Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD University)

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One of Canada’s oldest independent cultural institutions, NSCAD University is a creative centre for education and research in visual culture in North America. Founded in 1887 as the Victorian School of Art and Design, NSCAD occupies three campuses in the historic Halifax downtown district with a cosmopolitan mixture of staff and students from across Canada, North and South America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia.

Boasting a global reputation for excellence in pedagogy and research, NSCAD’s faculty and alumni connections form a critical mass of Canada’s most highly regarded curators, designers, craftspeople, filmmakers, artists, educators and entrepreneurs. Opportunities to establish close connections between students, faculty and alumni encourage vital and innovative dialogue and collaboration. This extends beyond the classroom through internships and practica worldwide and formal exchanges with one of 70 institutions in 15 countries.

NSCAD faculty and alumni have left their mark on the worlds of art, craft and design nationally and internationally for 125 years. The university has built its reputation on the combination of intellectual endeavor with practical skill. Studying at NSCAD is an intense experience in which students are taught to think critically, and to be highly equipped and adaptable professionals in their chosen fields. NSCAD delivers on its reputation, boasting a strong record of employment for its graduates.

NSCAD’s three undergraduate programs, Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Design and Bachelor of Fine Arts include majors and minors in art history, ceramics, drawing, interdisciplinary design, fashion, film, fine art, intermedia, jewellery design and metalsmithing, print, paper and book, illustration, photography and textiles. The Master of Fine Art and Master of Design are highly competitive graduate programs. In addition, NSCAD offers three post-baccalaureate programs: Visual Arts Certificate in Studio, Visual Arts Certificate for Teachers and Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Design.

NSCAD’s foundation program is the first-year program for all students entering NSCAD without prior university credit or without prior fine art study. A prerequisite to further study, these two semesters are designed to lay the groundwork for a wide variety of artistic practices, principles, approaches and issues. While developing a broad base of experience in the visual arts, students explore the range of possibilities available in a professional artistic career.

The university advances the understanding of the visual arts through a variety of research efforts, including the Canada Research Chair in Film and the recent Canada Research Chair in Applied Creativity, Cineflux and the new Institute for Applied Creativity. NSCAD boasts considerable and accomplished screen and media arts expertise.

NSCAD’s studios, laboratories and virtual connections are dedicated to the development of collaborative and interdisciplinary research in the cultural sector facilitating the development and commercialization of technology-based cultural products and services for regional, national and international distribution through associations with business and industry.

Student fees

Canadian student fees  2012-13 *
Tuition fees: $4,549 - $5,571

International student fees  2012-13 *
Tuition fees: $12,864

* Source: Statistics Canada. Fees for general programs in arts and humanities.

Note: In addition to tuition fees, universities generally charge fees for goods and services supplied to students. This includes areas such as student associations, sports and health. These additional fees vary widely per university and per student and can run from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand dollars. Check with the university for details.

Student enrolment

2012 rounded preliminary fall enrolment *
Full-time (undergraduates): 770
Full-time (graduates): 30
Part-time (undergraduates): 170

* Source: Association of Atlantic Universities