audition.

Get the Theatre Requirements

Request an Audition, Portfolio Review, or Interview

Submit an Online Audition

You're set! Watch for news on your admission status soon.

Fall 2016 Talent Deadlines for Incoming Freshmen

The early action admission deadlines have passed. Decisions were sent on December 9, 2016.

If you met all of the application deadlines, you should have received your admission decision on February 3, 2017.

Art and Design

The formal deadlines have passed, but you can petition to submit a late application. If you are allowed to apply, you'll receive a response once we have had a chance to review your materials.


If you audition after January 14, you will be notified about your potential admission to the university on a rolling basis.


Auditioners from sessions after January 22 will receive a decision once a review of their application materials has been completed.


Students who audition after January 28 will be informed about their admission status on a rolling basis.

Transfer Students

Qualified transfer students from both community and four-year college programs are eligible for admission. Academic and artistic qualifications are considered equally during the admissions review process, and both may impact your placement in core courses in your major. To learn about transfer requirements and the admissions process, see our suggestions for college prepration. You might also want to review the transfer student information from the Office of Undergraduate Admissions.

Each program has specific guidelines for portfolios.

Get the Art and Design Portfolio Requirements

Our performing arts programs have audition, portfolio, or interview requirements for admission. Each area has individual guidelines for assessing your talent.

Get the Dance Admission Requirements

Get the Music Admission Requirements

Get the Theatre Admission Requirements

Graduate Students

All students interested in earning a graduate degree in the College of Fine and Applied Arts must apply for admission through the Graduate College. Submit a form to request more information, contact a representative by phone at 217.333.0035, or email your questions to