Criticism & Curatorial Practice

Criticism and Curatorial Practice at OCAD U is the first undergrad program in Canada to prepare artists to be critics and curators. Students in our program also get experience in the studio making art themselves. We believe that people who work in all areas of the art and culture world benefit from this hands on experience.


In this program you’ll learn about professional practices in museums, galleries and many other creative institutions. You’ll benefit from studying with artists, curators, writers and designers. You’ll also learn how contemporary art and design productions and exhibitions reach the public.

This exciting four-year program will earn you a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. Get more details about the criticism and curatorial practice program.

  • For Ontario high school students, a minimum overall average of 70%
  • Portfolio (samples of your work and a visual representation of who you are)
  • Statement of Intent
  • Official transcripts
  • Other requirements

Graduates of this program have found careers in:

  • Museums, art galleries and artist-run organizations
  • Exhibition production
  • Arts administration and advocacy
  • Art consulting for private collections or auction houses
  • Grad programs in art history, museum studies or cultural studies
  • Working in arts publications and social media

OCAD U offers so much more than co-op because creative careers take many forms. Our approach is specialized, and individual to every student’s needs and goals. You will be able to take advantage of:

  • 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

OCAD University’s dedicated support services will help you build a professional community, valuable experience and skills necessary for a meaningful career.



All art students, including those going into Criticism and Curatorial Practice, take the First Year Art program. You’ll have lots of choices to explore different kinds of classes and to establish a strong base for your future years. A few courses are mandatory, such as Global Visual Culture, Time-based Media, and Drawing Across the Disciplines, but the rest of your classes could include:

  • Animation
  • Art & Code
  • Body & Technology
  • Curating: Nature & Culture
  • Indigenous Sculpture
  • Sculpture concepts
  • Painting
  • Photography
  • Wearable Art

In second year, you’ll take Museums, Galleries and Alternative Spaces and studio courses based on your interest in art or design. You’ll take an Art or Design History course of your choice and:

  • Art History and Visual Culture
  • Contemporary Issues: Art Today
  • An English course of your choice

In third year, you’ll take The Work of the Curator. This class gives you professional experience and an experiential learning course that could include the opportunity to study at the AGO or work in one of the OCAD U galleries. You’ll also take courses based on your studio interest in art or design. And, you’ll take:

  • A Question of Beauty: Reframed
  • Art Writing: Practice and Ideas
  • Professional Practice
  • History and Theory of Art Criticism

In fourth year, you will work on your thesis project and take the Proseminar (a course with graduate and undergraduate students) that puts you in direct contact with professionals in the field. You could curate your own show in one of the OCADU galleries. You’ll take breadth courses based on your interest in humanities and the social sciences. Finally, you’ll also showcase your work at GradEx ̶ OCAD U’s Graduate Exhibition, the biggest free art and design exhibition in Toronto with more than 40,000 visitors.