Home / Guides / 105 / 105 – OCAD University

105 icon

105 – OCAD University


Program information changes regularly. Refer to the application and the university’s website for up-to-date details.


  • You may apply to only 1 program.
  • Email is our primary communication tool. We will send important messages outlining the next steps required to complete your application and other information to the email address associated with your application.
  • After you submit your application, add the “ocadu.ca” domain to your email “safe senders” list and check your junk mail and spam folders regularly.

About OCAD University


Established in 1876, OCAD University was the first school in Canada dedicated exclusively to the education of professional artists in fine and commercial art.

Today, we are one of the largest art and design universities in North America.

Specializing in creativity and innovation, we are building on our traditional, studio-based strengths and adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinary studies, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies.

Special Characteristics

We are located in the heart of Toronto, one of the world’s most multicultural cities and Canada’s largest centre for art, design, culture and business. We encourage our students to take full advantage of the university’s downtown location, which links to an extended campus of design studios, art galleries, artist-run centres and museums.

Our professors are leading artists, designers and scholars who represent Canada’s largest art and design faculty. Our unique learning environment allows students to receive individual attention and work with educators in smaller class settings. The 4,000+ student population represents a wide variety of geographical, cultural and educational backgrounds, and creates a vibrant, energetic atmosphere.

Undergraduate Degrees and Majors

We offer Honours Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Design (BDes) and Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degrees with the following majors and specializations:

  • Advertising (BDes)
  • Creative Writing (BFA)
  • Criticism & Curatorial Practice (BFA)
  • Digital Futures (BDes or BFA)
  • Drawing & Painting (BFA)
  • Environmental Design: Interior Design (BDes)
  • Environmental Design: Non-Specialized (BDes)
  • Experimental Animation (BFA)
  • Graphic Design (BDes)
  • Illustration (BDes)
  • Indigenous Visual Culture (BFA)
  • Industrial Design (BDes)
  • Integrated Media (BFA)
  • Material Art & Design (Jewellery/Metalsmithing and Textiles) (BDes or BFA)
  • Photography (BFA)
  • Printmaking & Publications (BFA)
  • Sculpture/Installation (BFA)
  • Visual and Critical Studies (Honours BA – Art History)

Read more about our degrees, majors, specializations, minors, courses and graduate degrees.

Entry Point and Application Deadline

The fall semester, beginning in September each year, is the only entry point for all programs.

The recommended deadline to apply for all programs is February 1, 2023. We will consider applications received after February 1, 2023, as space permits, but some programs may not accept applications after this deadline.

You may apply to only 1 program at OCAD University.

Academic Entrance Requirements and Admission Information

Ontario Applicants

We require an Ontario Secondary School Diploma with an overall academic average of at least 70% in six 4U/M courses, including ENG4U (or EAE4U) with a minimum final grade of 70%.

Read more about Ontario applicants.

Canadian Applicants from Outside Ontario

We require a senior high school graduation equivalent to Grade 12 in Ontario, with an overall academic average of at least 70%, including a university preparatory Grade 12 English with a minimum final grade of 70%.

Read more about applying from outside Ontario.

International Applicants

We require a senior high school graduation, equivalent to Grade 12 in Ontario, with an overall academic average of at least 70%. We also require satisfactory documentation to demonstrate proficiency in English through an acceptable academic English course and/or a language proficiency test.

Read more about international applicants.

Mature Applicants

You are a mature applicant if you have not engaged in formal education for at least 2 years and are at least 20 years of age by September 1 of the intended enrollment year.

We consider previous educational experience in reaching an admission decision for individuals applying under this category. Official transcripts from all secondary and postsecondary institutions attended must be submitted.

You must demonstrate proficiency in English through an acceptable academic English course and/or a language proficiency test.

Upper-year applicants in this category must submit appropriate transcripts and course syllabi. International applicants are eligible for admission as mature applicants and must satisfy proof of English proficiency.

Read more about mature applicants.

Upper-year Applicants

If you are applying to an upper year (year 2 or 3), you must have at least 1 year of postsecondary education that is the equivalent of the first year of the selected program.

This equivalency must be documented by transcripts and course syllabi from recognized, accredited educational institutions.

Year-level placement and acceptance is based on the strength of your portfolio/supplemental application and academic history. You must also provide proof of English proficiency through an acceptable academic English course and/or a language proficiency test.

Read more about upper-year applicants.

Articulation Agreement

You are eligible to apply using this category only if you qualify for current articulation agreements or transfer pathways with OCAD University.

Read more about OCAD University’s articulation agreements.

English-language Proficiency Requirements

The language/medium of instruction at OCAD University is English and it is important for your success at OCAD U that you demonstrate proficiency in both spoken and written English.

In addition to meeting academic entrance requirements and English prerequisite course requirements (if applicable), all applicants whose first language is not English are required to submit results of an English-language proficiency test, complete an approved language pathway program, or provide proof of qualifying for an exemption from this requirement.

Read more about English-language proficiency requirements.

Program Notes – Bachelor of Arts

The Honours Bachelor of Arts in Visual and Critical Studies (Art History) is a degree program at OCAD University that officially launched in September 2014.

In addition to academic requirements, there are supplementary writing sample assignments required for admission to our Visual and Critical Studies (BA) program. We will notify you of further details and deadlines by email.

Read more about submission of the supplemental application.

Program Notes – Bachelor of Design and Bachelor of Fine Arts

Admission to our Bachelor of Design and Bachelor of Fine Arts degree programs is based primarily on a portfolio submission and assessment. Portfolio requirements may vary by program. All offers based on the strength of the portfolio are conditional upon successful completion of the academic entrance requirements.

You must submit a portfolio to be considered for admission, and we review portfolios primarily in February each year. We will notify you of further details and deadlines by email.

Read more about specific portfolio guidelines and submission methods.

Supplemental Fee

We require a $90 non‑refundable supplemental evaluation fee to process each application. Submit this fee directly to the OUAC.

Note: The OUAC will not process your application until you pay the supplemental fee.

Financial Aid and Awards

Our Tuition and Funding website provides information about the:

  • cost of attending,
  • scholarships and awards,
  • financial assistance programs and
  • ways to connect with our Financial Aid and Awards team.

Student Accessibility Services

We provide individualized support services for students with accessibility needs. We keep all information confidential. We encourage you to identify yourself so that Student Accessibility Services may accommodate your needs.

Visit the Student Accessibility Services website.

Residence Accommodations

We do not have student residence facilities. There are excellent housing resources/referrals, including links to independent residences around Toronto, available on the housing information website.

Campus Visits

Throughout the year, we offer information sessions, portfolio-building events and tours that are a great introduction to life at the University.

For more information, refer to our Visit web page.

Contact Information

The Admissions & Recruitment department makes every effort to help prospective students throughout the application process. Feel free to contact us with any questions.

Mailing Address:
OCAD University
Admissions & Recruitment
100 McCaul Street
Toronto ON M5T 1W1

In-person Inquiries:
Rosalie Sharp Pavilion
Level 1, 115 McCaul Street
Toronto ON M5T 1G1

Telephone: 416-977-6000, ext. 4869
Toll‑free: 1‑800‑382‑6516
Email: admissions@ocadu.ca

Scroll to Top