Visual Arts Admissions

Faculty of Humanities

Visual Arts Admissions


All prospective students are encouraged to apply and will be considered on the basis of marks and, where applicable, on a portfolio. The Visual Arts program is limited in its enrollment.

Studio Arts students must submit a successful portfolio before being considered for the Incoming Yr. 1 Visual Arts program. Once the portfolio has been deemed successful the student will then be considered for admission based on marks. Secondary school applicants will require an average in the mid to low 70s. Important note: students applying to History of Art/Visual Culture Studies and applicants transferring from a post-secondary Visual Arts program to Brock’s Visual Arts program are exempt from submission of a portfolio. 

Students currently registered at Brock who wish to change their major to Visual Arts or who wish to declare Visual Arts as a major must apply directly to the program. These applications will be considered in January and May of each year following a portfolio interview. For further information consult the portfolio guidelines below or contact the Department.


Ontario Secondary School students must have a minimum of six Grade 12 U or M courses and have completed the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD).

Required course: ENG4U 

Recommended courses: One from 4U history, philosophy, classical studies, or international language

Expected Entrance average: mid to low 70s


Students wishing to declare or change their major to Visual Arts are considered for admission into the program twice a year – in January and May. Admission to the Visual Arts program requires a portfolio interview. We suggest that students seeking acceptance into the Visual Arts program make an appointment with the Chair, Duncan MacDonald, to present their portfolio for the purpose of determining whether they are qualified for the program. See portfolio guidelines below. Contact the Department Chair at or by phone at extension 5253.

In the meantime, students wishing to plan for a change of major are advised to make an appointment with the Humanities Academic Advisor for Visual Arts, Alisa Cunnington to go over course options that will be of benefit should students succeed in being accepted into our program. Alisa can be reached at or at extension 5279.

Deadline for submission is February 8, 2016 


If you are applying to the Visual Arts Program, you will be accepted based on your marks. A digital portfolio assessment is required.

Portfolios are a required part of the admissions process for students applying to the following programs:

-Studio Art (4 Year Honours Degree)
-Concurrent Education Intermediate/Senior (Visual Arts major)

Students applying to the History of Art & Visual Culture program are not required to submit a portfolio.

Your portfolio submission must contain three elements:
1) a letter of intent (~300 words)
2) a digital portfolio of 15-20 of your artworks
3) your email address

We must receive your complete submission by February 8th, 2016 in order to consider your application for studies beginning September 2016.

All portfolio submissions must be digital. Please DO NOT send original artworks to us.

1. Letter of Intent
We would like to find out more about you, what motivates, challenges and inspires you in your creative process. Your letter of intent should describe your reasons for wanting to study visual arts, where you are coming from, and what you have studied in the past. Please consider how your answers may enhance or contribute to our understanding of your portfolio work as we view it. Your letter of intent should not exceed 300 words. Artist statements are also welcome but not mandatory.

Please submit your letter of intent as a Word document (.doc) and include it on a CD-R/DVD-R, on a USB stick or on an artist blog/website. You may include this letter on the same CD-R/DVD-R, USB stick or artist blog/website as your digital portfolio. Please be sure to clearly label it as your letter of intent.

2. Digital Portfolio
We recognize that submitting documentation of your artwork might make you apprehensive. However, we would like to let you know that we will be reviewing your artworks in a sensitive fashion, and provide you with constructive feedback to help you understand where we see strengths, and point you to artists we feel you need to research. It is recommended you send what you feel to be your strongest work.
Work submitted may demonstrate a range of media explored. The portfolio should be between 15-20 artworks (do not submit more than 20 pieces).

Digital files accepted: jpg, psd, tif, video (mov, wmv, flv, mp4), music (mp3) and PDF documents. For good image quality and efficient reviewing, your image files should be sized around 1024 x 768px @72 dpi, 2MB or less. Please keep video files under 120MB each and 2-3 minute clips for audio/video.

Label each file as follows:
01 LastName, Title, Year
02 LastName, Title, Year

Please include an image list that corresponds with the digital portfolio as a Word document (.doc). The image list should include:

01 LastFirstName, Title, Media, Dimensions, Date Completed

Your portfolio is to be submitted in one of the three following formats:
a. On a CD-R/DVD-R; please title your CD-R/DVD-R and provide a labeled case with your full name (as submitted on your application) OUAC reference number (if applicable), and date of birth.
b. Saved on a USB stick; your full name (as submitted on your application) OUAC reference number (if applicable), and date of birth are saved on the USB stick as well.
c. Or on an artist blog/website; the URL, your full name, OUAC reference number and date of birth are written in the email.

Please DO NOT send original artworks to us.

The deadline for submitting your letter of intent and digital portfolio is February 8, 2016 for admission the following September. The portfolio and letter of intent must be sent together in a strong, reusable package and must be accompanied by sufficient return postage if you are sending physical media. Portfolios sent without sufficient return postage will not be returned to the applicant.

3. Your Contact Information – email
Once you have completed your application, please email the Chair of Visual Arts Duncan MacDonald: to inform him that it has been sent.

If you are mailing your portfolio and letter of intent, send it to:

Portfolio Review Committee
Department of Visual Arts
Brock University
500 Glenridge Avenue
St. Catharines, ON L2S 3A1

Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions about putting together your portfolio. Questions should be directed to the Chair of Visual Arts, Professor Duncan MacDonald ( or Professor Shawn Serfas (

Questions related to the admissions process, including minimum academic requirements for entry, contact Michelle Lea, Admissions Director (



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Departmental Events

Elizabeth Chitty: Confluence Field Trips - Exhibition
January 7, 2016 - 12:00pm - January 29, 2016 - 5:00pm