Full-time/Part-time Associate Certificate 6475acert

Graphic Design

Do you have an artistic spark? You might have a future in graphic design, and BCIT can help. The BCIT Graphic Design associate certificate program is one of the fastest ways to build a solid foundation of knowledge that will prepare you for a long, rewarding career.

Available as an intense, 6-month training program or at your own schedule part-time, this program gives you hands-on experience with creative software, strategic design, and digital composition for the relevant job skills employers are seeking.

About the program

  • 6 months, full-time
  • Part-time, up to 5 years but often faster
  • No application required for part-time study
  • Like a career boot-camp of creative software, strategic design, and digital composition
Learn more about this program and how it prepares you for jobs in graphic design at the Program Details.

Who should complete the Graphic Design Associate Certificate?

If you’re interested in working in the graphic arts, earning your associate certificate is a great way to begin your training and test the field. Many students are:
  • Sponsored by their employers to strengthen their skills
  • Already gifted with an interest in creativity
  • Innovative thinkers
  • Interested in exploring a creative career
  • Enjoy collaborative, creative challenges
If any of these sound like you, visit the Program Entry page to begin today—most courses are offered every semester!

What grads can do

Many grads use their talents to create ads, displays, and web and print media for agencies, in-house marketing departments, and government organizations. Others pursue an entrepreneurial path as freelance artists. Additionally, some choose a combination of work and or continuing education to further their abilities and job prospects.

Learn more about the specific job opportunities available on the Graduating and Jobs page.

Program Entry

Application processing

Full-time: this program is open to applications beginning:

  • June 1* for the Spring (April) intake
  • November 1* for the Fall (October) intake

*or next business day

Applications are considered for a specific intake.

Part-time: this program is open to program declarations throughout the year.

Entrance requirements

There are no specific entrance requirements for this program. BCIT strongly recommends students have BC Grade 12 English or equivalent.

Apply to program

Full-time program

Applications are accepted by Admissions for full-time intakes.

To apply for the full-time Graphic Design program:

  • Click on Apply Now
  • Select Apply for a program and follow the prompts
  • Choose I am new to this program when selecting entrance type
  • Proceed with the application
Apply Now

You can check the status of your application at any time.

Program declaration

Effective January 7th, 2016, Program Declaration requests must be completed online. A declaration fee will be assessed at the time of the request. BCIT will no longer accept paper Program Declaration requests starting January 7th, 2016. Students who submitted paper declaration requests prior to January 7th, 2016 are not required to pay the fee.
Part-time program

Declare your intention to complete this program on a course-by-course basis through Part-time Studies.

Declaring your Part-time Studies program ensures that BCIT is aware of your intent to complete a program as it is currently outlined. BCIT continuously reviews programs and implements changes based on industry and market trends. Program Declaration guarantees that credit for courses which are a part of your program will be honoured despite program requirement changes.

Program Declaration also provides the opportunity to apply for transfer credit.

It is not necessary to declare prior to registering in most part-time studies courses. It is a good idea to complete one or two courses before submitting your program declaration. Check your program's Entry page for specific requirements.

Upon approval, a program plan will be sent to you confirming your program of study.

To declare the part-time Graphic Design program:

  • Click on Declare Now
  • Select Apply for a program and follow the prompts
  • Choose Part-time Program Declaration when selecting entrance type
  • Proceed with the declaration request
Declare Now

Please allow approximately 8 weeks for processing.

You can check the status of your declaration at any time.

Scheduled intakes

Part-time: January, April and September.

Full-time: April and October each year.


Full-time program

Within 2 business days of submitting your completed application, BCIT will send a message to your personal e-mail and your myBCIT e-mail address. All correspondence about your application will be posted to your online myCommunication account at my.bcit.ca. We'll send you an email when a new message is posted. It's important to watch for these emails, or regularly check your account online.

You can expect to receive communication concerning the status of your application within 4 weeks.

Costs & Supplies

Tuition fees

Please see the Fees, Payments and Refunds section of the website for information on full-time and part-time tuition fees.

Financial assistance

Financial assistance may be available for this program. For more information, please contact Student Financial Aid and Awards.


Offering you a choice of part-time and full-time study, this program addresses your career needs and goals with flexible course options and availability. Most courses are offered every term by working industry professionals to give you the most up-to-date technology and practices in topics such as colour theory, InDesign, Photoshop, and portfolio design.

Program delivery

Full-time program:

Part-time studies:

Program matrix

Check current availability of courses for this program.

Required Courses: Credits
  MDIA 1026 Adobe Acrobat MAC 1.5
  MDIA 1040 Graphics 3.0
  MDIA 1049 Adobe InDesign MAC 1 1.5
  MDIA 1105 Visual Composition & Layout 3.0
  MDIA 1140 Color Theory for Design 3.0
  MDIA 1144 Practical Color Management 1.5
  MDIA 1160 Adobe Illustrator MAC 1 1.5
  MDIA 1180 Adobe Photoshop MAC 1 1.5
  MDIA 1920 Typography 3.0
  MDIA 2012 Digital Darkroom 1.5
  MDIA 2049 Adobe InDesign MAC 2 1.5
  MDIA 2088 Strategic Design for Business 3.0
  MDIA 2180 Adobe Photoshop MAC 2 1.5
  MDIA 2260 Adobe Illustrator MAC 2 1.5
  MDIA 2310 Portfolio Design 3.0
Total Credits: 31.5

Check current availability of courses for this program.

Transfer credit

Do you have credits from another BC/Yukon post-secondary school? Do you want to know if they transfer to courses here at BCIT? Check out BCIT's Transfer Equivalency Database to find out.

Program Details

The Graphic Design associate certificate is designed to give you a basic foundation of technology and creative approach for today’s jobs. Your courses are designed and taught by working professionals to give you the most current design techniques and skills that are sought after by marketing departments, ad agencies, publications, and other organizations. As part of your training in this fast-paced program, you’ll participate in a course on portfolio design and presentation to show clients and potential employers your accomplishments.

Program length

Graphic Design is a flexible, part-time studies program. You can expect to complete the associate certificate in approximately two years, depending on your work schedule. All program requirements must be completed within five years.

This program is also now offered in a full-time 25 week format at the Downtown Campus and/or Burnaby Campus.

Program location

Burnaby Campus
3700 Willingdon Avenue
Burnaby, BC

Downtown Campus
555 Seymour Street
Vancouver, BC

Note: This program is primarily offered at the Downtown Campus, with the occasional intake offered at the Burnaby Campus. Please indicate on your application which location is preferred or contact the Admissions Office to place your request.

Program structure

The Graphic Design Associate Certificate program requires the completion of 15 courses totalling 29.5 credits.

Graphic Design Full-time Program Structure:

Graphic Design Part-time Program Structure:

Graduating & Jobs

The intense focus on graphic design creative skills and technology in this associate certificate program can help prepare you for entry-level jobs and continuing career development within your current field such as marketing, advertising, or print and online media.

Some job opportunities in the graphic arts include:
  • Junior Graphic Designer
  • Production Artist
  • Layout Specialist
  • Visual Designer

Graduate employment outcomes

The BCIT student outcomes reports present summary findings from the annual survey of former students administered by BC Stats one to two years after graduation. These reports combine the last three years of available results for the 2013-2015 BCIT Outcomes Surveys of 2012-2014 graduates and for Degree 2010-2012 graduates. The reports are organized into three-page summaries containing information on graduates' labour market experiences and opinions regarding their education. More detailed information can be accessed at the BC Student Outcomes website.

To view these results, you may need to have the Adobe Acrobat Reader installed in your Web browser.

Apply for graduation

Upon successful completion of all program requirements, complete an Application for BCIT Credential [PDF] and submit to Student Information and Enrolment Services.

Allow approximately six to eight weeks for processing.

All financial obligations to the Institute must be met prior to issuance of any credential.

Contact Us

Part-time Studies

Angelina Shine
Program Assistant, Digital Arts Part-time Studies
604-451-7198 | Angelina_Shine@bcit.ca

Full-time Studies

Karen Harvey
Program Assistant
, Digital Arts
604-453-4032 | Karen_Harvey@bcit.ca

Paul Sawyer
Program Head, Graphic Design
604-456-1011 | Paul_Sawyer@bcit.ca

Contact a Program Advisor with the BCIT program name in the subject line if you have a question about:
  • Course selection and program planning
  • Declaring your program
  • Making changes to your approved program plan
  • Applying for transfer credit and advanced placement
  • Laddering options
  • Job placement and graduate outcomes
  • Student life

Questions or comments?

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The personal information on this form is collected under the authority of the College and Institute Act (RSBC 1996, Ch.52). BCIT will use this information to communicate with you regarding relevant BCIT programs, courses and services. This information is only used by authorized BCIT staff. Email communication sent to and from BCIT is routed through the United States of America. If you have any questions about BCIT's collection and use of this information, please contact BCIT’s manager of Information Access and Privacy.

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