Frequently asked questions

Application information
Submitting documents
Presenting your portfolio
Academic requirements information
General information

Application information


Q. Where can I apply?

A. All students applying for full-time or part-time admission must submit an application to the Ontario Universities' Application Centre, www.ouac.on.ca.

Q. When should I apply?

A. The application deadline to apply is always February 1 of the year of intended enrollment.

Q. Can I apply for January admission?

A. No. Admission to OCAD University is only offered in September.

Q. If I am accepted to a specific area, can I change my mind?

A. Yes, students may be able change their area of major during their first year of study. Depending on the number of students transferring, a portfolio assessment may be necessary to transfer.

Q. How do I know if I qualify for Direct Entry to an Upper Year (Advanced Standing)?

A. Applicants interested in applying for direct entry to an upper year (Advanced Standing) must have at least one year of post-secondary visual art or design education, which is equivalent to the program they are applying to. Applicants should review our curriculum and compare it to their previous post-secondary experience to determine if they qualify. Applicants should submit all relevant official transcripts when applying (transcripts should be sent directly to the Admissions & Recruitment office at OCAD U).

Q. How many credits can I transfer?

A. As an Upper Year Entry/Advanced Standing applicant, your acceptance and year level placement is dependent on the assessment of your portfolio and a review of your academic history. In addition, students may transfer Liberal Studies courses to satisfy OCAD U's degree requirements. All other applicants with previous post-secondary experience are encouraged to apply to to receive transfer credit. Details will be emailed to all successful applicants on how to request transfer credit. It is important to keep in mind that OCAD U is a university. Many college level academic courses may not be considered for transfer. For further information please visit our Transfer Pathways page.

Q. I was accepted last year but did not attend. Do I need to apply again?

A. Yes, if you were accepted to OCAD U but did not register for courses, you must reapply.

Submitting documents

Q. Do I need to send my transcripts?

A. Students currently attending a secondary school in Ontario, British Columbia, or CEGEP school in Quebec, will have their grades automatically reported through the Ontario Universities’ Application Centre. All other applicants must mail their official documents to the Admissions & Recruitment office at OCAD U.

Q. When should I send my transcripts?

A. Upper Year applicants should send their official transcripts as soon as they apply. First Year applicants may send their transcripts after an offer of admission has been received. Applicants will be notified by email of final deadlines to submit requirements and supporting documentation. 

Q. Where do I send my transcripts?

A. Transcripts can be sent to Admissions & Recruitment c/o OCAD University, 100 McCaul Street, Toronto, Ontario, M5T 1W1

Presenting your portfolio

Q. If I can't attend my portfolio assessment, what should I do?

A. You may choose to submit an online portfolio using Slideroom.com.

Q. When will my portfolio be reviewed?

A. Once your application has been received, OCAD U will contact you  to arrange a date and time when your portfolio will be assessed. Applicants may choose to attend the assessment in-person or to submit an online portfolio using Slideroom.com.

Q. Do I need to leave my portfolio after the review?

A. No, if you attend your assessment in-person, your work comes with you and leaves with you.

Q. Can I change my portfolio assessment date?

A. Only exceptional circumstances will warrant a change in your time and date. We have so many applicants to accommodate that there is very little flexibility in the schedule.

Academic requirements information


Q. What is OCAD U's TOEFL code?

A. The OCAD University's TOEFL code is 0537.

Q. What if my English mark is only 65%?

A. You cannot gain admission to OCAD U unless you meet the full academic requirements. If you do not have the English requirement at the time of the portfolio assessment you should still attend or submit an online portfolio. If you successfully pass the portfolio assessment we will offer you a conditional offer of admission, with the provision that you fulfill the English requirement by the August document deadline.

Q. What if my overall high school academic average is below 70%?

A. You cannot gain admission to OCAD U unless you meet the full academic requirements. If you do not meet the academic average requirement at the time of the portfolio assessment, you should still attend. If you successfully pass the portfolio assessment we will offer you a conditional offer of admission, with the provision that you fulfill all academic requirements by the August document deadline.

General information


Q. Why can't I find OCAD U on the OCAS website?

A. OCAD U is an accredited university that offers Bachelor degrees. OCAD U is part of the Ontario university system and applicants must apply through the Ontario Universities' Application Centre, www.ouac.on.ca.

Q. Can I defer my acceptance?

A. No, OCAD U does not offer deferral of admission.

Q. I graduated from a specialized high school art program. Can I skip first year?

A. In order to meet the Upper Year (Advanced Standing) admission requirements, applicants must have at least one year of post-secondary visual art or design experience. If an applicant does not meet this requirement they must apply to first year. Currently, OCAD U does not transfer credits from specialized secondary school/high school art programs.