Policies and Statements

In accordance with various federal laws and statutes, a number of consumer disclosures are required for prospective applicants and employees, as well as for current students and employees.

Mission Statement

Cranbrook Academy of Art is an independent, graduate degree-granting institution offering an intense studio-based experience where artists-in-residence mentor students in art, architecture, and design to creatively influence contemporary culture.

Statement of Non-Discrimination

Cranbrook Academy of Art does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, creed, sex, height, weight, marital status, disability, veteran status, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, or any other basis prohibited by local, state or federal law in its programs and activities. Inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies may be addressed to: Director, Cranbrook Academy of Art, 39221 Woodward Avenue, P.O. Box 801, Bloomfield Hills, MI 48303-0801.

AICAD Statement of Principles on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

AICAD and its member institutions acknowledge that structural, systemic, historical, and intersecting forms of oppression require our ongoing attention, action, innovation, and leadership for positive change. Therefore, we have crafted this statement of principles on diversity, equity and inclusion to guide our ongoing work both individually and collectively. We recognize that particular areas of focus within this work will vary from institution to institution, based on both regional differences and institution-specific histories. We also view this statement as a living document, requiring regular review and evolution.

AICAD member institutions believe that contemporary art and design education, thinking and making requires the full embrace of diversity, equity and inclusion. We are committed to providing learning environments and communities within which all can succeed. Given our specialized focus, we recognize that excellence embraces a range of aesthetic sensibilities and artistic motivations as well as, and often intertwined with, the dimensions of diversity listed in the adopted definitions below. Along with our students, faculty, staff, and boards, we strive to continually develop in order to thrive in an increasingly interconnected and global society. We understand that institutional practices and education rooted in the strengths of diversity, equity and inclusion are fundamental.

Diversity is the range of human differences and means that each individual is equally worthwhile. Not merely acknowledging the existence of differences, it celebrates these differences and recognizes the essential value of diversity in a system. Dimensions of diversity generally cover but are not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic class, physical or cognitive disability, religious or ethical values system, national origin, citizenship, political beliefs, and other ideologies.

Equity is the equal distribution of a system’s benefits and burdens regardless of its members’ differences. In other words, equity would be a reality in which an individual or groups are no more or less likely to experience a system’s benefits or burdens just because of their differences, creating an environment where everyone can succeed and thrive. In our not yet perfect world, a commitment to equity requires the will and action of a system to redistribute opportunities and power.

Inclusion is involvement and empowerment, where the inherent worth and dignity of all people are recognized. An inclusive system promotes and sustains a sense of belonging. It values and practices respect for the talents, beliefs, backgrounds, and ways of living of its members. An inclusive system also recognizes that agreement might not always be the end result, but that dialogue and understanding are part of the larger process that allows for inclusivity to be achieved.

Accreditation and State Approval

Cranbrook Academy of Art is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).  The Academy’s MFA programs are accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design; the Architecture program is not professionally accredited. Any person may review documents describing the Academy’s accreditation by contacting Judy Dyki, Director of Library and Academic Programs (248-645-3364). Documents are maintained in the Academy Office.

The Academy is approved as an educational corporation by the State of Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs to provide higher education degree programs.  Any person may review documents describing the Academy’s state approval by contacting the Manager of Enrollment Services by emailing CAAFinanAid@cranbrook.edu.

Americans with Disability Act (ADA) Compliance

Cranbrook Academy of Art will seek to assist students with disabilities to the extent possible, given building, staffing, and monetary restrictions and will comply with federal and state law as required. Students with disabilities may contact Vanessa Mazei, Dean of Student Services, to discuss their individual needs (248-645-3306). Prospective and current employees may contact the Cranbrook Educational Community Human Resources Department (248-645-3161) with questions and concerns relating to ADA issues; CEC complies with federal and state law as required.

Veterans Benefits Compliance

Cranbrook Academy of Art is authorized to receive veterans educational benefits. Veterans educational benefits are coordinated by The Manager of Enrollment and Financial Aid; please contact the Manager of Enrollment and Financial Aid by emailing CAAFinanAid@cranbrook.edu for assistance with and questions about using veterans educational benefits at the Academy. The Academy does not maintain a formal office of veteran’s services.

Click on the Veterans Information Bulletin for Academy information of particular interest to students receiving VA benefits.  Note that students receiving VA benefits must, by law, be evaluated for transfer credit.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (V.A.). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government Web site at https://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill

Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) Information

FERPA affords students certain rights with respect to their education records. These rights include the right to: (a) inspect and review their education records within 45 days of the day the Academy receives a request for access; (b) request an amendment of any educational records the student believes to be inaccurate, misleading, or otherwise in violation of his/her privacy rights under FERPA; (c) provide written consent before the Academy discloses personally identifiable information contained in the student’s educational records, except to the extent that FERPA authorizes disclosure without consent; and (d) file a complaint with the Department of Education concerning (over) alleged failures by the Academy to comply with the requirements of FERPA. The Academy’s written policy in relation to FERPA may be found here: Notification of Rights Under FERPA. The Academy will provide a paper copy upon request; contact the Registrar by calling 248-645-3047.

Complaint Procedures

Cranbrook Academy of Art encourages students and prospective students with complaints relating to institutional policies and consumer protection issues to first address their concerns with personnel in the office or department that caused the alleged grievance or to contact the Manager of Enrollment Services by emailing CAAFinanAid@cranbrook.edu. Senior administrators may be involved as needed to address the complaint.

Pursuant to the state authorization provision of the Program Integrity Regulations (34 C.F.R. 668.43) established by the Department of Education on October 29, 2010, the following contact information is provided for filing complaints that remain unresolved after engaging in the above-referenced process:

  • If you have concerns regarding the quality of instruction provided at the Academy or the Academy’s ongoing ability to meet its accreditation requirements, you may contact the University’s accreditor, Higher Learning Commission (HLC), using the process described at https://www.hlcommission.org/HLC-Institutions/complaints.html. Mail the complaint letter and its attachments to the Commission’s office at 230 South LaSalle Street, Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411.
  • Complaints concerning consumer protection violations may be directed to the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, through the process described at https://www.michigan.gov/leo/bureaus-agencies/wd/pss. Mail complaints to: State Of Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity; Employment & Training, Post-Secondary Schools/P.O. Box 30726/Lansing, MI 48907

Financial Assistance Available to Enrolled Students

Cranbrook Academy of Art offers federal aid and institutional need-based aid to those who qualify; eligibility for federal financial aid is required. Assistance is available in the form of institutional grants, federal student loans, and Federal Work Study. Not all students will qualify for all forms of assistance. Students seeking federal aid and institutional need-based aid must file the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) in a timely manner, comply with all requests for information, and maintain Financial Aid Satisfactory Academic Progress.

Need-Based Aid is awarded based on the results of the FAFSA, taking into consideration each student’s financial need, total available aid, and the cost of attendance.  Non-Need-Based Aid is available to all enrolled students in the form of competitive scholarships. Further information regarding financial assistance is available from the Manager of Enrollment and Financial Aid, CAAFinanAid@cranbrook.edu.

Financial Aid Code of Conduct

Cranbrook Academy of Art is committed to the highest ethical standards in connection with its responsibilities regarding federal financial aid. All employees who have responsibilities with respect to educational loans or other financial aid at the Academy adhere to a Financial Aid Code of Conduct in the administration of federal financial aid.

Financial Aid Ombudsman

The Department of Education has established the FSA Student Loan Ombudsman Group.  We are required to inform you of the availability of this group and to provide contact information.  Borrowers may contact the Ombudsman as follows:
Online: http://www.nslp.org/borrowers/ombudsman/
Telephone: 877-557-2575
Fax: 606-396-4821
Mail:  FSA Ombudsman Group
P.O. Box 1843
Monticello, KY  42633

General Information about the Institution

Academic Programs
Cranbrook Academy of Art offers the Master of Fine Arts degree and the Master of Architecture degree, with an Artist in Residence heading each of the 11 departments. Specific information regarding the academic requirements and course descriptions may be found here.  The Academy’s academic facilities include studio buildings, a library, a central media lab, a woodshop, and fabrication facility, and the Cranbrook Art Museum. The Cranbrook Academy of Art website contains detailed information about the Academy’s programs, faculty, and facilities.

Cranbrook Academy of Art is a graduate school offering Master of Architecture and Master of Fine Arts degrees only. We do not offer bachelor degrees, associate degrees, or continuing education programs.

  •  School Costs
    2024-2025 tuition is $46,450 for incoming students; fees total $1,823.  Returning 2nd-year student tuition is $44,450; fees total $1,823.  Tuition and fee details are available here.  All international students are required to have health insurance and are assessed a fee ($2,144 for 2024-2025).  Domestic students are eligible to opt-in to purchase health insurance through
  • Cranbrook.
  • Withdrawal Procedures, Refunds, and Return of Aid

  • The Academy has set forth formal withdrawal procedures and a refund schedule. These are available in the Student Handbook and here. In accordance with federal regulations, the Academy performs a Return of Title IV Funds calculation for students who withdraw from the Academy during the course of a semester. This calculation is separate from the institution’s refund policy and may result in aid being returned with a balance being owed to the Academy.
  • Reapplication
    When a student has withdrawn from the Academy and wishes to reapply, a formal application review process will be conducted by a committee consisting of the Departmental Artist in Residence, the Dean of Academic Affairs, the Dean of Student Services, the Manager of Enrollment and Financial Aid and as determined by the circumstances, the Academy Director. The committee will review the application and consider evidence of further development in the candidates’ work samples and the candidates’ prior experience at the Academy. Additional documentation or assessment may be requested depending on the nature of the withdrawal and any prior expectations outlined at the time of a student’s withdrawal.   

  • Transfer Credit Policy
    Cranbrook Academy of Art does not accept transfer credit from any other institution. All students are required to complete their entire program of studies at the Academy. Note: Veteran students should consult the Veterans Information Bulletin for information specific to their situation.

  • Non-Profit Status
    Cranbrook Academy of Art is part of the Cranbrook Educational Community.   The Cranbrook Educational Community is a non-profit organization as described in Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code (the Code) and is exempted from federal income taxes on related income pursuant to Section 501(a) of the Code.

Retention and Graduation Rates

The average retention rate and average graduation rate are data points that may assist prospective students in evaluating student achievement. The retention rate is the percentage of students who begin in a given year and return in subsequent semesters.  For student cohorts beginning school Fall 2009 through Fall 2019, Cranbrook’s retention rate after one year is 96.65%; after two (student cohorts beginning Fall 2009 – Fall 2018), 95.91%. The graduation rate indicates the percentage of students who began the program who ultimately receive their degree; the averages cited here for student cohorts beginning school Fall 2009 through Fall 2017: Cranbrook Academy of Art’s graduation rate is 96.72% after three years; 95.52% completed their degree requirements in 2 years.

Student Body Diversity

2022-2023 student statistics: 63% females and 37% males. 26% of the student body includes international students. Of the U.S. citizens and Permanent Residents enrolled, the breakdown of self-reported major racial or ethnic groups is as follows: Hispanic or Latino, 8.3%; Asian, 6.3%; Black or African American, 11.5 %; Indian/Native American, 3.1%; White, 57.2%; 4.1% did not report ethnicity.

Annual Security Report and Fire Safety Report

The Academy’s annual public safety report includes statistics for the previous three years concerning reported crimes that occurred on campus and on public property within or immediately adjacent to and accessible from campus. The report also includes institutional policies concerning campus security, such as policies concerning drug and alcohol use, crime prevention, the reporting of crimes, hate crimes, sexual assault, domestic violence, intimate partner violence, stalking, emergency response and evacuation procedures, annual fire safety report and fire log, missing student notification, timely emergency notifications, and other matters. This report may be viewed here: 2023 Annual Security and Fire Safety Report. If desired, a paper copy may be obtained upon request from Public Safety (248-645-3170).

Title IX Disclosures

It is the policy of Cranbrook Academy of Art to comply with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 (“Title IX”), which states: No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance. Title IX prohibits sex discrimination in all university programs and activities, including, but not limited to, admissions, recruiting, financial aid, academic programs, student services, counseling and guidance, discipline, class assignment, grading, recreation, housing, and employment.

In accordance with Title IX requirements, Cranbrook Academy of Art prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in its educational programs, activities or employment practices. Prohibited sex discrimination includes sexual harassment and sexual violence. Retaliation for asserting or otherwise participating in claims of sex discrimination is prohibited.

This policy also addresses the requirements of the Campus Sexual Violence Elimination Act, or Campus SaVE Act (SaVE), a 2013 amendment to the federal Jeanne Clery Act. The SaVE Act addresses sexual violence in the form of sexual assault, domestic violence, dating violence, and stalking. For the purpose of this policy and the Academy’s handling of such cases, “Title IX” includes the concerns of the Campus SaVE Act; therefore, the prohibition against sexual violence includes the forms of sexual violence addressed in the SaVE Act.

Click here for our full Title IX Policy

Title IX Coordinator: Inquiries concerning the application of Title IX, for a copy of Cranbrook’s policy and its implementing regulations should be directed to the Cranbrook Academy of Art’s Title IX Liaison or Cranbrook Educational Community’s Title IX Coordinator:

Academy of Art Title IX Liaison
Lynn Tomaszweski, Dean of Academic Affairs
Cranbrook Academy of Art
39221 Woodward Avenue
Art Academy Administration, 2nd Floor
Bloomfield Hills, MI 48304
(248) 645-3582

Cranbrook Educational Community Title IX Coordinator
Beth Beadle, HR Manager
Cranbrook Educational Community
39221 Woodward Avenue
Cranbrook House, 1st Floor
Bloomfield Hills, MI  48304
(248) 645-3165

Students may also contact the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights, (800)421-3481 or ocr@ed.gov.

Title IX Protections: Title IX protects all people regardless of their gender from sex discrimination, which includes sexual harassment and violence.

Drug and Alcohol Abuse Awareness / Prevention

Cranbrook Academy of Art is committed to providing a safe, healthy learning community for all its members. The Academy recognizes that the improper and excessive use of alcohol and other drugs may interfere with the Academy’s mission by negatively affecting the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff. Studies have shown that problems such as vandalism, assault, harassment, sexual misconduct, and disruption of sleep and study space increase in relation to misuse. It is due to the harm caused by excessive and illegal use that the Academy has a vested interest in establishing policies to prohibit unlawful behavior and sanctions to address policy violations by members of the Academy community.

Under the Drug-Free Workplace Act and the Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act, the Academy is required to have an alcohol and other drug policy and distribute this policy annually to all employees and students. This Policy must outline the Academy’s prevention, education and intervention efforts, and consequences that may be applied by both the Academy and external authorities for policy violations. The law also requires that individuals be notified of possible health risks associated with the use and abuse of alcohol and other drugs, and sources of assistance for problems that may arise as a result of use.

Information regarding alcohol and drug abuse awareness/prevention is provided annually to all students individually at registration; students sign a form to indicate that they will read this information. Information is also posted for enrolled students on the Intranet page of this website.  The Cranbrook Educational Community Human Resources department provides relevant information to employees at the time of hire, as well as on an annual basis.

The Academy’s Drug and Alcohol Abuse Awareness / Prevention Policy may be found here:  Drug and Alcohol Abuse Awareness and Prevention.

The Academy’s most recent biennial review of alcohol and other drug programs (for 2017 and 2018) may be found here:  Biennial Review 2017 and 2018.  This review covers the academic years 2017-2018 and 2018-2019; it was completed in spring 2019.

Federal Financial Aid Penalties for Drug Violations

The following notice provides information about the Title IV federal financial aid penalties associated with drug-related offenses under section 484(r) of the Higher Education Act. It also describes how to regain eligibility for such financial aid after conviction of a drug-related offense. As prescribed in Section 484(r), a student convicted of any offense under any federal or state law involving the possession or sale of a controlled substance during a period of enrollment when he or she was receiving any grant, loan, or work assistance under Title IV will be ineligible to receive such assistance for the following period of time:

      • For one year from the date of conviction for the first offense involving the possession of a controlled substance;
      • For two years from the date of conviction for the second offense involving the possession of a controlled substance;
      • Indefinitely from the date of conviction for the third offense involving the possession of a controlled substance;
      • For two years from the date of conviction for the first offense involving the sale of a controlled substance;
      • Indefinitely from the date of conviction for the second offense involving the sale of a controlled substance.

A student whose eligibility has been suspended under the previous provision may resume eligibility before the end of the prescribed ineligibility period by one of the following means:

      • The student satisfactorily completes a drug rehabilitation program that complies with criteria the Secretary of Education prescribes and includes two unannounced drug tests;
      • Or the conviction is reversed, set aside, or otherwise rendered nugatory.

Penalties and Institutional Policies on Copyright Infringement

Unauthorized distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject students to civil and criminal liabilities. Click here for a summary of penalties for violation of federal copyright laws, as well as details of the Academy’s policies with respect to peer-to-peer file sharing (including disciplinary actions taken against students who engage in illegal downloading or unauthorized distribution of copyrighted materials using the Academy’s information technology system): Technology Use Policies. For links to many legal music pages where you can locate MP3s and other forms of digital music that are provided for free or at a small charge:  http://www.whymusicmatters.com. For links to several online services where you can download and watch television shows and movies ranging from major feature films to independent short subjects: WheretoWatch.org. While the Academy cannot endorse any particular Internet music or movie service provider, you may find good information from the organizations above, as well as from this website: http://www.educause.edu/legalcontent.

Credit Hour Requirements

Credit hours are calculated based on the Art Academy’s stated educational program components: academic programming and departmental activities. Each semester is 15 weeks in length. Because there are no formal classes, each semester is assigned 15 credits for the student’s major; a student either receives 15 credits or receives no credit in the major for a given semester. The breakdown of expectations for student engagement to receive a passing grade, and thus receive 15 credits, is as follows:

Studio Work and Research:

12 credits per semester; one credit hour equals 45 hours of work in the studio.

While some faculty members may use focused projects, for the most part, students are expected to work on self-initiated projects. Individual critiques, both group and one-on-one with the Artist-in-Residence, are included in studio requirements. All students prepare for annual formal reviews by faculty from other departments, as well as for their degree exhibition and Master’s Statement.

A minimum of 36 hours per week of independent studio work is expected.

Lecture and Discussion:

3 credits per semester

Includes the Academy’s Critical Studies and Humanities program, the Academy’s Professional Practices program, visiting artists and critics, written critiques, and reading/discussion sessions.

Three hours of participation in a formal setting and 6 hours of individual work and preparation outside of the formal setting, for a minimum of 9 hours per week, are expected.

Departmental Activities:

Additional hours are expected to be spent in various departmental activities, including field trips, attendance at off-campus lectures, and sessions with visiting artists and critics.

Departmental activities augment the 45 hours per week expected in the studio and in lecture and discussion activities.

In addition to the required 15 credits per semester in the student’s major, students have opportunities to earn one credit by completing a semester-long Elective in a discipline outside the major. The academic content of and participation in the Elective is determined by the student and the Elective department’s Artist-in-Residence.


1 credit per semester (optional)

General expectations are that a student in an Elective will join the department in critiques, seminars, and discussions as well as in events that may be a part of both their major and elective areas.

At least 3 hours per week of formal participation and/or studio work and preparation is expected for students in an Elective.

CARES Act funding received by Cranbrook Academy of Art

Visit our COVID-19 page for the most recent CARES Act funding details