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Design Foundation

Credential: Ontario College Certificate Program Code: 09151 Length: 2 semesters

Programs Starting Between:

To be eligible for admission, you must possess the following:

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent including these required courses:
    • Grade 12 English (ENG4C or ENG4U or equivalent)
    • Three Grade 11 or Grade 12 C, M or U courses in addition to those listed above



All applicants whose first language is not English must meet Humber’s English Language Proficiency Policy.


Mature Applicants

An applicant is considered a mature applicant if they have not completed secondary school or other postsecondary school, and will be 19 or older (21 or older for degree programs) as of the first day of classes. Humber will invite you for testing to demonstrate that you meet program eligibility. Mature applicants for degree programs will be required to meet course requirements at the U level or equivalent.

College Transfer Applicants

An applicant is considered a college transfer applicant if they have completed some or all of a college-level credential. Humber will use your college courses and grades to determine program eligibility. You may also be eligible for transfer credit if you are admitted to a Humber program.

University Transfer Applicants

An applicant is considered a university transfer applicant if they have completed some or all of a university-level credential. Humber will use your university courses and grades to determine program eligibility. You may also be eligible for transfer credit if you are admitted to a Humber program.

Selection: Admission Selection is based on the academic criteria indicated. Meeting minimum eligibility requirements does not guarantee admission.


Post-Admission Requirements:

Students must have a digital camera during the program; a smart phone camera works well.

Date Location Availability International Student Availability
September 2017OrangevilleOpenNot Available
September 2017NorthOpenWaitlisted
January 2018NorthOpenOpen

The 2017-2018 fee for 2 semesters is:

  • domestic: $3,945.69
  • international: $14,671.00

Fees are subject to change.

Additional Costs

$650 for various course materials and equipment

Fees by Semester 


Humber offers a variety of scholarships each year.

Learn more >

Future Study Options

Humber has a number of transfer agreements with other postsecondary institutions (within Canada and around the world) that enables students and graduates to use their Humber credential to gain advanced standing in another program.

Your generalized training in the many aspects of design will be an effective launching pad to more specialized diploma and degree programs the following year.  These include Industrial Design, Interior Design, Interior DecoratingCreative Advertising , Graphic Design and Architectural Technology.

Design Foundation graduates with excellent portfolios and the required GPA are desirable candidates for all major design programs. These include degrees and diplomas, and Design Foundation students achieve success both at Humber and other institutions that require a portfolio as well as academics.


Transferring from Another College or University

Details on transferring credits or credentials from another college or university or how to apply for credit based on prior work or life experience.

Learn more >

Program Contact(s)

David Vazquez-Abrams
Program Co-ordinator
416.675.6622 ext. 4115



International Students

Phone 1-416-675-5067

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Apply to Humber

Applications to Humber are made through Be sure to submit your application by the equal consideration deadline of February 1. You may apply after February 1, however, post-February 1 applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis depending on the availability of the space in the program. To check program availability refer to the Campus/Availability listing on Humber's program pages or

Admission Road Map >

Apply through Ontario Colleges >

International Students

If you’re an international student, you can apply directly to Humber via our International Centre.

Apply through the International Centre >

Fees by Semester

Semester 1Domestic FeeInternational Fee*
Mandatory Non-Tuition$450.45$450.45


Semester 2Domestic FeeInternational Fee*
Mandatory Non-Tuition$450.45$450.45

*Plus Mandatory Health Insurance fee once per academic year: Fall start - $420 Winter start - $280 Summer start - $140

Our Program

Humber’s one-year Design Foundation certificate program gives you the skills to put your creative flair and interest in visual arts into focus as you begin a career in design. Train in professional design with a diverse curriculum that features courses in interior, graphic, packaging and industrial design.

If you have a passion for design but are uncertain what field you want to work in, or if you want to learn general design skills, the Humber Design Foundation certificate program is for you. You will learn the basics, develop a portfolio and determine what field is best for you.

Small classes are taught by industry experts, teaching:

  • essential concepts and techniques of design through instruction in structural drawing
  • 2D and 3D design principles
  • colour theory
  • design drafting and design calculations
  • technical communications
  • relevant design software such as Illustrator, Photoshop and AutoCAD.

You will also work in professional-quality labs, developing skills that will give you the hands-on experience employers want.

Courses Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of the program, a graduate will:

  • Recognize the importance of all visual design processes in a consumer society.

  • Demonstrate, via in-studio projects, the broad disciplines of two-dimensional and three-dimensional design.

  • Apply an understanding of design principles, via in-studio projects, to the major disciplines of applied design.

  • Pursue further design study at an advanced level.

  • Decide which visual discipline to pursue after their Foundation studies are complete.

  • Investigate design education opportunities at Canadian colleges and universities.

  • Evaluate the relative personal attractiveness of various design disciplines and individual suitability of one in particular.

  • Recognize the importance of portfolio work as a personal representation of design abilities.

  • Use the portfolio work as a pivotal tool in applying or securing a position in a program of subsequent and specific design education.

  • Apply for positions in advanced design education at Humber or alternative colleges and universities in Canada.



The Humber Experience

design foundations video

Humber’s one-year Design Foundation certificate program gives you the skills to put your creative flair and interest in visual arts into focus as you begin a career in design.

Your Career

Take the first step into a creative career with Humber’s Design Foundation certificate. 

As the economy rebounds, the design industry is expected to grow, according to a report by IBISWorld, which researches various industries. In Toronto’s vibrant creative sector, the demand for talented and skilled designers is strong – and our program will help you find your fit and choose a specialty.

Designers influence the development of products, the packages they come in, and the marketing materials used to promote them. We also rely on designers to plan buildings of all kinds, and to create inviting spaces within them.

Your generalized training in the many aspects of design may be an effective launching pad to more specialized design study in various fields, including, industrial design, interior design, interior decorating, graphic design, architecture, civil engineering or building technology. Graduates may work with advertising agencies, architectural firms, manufacturers and interior design and industrial design companies.

Humber Also Offers

Advertising and Graphic Design, Architectural Technology, Bachelor of Industrial Design, Bachelor of Interior Design, Graphic Design and Interior Decorating. Design Foundation graduates still need to apply for the programs listed above.


"My Design Foundation certificate was great preparation for Humber's Interior Design degree." - Alec, Interior Design degree student

Student Work

Every attempt is made to ensure that information contained in this website is current and accurate. Humber reserves the right to correct any error or omission, modify or cancel any course, program, fee, timetable or campus location at any time without prior notice or liability to users or any other Person.