Undergraduate Admissions

  • Admissions Overview

    Southwest University of Visual Arts seeks students who have a strong desire to succeed, the integrity to produce high quality original work and the commitment to realize their personal best. The Application Review Board reviews each application individually to determine the strengths of the applicant. Acceptance is determined by an assessment of the application materials submitted by the applicant.

    Application Requirements

    The following materials and costs are needed for admission:

    • Interview
    • Application Form
    • $25 application fee
    • Essay
    • Transcripts
    • ACT, SAT or Accuplacer Test Scores
    • Artwork (strongly encouraged)

    * SUVA accepts official transcripts in three ways: by mail, electronically via Parchment, or faxed directly to SUVA from the institution.

    Admission review process

    Applicants for admission are reviewed individually and are accepted based on an evaluation of strengths, academic preparedness and communication skills. The college reserves the right to weigh each admissions requirement separately. An applicant may be asked to submit additional information in lieu of a particular requirement. Applicants should contact the Admissions Department to discuss special circumstances.

  • Application Materials

    The following application materials will be required to apply to study at Southwest University of Visual Arts:

    Application form/fees

    Applicants must submit a completed application for admission and a $25.00 application fee.

    Personal statements

    The Personal Statement form offers you a chance to speak directly to the Review Board. This is an important opportunity for you to voice your strengths as a candidate for Southwest University of Visual Arts.


    Your essay is evaluated on writing style, content, organization, grammar, vocabulary, punctuation and spelling. Please submit a 5-7 paragraph typed essay on the following topic:

    Other than earning a degree in art and design, what do you want to accomplish as a result of attending SUVA?

    Official transcripts

    High school graduates must submit transcripts with cumulative grade point average (GPA) or proof of diploma indicating date of high school graduation.

    General Education Development (GED) recipients must submit GED certification with corresponding scores. Based on additional education or life experience, high school transcripts or GED scores may not be an accurate indication of basic ability. Therefore, Southwest University of Visual Arts provides the opportunity for applicants to take an academic assessment to determine appropriate placement in required coursework.

    Applicants with a bachelor’s or graduate degree are required to submit BOTH official college transcripts and official high school transcripts.

    ACT/SAT or placement test scores

    Applicants are required to submit ACT or SAT test scores unless the applicant has earned a bachelor’s or graduate degree or has college transcripts indicating success in academic subjects. Applicants who have not previously taken one of these standardized tests may take the ACT residual test or a placement exam offered at Southwest University of Visual Arts.


    Candidates for all undergraduate programs are encouraged, but not required, to submit examples of their work for consideration. Slides, photocopies (color or black/white), photographs or digital files are accepted.

    Admissions appointment

    Applicants may meet with a SUVA Representative in person or by phone. To arrange an application appointment, call (520) 325-0123.

  • Transfer Students

    Transfer credits will be given for courses successfully completed at other post secondary institutions that are equal or similar to Southwest University of Visual Arts accreditation and course offering. The minimum acceptable grade for any course is C (1.9). Applicable credits earned at other accredited institutions may be accepted as transfer credits for a period of up to 10 years. Once this time frame has lapsed, credit is contingent upon the student demonstrating the knowledge or skills, as determined by the Academic Chair, to successfully complete the course.

    Transfering from other institutions

    Students seeking transfer credits from other post secondary institutions must submit transcripts of grades and course descriptions from catalog prior to enrollment in the course or during the drop/add period. Students requesting transfer credit for studio courses must submit examples of work to demonstrate proficiency in the subject. Students may receive credit for previous education or experience in computer courses by completing a practical exam. Transfer credits are determined on an individual basis. Transfer credits from other accredited post secondary institutions may not exceed 75% in any program.

    Southwest University of Visual Arts does not charge a fee to transfer credits from other accredited institutions or between Southwest University of Visual Arts' degree programs. All credit transfers must be completed and approved no later than the end of a student's FIRST semester, with the appropriate forms filled out and submitted. These forms are available at the front office.

    SUVA can only accept credits that were completed within the past 10 years. Courses taken longer than 10 years ago are not eligible for transferring.

    Students must be sure to submit the official college transcripts as well as course descriptions pulled directly from the institution’s official course catalogue, for each transfer course.

    Application materials

    Applicants who have successfully completed 24 academic credits at another regionally-accredited college or university must submit the following materials to complete the application for admission. View a detailed list.

    • Application Form/Fees
    • Personal Statements
    • Official College Transcripts (Applicants who do not have a bachelor’s degree must also submit high school/ GED transcripts)
    • Artwork/ Portfolio
    • Admissions Appointment
  • Financial Aid

    Southwest University of Visual Arts encourages students to apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). There is no application deadline. Southwest University of Visual Arts complies with all Federal and State regulations in the distribution of financial aid awards (see Understanding Financial Aid, U.S Department of Education).

    If the student is meeting satisfactory progress standards, Financial Aid is disbursed by the appropriate office in the Student Services Department. Financial Aid funds are disbursed in a reasonable time frame after funds are received by the College. Federal Financial Aid is available to eligible students, which includes Direct Stafford Loans, Federal Pell Grants, Federal Supplemental Educational Opportunity grant (FSEOG) and Federal Workstudy (FWS). Please contact a Student Services Representative at studentservices@suva.edu for more information.

    Net Price Calculator

    The Net Price Calculator is a tool that can help you see how education loans and college financial aid work. Keep in mind: this calculator only provides estimates. SUVA’s financial aid administrator provides the final word on financial aid eligibility after analyzing each family's financial situation. Note: This is a federal calculation to provide you with an early estimate of your eligibility for federal student aid.

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  • Readmission

    Students will be subject to the curriculum and degree requirements, as well as tuition costs, in effect at the time of their re-entry. Students who re-enroll within one year of their withdrawal will be responsible for a $25.00 file reactivation fee. Students who have not been enrolled for one year or longer will be required to complete a new application for admission. The application fee is $25.00 and the registration fee is reduced to $50.00.

  • Degree completion

    Students enrolled in the recommended courses can finish their bachelor’s degree program in eight semesters and two summers. Actual completion dates vary based on the number of credits students successfully complete each semester.

  • Terms and conditions

    Acceptable forms of payment include cash, credit/debit card, check or money order payable to Southwest University of Visual Arts. Non-payment of tuition may result in the ineligibility to utilize the payment plan or register for subsequent terms. Southwest University of Visual Arts reserves the right to assess late charges on past-due payments (late charges equal four percent (4%) of payment amount).

Studying at SUVA

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