Top 10 Art Schools in Canada

I still remember the day I decided to pursue my passion for art, and the first question that came to mind was, “What are the top 10 art schools in Canada?

As an aspiring art student, I knew that enrolling in a reputable art school would be instrumental in honing my skills and helping me achieve my dreams. After weeks of research, I finally had my answer – and I was excited to discover the numerous exceptional art schools in Canada that offer top-notch programs and facilities.

In this article, I’ll share my findings as we discuss the top 10 art schools in Canada that can help you professionalize your creativity and take your art to the next level.

I know this interests you already. Continue reading to find exceptional information on the Best art colleges in Canada.

Is Art Schools in Canada Worth it?

Selecting one of the Canadian art schools to pursue your educational dreams is an outstanding idea. However, attending an art school in Canada can be an advantageous experience. Not only do these schools offer world-class education, but they also provide distinct programs to suit various interests and career goals. From fine arts to digital media, design, and performing arts, there’s something for everyone. Plus, the instructors are experienced professionals in their fields, and the facilities are top-notch.

One of the most significant advantages of studying at arts school in Canada is the career opportunities after graduation. Canadian art schools have a strong reputation globally, and graduates are highly sought after by employers in the arts, culture, and creative industries. Whether you want to become a professional artist, designer, or performer or work behind the scenes in production or management, Canada’s art schools can help you achieve your goals.

Another benefit of choosing Art education in Canada is because of the cultural diversity that permeates these schools. You’ll be surrounded by students from different backgrounds and perspectives, which can help broaden your knowledge of arts and inspire your creativity. Additionally, many art schools in Canada offer scholarships, grants, and funding opportunities to support students’ artistic pursuits, which can help alleviate some of the financial burdens of studying.

In a nutshell, Canada’s art schools provide a platform for networking and building connections in the industry. You’ll have opportunities to connect with fellow artists, industry professionals, and potential employers, which can be invaluable in helping you launch your career. And, with the Canadian government’s support for the arts, you’ll study in a country that values and invests in creativity and self-expression.

Why Attend Arts School in Canada?

Without mincing words, there are beneficial reasons you should attend the Top art universities in Canada.

Do you want to study interior design, fashion design, animation, game design, and other art-related subjects? Ensure you select the top art schools in Canada for graphic design. This is because their teachers are exceptional when it comes to teaching.

As a result, a career in the arts has become a highly sought-after and lucrative discipline. But it doesn’t come quickly – it takes dedication and hard work to expertise in your educational pursuit.

What is the Cost of Studying Arts in Canada?

Studying arts in Canada can be expensive. For some institutions, their tuition fee can be more costly, while some are pocket friendly. But generally, the instate students are charged around $3 300 while the international students pay $11,000 as their tuition fees.
How can I Find A Good Art School in Canada?
Finding the right art school in Canada might seem challenging, but with a straightforward approach, you can make an informed decision that sets you up for success.

Below are the step-by-step guide to help you find a good art school in Canada:

Define your Goals: Identify what you want to achieve in art school. Are you looking to specialize in a specific medium, like painting or sculpture? Do you want to pursue a degree or diploma? Are you interested in fine arts, graphic design, or another field? Clarifying your goals will help you focus your search.
Research Online: Begin by searching online for art schools in Canada. Look for schools that offer programs in your desired field. Browse their websites to learn more about their programs, courses, and faculty. You can also check websites like or for a comprehensive list of art schools in Canada.
Check Accreditation: Ensure the school is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency, such as the Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design (AICAD) or the Canadian Information Centre for International Credentials (CICIC). Accreditation ensures the school meets specific standards of quality and accountability.
Look at Curriculum and Faculty: Review the curriculum to see if it covers the topics you’re interested in. Check the faculty’s credentials and see if they’re working artists or industry professionals. A faculty with real-world experience can provide valuable insights and mentorship.
Check Graduate Success: Research the school’s graduate success rates, including job placement and acceptance into further education programs. This will show you how well the school prepares its students for the art world.
Consider Location: Consider the school’s location and whether it’s a good fit for you. Do you prefer an urban or rural setting? Are you looking for a school in a specific province or region? Location can impact your access to resources, internships, and job opportunities.
Reach out to Schools: Contact the schools that interest you and ask questions about their programs, admissions process, and student life. Ask about scholarship opportunities, mentorship programs, and career services. This will give you a sense of the school’s community and support.
Check for Scholarships and Funding: Research the school’s scholarship and funding opportunities to help with tuition fees. Many art schools offer scholarships, grants, or bursaries to support their students.
Visit the school: If possible, visit the school to get a sense of the campus culture, facilities, and community. Talk to current students, faculty, and staff to get a firsthand perspective on the school.
Check for Industry Connections: Look for schools with strong industry connections, such as partnerships with art galleries, design firms, or other creative organizations. These connections can provide valuable opportunities for internships, mentorship, and job placement.
Consider the Cost: The last step is to consider the cost of attending the school, including tuition fees, living expenses, and supplies. Ensure you understand the total cost of attendance and explore options for financial aid.

The Eligible Requirements to study Arts in Canada

The art schools in Canada demand some requirements that every qualified student should provide before admission.

To be eligible, you must have a high school diploma. For master’s programs, a bachelor’s degree (or equivalent) is required. You will also need to provide academic transcripts.

Your artistic portfolio is a crucial part of your application, showcasing:
A variety of artwork
Observation skills
Creative thinking
Experimental processes
Material techniques

Please note that specific requirements for the portfolio vary from one art institution to another. Therefore, you must contact the school of your choice to determine their particular submission requirements.

You must also demonstrate English proficiency if English is not your first language. You can take tests like IELTS, TOEFL, or other tests specified by your chosen university. A letter of intent is also required.

The Necessary Documents required to study in Arts schools in Canada

To apply to art school in Canada, you may need to submit the following documents, ranked in order of importance:
Academic transcripts and certificates: Official records of your academic achievement, including grades and diplomas.
Statement of purpose: A written statement outlining your artistic goals, inspirations, and reasons for applying to the program.
Three letters of reference: Recommendations from academic or professional mentors who can speak to your artistic talent and potential.
Curriculum vitae (CV): A summary of your education, work experience, and relevant skills.
Proof of language proficiency test scores (TOEFL, IELTS, or other): Results from a recognized English language proficiency test if English is not your first language.
Portfolio: A selection of artistic work showcasing your skills and creativity (specific requirements may vary by institution).

Top 10 Art Schools In Canada

Inarguably, there are numerous Canadian art colleges and universities, but below are the best among them. They offer standardized teaching and have a conducive environment.

They are as follows:

Alberta University of Art
Concordia University, Department of Visual Arts
Emily Carr University of Art & Design
George Brown College, Center for Arts and Design
The Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD U)
Ottawa School of Art
Nova Scotia College of Art & Design
The New Brunswick College of Craft and Design
Yukonsova School of Visual Arts
University of Alberta, Department Of Fine Arts

Alberta University of Art
The Alberta University of Art, formerly known as the Alberta College of Art + Design, is a public institution in Calgary focused on providing studio-based experiences in fine arts, new media, and design. Established in 1973, it is recognized among Canada’s top art schools, offering competitive admission to its acclaimed programs.

The university’s comprehensive offerings include a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting, drawing, sculpture, ceramics, fiber, glass, jewelry & metalworking, print media, and media arts & digital technologies. Additionally, it provides a Bachelor of Design degree, a second option alongside fine arts, with majors in photography and visual communication, catering to students interested in fields like advertising, TV entertainment, new media, publication, editorial, and fashion. These full-time degree programs typically take four years of study, with some evening classes.

The university is in Calgary, near mountain parks and numerous cultural and art venues. The university’s location fosters an enriching environment for artistic study. It attracts students worldwide with its unique art facilities and accomplished faculty members who guide students through various studio practices. The university offers relatively low tuition fees for art and design studies in Canada, with domestic students paying around $4,356 per semester and international students paying $13,792.

Furthermore, the Alberta University of Arts, commonly referred to by local students, offers opportunities for graduate studies, including Master’s degrees in Jewelry and Metals and Glass. It brings renowned creative minds to speak to students and conduct workshops, fostering a vibrant learning atmosphere. Notable alumni include the celebrated singer and artist Joni Mitchell.

Concordia University, Department of Visual Arts
Concordia University, located in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, offers a diverse range of programs in fine arts through its Faculty of Fine Arts. Established in 1974 through the merger of Sir George Williams University and Loyola College, the university provides students a platform to explore their creative potential.

The Department of Visual Arts offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree in various specializations, including Art Education, Visual Arts, History of Art, Cinema, Design, Communication Arts, Creative Arts Therapies, and Studio Arts. In contrast, the Department of Performing Arts offers a Bachelor of Performing Arts (BPA) degree in contemporary dance, performance art, theater, and music. Furthermore, master’s programs are available in Studio Art, Design, Drama, and Film, as well as a Doctorate in Art Education, Art History, and Film.

Tuition fees at Concordia University vary depending on the program, with Canadian students paying $3,600 and international students paying $19,390 for three terms. However, the university offers scholarships and bursaries to a limited number of students.

Prospective students can visit the university’s website to apply and explore available opportunities. For more information, you can contact the university at 1455 De Maisonneuve Blvd West, Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3G 1M8. Or call 514-848-2424. You can also send email to the institute via
Emily Carr University of Art & Design
Emily Carr University of Art and Design is located in Vancouver, British Columbia. It is a public university ranked among the top arts schools in Canada. Established in 1925, it was the first institution in British Columbia to grant specific degrees for performing and visual art students.

The university offers a talented community supported by dedicated staff, providing various art and design learning materials with resources from Canada and the world. Students, staff, and faculty are motivated by the excellent-built facility that has more resources.

The undergraduate degree programs at Emily Carr University take four years to complete, leading to a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) or Bachelor of Design (BDes). The BFA provides majors in various art fields, including painting, drawing, ceramics, print media, sculpture, illustration, digital arts, animation, integrated media, film, critical and cultural practices, fine arts, and creative writing. The Bachelor of Design offers majors in communication design, industrial design, and interaction design.

In addition to undergraduate programs, the university offers a two-year Master of Applied Arts program that enhances students’ knowledge and skills for a career in visual arts, design, and media industries. Tuition fees are $3,300 for in-state students and $11,000 for international students.

Emily Carr University has been ranked among the top 50 universities worldwide and the first-best university in Canada in Art and Design, according to the QS World University Rankings 2021. The university has adapted quickly to online learning, demonstrating that art and design are not limited to a particular environment.

For more information, you can contact the university at 1399 Johnston Street, Granville Island, Vancouver, BC. V6H3R9, Canadavor or call 604-844-3800.

George Brown College, Center for Arts and Design
George Brown College Centre for Arts and Design, located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, is a leading institution for art and design education. Established in 1967, the college offers a range of programs in art, design, fashion, jewelry, media, and performing arts, providing students with practical skills and technical expertise.

The Centre for Arts and Design comprises three schools: the School of Design, the School of Fashion Studies, and the School of Performing Arts. Each school offers undergraduate, postgraduate, and certificate programs in various design fields, including digital design, games design, art and design, digital experience design, game art, interdisciplinary design, fashion business, fashion management, fashion techniques, and design.

The School of Design offers courses in art and design, digital experience design, game art, and interdisciplinary design. The School of Fashion provides diploma and certificate courses in fashion business, fashion management, fashion techniques, and design. The School of Performing Arts offers programs in dance, media, and theater. Additionally, the college offers four full-time certificate courses in jewelry: gemmology, jewelry essentials, jewelry arts, and jewelry methods.

Tuition fees are $11,408 annually for two semesters. For more information, contact the college at P.O. Box 1015, Station B, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, M5T 2T9. You can place a call at 416-415-2000.

George Brown College offers scholarships and bursaries to students. The annual average fee is approximately $19,646 for Canadians and $26,350 for international students. The school has state-of-the-art facilities in a vibrant community, allowing students to connect with renowned artists and professionals in their field.

The Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD U)
The Ontario College of Art & Design University (OCAD U) is the oldest and largest art and design university in Canada. It is located in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and offers various visual and design programs. State-of-the-art facilities and programs provide students with hands-on experience and opportunities to explore their creativity.

OCAD U offers various degree programs, including Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA), Bachelor of Designs (BDes), Master of Arts (MA), Master of Fine Arts (MFA), and Master of Designs (MDes). The BFA program offers majors in drawing and painting, printmaking, photography, integrated media, and criticism and curatorial practice. The BDes program offers majors in material art and design, advertising, industrial design, graphic design, illustration, and environmental design. Additionally, diploma and certificate programs in fine arts, drawing, sculpture, and painting are available, as well as online courses in ceramics, printmaking, color theory, art history, and photography.

The tuition fee at OCAD U is $6,995 per semester. For more information, contact the university at 100 McCaul Street, Toronto, ON M5T 1W1, or call this number: 416-977-6000. Their email address is

OCAD U has a rich history and culture, producing some of the country’s best artists and designers. Located adjacent to the Ontario Art Gallery, OCAD U attracts thousands of international students annually, offering a unique opportunity to familiarize themselves with modern art and design techniques.

With comprehensive programs, state-of-the-art facilities, and experienced faculty, OCAD U has a strong reputation in the art and design community.

Ottawa School of Art
The Ottawa School of Art is a private college in Ontario, Canada. It is recognized among the best art schools in Canada for its unique teaching style based in a studio setting. The school offers a range of programs, including a 3-year Fine Arts Diploma and a 1-year Certificate Program, which focus on practical skills and knowledge in the visual arts.

The Fine Arts Diploma program allows students to pursue a particular studio concentration in their second year. At the same time, the Certificate Program offers specialized courses in life drawing, landscape painting, photography, ceramics, sculpture, lithography, watercolor, etching, and printmaking.

The school has a non-profit status and is known for its inclusive environment, housing most international students who come to Canada. The Ottawa School of Art has two campuses, with the Downtown Campus located at 35 George Street Ottawa, ON K1N 8W5, and the Orléans campus at 245 Centrum Blvd. Orléans, ON K1E 0A1.

Tuition fees are $375 per course/term for Canadian students, while international students pay $7,750. The school also offers various scholarships, including the Ottawa Mixed Media Artists Scholarship, Wallack’s Fine Art Scholarship, and Ottawa Art Association Fine Arts Scholarship.

For more information and to apply, visit the Ottawa School of Art’s official website.

Nova Scotia College of Art & Design
Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, shortened as NSCAD, was founded in 1887. It is a prestigious art school located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, offering three undergraduate degree programs: Bachelor of Fine Arts, Bachelor of Arts, and Bachelor of Design. Each program requires four years of study, including two semesters of foundation studies that build a strong base in visual arts.

Students can specialize in five main areas: Fine Art, focusing on painting, drawing, printmaking, and sculpture; Design, encompassing interdisciplinary design, digital design, graphic design, and product design; Crafts, including textiles, ceramics, jewelry designs, and metalsmithing; Media Arts, covering photography, film, and intermedia; and Historical and Critical Studies, exploring art history, liberal arts, English, and critical analysis courses.
In addition to degree programs,

NSCAD offers certificate programs in visual arts, including a studio certificate and a certificate for teachers. The institution provides excellent facilities, including film production equipment, studio spaces, and other relevant resources, ensuring students have everything they need to succeed.

The annual tuition fee is $11,408 for two semesters. For more information, contact NSCAD at 5163 Duke Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada B3J 3J6, call 902-444-9600, email, or visit their website.
The New Brunswick College of Craft and Design
New Brunswick, Canada, NBCCD is a unique institution focusing entirely on fine craft and applied design. It is situated in Fredericton. Since its establishment in 1938, it has been providing students with a studio-based education that combines hands-on learning with entrepreneurship skills.

The college offers a range of programs, including two-year Diplomas in Aboriginal Visual Arts, Ceramics, Digital Media, Fashion Design, Graphic Design, Jewelry/Metal Arts, Photography, and Textile Design. Additionally, one-year Certificate programs in Foundational Visual Arts and Advanced Studio Practice are available, as well as a four-year Bachelor of Applied Arts (BAA) degree in partnership with the University of New Brunswick (UNB).

Students at NBCCD benefit from professional studios, small class sizes, state-of-the-art labs, and an extensive library. They also have access to non-credit courses, the George Fry Gallery, and craft workshops known as edVentures. This comprehensive learning environment prepares students for successful careers in the industry and artistic collections, with a focus on entrepreneurship and hands-on experience.

Tuition fees for full-time students are
around $1,000 for Canadian students and $6,630 for international students. For more information, visit the NBCCD website at

Yukonsova School of Visual Arts
Yukon School of Visual Arts (SOVA) is a premier art school in Canada, offering a comprehensive Foundation Year Program that sets the stage for a successful career in fine arts. Located in the heart of Canada, SOVA provides students with a unique and enriching learning experience, fostering creativity, technical skills, and critical thinking.

The Foundation Year Program is equivalent to the first year of a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) or Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree, allowing students to transfer to affiliate universities such as Emily Carr University, NSCAD University, and OCAD University. This program comprises six studio and four liberal study courses covering various subjects, including drawing, printmaking, painting, sculpture, and cultural studies.

Through various studio study courses, students develop their technical skills and creative expression, exploring mediums like drawing, printmaking, painting, and sculpture. Additionally, courses in time-based media, art writing, and cultural studies provide a well-rounded education, preparing students for a dynamic career in the art world.

With a tuition fee of $1,620 per semester, SOVA offers an affordable and valuable education. For more information, students can contact the school at Downtown Campus: 35 George Street, Ottawa, ON K1N 8W5, or Orléans campus: 245 Centrum Blvd., Orléans, ON K1E 0A1. You can also contact them by calling this number: 867-993-6390 or email them via
By attending SOVA, students gain a solid foundation in visual arts, develop essential skills, and build a strong portfolio, preparing them for a successful career in the art world.

University of Alberta, Department Of Fine Arts
The last in the list of top 10 Canadian art colleges and universities is the University of Alberta. The Department of Fine Arts, precisely. However, the University of Alberta is a top-ranked art school in Canada. It offers an exceptional education in fine arts. With over 36,000 students and 11,000 faculty and staff members, the institution provides a vibrant and supportive learning environment. It was established in 1910 by Norwegian emigrants. The university’s address is University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G.

The Department of Art is divided into three main areas: art and design, music, and drama. Students can major in painting, drawing, sculpture (using various materials like clay, found objects, plaster, paper, wood, and foam blocks), and digital imaging as part of studio practices. This four-year Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree program allows students to explore their creativity and develop their skills, with the option to minor in other fields.

Tuition fees vary depending on student status, with Canadian students paying $2,588.40 per semester and international students paying $17,995.20. In addition to the BA program, the university also offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) degree program, providing students with various options to suit their interests and career goals.

The university’s facilities include the University of Alberta Art Gallery, featuring a diverse collection of contemporary and historical art, as well as state-of-the-art studios, workshops, and digital media labs. Students have access to the latest tools and technologies, ensuring they are well-equipped to succeed in the art world.

For more information, students can contact the university at 780-492-3113 or or visit the university’s website.

Others include:
University of Toronto
Simon Fraser University, Faculty of Communication, Art, and Technology
Ryerson University, Faculty of Arts
Sheridan College, Faculty of Animation, Arts and Design, etc.

How to Apply for Art Schools in Canada
To apply successfully to the Best art colleges in Canada, follow the following instructions.

Choose an Art School in Canada
Check the School’s First-Year Requirements
Check Portfolio-Specific Requirements
Apply to the Art School
Receive Acceptance Letter

Choose an Art School in Canada
Selecting the right art school in Canada is the first step towards pursuing your artistic dreams. Research various institutions that offer programs in your preferred field, such as fine arts, graphic design, or visual arts. Consider factors like program duration, curriculum, faculty expertise, and alumni success. List your top choices to ensure you find the best fit.

Check the School’s First-Year Requirements
Each art school in Canada has its admission requirements for first-year students. These may include academic prerequisites, such as a high school diploma or equivalent, and minimum grades in subjects like English or art. Additionally, some schools may require entrance exams, auditions, or interviews. Verify the specific requirements for your chosen schools to ensure you meet the necessary criteria.
Check Portfolio-Specific Requirements
A portfolio is a critical component of the art school application process, showcasing your artistic skills and creativity. Each school has its portfolio requirements, including the type of artwork, number of pieces, and submission format (physical or digital). Carefully review the portfolio guidelines for your chosen schools to ensure your artwork meets the necessary standards.

Apply to the Art School
Once you’ve prepared your documents and portfolio, it’s time to submit your application.
Submit your documents: Provide official transcripts, diplomas, and other required documents, such as proof of English proficiency (e.g., IELTS or TOEFL) if applicable.
Submit your portfolio: Share your artistic work, following the specific guidelines for each school.

Receive Acceptance Letter
After submitting your application, wait for the admission committee to review your documents and portfolio. If accepted, you’ll receive an acceptance letter or email, which may include information about scholarships, awards, or other opportunities.

Apply for a Study Permit
If you’re an international student, you must apply for a study permit to study in Canada. This involves:
Obtaining a letter of acceptance: Get a letter from the art school confirming your approval.
Applying for a study permit: Submit your application, along with required documents, such as proof of language proficiency and financial support, to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).

Conclusion on Top 10 Art Schools in Canada

Suppose you are an art student planning to attend one of the Top art universities in Canada to fulfill your dream of becoming an artist. Consider the listed reputable art schools. They are the best according to Canada art school rankings.

We have successfully discussed how you can apply and get admitted at ease and other necessary information. Kindly go through them again for proper understanding and practice where required.

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