Get a solid foundation in the technical and visual aspects of digital photography. Learn image capture, editing, composition, lighting basics and more from experienced professionals.

This program is perfect for:

  • Students new to photography, or interested in receiving formal instruction
  • Individuals interested in learning the technical and visual aspects of digital photography
  • Creatives who are considering adding photography to their practice
  • Professionals looking to take their photography to the next level

What you can learn.

  • Study the core principles of effective photography, including digital image capture, editing, composition and lighting
  • Learn the technical and aesthetic backgrounds and processes that make a strong photographer
  • Cover topics including aperture, shutter speed, depth of field, focus, ISO, file management, lighting skills, composition and digital imaging
  • Discuss the paradigm shifts in technology, workflow, social relevance, usage and art that are changing the very nature of photography

Learn the fundamentals of digital photography.

amazing photo taken from inside an ice cave

The UCLA Extension Photography Certificate program keeps pace with developments transforming the industry, including image editing, asset management, equipment and AI image-making.

Designed to serve both novice and experienced freelancers, as well as portrait and event photographers, this certificate gives students a solid foundation in the technical and visual aspects of digital photography, with the goal of producing technically proficient photographers possessing strong concept development skills. Taught by industry professionals, the courses offer participants personalized feedback and critique in a small class setting.

This certificate is eligible for Veterans Administration Education Benefits.

Format: In Person and Online. Can be completed 100% online.
Duration: 1.5 years (part-time)

Expect more from your education.

Learn from Industry Leaders

"I enjoy creating a shared space for information and experimentation where students can generate the momentum that propels them into a robust, self-generative practice."

Craig Havens

Our course curriculum is developed in cooperation with UCLA’s Department of Design Media Arts (DMA)

The program is equally conceptual and hands-on, fostering a unique approach to the intersection of art and technology.

These new techniques that I was exposed to are not only interesting, but they allowed me to grow and expand creatively in ways that would not otherwise be possible.

Joe Stehly
Photography Certificate Graduate


Click below to view the required and elective courses, if applicable, for this program.

Required Courses

It is recommended that you begin with Photography I, as it is a prerequisite for other courses in the program. Your final course should be Photography Portfolio Workshop, so that you can apply everything you’ve learned.

ART X 438.9
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ART X 439.90
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ART X 440.22
Typically Offered: Winter, Summer
ART X 428.56
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring
ART X 450.37
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring
Students must complete 1 elective course.
ARCH X 467.11A
Typically Offered: Fall, Spring, Summer, Winter
ART X 428
Typically Offered: Summer
ART X 440.21
Typically Offered: Fall
ART X 440.80
Typically Offered: Winter
ART X 441.56
ART X 482.14
Typically Offered: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer
ART X 486.55

Estimated Cost Breakdown

All courses in this program are paid for individually, unless otherwise noted. An application form is required to establish candidacy in this program. From the 'Apply Now' button, complete the online application and pay the application fee if applicable.

Application & Candidacy Fee


Estimated Program Tuition


Estimated program textbook/materials


*The Application & Candidacy Fee establishes your candidacy in the program for a period of time covering normal progress toward completion and may allow you to access a variety of program benefits.

**Federal Financial Aid Gainful Employment Disclosures

The U.S. Department of Education requires colleges and universities to disclose certain information for any financial aid eligible program that, “prepares students for gainful employment in a recognized occupation”. This information includes program costs; occupations that the program prepares students to enter; occupational profiles; on time completion rate; and for the most recent award year: the number of students who have completed the program, the number of students who complete the program within the estimated duration, the job placement rate, and the median Title IV and private loan debt incurred by those who complete the program. For gainful employment information for this program, visit our Financial Aid page.

Contact Us

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