Top Graphic Design Universities in Canada

Description of graphic:

There are a lot of categories of graphic design that can involve: photographing, advertising, designing logos, creating posters, font designs, and even build a 3D model, redesigning magazine’s styles and so on.


Related Jobs to Graphic Design:

  • Multimedia Designer.
  • Web Designer
  • Logo Designer
  • Brand Identity Designer
  • Flash Designer
  • Creative/Art Director
  • Photo Editing/Photoshop Artist
  • Layout Artist


OCAD University (Ontario College and Art Design University)


Graphic Design at OCAD U

In OCAD University at graphic design program, it is four-year long program, it requires students to communicate their ideas with professors, and need to do 3D craft and paper folding which is wonderful that provides students to design graphic, flat activities in various ways. Also will learn the process of communication through the combo of images, photography and text to present thoughts and messages.

OCAD University also offers students for job opportunities and school events for celebration: Office of Diversity, Equity and Sustainability Initiatives (ODESI); Development & Alumni Relations; Student Wellness Center; Office of International Student Support & Exchange Programs. “O Days” for welcoming new students; “Student-run Clubs”.

By Devaki Majoomdar

Preparing Portfolio for Graphic Design at OCAD University 

Note: Submitting portfolio needs to go through to Slideroom.

  • Statement of Intent: to support your application to OCAD U. (300 words maximum)
  • Process work: Include your sketchbook, process and process and concept development skills as part of your portfolio submission.
  • Finished Work: Include 8 to 10 examples of your original work that demonstrates a variety of your skills and approaches to art, design and media.
  • Descriptions: Explain in 50 words per finished piece the process/making method/media/concept and purpose of each piece.


Benefits at OCAD University:

  • Location is in heart of Downtown Toronto
  • Convenient transportation
  • Strong study environment
  • Five minute walk to Chinatown
  • Offering job opportunists

Review of OCAD University 

“Every professors in OCAD have strong relationship between the high level designers and have powerful association with different interpersonal connections. Our students’ goals are getting profs to like you while the GPA is not too bad, get should be familiar with every faculty because it will provide us such precious opportunities.” ---Qiyana Y. 

“Graphic Design major is very intense but also you can get tons of experiences at OCAD University, the professors at school are ambitious to solve students’ problems at their field. And the facilities are all in readiness, 3D print shop, computer labs, camera rental department, and many areas that you can’t imaging!” ---Helena S.

Graphic Design Student awards

  • Congratulations to Tucker McLahlan, medal winner for OCAD University’s 102nd Graduate Exhibition (GradEx)! (May 2017)
  • Congratulations to Tristan Marantos, medal winner for OCAD University’s 101st Graduate Exhibition (GradEX) for his project, “Life After Death”, which proposes a series of speculative artifacts for a world in which human life is extended indefinitely. (May 2016)


York University

Graphic Design at York University

In York University, it is four-year long program, it offers students to learn the history of graphic design, theory, and management. It also provides student can have an exceptional professional education in visual communication, creative and information design. 

York’s Bachelor of Design

(BDes Specialized Honors) program recognized that design is by nature an interdisciplinary endeavour. York Design draws strength from its home in a robust research university, offering students exposure and collaborative opportunities in area such as business, engineering, technology, health and more broadly, the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

In York Design program, it pursues students have creative solutions to real-world problems involving users, their experiences and interactions; to understand not only graphic design, but also encourage students to study other subjects such as illustration, animation, or other categories.


Preparing Portfolio for Graphic Design at York University

Note: portfolio should contain your original work that demonstrate a wide range of ideas and thoughts with various media and tools.

Portfolio advise from LoveFun Art student

“York University has a building that specially offer to art and design student, in addition that York University is pay attention to student fundamental skills, they require your portfolio need to have your unique style, need you to demonstrate your abilities to use various medias including painting, computer software and model craft.”

  • Two-dimensional design work: posters, logos, letterheads, book/magazine covers and interior page spreads, CD/DVD inserts.
  • Typography: poetry or words using an expressive font of page layout, typeface designs, expressive lettering, projects with text settings designed for clear communication.
  • Interactive media: website design or other interactive work.
  • Motion graphics: video or animation using images or typography.
  • Sketchbook or concept: the samples of your work that show your idea and creative thoughts, the exploration of process.
  • Drawing & Illustration: direct observational drawings are preferred. Imaginative paintings or drawings are also welcome.
  • Photography: B&W prints, colour prints, digitally manipulated.
  • Painting: drawing in oil, acrylic, watercolour, gouache are required.
  • 3D Design/Sculpture: handmade model from plan drawings and fibre experiments.


Benefits at York University

  • Students are automatically enrolled into YFS Member’s Health and Dental Plan
  • Intense study environment, strong competition
  • York University has Co-op Program
  • York University offers Academic Exchange to other country

Review of York University

“Being able to dabble in so many different design steams like graphic design, editorial, motion, and UX allowed me to become a more creative person.” ---Fiona Yeung

“Get to know the students who are involved in the student associations and those who are always hanging out in the studio. That’s really when you become an art student, when you live and breathe art so much it becomes your life.” ---Betty Zhang 

“The bottom line is that it’s hard to work and live as an artist by just being one thing. I crafted my degree at York in a way that has allowed me to wear multiple hats when necessary.” ---Luck Reece


NSCAD (Nova Scotia University of Art and Design)


Interdisciplinary Design (From graphic design to interactive products) 

Major in Interdisciplinary Design in NSCAD is a unique program that takes a distinctly collaborative and process-oriented approach. Because the field of design covers a range of services and products that fuse human factors, technology, and aesthetics, the program will equip you with a variety of skills, including analytical and imaginative thinking, visualization techniques, drawing, typography, and photography, as well as understanding of production processes. 

In addition, Student Services in NSCAD, it maintains a searchable list of student job postings.


“Nova Scotia Art Bank 2019 Purchase”
 “Nothing to See Here”

Preparing Portfolio at NSCAD University

  • 10-20 pieces work: they could be the works that complete recent or from past three years. Any work should be explain in the List of Work as to why you are including it and why you think it’s still relevant. (the portfolio must include 3 different mediums)
  • 5-10 additional sketchbook/notebook/journal entries: these pages should demonstrate your process work. How do you plan? How do your ideas come to be? 

A good portfolio demonstrates and contains:

  • Must be your original work.
  • Should demonstrate the works that you are confident, display various textures and mediums.
  • A good understanding of what you are interested in.
  • Show your level of ability, communicate to a craft, design, of fine art education.
  • Your general level of curiosity and creativity about how you view your surroundings from multiple angles
  • Should communicate your thoughts, ideas clearly with quality.


 Benefits At NSCAD University

  • Located in Downtown in Halifax
  • School provides Anna Leonowens Gallery
  • Art Bar +Project
  • Included Fashion Show
  • Provide Art Supply Store
  • Offer Design Print Services

Reviews of NSCAD University

I earned my Bachelor of Design (Honours) at NSCADU some years ago. I cannot express the amount of gratitude I hold for the quality of teaching I received from the Design faculty. I use the knowledge and experience I soaked up from my time at the university every day in my career as a Graphic Designer/Developer.” ---Jordan A 

NSCAD is great school near Halifax harbor and farmer market , Halifax is very nice city, beautiful harbor view and seashore view, great lobster restaurant.” ---Christina C.


Emily Carr University of Art and Design 

Communication Design (Graphic Design) at Emily Carr University

Communication design at Emily Carr University will encourage and empower student to express ideas, brands, and storylines clearly and creatively. Also will be teaching the history of design to understand how design is evolved.


by Brooke Taylor

Preparing portfolio for Communication Design at Emily Carr University

  • 10 Examples of your Creative Practice: a wide range of using different or mix media to demonstrate creative practice, from a video or a song, to a comic strip or a zine, are welcome.
  • Process Project: Respond to three prompts using a variety of materials, from images to songs to sculpture. Maximum 50 words.
  1. In the original image or 20-second media clip, answer the question: What keeps you up at night?
  2. In three original images, tell us a story about yourself.
  3. Using three different materials, build a model of what you would put in the centre of a town square. Include process sketches/photographs.
  • Written Responses: Lastly, introduce yourself through your writing and answer the following questions. No more than 100 words.
  1. What makes a problem interesting to you?
  2. Tell us about something that inspired you recently.
  3. Make a list of all the things you’d like to learn at Emily Carr.


Benefits at Emily Carr University

  • BE WHO YOU ARE: Emily Carr University is passionate about teaching students to create what they want to create, and will give students valuable experiences to solve their confusion, will make clear direction to guide students to become the people who they want to be.
  • MAKE SOMETHING REAL: Emily Carr University believes that the hard-works by student are being processed through many times of thinking, sketching, and discussing to share their minds, finally turns out to amazing artwork.
  • CREATING LASTING VALUE: As a university, they persevere in an effort to create lasting value for culture, community and economy, and increase the quality of life and offer students to have a higher platform to reach vivid world that is ethical, inspired, and meaningful.

 Review of Emily Carr University

Was an excellent experience. Instructor went above and beyond what he was required to do. He came in on the weekend before the practical test just to do a review for those of us who had questions . Even stayed late after class to make sure everyone understood the material and had it down. I've recommended this course to everyone I know. When it's time to renew my course I'll definitely be going back to MetroSafety. Great instructors, very friendly and super super patient.” ---Aj K. 

I am writing this review as a visitor, not as anyone who is closely connected with the institution. What I like about Emily Carr is its generally upbeat aura of experimental investigation of art and other aesthetic issues. It's a gem on centrally located Granville Island, with terrific views of downtown Vancouver and the mountains to the north. Its quasi-isolation gives it the distinct sense of an enclave, in this case one that can be visited for a satisfying dose of aesthetic elevation. I love places like this, and this one I will never forget because it bolstered my belief that art and design make a great city (like Vancouver) even greater. I'm going to have to find a way to get a teaching or exhibiting artist fellowship to Emily Carr.” ---Noe B.