Reach New Creative + Professional Heights
Whether you want to tackle an item on your bucket list — like mastering your digital camera — or if you are poised to take the creative reins of your career, UArts Continuing Education courses and programs are the perfect step forward.
Please note our new temporary office location:
Gershman Hall, Room 206
401 S. Broad St. (corner of S. Broad and Pine)
Philadelphia, PA 19147
A wheelchair accessible entrance is located on Pine Street. Please contact 215-717-6006 if you require assistance accessing the building.
Classes & Registration
Courses for adults in Art + Design, Digital Design, Music, Movement + Dance, Photography, Social Media, and Writing.
Tuition & Policies
Review tuition and fees for courses and learn about program policies.
Join Supra Endura Creative Conversations host Gabrielle Mandel in a discussion with author Carmen Maria Machado about her books (Her Body and Other Parties , In the Dream House: A Memoir ) and working as a creative professional. This live podcast recording and event is presented by the Art Alliance Writers' Workshop.
October 21, 2019, 7:00-8:30PM
Caplan Recital Hall, 17th Floor, Terra Hall
211 S. Broad St., Philadelphia PA 19102
This event is free but space is limited. Reserve your ticket here.
- Carmen Maria Machado's debut short story collection, Her Body and Other Parties, was the winner of the Bard Fiction Prize, the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Fiction, and the National Book Critics Circle's John Leonard Prize. In 2018, the New York Times listed Her Body and Other Parties as a member of “The New Vanguard,” one of “15 remarkable books by women that are shaping the way we read and write fiction in the 21st century.” Her essays, fiction, and criticism have appeared in the New Yorker, the New York Times, Granta, Tin House, VQR, McSweeney's Quarterly Concern, The Believer, Guernica, Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, and elsewhere.
- Gabrielle Mandel started Supra Endura in 2013. She wanted to create a unique collection of one-of-a-kind prints. She loved the idea that for every item sold she would donate a portion back to non-profits that were centered around social justice issues. In 2018 she launched her podcast: Supra Endura Creative conversations, chronicling the creative journey of entrepreneurs she knew and admired.
Enhance your career
We are currently accepting applications for our fall certificate programs:
Digital Photography (I & II)
Register for classes & workshops:
Fall Info Session & Digital Design Panel
Wednesday, September 4, 2019
Gershman Chapel, 401 S. Broad St.
Info Session | 6 PM - 7 PM
Consider your options, discuss your goals and meet our faculty. New student attendees are eligible for a 10% discount on one fall course.
Digital Design Panel | 7 PM - 8 PM
Join us for a discussion focused on digital design trends and how to navigate the digital landscape.
By: Daniel Kraus, Digital Photography Certificate Faculty
The Digital Photography Certificate program at University of the Arts is the ideal place for those who are eager to start a career in photography or give their passion more direction. The program is distinct in offering students two tracks to follow, so you can decide how you want your development to be shaped and what pace is right for you. The curriculum’s trajectory address photographic technique, software skills, artistry, and career development, resulting in a full understanding of the medium. Courses present opportunities to connect you with Philadelphia’s thriving arts community where you’ll attend artist’s lectures, exhibitions, and hear advice from photo-industry professionals.
Within a few class sessions it becomes clear how quickly students develop an interest in one another’s work, leading to great peer-to-peer interactions. You’ll build a community around yourself that gives critical and useful feedback to help you focus and strengthen your skills.
The certificate classes create a cohort that is inspiring to see as an instructor. Within a few class sessions it becomes clear how quickly students develop an interest in one another’s work, leading to great peer-to-peer interactions. You’ll build a community around yourself that gives critical and useful feedback to help you focus and strengthen your skills. Courses are often structured around out of class photo assignments, lectures that explore contemporary issues, demonstrations on technique, and critiques that give you the beneficial insight of your classmates.
The depth of courses in the certificate program teaches you to integrate artistry and professionalism for your developing career. You will learn the necessary industry software by taking classes specifically on Lightroom and Photoshop and also be creatively challenged by courses that show students how to develop a portfolio of creative work and even self publish a photo-book. Rather than focusing solely on technique and software programs, you will be challenged to unite ideas with technique to create photographs that have meaning and usefulness in the creative market. This point was driven home by the advice given by the photography editor of Philadelphia Magazine during our Digital Photo 2 course this past Spring.
The proximity of the University of the Arts to major photography institutions is truly remarkable. As a student, you'll have the opportunity to meet important and local photographers and curators at places like the Print Center. You will also experience the latest in contemporary photo exhibitions at the Philadelphia Photo Arts Center, and look at the city’s historical collection of photographs at the Library Company or the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
While teaching in the Digital Photography Certificate program, it’s been inspiring to see the diverse student-body in the classroom. You’ll work with students who come from various career fields, backgrounds, and age groups who bring together a wealth of knowledge from various viewpoints and artistic interests. I truly see this as one of the biggest strengthens of the certificate program, as traditional college classrooms do not have this same cross section of people in the classroom. You will have the opportunity to gain in understanding by studying with students who help you identify your successes and learn from your failures in an empathic community.
Written by Jeff Stern, UX Design Certificate Faculty
The UX Design Certificate Program offered by Continuing Education attracts students from a variety of backgrounds, and they all have a passion for using design to create useful and usable digital experiences. I caught up with one student, Ricardo Garcia, about how he chose to apply, his experiences so far and his advice for others interested in studying UX.
What first interested you in the University of Arts UX Certificate program?
I was doing a lot of research online and most of what I found were online courses. There were not a lot of university-based schools in the area. I graduated from University of Arts in 2002, so the school was already familiar too. There were also the right amount of classes, a few user experience-focused classes, spaced out over a year.
What are some of the courses you’ve taken so far?
The two classes that stood out to me were the research class and the project management class.
I have practiced design, but I have never really concentrated on research so that was a brand new experience for me. It was intimidating at first, but I dove in and really enjoyed it. We learned about how surveys, interviews and competitive analyses can inform our designs. My final prototype was a lot better had I not done the research. Having evidence to back up design decisions was a really important learning.
We also had a weekend crash course on project management. I learned so much in the class. The class was invaluable for if I wanted to be self-employed, do freelance design work, or even switch to project management. Sloan was an awesome teacher.
How much did you know about UX design before beginning the program?
I had an idea of what UX Design is, but until I took this certificate program I didn’t really get a lot of practice in it. I have learned a lot about the day-to-day basis of being a UX designer. Concepts, sketching, brainstorming, in-class, master of the post-its. It gave me the confidence to start bringing these skills into my own job and start making a career move.
Taking the program in-person also made a difference. I have taken classes online, but it was nothing like being in a classroom. There’s something about the people element.
What was it about being in a classroom with peers that made the program more impactful?
I thought it was cool how all of us came from different backgrounds and different levels of our careers. In my cohort there were marketing managers, people managers, and even one person who designed physical spaces. Having these different perspectives, we got to see more fully who the user is. With this variety in the classroom, we also got a peek of what it would be like in the real world.
It was also easier to get quick feedback and validation if I was going in the right direction on a project. When I’m in the classroom, it’s instant. And I don’t just get to hear or read feedback, but I can read facial expressions. In all my classes, I received very supportive feedback and very targeted feedback – not just on designs, but also how to present my work. Those things I’d never get in an online course.
How has the program changed you and your skill set?
Before the program, I had mostly done visual web design, but UX design is so much more than that. This has opened my eyes, I used to be so tunnel-visioned on design, design, design. I now see opportunities for user research, and I could do more of that. Being in the program now, it reinforced that what I wanted to do, which is UX design, and it opened my eyes to how UX design works in the real world.
What advice would you have for future cohorts?
Be ready to work a lot. I knew that the more I put in, the more I was going to get out of it. I get it – Game of Thrones is awesome – but there were times when I had to turn it off and focus on the assignment.
This is a career-changing decision for me, and I took it very seriously. When it comes time to applying for UX design roles, I’ll have a portfolio that’s spot-on and ready to go. Take it seriously.
Applications for the UX Design Certificate are accepted for Fall
Application deadline: September 9, 2019
Fall cohort begins: September 30, 2019
UX Design Certificate faculty Lindsay Tabas shared some valuable insight into how you can approach developing a prototype to solve a problem. For starters, shift your focus from the Minimal Viable Product to the Most Viable Problem by analyzing your user's needs and the features they will use to create your best product.
Your first version of the product (i.e. your prototype) should be the smallest group of features that can solve your most valuable problem (The Real MVP). This prototype should highlight your unique way of solving that problem.
Read more about what Lindsay has to say about the two MVPs in user experience.
Want to learn more from Lindsay? We are currently accepting applications for our Fall cohort, starting September 30th.
By: Jeff Stern, UArts UX Certificate Program Faculty
User experience designers are tasked with deeply understanding the needs of users and crafting digital experiences, like websites and mobile apps, that satisfy those needs.
Have you ever used a website or application that has left you feeling frustrated? Perhaps it was confusing to locate a piece of information, or maybe some desired functionality didn’t exist at all. That frustration usually occurs because there wasn’t a user experience designer on the team that created the product.
In 2019, thoughtful product design is no longer optional. Companies understand that making their products easy and delightful to use can help them stand out from their competitors and strengthen perceptions of their brand. Sales and marketing teams thrive when they can rely on the quality of the product. This all means there’s an increased demand for UX designers. Some reports show that UX design is the top in-demand creative role. On LinkedIn in June 2019, there were more than 2,500 open positions for “user experience” in Philadelphia alone, and positions ranged from large, tech-forward companies like Comcast and Elsevier to growing startups like Stella.ai and Power, to creative agencies like Hero Digital and Eastern Standard.
But what do you need to know to become a UX designer? They are often thought of as generalists with a versatile toolkit of skills to apply to different problems. The skills they use on a day-to-day basis might vary based on the company they work for or the product they build, but all UX designers should be able to do these three things.
1. Conduct research to better understand the problem space
The best products are those that deeply empathize with the needs of users. UX designers can develop that empathy and understanding through research, such as conducting interviews, analyzing data and testing designs with users. The IDEO Design Kit and the Nielsen Norman Group both provide examples of different types of activities that can be employed to explore problems. The results of this research can be a source of knowledge and inspiration for the whole team.
2. Use design tools to create a new or improved solution
UX designers are expected to fuse their knowledge of the problem with best practices to create a compelling solution. Some of the most popular design-related applications today include Sketch for creating wireframes (a functional “blueprint”) and Invision for creating clickable, interactive prototypes. Occasionally UX designers are tasked with creating pixel-perfect design assets, but in larger organizations, that’s often the responsibility of visual designers.
3. Communicate research and design to project stakeholders
Finally, communication skills are critical. UX designers need to be able to advocate for the needs of users and demonstrate the value of their work to a wide variety of stakeholders, such as the client, an engineering lead who will assess the technical feasibility of proposed designs, or a marketing person who will be promoting new features. UX designers often do this by giving compelling presentations and creating clear documentation and deliverables.
The best way to learn all these skills is to practice them. In fact, you can practice right now. Is there a website you wish was more usable or an app you wish existed? Speak with others about the problem, ask questions and find out what would make their lives easier. Take out a pen and paper and sketch a couple screens of your website or app. Think about your favorite apps and what makes them so engaging. Then present your sketches and get feedback from potential users. The UX certificate program at University of the Arts is a yearlong program that provides countless opportunities to practice and refine these skills. Classes are centered around real-world problems, and you’ll work with peers on research and design projects for your portfolio.
Join us in kicking off the Summer semester with an Ice Cream Social! Meet other Continuing Education students and grab an ice cream on your way to class.
Ice cream will be available in the lobby of Anderson Hall and Terra Hall on
Monday, June 3 - Wednesday, June 5, 5-6PM
And we'll be serving up Little Baby's Ice Cream in the Gershman Hall lobby on
Thursday, June 6, 5-6 pm
333 South Broad Street
211 South Broad Street
401 South Broad Street
Not registered for a Summer course yet?
Don't miss Michelle Oosterbaan's new drawings, paintings, and silkscreen prints on view at the Painting Gallery. This show investigates alterations resulting from movement/stillness, and ideas of cartography, memory and the idea of place, in the ever-evolving cycles of the liminal spaces of landscape.
Landvaettir & Sweet Darkness
April 18 - May 17, 2019
Reception Thursday, April 18
4 PM - 7 PM
The Painting Gallery
The University of the Arts
333 South Broad St. 8th floor
Mon + Thurs: 8:30 AM - 4 PM
Tues + Fri: 8:30 AM - 7 PM
Reach new creative heights.
Enrichment courses are designed for adults with all experience levels. Registration is open for Summer courses in Art + Design, Music, Dance and Writing. Click here for a full course listing, course descriptions and faculty info.
Director's Spotlight Courses:
By Ognian Danailov, Digital Technology Coordinator for UArts Continuing Education Program
Want to learn more?
Jean Solar is a Chilean-born artist working in photography and a UArts Digital Photography Certificate candidate. His current project documents “unscenic” views of city life, poetically framing daily encounters and moments of alienation.
Ciudad sin fin / Endless City is a series of images that use digital photography to make a record of the less visible and seemingly unpicturesque. Solar traverses the urban landscape by dérive—experimental wandering—tuning his aesthetic sensitivity to overlooked scenes and chance incidents. The resultant black and white photographs are high contrast images of mundane social spaces, voyeuristic photographs of strangers, and moody representations of architecture, light, shadows, and weather. These photographs are indexes of ordinary life—stolen moments that reveal the subtleties and subjectivities of contemporary urban experience.
Digital Photography Certificate Capstone Exhibition
April 1-May 17, 2019
Reception: Wednesday, April 10 | 5PM - 6:30PM
Exhibition is free and open to the public.
College of Critical & Professional Studies Gallery
Terra Hall, Floor 9
211. S. Broad St.
Philadelphia, PA 19107
215 717 6006 | firstname.lastname@example.org
Weekdays 9AM - 5PM
Taxidermy as Wearable Art was recently featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer as one of the six can't-miss adult education classes in Philly this Spring.
"Taxidermy is not just for hunting lodges anymore."
Instructor Beth Beverly is a licensed taxidermist who has had her work featured on AMC's Immortalized and Netflix's Stranger Things. Many of her students are repeat attenders and as a result, “It feels like a sewing circle in there. A morbid sewing circle,” says Continuing Education director Caitlin Perkins.
Learn how to repurpose, design and create creature-adorned purses, hairpieces and jewelry boxes and more. Taxidermy as Wearable Art is a 5-week course starting March 13th, 6-9pm.
Lilanee Chanyothi is a student in the Continuing Education Digital Photography Certificate program, who recently completed a project titled '30 Ways to See a Tchotchke'. This project is an exploration in composition using a wooden duck in various locations around Philadelphia. We recently caught up with Lilanee about her background and experience in the Digital Photography Certificate program:
How did you develop the idea for ‘30 Ways to See a Tchotchke’?
I have the Tchotchke of a mallard duck that sits on on my kitchen counter top. It never moved since I moved into my Philly apartment. So when I found out that was this was the composition assignment for class, I decided why not take this duck on a little photo shoot adventure? I developed the ideas as I went about with my day, while incorporating long nature walks and mini site-seeing trips to spice up the scenery. This duck has seen a lot!
How has the UArts Digital Photography certificate program affected your work?
So far, it has shown to be a very invaluable experience. The program has provided me the foundation and tools to further my skills. It is a work in progress, but I find myself more able to accurately express my taste and art! I feel more confident in my work, while having a more refined eye to my surroundings and inspirations. I am now bringing my camera around everywhere!
What brought you to the UArts Digital Photography certificate program?
For as long as I can remember, I've been very interested in photography and have always aspired to take a class. I was drawn to the UArts Program because I knew if I wanted to pursue continuing education in photography, I had to do it right! I travel quite a lot, so I'd quite like to get into travel photography. I had always thought it was a waste to go to these beautiful places, and not be able to skillfully capture the moments. Perhaps down the line, I will challenge myself to go beyond the hobby and get into freelance, but we'll see.
What skills have you learned at UArts that you've taken outside the classroom?
I've learned about the technical and manual skills of using a DSLR camera, along with subjects on photo editing, composition, depth of field, and motion. I think the most important takeaway of all is the appreciation of photography and art all around.
Do you have any advice for anyone looking to get started in digital photography?
Go for it! I would recommend taking classes with a reputable program such as the the UArts program, that will provide wholesome education and give you a good foundation to get you started on your digital photography endeavors!
You can follow Lilanee on Instagram at @Lilanee
Interested in applying?
Digital Photography Certificate applications are accepted for Fall 2019.
Application deadline: September 9, 2019
Fall cohort begins: September 30, 2019
Maddie Allard is no stranger to UArts. She came to the Pre-College Program as a high schooler and currently enrolled in the Social Media Marketing Certificate Program. We had the opportunity to catch up with her and hear about her experience with the wide range of programs at UArts.
“UArts has had a huge part in helping me discover who I am and my passions in life.”
What UArts Pre-College classes did you take? How did the program inspire/shape you?
I attended Pre-College in 2009 where I took creative writing, screen directing, and [a] performance art class. All had huge impacts on building my future. In screen directing, my Teaching Assistant Lendl Tellington, ended up becoming a mentor of mine throughout my college years. He even hired me for my first internship. My other classes really helped me find my voice. I’m from a small town where being different isn’t very welcome, but I think attending Pre-College helped me realize that there’s a bigger world out there and what people in my high school thought of me didn’t matter. I thank the performance art class and the teacher for that. We began every class walking around yelling “I don’t give a shit what anyone thinks of me” and as a 16 year old that was really life changing.
What brought you back to UArts?
I’m always looking for ways to grow my career, so I started searching for social media marketing classes at multiple schools both in Philly and New York. I graduated in 2015 from Temple University with a BA in Advertising. Thanks to internships, freelance gigs, and my current job, I really found direction in social media. I looked at UArts because I have such fond memories of going there and I thought it would be fun to bring my education full-circle.
More specifically, what brought you to the UArts Social Media Marketing Program?
I’ve learned so much so far through the Social Media Marketing program. My project management skills were a bit of a hot mess, so Sloan Miller’s weekend-long intensive class about project management was so helpful. Despite teaching some complex methods, his ability to bring it into our everyday lives have given me skills not only for work, but for life too.
What skills did you learn/have you learned at UArts that you've taken with you?
I also really enjoyed Melissa Alam’s class. I’m a creative, but when it comes to design I’m still trying to find my voice. She did a great job showing us how to organize ideas and narrow things down to have a cohesive visual brand. It’s really improved how I approach Instagram both personally and professionally. Plus I got a freelance gig out of that class. I’m currently helping Melissa with social media for her Fearless Conference.
Do you have any advice for anyone looking to get started in Social Media Marketing?
My advice is to familiarize yourself with the top 3 social media platforms (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter) before diving into the program. Social may seem easy, but everything you do is intentional. So if you’re looking to build your business and/or you have the energy and passion to really pursue it as a career, I definitely recommend it.
Maddie is currently a Social Media Coordinator at TravelSafe Insurance. Although she has a Bachelors in Advertising with a focus in Copywriting from Temple University, she’s found her true calling in Social Media. In her free time Maddie is a certified Open Water Scuba Diver and volunteers as a CASA in Berks County.
Give your passion a boost of knowledge. We're now accepting applications for our Social Media Marketing and Web Design programs. The deadline to apply is January 18th, with courses beginning January 28th.
Minimal previous experience is required to apply, which means they are perfect for just about everybody. And because each program challenges you to apply your new skills and expertise in practical situations, you will be prepared for an increasingly complex workplace and dynamic world.
Interested in applying for our Spring cohort? The application deadline is January 11th, with courses starting January 28th.
Wednesday, January 9, 2019 | 6 - 7:30pm
Terra Hall, 13th Floor, Room 1355
211 S. Broad St. Philadelphia PA 19107
Expand your creativity through Continuing Education courses in Art + Design, Digital Design, Photography, Writing, Music, Dance, Social Media, Theater, and more. Our curriculum provides an accelerated, in-depth learning experience taught by talented working professionals who emphasize practical knowledge and skills through a project-based approach.
Attendees are eligible for a 10% tuition discount for one Spring 2019 Continuing Education course. (New students only; No retroactive refunds will be given).
RSVPs are not required but preferred. Please email us at email@example.com or call us at 215.717.6006 to RSVP.
Happy Holidays from Continuing Education! Our office will be closed December 17 through January 1 but you can still register online for Spring courses. View a full course listing here.
Interested in a Certificate Program? The deadline to apply is January 11th. More info here.
Program Director, Continuing Education
Caitlin Perkins came to UArts from Fleisher Art Memorial, where she served as the Manager of Adult Programs at for three years. During her tenure at Fleisher, she managed a faculty of 55 teaching artists and oversaw the classes and workshops for more than 900 adults each term. Prior to Fleisher, Caitlin managed Philagrafika’s international artist residency projects and partnerships with exhibition and historical sites across Philadelphia.
Continuing Education Fall 2019 Info Session | Gershman Hall Chapel | 401 S Broad St | 6-7 PM / Digital Design Panel Discussion 7-8 PM
→ New students who attend are eligible for a 10% discount on one fall course.
Applications for certificate programs with Fall 2019 start dates due
Certificate student orientation
Continuing Education Fall 2019 courses begin
Fall 2019 courses end
JAN 8, 2020
Continuing Education Winter/Spring 2020 Info Session | Location TBD | 6 PM - 7:30 PM
→ New students who attend are eligible for a 10% discount on one winter/spring course.
Applications for certificate programs with Winter/Spring 2020 start dates due
Certificate student orientation
Continuing Education Winter/Spring 2020 courses begin
Winter/Spring 2020 courses end
The next information session will be held on Wednesday, January 8, 2020.
Continuing Education Spring 2020 Info Session
Terra Hall 211 S. Broad St. (Broad & Walnut) | 6 PM - 7:30 PM
Consider your options, discuss your goals, learn about certificates, meet our faculty, speak with current students and ask questions.
New students who attend are eligible for a 10% discount on one spring course.
Questions?Request more info
Contact Continuing Education
School of Critical & Professional Studies
with the Center for Engagement
401 S. Broad St., Gershman Hall 206
Philadelphia, PA 19147