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Frequently Asked Questions

Learn About CFS

WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO SEE WHAT THE COLORADO FILM SCHOOL IS ALL ABOUT?

Read the Director’s Letter, schedule a tour, watch the CFS Promo, have a look at degrees and programs, and watch student work on Vimeo and YouTube.

I HAVE NEVER VISITED OR TOURED CFS, HOW DO I SCHEDULE A TOUR?

Please visit the tour page and check on available dates and times. If the dates and times below are not convenient for you, please call us at (303) 340-7321 or email admissions@coloradofilmschool.co to arrange a tour. Although tour staff is limited, we will do our best to accommodate all prospective students.

HOW LONG HAS THE SCHOOL BEEN AROUND?

The Colorado Film School (formerly Colorado Film/Video Instructional Studios) was started in 1993.

Campus Life

HOW MANY STUDENTS DO YOU ADMIT?

We have a cap of 120 new students per semester. This is based around our commitment toward small class sizes, as well as the size of our facilities.

WHAT IS AN AVERAGE CLASS SIZE?

Most CFS classes are capped at 16 students. Some film appreciation and business courses may get up to 30 or more.

HOW MANY STUDENTS CURRENTLY ATTEND THE SCHOOL?

There are approximately 350 students currently enrolled at CFS.

DO YOU HAVE HOUSING OPTIONS FOR CFS STUDENTS?

Many housing options may be found online here. We do not maintain official student housing, but CFS students may choose to enter into an arrangement with The Regency for both a dorm based living environment and meal plans. The majority of students do tend to enter living arrangements with other students, and we maintain a housing board in conjunction with our Facebook group called CFS Roomies.

DO I NEED A COMPUTER, CAMERA, HARD DRIVE, ETC. BEFORE I ATTEND?

We do not require that students purchase any equipment before coming to the school. If you are interested in buying equipment we recommend waiting until you begin classes so you can talk with students and teachers about the latest technologies. Although it is not required to buy any equipment, students are encouraged to have an external USB3 or Thunderbolt equipped hard drive. Backing up work on these external drives is always recommended in the case of any unforeseen issues. CFS recommends high quality hard drives such as those by G-Tech or Lacie, with either at least 7200 rpm spinning drive or SSD with USB3 or Thunderbolt connections.

Additionally if you would like to purchase a computer prior to your arrival at school, we recommend either the Apple MacBook Pro Laptop with an Apple Flash Storage hard drive and 16GB RAM running FCP X or the Apple iMac with i7 processor also with an Apple Flash Storage or Fusion hard drive, 16GB ram, and running FCP X. However, you will have more than adequate access to computer stations and software at the school.

We DO NOT recommend that students purchase their own equipment such as cameras and lights. CFS makes substantial investments to have the latest equipment and due to how quickly technology changes it is possible that any equipment you bought when you started the program would be obsolete in just a few years.

WHAT KIND OF EQUIPMENT DOES THE SCHOOL HAVE?

Take a look at the Equipment page of the website.

Career

WHAT ABOUT JOB PLACEMENT?

CFS does not have job placement services at the school, but the school does have a strong integration with the local industry and many contacts in Los Angeles, Louisiana, New Mexico, New York, and across Colorado. There are internships offered at a number of the local employers. We encourage students to take advantage of these opportunities to show your professionalism to potential employers. Click here for highlights from The State of Colorado’s Creative Economy, a 2008 report commissioned by the Colorado Council on the Arts, a division of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.

Our Alumni and Facebook pages offer networking opportunities with faculty and alumni working in the industry throughout the world. Visit our Jobs Blog for recent job postings.

IS THE SCHOOL INVOLVED IN LOCAL FILM/VIDEO PRODUCTIONS?

CFS students regularly participate both as interns and paid cast and crew for productions in and around Denver. In addition, the school has produced the feature film Tiger Street. Some of the films our students and alumni have worked on include:

Hateful Eight
Time Lapse
Dear Eleanor
Gone Girl
The Avengers
The Amazing Spider-Man
The Muppets (2011)

The Walking Dead
American Idol
Resident Evil: Retribution
Think Like a Man
Underworld: Awakening
Criminal Minds
Total Recall

Gone
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
Katy Perry: Part of Me
Captain America: The First Avenger
Gulliver’s Travels
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters (2013)
The Wackness

CAN I ATTEND CFS ON A PART TIME BASIS?

Yes, many of our students have previous work or social commitments and attend less than full-time. Please be aware that few courses are available at night and none of our courses are offered on the weekends.

I WORK FULL TIME. DO YOU ACCOMMODATE STUDENTS WHO NEED COURSES ON EVENINGS/WEEKENDS?

We offer very few courses at night and none of our courses are offered on the weekends. Classes run Monday through Thursday between 9am and 10pm. Working students need to be prepared to make time available during normal business hours in order to complete their degree requirements.

Admissions Process

CAN I STILL BE ADMITTED TO CFS IF I DON’T HAVE PRIOR EXPERIENCE IN FILM?

Yes, we welcome newcomers to film work, as well as returning professionals. We provide comprehensive training for anyone looking to explore film and video media.

DOES CFS ACCEPT FIRST-YEAR AND TRANSFER APPLICATIONS FOR SPRING SEMESTER?

Yes. See our admission page for deadlines.

HOW DO I APPLY FOR ADMISSION TO CFS?

Begin your application process here. There are two applications: CCA Admissions Application, CFS Supplemental Application. Both applications must be completed and all supporting documentation, letters of recommendation, transcripts, and test scores as applicable, must be received by CFS Admissions by the posted deadline for the term of application. All applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible and should follow up with CFS Admissions to ensure all required application materials have been received. Paper copies of the Colorado Film School Supplemental Application will NOT be accepted. International students have additional requirements – see here for details.

IS THERE AN APPLICATION FEE TO APPLY TO CFS?

No, the application for the Community College of Aurora, and the CFS application supplement are both free and online.

WHEN SHOULD I APPLY FOR ADMISSION TO CFS?

As soon as possible. Applications for the following year become available each August.

Priority deadline for Fall is February 15;
Regular submission deadline for Fall is July 1;
Priority deadline for Spring is October 15;
Regular submission deadline for Spring is November 30.

WHAT ARE CFS’s ADMISSION DEADLINES?

US and International Students:
Application Deadlines (priority) – all required materials must be received by:
Fall = February 15
Spring = October 15 (prior year)

Application Deadlines (regular) – all required materials must be received by:
Fall = July 1
Spring = November 30 (prior year)

International students must also work with the International Student Advisor at CCA to complete additional paperwork, testing, and fee requirements. Note: you must be accepted into the main college CCA, accepted into one of the Colorado Film School programs of study as defined by receiving an acceptance notification from the Colorado Film School, AND issued an I-20 before you will be eligible to register in film courses. Visit our admission page for more information.

I AM CURRENTLY A JUNIOR IN HIGH SCHOOL. WHEN SHOULD I APPLY TO CFS?

Fall of your senior year, after having completed your ACT/SAT testing. The priority deadline for Fall is February 15.

I AM CURRENTLY A STUDENT AT THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE OF AURORA. I AM NOT CURRENTLY IN THE FILM PROGRAM BUT WOULD LIKE TO CHANGE MY MAJOR. DO I STILL NEED TO COMPLETE AN APPLICATION FOR CFS?

Yes, current CCA students must apply for admission and be accepted into a CFS Program of Study before they are permitted to declare a film degree and register in any film courses.

I AM A CFS READMIT STUDENT – I HAVE TAKEN CFS FILM COURSES IN THE PAST. MUST I COMPLETE THE CFS SUPPLEMENTAL APPLICATION?

Students who are already declared as a film major and have attended film/video media courses within the last three semesters will not have to complete the CFS Supplemental Application. Those that have not yet declared a major in film or have not attended in the last three semesters must apply for admission into the Colorado Film School regardless of having taken film courses in the past. They will not be able to register in any film/video media courses until they have been admitted into a current CFS program through the new admissions process. Students who have not attended in the last three semesters will also be required to complete a new CCA Admissions Application. Apply online here.

I ONLY WANT TO TAKE ONE OR TWO CLASSES IN FILM, DO I STILL NEED TO APPLY TO CFS OR CAN I JUST REGISTER FOR THE SPECIFIC CLASSES I WANT?

Anyone planning to take Film/Video Media courses will be required to complete the CFS Supplemental Application and go through the admissions process. CFS students are required to be declared in one of our degree or certificate programs. Accepted film industry professionals seeking specific continuing education may receive special consideration depending on prior experience and knowledge, reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I MISS THE SUBMISSION DEADLINE?

There are two deadlines for each term of admission: priority deadline and late submission deadline. All applicants are encouraged to apply as soon as possible and should follow up with CFS Admissions to ensure all required application materials have been received. If you miss the first deadline, we continue to review late submission applications on a rolling admissions basis as time and space permits. If you miss the late submission deadline, please meet with an academic advisor to discuss General Education coursework for the current term and consider applying for the following semester when the application for the following term becomes available.

IS IT POSSIBLE TO DELAY OR DEFER MY ADMISSION TO A FUTURE TERM?

No. Applicants need to apply within one year of the start of their desired admission term. If during the process of applying to CFS you find that you are unable to commit to the term selected, contact CFS Admissions at (303) 340-7321 or admissions@coloraofilmschool.co. You may be required to submit a new application.

WHAT HAPPENS IF I APPLY AFTER THE REGULAR DECISION DEADLINE?

Applications received after the Regular Decision deadline of their desired term of entry are considered late and are reviewed on a space available basis up until the late submission deadline. Students submitting applications during this time should be prepared to re-apply for a later semester if no acceptance is given before the first week of class. All applicants are highly encouraged to check the status of their application until they have received confirmation from CFS that their application is complete and requirements are met. Check the status here: (303) 340-7321 or admissions@coloradofilmschool.co.

HOW DO I TRANSFER MY PRIOR COLLEGE COURSEWORK TOWARDS MY DEGREE/CERTIFICATE PROGRAM AT CFS?

Once accepted and registered in film courses, you must complete a Transfer Credit Evaluation Request online. Please feel free to discuss this post-registration process with one of our academic advisors at (303) 340-7093 or email CFSadmissions@ccaurora.edu.

NOTE: no college credits will be evaluated for transfer during the admissions evaluation.

WHAT IS THE CFS APPLICATION REVIEW COMMITTEE LOOKING FOR IN AN APPLICANT?

We are actively seeking students who are imaginative storytellers that are focused, energetic, ambitious, and eager to hone their professional skills for entry into a highly competitive field. We expect that all students be at college level when they enter any Colorado Film School program.

IF I AM NOT ADMITTED TO CFS, CAN I REAPPLY AT A LATER DATE?

Yes. Applicants who do not meet admissions criteria may still enroll in the Community College of Aurora. As applicable, a student who was not accepted into the CFS program may be provided with a recommended progression of CCA general education courses, as determined by their academic standing. After passing the recommended courses with a “C” or higher, the student may reapply for CFS admission to be re-evaluated.

IF I AM ADMITTED TO CFS, WHAT DEGREE AND CERTIFICATE OPTIONS DO I HAVE?

We offer several degrees and certificates. The degree programs are designed to award AAS degrees with an emphasis in either: Writing and Directing, Writing and Producing, Post Production, Cinematography, Acting/Directing for the Screen, or Screenwriting. The Certificate Programs in these same areas supply training to those wanting to begin working immediately in the film and video industries. Visit our Classes & Programs page for more info.

WHAT DO I DO AFTER I HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED TO CFS?
  • Sign and submit both your Attendance Confirmation and Declaration of Intent Forms (attached in your notification email);
  • RSVP to the mandatory Film School Orientation;
  • Meet with an advisor to prepare for registration, apply permissions to your account, and discuss transfer of any prior college credit or advanced placement;
  • Register for classes to set your class schedule—be sure to register early (students may not register until they have met with an academic advisor);
  • Make payment arrangements for registered courses;
  • Film School Orientation is required of all students who have been accepted into a film program of study, which must be completed the Friday prior to their first semester (students must be registered PRIOR to this Orientation).

Application Questions

I ALREADY HAVE A BACHELOR’S (OR ADVANCED) DEGREE. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

Until we have a MFA program in place, you should pursue a Certificate or Associate of Applied Science program. Our AAS programs are closely modeled after an MFA.

I JUST WANT PROFESSIONAL SKILLS. I DON’T WANT ANY GENERAL EDUCATION COURSES OR DEGREES. WHAT’S THE FASTEST WAY INTO THE JOB MARKET?

You should take a Certificate program through CCA. The Certificate programs include 48 credits (16, 3-credit courses).

DO I NEED TO SUBMIT TRANSCRIPTS?

Yes – please submit OFFICIAL* sealed copies from all prior educational institutions to CFS Admissions by mail:

ATTN: CFS Admissions
9075 E Lowry Blvd
Denver, CO 80230.

NOTE: Electronic copies are not advised. If electronic copies are your only option, they must be submitted to: records@ccaurora.edu

ALSO NOTE: a single transcript showing transfer credits from prior institutions will not suffice.

You are highly encouraged to also upload unofficial copies of your transcripts to your CFS Supplemental Application to expedite the review of your application.

Be prepared to submit transcripts from all prior institutions and be sure to list them on your CFS Supplemental Application.

If you have credits from the Community College of Aurora, we request that you submit Unofficial Transcripts. To submit these, please log into MyCCA, click on the “Student” tab, then find the portal for “My Student Stuff”, then drop down “My Grades and Transcripts”, then click on the link that reads “Unofficial Transcript”. Save as PDF and upload to your CFS Supplemental Application.

See our admissions page for more details on the application process.

AM I REQUIRED TO SUBMIT OFFICIAL HIGH SCHOOL TRANSCRIPTS?

High school transcripts are necessary if an applicant has no prior college experience or has attempted less than 30 credits of college-level coursework.

I HAVE A GED DIPLOMA BUT DO NOT HAVE A HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMA. WHAT DO I DO?

Submit Official Transcripts from your GED institution.

HOW DO I CHECK THE STATUS OF MY APPLICATION?
  • To check the status of your CCA Admissions Application, contact the CCA Admissions, Registration & Records Office by phone at (303) 360-4797 or email Admissions@ccaurora.edu.
  • For the CFS Application, applicants are advised to contact CFS Admissions to verify receipt of all required academic credentials.
  • Applicants can monitor the status of their letters of recommendation for their CFS Supplemental Application Log into your DecisionDesk application and review your Letters of Recommendation section.
    • If the recommendation is submitted, you will see, “Completed” and the date of completed under the recommender’s name.
    • If their recommendation has not yet been submitted, it will read, “Sent” and the date the link was last sent to your recommender.
    • It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure the email address provided is accurate. NOTE: The link sent to your recommenders will be coming from no-reply@decisiondesk.com.
WHAT IF I DO NOT HAVE AN ACADEMIC REFERENCE FOR MY LETTER OF RECOMMENDATION?

You may use a professional reference to complete your academic letter of recommendation if you are unable to provide an academic reference. However, faculty reviewers will observe higher scrutiny of your academic credentials during the evaluation of your application.

MY RECOMMENDER CANNOT OPEN THE LINK SENT FROM DECISIONDESK. WHAT SHOULD I DO?

First, make sure your recommender is using Google Chrome, Firefox, or Safari web browser. Some institutions can prohibit the opening of links in emails. To work around this issue, please either:

  1. Request a different email address from your recommender OR
  2. Have them forward the email to a personal account and open it on a computer at a non-work location.
DO YOU REQUIRE ACT, SAT, CCPT AND/OR ACCUPLACER SCORES FOR TRANSFER STUDENTS?

Yes, if you have no prior college-level English and/or no college-level Math completed at a regionally accredited institution. However, test scores must be less than five (5) years old to be used to meet college-ready standards.

I HAVE NOT TAKEN THE ACT OR SAT. IS THERE A PLACEMENT TEST I CAN TAKE SO THAT I MAY BE CONSIDERED FOR ADMISSION TO CFS?

Yes, you may take the Accuplacer or the Community College Placement Test (CCPT). Testing is available at numerous institutions. For more information, please click here.

HOW DO I ACQUIRE COPIES OF MY TEST SCORES?

ACT: Contact the high school where you took your ACT scores or visit ACT’s website at http://www.actstudent.org/scores
SAT: http://www.collegeboard.org
Advanced Placement: https://www.collegeboard.org
International Baccalaureate: http://www.ibo.org
Accuplacer: Contact the institution where you took the Accuplacer test or request through https://www.collegeboard.org
CCPT: Contact the institution where you took the Community College Placement Test.
TOEFL: http://www.ets.org
IELTS: http://www.ielts.org

HOW SHOULD I SUBMIT MY TEST SCORES?

For ACT/SAT/ACCUPLACER:
Unofficial copies should be uploaded to your CFS Supplemental Application in PDF format.

For International Baccalaureate Certificate, TOEFL, IELTS, or CollegeBoard Exam Scores, submit OFFICIAL sealed copies by mail to:

ATTN: CFS Admissions
9075 E Lowry Blvd
Denver, CO 80230.

To expedite the review of your application to CFS, please also upload unofficial copies in PDF format of your advanced placement exam transcripts, TOEFL scores, IELTS scores, and/or your IB Certificate to your CFS Supplemental Application.
WHAT ARE THE MINIMUM ACT/SAT OR ACCUPLACER/CCPT SCORES FOR ELIGIBILITY?

Qualifying test scores include:
ACT English: 18+ AND Reading: 17+; Math: 19+.
SAT Evidence-Based Reading and Writing: 440+; Math: 460+.
Accuplacer Reading: 80+ AND Sentence Skills: 95+; Math: 85+.
CCPT Essay: 5+ AND Reading Exam: 96+; Math: 106

All CFS applicants are expected to be college-ready in both Math and English before being admitted into one of the CFS programs of study. College-ready is defined by having completed or are eligible to enter into ENG 121 and MAT 120. College-readiness can be met in one of several different ways – one of which is passing test scores. Please see “CFS Admission Criteria” on our admissions page for more college-ready options.

I HAVE INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE CREDITS, HOW DO I RECEIVE CREDIT AND/OR USE FOR COLLEGE-READINESS?

Request IB transcripts online here. Send all official scores to CFS Admissions by mail. Unofficial copies may be uploaded to your CFS Supplement, but official copies must be submitted to be considered for college credit.

I HAVE ADVANCED PLACEMENT (AP) CREDITS, HOW DO I RECEIVE CREDIT AND/OR USE FOR COLLEGE-READINESS?

To request College Board AP results, please contact the College Board online here, or call (888) 225-5427. Please note: if you participated in Advanced Placement or International Baccalaureate programs in high school and have taken the national exams, you may be eligible to have your scores reviewed for transfer credit. For more information, please contact a CCA academic advisor by email at OnlineAdvisor@ccaurora.edu, or call (303) 360-4797. Send all official scores to CFS Admissions by mail. Unofficial copies may be uploaded to your CFS Supplement, but official copies must be submitted to be considered for college credit.

HOW DO I KNOW IF MY APPLICATION IS CONSIDERED COMPLETE AND READY TO EVALUATE?

It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all application materials and supporting documentation have been received by CFS Admissions by the posted deadline. CFS Admissions considers an application complete when an applicant has:

  • Completed the CCA Admissions Application;
  • Completed the CFS Supplemental Application;
  • Both letters of recommendation have been received by CFS Admissions;
  • All prior transcripts and test scores have been received by CFS Admissions;
  • College-readiness standards in both Math and English are met which must be demonstrated within the inclusive application materials;
  • NOTE: additional documentation/information may be requested by CFS Admissions.

As a courtesy, CFS Admissions may attempt to contact you to request missing information/documentation. Students are advised to check the status of their application immediately and until they receive confirmation their application is complete. Please check the status of your application here:

(303) 340-7321 or admissions@coloradofilmschool.co

WHAT CAN I DO WHILE MY APPLICATION IS BEING REVIEWED?

Assuming the application is complete, consider the following:

WHEN AND HOW WILL I BE NOTIFIED IF I HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED?
  • CCA will send an acceptance letter by mail within two weeks of completion of the CCA Admissions Application. This does not automatically admit you into the Colorado Film School. You must complete all steps as outlined on CFS’s Admissions page.
  • CFS will notify applicants separately by email. Applicants who submitted their application on-time by the regular submission deadline will be notified by the posted notification dates for applications that were considered “complete” by the posted deadline for the term of application. Any application received after the posted regular deadline are considered late and will be reviewed as in the order that they are received as part of rolling admission until all seats are filled for that term.
  • Note: We do not guarantee a specific notification date for late applications, therefore late applicants need to be prepared to re-apply for a later semester if their application is not complete before one week prior to classes. If you are in this situation, please contact CFS Admissions to discuss your status and options: (303) 340-7321 or email admissions@coloradofilmschool.co

Paying for College

HOW MUCH IS TUITION?

We have a very low bottom line with similar quality of equipment and instruction compared to other highly reputable institutions such as USC, UCLA, Columbia, NYU, and Chapman to name a few. More information is shown on the Tuition page.

HOW DO I GET FINANCIAL ASSISTANCE?

There are many ways to get an affordable college education in Colorado. There are federal and state grants and loans, privately funded scholarships, work-study opportunities, veterans’ benefits, and other forms of financial aid. Click here to learn more about the options CCA offers. For details on CFS-specific scholarships, please see, “Does CFS and/or CCA offer Scholarships?”

HOW DO I CONTACT FINANCIAL AID?
  • (303) 360-4709
  • FinancialAid@ccaurora.edu
  • CCA Financial Aid Office, CentreTech Campus, 16000 E CentreTech Pkwy, Aurora, CO 80011
  • Lowry Student Services, West Quad Bldg 903, 710 Alton Way, Denver, CO 80230
WHOM DO I CONTACT TO DISCUSS AND REVIEW MY RESIDENCY STATUS FOR TUITION PURPOSES?

Please refer to this page at the Colorado Department of Higher Education for any general questions about residency status online here. If you have met the requirements listed there, then speak with the CCA Admissions, Registration and Records Office about updating your residency status at (303) 360-4797 or admissions@ccaurora.edu.

WHAT IS THE WESTERN UNDERGRADUATE EXCHANGE?

If you are a resident of a Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) state, you are eligible to request a reduced Western Undergraduate Exchange (WUE) tuition rate of 150% of the resident rate at more than 150 participating institutions in the West. Search our WUE database to see which institutions participate, and which programs are available at the WUE rate.

WICHE states include: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wyoming, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.

Please check with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education’s website here for further information on WUE tuition.

HOW CAN I FIND OUT IF I AM QUALIFIED FOR THE WESTERN UNDERGRADUATE EXCHANGE (WUE) TUITION RATE?

Contact the Admissions, Registration and Records Office at the CentreTech Campus Administration Building, Room A102, by email or call 303 360-4797, or Lowry Student Services, West Quad Room 119, or call 303-340-7093. Please check with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education’s website here for further information on WUE tuition.

DOES CFS AND/OR CCA OFFER SCHOLARSHIPS? WHERE CAN I FIND MORE INFO?

Yes. We offer a modest tuition scholarship to the winner of our annual Colorful Colorado Film Festival for Youth, which is a festival open to current high school and middle school students in Colorado. We also offer small tuition scholarships to the winners of Best Production I and Best Production II at our semi-annual Colorado Film School Student Shows each May and December for continuing students. Through the CCA Foundation, additional scholarships are available for new and continuing students. Visit CCA’s Paying for College page for more information on scholarships, grants, loans, and work-study.

DOES CFS ACCEPT OUTSIDE SCHOLARSHIPS?

Yes – all 3rd party scholarships must be submitted through the CCA Fiscal Affairs Office. Contact (303) 360-4759 or (303) 340-7552 or Cashiers.CCA@ccaurora.edu for more details.