California Institute of the Arts

Envisioning creative teaching applications for a dynamic arts education



Recognized as one of the most esteemed arts institutions in the U.S., California
Institute of the Arts (“CalArts”) has evolved into one of the most forward-thinking
centers for the arts and other creative felds. Established in 1970 by legendary
animator Walt Disney, the school was intended to be an innovative hub where
professional creatives can advance their practice and develop the latest creative
technologies. Students can pursue BFA, MFA, MA, and DMA degrees in a range of
felds, such as visual, interactive, media, and performing arts.

Over 70 programs offered across 6 Schools

Weekly Gallery Nights every Thursday

Ranked #9 in Best Graduate Fine Arts programs

Kannu is a registered trademark of Kadenze, Inc.


An organized and fexible platform to support learning across
diverse disciplines such as fne art, animation, music, and theatre

As a nationally-ranked arts school, CalArts desired a modern, adaptable LMS with a broad functionality to supplement the wide scope of their teaching practices. The concept of a LMS was new and promising tool to integrate in pedagogy. Some primary features they were looking for include storage for lecture and media materials and a fexible, customizable platform for instructors.


CalArts has set up 2 portals featuring over 500 courses hosted
on Kannu, with over 2,900 coursework submissions

Boasting a slew of educational tools and features, Kannu was seen as the optimal LMS of choice for CalArts. They decided to set up two portals on Kannu, one for on campus classes and one for distance learning. Kannu’s expansive breadth of features such as user management and multimedia embedding provides countless possibilities for the type of content instructors can make and offer to their students, like lecture notes and in-depth videos.

Kannu is a registered trademark of Kadenze, Inc.

With over 100 CalArts instructors who have provided courses on Kannu, the platform stands as a wonderful success for CalArts and its evolving pedagogy. Kannu’s centralized student dashboard allows learners to access active learning tools like student galleries to improve knowledge retention, connect with peers, and submit their work.

Associate Dean at CalArts Michael Bryant views the additional steps in course setup as more of a benefit than a cost, praising Kannu as an “investment in [his] ability to offer content to students”. A high-quality LMS is a great example of how powerful edtech software can offer solutions to anticipate new, unforeseen uses and teaching applications.

Key Features

Efficient technological support for streamlined user experience

Customizable, organized platform to host lecture materials

Capacity for diverse learning tools such as text resources and videos

Kannu’s interactive learning features like
discussion forums and user portfolios show
how a powerful LMS can yield opportunities for
schools to experiment with their pedagogical
approach. CalArts’ success with Kannu’s
content authoring tools has led them to create
engaging ways of structuring their curricula
and enhance students’ online educational

Kannu is a registered trademark of Kadenze, Inc.