About OCAD University

OCAD University is Canada’s “university of the imagination.” The University, founded in 1876, is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines

OCAD University offers students a unique environment combining studio-based learning with critical inquiry where they can experience a range of research contexts and methodologies. Programs lead to a BFA or BDes and an MA, MFA or MDes Degree.


OCAD University engages in art and design research and creative practice through a diversity of cultures, disciplines, forms of literacy, methods and approaches. 

Rapid Prototyping
  • The Inclusive Design Institute and the Inclusive Design Research Centre are hubs of innovative applied research that addresses the timely and critical challenge of digital inclusion for the full range of human diversity.
  • OCAD University leads the Centre for Innovation in Information Visualization and Data-Driven Design (CIV-DDD) in partnership with York University. The five-year, $11.5-million project includes over 50 researchers from York, OCAD U, the University of Toronto, 14 industry partners and significant international collaborators, and aims to develop the next generation of data discovery, design and visualization techniques.
  • The Imagination Catalyst is a student and alumni-centred entrepreneurship and innovation incubator/accelerator designed to aggregate OCAD U's existing innovation, research and commercialization activities.
Ceramic Studio
  • The Digital Media Research + Innovation Institute (DMRII) is the research and incubation component of OCAD University’s Digital Futures Initiative (DFI), bringing together design, computer science, art, media, engineering and social science, consisting of 19 networked multi-disciplinary research laboratories, many virtual collaborative teams, and the complementary commercialization support facilities of the Imagination Catalyst.
  • The Strategic Innovation Lab(sLab) is a centre for research and innovation that engages a community of researchers, practitioners, design and business professionals, and teachers and students who are passionate about envisioning possible futures.
  • The Mobile Experience Innovation Centre (MEIC) is a not-for-profit association that supports design leadership, experience innovation and applied research in Canada's mobile and wireless industries.


Undergraduate Studies

OCAD University delivers specialized, discipline-based education in an interdisciplinary context, integrating studio learning with historical, critical and scientific inquiry. Curriculum has more breadth and depth than any other fine arts program in Canada. Thirteen program majors, and three specializations, lead to either a Bachelor of Fine Art (BFA) or a Bachelor of Design (BDes).

Bachelor of Design (BDes):

Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA):

Interdisciplinary (BFA or BDes):

Graduate Studies

At Toronto’s creative core, OCAD University has a long standing tradition of contemporary thinking and practice in art and design. OCAD U graduate degree programs offer the next generation of artists, designers and industry leaders a level of scholarship that is virtually unmatched in Canada.

OCAD U’s Graduate Programs:


School Building

Leading Canadian and international artists, designers and scholars, OCAD University professors represent Canada's largest art and design faculty. Diverse, vibrant and provocative, these are working professionals who love to teach – and academics who pursue research that extends the boundaries of what we know.

Many members of the OCAD U faculty have achieved national recognition with honours such as the Governor General's Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Visual Arts and membership in the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. A number have also achieved worldwide recognition through their participation in major international events and exhibitions and their publication in international awards annuals