Social media, print, online videos, billboards, radio, websites, TV shows, and video games are just some of the forms advertising takes today. In the School of Advertising at Academy of Art University, you will learn to master all media with ideas that intrigue people. You’ll strengthen your technical skills. You’ll be challenged and supported by advertising experts who are as passionate about teaching as they are about their own advertising practices. You’ll develop industry contacts and get on a first name basis with influential professionals. You’ll put it all to work in a student-run ad agency with real-life clients. And you’ll build a competitive portfolio that can help you towards a successful advertising career.

Advertising Areas of Interest


Strategic, thoughtful use of photography, illustration, typography, graphics, color palettes, cinematography, UX/UI, and aesthetics.



Manipulate voice, tone, grammar, structure, vocabulary, music, and sound effects on the way to strategically-compelling storytelling.



Extract the right information for the challenge. Develop insights by synthesizing research with taste, knowledge, morals, and patterns.


Orchestrate the optimum combination of traditional—print, TV, radio, outdoor—with emerging options—social, streaming, experiences, etc.

Online Education

Our revolutionary online courses provide the same rigorous education that we offer on campus with greater flexibility. Study on your own time, at your own pace. Take full- or part-time classes. Let nothing stand in your way of pursuing your creative goals.

See How it Works

Student Work

Our Faculty

Andrea Pimentel

Co-Director, School of Advertising and School of Web Design & New Media

Andrea is a committed educator and award-winning Interactive Art Director, Creative Director, and UI Designer in San Francisco and Silicon Valley. She has worked for large-scale websites, start-ups, and mobile apps, and some of San Francisco’s top advertising agencies developing cutting edge campaigns. In her roles as Art Director and Creative Director, Andrea has worked with many top brands, including Suzuki, Shutterfly, G4tv, SanDisk, Nokia, Tonik Health, WaMu, eBay, and Bank of America. Andrea has also taught classes and had leadership roles in the School of Web Design and New Media.


Ryan J. Medeiros

Co-Director, School of Advertising and School of Web Design & New Media

In over 15+ years as a designer, Ryan has worked for a variety of technology and design companies in the Silicon Valley and San Francisco. Right out of college, he designed the artwork for “Space Cadet Pinball” - a game that shipped with Microsoft Windows for over 10 years. In the 1990s Ryan founded his own web design business in downtown SF, and led his team to design and build the first online store for worldwide skateboard retailer Deluxe Distribution. He also created sites for top skateboarding professionals like Tommy Guerrero.

Ryan was recognized at the Moscow Biennale of Graphic Design in 2009 as best of show alongside luminary designer Stefan Sagmeister for his poster “100 years of Futurism”. He lectured on the intersection of typographic history and emerging Web fonts technology at Swissnex in 2011.

Degree Details

Our programs have many choices to help you customize your educational journey based on your areas of interest. Click the semester class breakdowns to explore the classes we offer.

Pre-College Programs

The Pre-College Art Experience Programs are programs that provide intensive art experiences for high school students. All high school students are invited to apply to take advantage of these full-tuition art scholarships (based on availability). Learn more about Pre-College Programs

Continuing Education

A flexible admissions process allows students to craft their own online education program. Dive deeper into fields you're already familiar with, or branch out into new creative disciplines. Learn more about Continuing Education

Technology and Facilities

Feel what it's like working in a real agency with our Advertising facilities.

View Facilities

Careers in Advertising

Art Director

Art directors are responsible for communicating a clear, unique, and interesting idea about a product or a brand. Together with copywriters, they form the creative teams that drive the advertising industry.



Copywriters craft messages and develop stories for all media so a product or brand can have an intriguing voice. Together with art directors, they form the creative teams that drive the advertising industry.

Creative Strategist

As a creative strategist, you’ll manage information flow, conduct research-focused projects, and inform and inspire the creative teams. You’ll also help devise business strategies and guide clients to success.


Content Creator

Create, edit, and curate compelling work to supplement ads. Content creators work with blogs, streaming videos, magazine articles, books, songs, and movies. The future is limited only by your imagination.


Alumni Success

Who's Hiring Our Graduates?

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