General Arts and Science - Design Foundations

Algonquin College
1 year
Diploma / certificate
Scholarships available
Algonquin College

About this program

General Arts and Science - Design Studies

This one-year Design Foundations Ontario College Certificate allows you to develop fundamental design skills and to explore a range of design-related disciplines, in order to discover where your strengths and interests lie.

Throughout the program, you develop foundational knowledge and skills used in a variety of design elements such as:

  • principles of design and layout
  • typography
  • drawing and sketching
  • perspective
  • colour theory
  • 3D structure
  • time management
  • web design
  • industry-standard software.

You explore your own aptitudes and interests through research and a speaker series of professionals, to help determine which area of design best suits you. Your work accumulates into a portfolio that represents your best design and artwork, which can be used to apply for future programs of study. An annual showcase provides an opportunity to exhibit your portfolio and interact with industry professionals, peers and the community.

Admission requirements

Program Eligibility

  • English, Grade 12 (ENG4C or equivalent).
  • International applicants must provide proof of the subject-specific requirements noted above along with proof of either: (IELTS / TOEFL) IELTS-International English Language Testing Service (Academic) Overall band of 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each ban; OR TOEFL-Internet-based (iBT) Overall 80, with a minimum of 20 in each component: Reading 20; Listening 20; Speaking 20; Writing 20.
  • Applicants with international transcripts must provide proof of the subject-specific requirements noted above and may be required to provide proof of language proficiency.

Should the number of qualified applicants exceed the number of available places, applicants will be selected on the basis of their proficiency in English.

This program is well-suited for students who:

  • Think visually, creatively and conceptually.
  • Can work under pressure to meet deadlines.
  • Have good hand-eye coordination.
  • Have an eye for detail.
  • Enjoy exploring and solving design problems.

For more information about admission requirements, please visit the university website.

Does this course require proof of English proficiency?

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Program content

Level: 01

  • Perspective Sketching
  • Observational Drawing
  • Layout and Design 1
  • Computer Graphics 1
  • Design Pathways
  • Foundations of Communication

Level: 02

  • Web Design I
  • Understanding Colour
  • Sketching and Concept Development
  • Layout and Design 2
  • Communications I

Scholarships & funding

Several scholarship options are available. Please check the university website for more information.


For more information about tuition fees, please visit the college website. 



Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Create two- and three-dimensional purpose-driven works using a wide range of materials, processes and techniques that support form and function within the principles of design.
  2. Solve design problems and develop creative form using a research-based design process.
  3. Develop and present a portfolio that showcases personal artistic style, using a range of media appropriate for a variety of design-related disciplines.
  4. Communicate in an art and design environment using appropriate language, strategies and techniques, in order to develop and maintain interpersonal relationships and participate in a peer evaluation process.
  5. Explore and select existing and emerging technologies and techniques, to develop and manage a personal visual and digital presence.
  6. Explore the professional requirements and opportunities in various design industry-related fields, to inform academic and professional goals.
  7. Identify and apply discipline-specific practices that contribute to the local and global community through social responsibility, economic commitment and environmental stewardship.

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About this institute

Algonquin College

Consider Algonquin’s unique campuses Algonquin College, located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, offers an experience that includes personalized learning and industry-ready skills through field-work, work placement and co-op.  With more than 300 programs, including degrees and graduate certificates, we have the...

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Why study at Algonquin College

Canada ranked #1 study abroad country

Canada has been ranked the #1 study abroad country in the world for 2020! Known for its untouched natural beauty, friendly and welcoming locals, and a culture of tolerance and diversity, Canada is a clear choice for students looking to study abroad.

Contact info

Algonquin College

1385 Woodroffe Avenue
K2G 1V8 Ottawa Ontario

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