Student work by Ariel Riske, Zachary Bautista, Nicole Antinucci, Heejae Choi, Hayley Hinkley.
This is Canada’s top advertising program through a combo of classes in graphic design, branding, creative copywriting and career-building skills.

More than half of students get offered jobs before they even graduate at Canada’s only four-year university advertising program.

In this program, instructors who work in the advertising field will teach you:

  • Design
  • Storytelling
  • Digital
  • Copywriting
  • Typography
  • Layout
  • Strategy
  • Consumer behaviours and market research
  • Art direction
  • Film
  • User experience
  • Public relations

You will learn storytelling from many different points of views. You will be encouraged to challenge tradition and consider different viewpoints and values.

In fourth year, you’ll work in boot camps with real clients and create real campaigns. In the past, students have worked with McCain Pizza Pockets and Sony Playstation. This means you can say you’ve sold a creative concept before even finishing school – a huge advantage when you’re looking for a job.

You’ll also benefit from guest speakers from Canada’s biggest ad agencies and have the opportunity to do internships. Acclaimed alum of the program include many top creative directors in Canada and worldwide, including Elspeth Lynn, Creative Director for Saatchi & Saatchi in London, UK, Wain Choi, Global VP ECD at Cheil Worldwide in Korea and Carlos Moreno, Global Chief Creative Officer for Cossette.

Program Highlights

At the End of this Program...

At the end of this four-year program, you will earn a Bachelor of Design (BDes) degree.

Admissions Requirements

Jobs You Can Get 

More than half of fourth year students have jobs lined up before they even graduate. Many of Canada’s top advertising creatives are graduates of OCAD U’s program.

  • Advertising agencies and marketing firms
  • In-house marketing for companies
  • Digital agencies
  • Design companies
  • Production and film studios

Internships & Experiential learning

OCAD U offers so much more than co-ops because creative careers take many forms. Our career services help you build a professional community, valuable experience and skills you need for a meaningful career. Get access to:

  • Short experiential learning placements from among hundreds of organizations
  • Creative in-class projects with real-world industry partners
  • Exclusive summer internships
  • Gallery exhibitions of your work
  • Freelance creative opportunities
  • Jobs after graduation

What You'll Do in the Program

In first year, you’ll take intro to advertising courses and a good base of art and design classes including:

  • Typography
  • Drawing
  • Colour and two dimensional design
  • Writing
  • Design history

In second year, you’ll learn advertising strategy and concept. You’ll also take:

  • Digital advertising design
  • Typography
  • Photography
  • Your choice of classes in English, social sciences or humanities

Third year features your choice of art classes and:

  • Advertising concepts
  • Advertising research
  • Art of persuasion
  • Advertising storytelling
  • Advertising copywriting
  • Retail advertising and user experience
  • Your choice of classes in English, social sciences or humanities

In fourth year, you’ll work with real clients in advertising boot camp. You will create real campaigns from scratch and present it to clients such as McCain or Sony. You’ll also work on your thesis project and showcase your work at OCAD U’s GradEx, the biggest free art and design exhibition in Toronto with over 40,000 visitors.

Minors

In all undergraduate programs you can choose to take a minor alongside your major to explore and expand your practice. Minors give you the opportunity to pursue a focused secondary field of study in addition to or sometimes instead of taking electives in your program and can help you look better for employers or in grants or grad school applications.  You don’t need to choose a minor on your application – rather once you start at OCAD U, you’ll be able to choose from over 90 electives that can build towards one of our 25 focused minors. Learn more about Minor Programs here.

Program
Advertising
Degree earned
Bachelor of Design
Faculty
Faculty of Design
Duration
4 years
Portfolio required
Yes