Important Notice: COVID-19 Institute response

Full-time/Part-time Associate Certificate 6475acert

Graphic Design

Delivery Mode: ONLINE

  • This program will be delivered online during COVID-19.
  • Your education is our priority and we will continue to deliver the applied instruction, collaborative experience, and industry connections that you expect from BCIT.
  • Full-time students should be prepared to attend some synchronous online sessions during regular school hours (Monday to Friday, 8:30am – 5:30pm PST) with some evenings and weekends. Student schedules will be available in late August 2020.
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
  • 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 program

This program is open to applications beginning:

  • June 1* for the spring (April) intake
  • October 1* for the fall (September) intake
  • *or next business day

Applications are considered for a specific intake.

Recommended for success

International applicants

Please note that a study permit is required to attend this program. Visit Permits and Visas for more information.

Apply to program

Both full-time program applications and part-time program declarations are submitted via the following process:

  1. Click on Apply Now
  2. Select Apply for a program and follow the prompts
  3. Select your entrance type:
    • Full-time applicants: I am new to this program
    • Part-time declarants: Part-time Program Declaration
  4. Proceed and fill out all required fields
  5. Have a credit card ready to pay the application fee
Apply Now

Learn more about how to apply

Scheduled intakes

Part-time: January, April and September.

Full-time: April and September each year.


Full-time program

Within two business days of submitting your completed application, BCIT will send a message to your personal and myBCIT e-mail addresses. All correspondence regarding your application will be posted to your online myCommunication account at We'll send you an e-mail when a new message is posted. It's important to watch for these e-mails or regularly check your account online.

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

Books and supplies

We recommend that students in the Graphic Design program have a MAC notebook or Windows PC. Costs for a computer will vary depending on the configuration chosen. Please see below for specifications.

System Requirements for Graphic Design
Operating System Microsoft Windows 10 (64-bit) version 1809 or later
Apple® macOS® 10.13, 10.14 or later (64-bit Intel-based)
Processor 64-bit Intel® or AMD® multi-core processor with SSE4.2 instruction set
Memory 8 GB minimum, 16 GB or higher recommended (32 GB for 4K media or higher)
Graphics Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 or equivalent; Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 or Quadro T1000 is recommended.
AMD Radeon Pro 555X or higher
Intel UHD Graphics 630 or higher
Storage 250GB SSD or higher
Monitor 1920 x 1080 or better
Internet Internet connection and registration are necessary for required software activation, validation of subscriptions, and access to online services.

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.

Students with approved Program Declaration, please note: Program matrix changes effective September 2016 may impact you as follows.
  • If your program declaration lists MDIA 1900 - Typography Principles and you have not completed it, please complete MDIA 1920 - Typography instead.
  • If your program declaration lists MDIA 2098 - Portfolio Design and Presentation and you have not completed it, please complete MDIA 2310 - Portfolio Design instead.
Please note: part-time programs and courses are open enrolment and although we make every effort to accommodate demand, course registration cannot be guaranteed in every semester. High demand courses fill quickly and may result in students unable to register for a course that semester. Courses may also be cancelled due to low enrolment.

Program delivery

Full-time program

The full-time program is delivered over two three-month terms. Courses may be scheduled during the day or evenings on weekdays and during the day on weekends. Students will need to be able to attend classes during those time periods. Final term schedules will be complete and accessible to students no later than four weeks prior to program start.

Part-time program

Part-time students can choose the number of courses they take each term and register for each course individually. Course prerequisites must be met prior to registration. Courses are offered in the fall, winter, and spring/summer terms each year. For specific registration dates, please view the Part-time Studies Key Registration Dates.

Please note that all courses must be completed within five years.

Program matrix

Check current availability of courses for this program.

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

Full-time program

The full-time program is six months, beginning in April and September each year.

Part-time program

Part-time students have the flexibility of completing the program at their own pace. Most students complete this program within two years, although it is possible to complete this program more quickly by taking multiple courses each term.

The maximum time to complete this program is five years.

Program location

Full-time: This program is offered at both the Burnaby And Downtown Campus locations.

Part-time: Course offerings at each location vary from term to term. Please check the website for course availability each term.

Burnaby Campus
3700 Willingdon Avenue
Burnaby, BC

Downtown Campus
555 Seymour Street
Vancouver, BC

Program structure

Courses in this program are the same whether studying full-time or part-time. Full-time students complete all Term 1 courses before commencing Term 2. Part-time students proceed on a course-by-course basis in any order, provided that any prerequisite courses are completed first.

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 2017-2019 BCIT Outcomes Surveys of 2016-2018 graduates and for Degree 2015-2017 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 it 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

Karen Harvey
Program Assistant, Digital Arts

604-453-4032 |

Paul Sawyer
Program Head, Graphic Design
604-456-1011 |

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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As well, if you meet any of the following criteria, please follow the links for more information, instead of sending the form:

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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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