Southern California Woodworking Schools
Southern California is home to a number of colleges and universities with courses in woodworking. This article focuses on the coursework requirements for programs at three schools in particular, and also provides a table of facts and figures for comparison. Some information on additional school options in the area is included as well.
- California State University - Fullerton (CSUF) offers a bachelor's degree in sculpture and a master's degree in crafts that allow students to focus their studies in woodworking from an artistic perspective.
- California State University - Long Beach (CSULB) also focuses on wood as an artistic medium through its bachelor's and master's degree programs in the field.
- Centered mainly on wooden furniture design, the woodworking degree programs at San Diego State University (SDSU) are offered at the bachelor's and master's levels.
Comparison of Schools
Take some time to compare the profiled universities' costs, campus environments, acceptance rates and other stats by reviewing the table below.
|California State University - Fullerton||California State University - Long Beach||San Diego State University|
|School Type||4-year, public||4-year, public||4-year, public|
|Total Enrollment (2014)||40,905*||37,622*||35,158*|
|Campus Setting||Large Suburb||Large city||Large city|
|Tuition & Fees (2017-2018)|| $6,850 in-state, $18,730 out-of-state (undergraduate);
$8,284 in-state, $17,788 out-of-state (graduate)*
|$6,730 in-state, $18,610 out-of-state (undergraduate);
$8,164 in-state, $17,668 out-of-state (graduate)*
|$7,460 in-state, $19,340 out-of-state (undergraduate);
$8,894 in-state, $18,398 (graduate)*
|% of First-Year Students Receiving Some Form of Aid (2016-2017)||79%*||80%*||59%*|
|Acceptance Rate (2017)||46%*||28%*||35%*|
|Retention Rate (2016-2017)||87% full-time*||88% full-time*||89% full-time*|
|Graduation Rate (for those who began their studies in 2011)||66% *||69% *||74% *|
Source: *U.S. National Center for Educational Statistics
California State University - Fullerton
Woodworking programs are offered through the College of the Arts at CSUF. The college has programs in theatre and dance, music and visual arts.
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Sculpture
The sculpture concentration requires 21 preparation units in topics like life drawing, art and civilization, and beginning sculpture. Students will be responsible for 48 credits for the concentration in areas like writing in the visual arts, ceramic sculpture, sculpting life forms, mold making and cast sculpture, and kinetic sculpture.
Master of Fine Arts in Art - Crafts Concentration
This program is for students serious about becoming professional artists. Students may concentrate in crafts, including woodworking. The program includes courses, as well as student practice in the chosen area of concentration.
California State University - Long Beach
CSULB's School of Art is the biggest publicly funded school of its kind in the U.S. It offers programs in studio art, illustration and animation, graphic design, art history and art education.
Bachelor of Fine Arts in 3-D Media - Wood Concentration
Students interested in construction and furniture design may avail themselves to the woodworking facilities of the school. Students can use those facilities to practice their furniture construction and design skills. Graduates have gone on to become display and exhibition designers, special effects designers and furniture designers.
Master of Arts in Art and Master of Fine Arts in Art - Wood Track
Both degrees have a studio art concentration, and students may choose the wood track. Students can take a graduate course in wood where they express themselves via a particular technique and look at wood related-issues and aesthetics. The graduate wood studio course allows students to develop their techniques and skills by exploring wood.
San Diego State University
The School of Art, Design and Art History at San Diego State offers programs in art history, design and art (concentrating on applied design - furniture design and woodworking). Its wood shop consists of a large machine room, a tool room, two bench rooms and a computer room for using furniture design software. Degree programs available through this school include Bachelor of Arts, Master of Arts and Master of Fine Arts.
Bachelor of Arts in Applied Arts and Sciences - Furniture Design and Woodworking Specialization
In this 4-year program, students learn the history of woodworking, study modern woodworking designs and experiment in the studio using a wide variety of techniques. This interdisciplinary program provides students with hands-on application in creating innovative designs. Students learn through slide presentations, demonstrations and lectures. Furniture making and traditional woodworking are the basis of the program's core curriculum. The curriculum teaches students to master various furniture construction techniques, including carving, joinery and veneering. Independent and study abroad options are available to those who qualify.
Master of Fine Arts in Applied Design - Furniture Design and Woodworking Specialization
This 3-year graduate program focuses on aesthetic and technical aspects of furniture design and construction. In addition to the woodworking shops available to undergraduates, graduate students have their own large studio to design and create furniture pieces. They also have access to seminars in furniture making and woodworking. Students are involved in both individual and collaborative projects throughout the program. Graduate students complete a thesis project in their final year and participate in a Master of Fine Arts thesis exhibition.
Other School Options
A number of 2-year colleges in the Southern California area offer woodworking programs. Students may take woodworking classes at Cerritos College and El Camino College.