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Graphic Design

We are now accepting applications for the 2024/2025 academic year

Start Date: September

Location: Prince of Wales Campus

Length: 2 Years

Credential: Diploma, Graphic Design

Program Availability: Fall 2024 Term

Canadian Applicants

International Applicants

The Graphic Design program prepares you for the many creative opportunities a career in design can bring. Through exposure to various ideas, projects, and client work, you will be guided and encouraged as you work to build your creative point of view and style.

We will introduce you to creative problem solving, illustration, digital painting, expressive typography, history of graphic design, prepress, UI/UX, print production, web design, and project management. You will study the latest software applications that will help bring your ideas to life. We emphasize the establishment of strong visual problem-solving skills.

Study at our Prince of Wales Campus

Our studio setting is designed to simulate industry, and your time with us will prepare you to be a collaborative team member. Your creativity, combined with determination, will help turn your natural abilities into a fulfilling career with a path that is uniquely yours.

This program is located in the Charlottetown Centre - Take a virtual tour! 


The Graphic Design program is designed to build upon your artistic foundation to prepare you for a career as a commercial designer. Applicants are required to submit a portfolio of their best work when they apply to the program. Review our Portfolio Requirements.


This program has degree pathways, giving you the opportunity to receive credit for your Holland College diploma when you continue your education. For a complete list of agreements, visit the Degree Pathways page.

Partner Institution Credential Details of Agreement
University of Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown, P.E.I. Bachelor of Arts Graduates with a 70% average receive up to 60 hours of credit toward a Bachelor of Arts degree.
University of New Brunswick - Saint John, Saint John, N.B. Bachelor of Applied Management Graduates with a 70% average receive two years of credit toward a Bachelor of Applied Management degree.
Athabasca University, Athabasca, Alberta Bachelor of Professional Arts Graduates receive two years of credit toward Bachelor of Professional Arts in Communications Studies. This is an online program.
  • Grade 12 or equivalent with credits at or above the general level
  • Grade 12 English, minimum 60%
  • Submission of a portfolio. Your portfolio will be a significant factor in gaining admission to the program. Review portfolio requirements.
  • Résumé including work and volunteer experience with applicable dates, membership in groups, associations or athletics, awards and distinctions, and any other information about yourself relevant to the program.


2023/2024 Academic Year

Tuition, fees, and other costs are listed in Canadian dollars. International tuition includes the International Student Fee.

Students are required to bring their own laptop, which must meet the following technical requirements:
MacBook Pro, macOS 10.14 (or later), 16 GB minimum (32 GB recommended).

1st Year



Tuition $4,450 $9,550
Fees $797 $1,547
Other Costs $2,860 - $5,860* $2,860 - $5,860*
Total $8,157 - $11,107 $13,957 - $16,957

*Includes cost of laptop

2nd Year



Tuition $4,450 $9,450
Fees $997 $1,747
Other Costs $500 $500
Total $5,947 $11,697

Canadian Cost Breakdown

Tuition & Fees

1st Year

2nd Year

Tuition $4,450 $4,450
Lab Fee $100 $200
Student Union $172 $172
Health Insurance Fee $445 $445
Fitness Centre Fee $80 $80
Graduation Fee - $100
     Total payable to Holland College $5,247 $5,447
1st installment due September 5 $ 3,022 $ 3,222
2nd installment due January 8 $ 2,225 $ 2,225

Other Costs
Please note: the cost of books, materials, and supplies are included here for your information only, this amount is not payable to the college. Do not include this amount in your tuition payment.

1st Year

2nd Year

Books - -
Laptop $2,360-$5,360 -
Materials/Supplies $500 $500
     Total $2,860-$5,860 $500
Grand Total $8,157 - $11,107 $5,947

International Cost Breakdown

Tuition & Fees

1st Year

2nd Year

Tuition* $9,550 $9,450
Lab Fee $100 $200
Student Union $172 $172
Health Insurance Fee $1,195 $1,195
Fitness Centre Fee $80 $80
Graduation Fee - $100
     Total payable to Holland College $11,097 $11,197
1st installment due September 5 $8,872 $8,972
2nd installment due January 8 $2,225 $2,225

Other Costs
Please note: the cost of books, materials, and supplies are included here for your information only, this amount is not payable to the college. Do not include this amount in your tuition payment.

1st Year

2nd Year

Books - -
Laptop $2,360 - $5,360 -
Materials/Supplies $500 $500
     Total $2,860 - $5,860 $500
Grand Total $13,957 - 16,957 $11,697

*Includes the International Student Fee.

  • Design studios
  • Freelancing
  • Web design firms
  • Corporate in-house design
  • Advertising agencies
  • Pre-press production such as offset, screen print, signage, and flexography


Many Holland College programs have degree pathway agreements with other post-secondary institutions. You can receive credit for your Holland College diploma toward a university degree or other post-graduate credential, saving you time and money! Find out more on the Degree Pathways page.

Course Code

Course Name & Description

Credit Values

Course Code:SAFE-1005

PEI Occupational Health and Safety

An overview of the Occupational Health and Safety Act of Prince Edward Island. Students examine the legislation, how PEI employees are protected while on the job and the responsibilities of employees and employers.

Credit Value:0

Course Code:GDES-1000

Design 101

Learn the fundamental building blocks and processes of design, concentrating specifically on the elements, variables, and principles of design. Using a project-based approach, the design process, design thinking and visual communication skills are applied to create graphic design solutions.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1010

Colour 101

Colour is one of the many tools designers use to create both visual and psychological impact in graphic design. Explore the theory and practical application behind colour, its emotional impact on a design, and how it applies to solving problems in any design situation.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1020

Graphic Design History 101

Explore the beginnings of visual communications in various ancient civilizations. Learn about the invention of writing and the alphabet, the Asian contributions, illuminated manuscripts, the creation of printing in Europe and the evolution of type. Examine Renaissance graphic design, design in the Industrial Age, the invention of photography, Victorian-era trends, the Arts and Crafts Movement, and Ukiyo-e and Art Nouveau.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1030

Structural Drawing 101

Develop the observational and conceptual skills needed to produce effective illustration solutions for design. Focusing on Adobe Illustrator, students will develop the skills neeeded to utilize the tools and options in the software to create vector illustration solutions suitable for digital and print solutions.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1040

Typography 101

Typography is a fundamental tool of graphic design and visual communication. Learn to evaluate typography in its many applications with a critical eye. Develop a vocabulary of typographical terms. Identify the classification of typefaces and how to select typefaces that communicate the desired tone. Explore expressive and experimental typography in contemporary graphic design.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1050

Design 201

Focusing on creating effective design solutions for client-based scenarios, develop conceptual, creative, critical thinking and presentation skills. Apply and further develop an understanding of primary and secondary design elements, variables, and principles using software to create digital design solutions based on project objectives.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1060

Colour 201

Further develop the skills built in Colour 101 by creating design solutions that leverage colour to impact what the design communicates. Explore the physiological and psychological impact colour has on a viewer through illusion, and connecting colour to theme and emotion in projects that focus on the client/viewer.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1070

Graphic Design History 201

Develop an understanding and knowledge of graphic design history including the beginnings of 20th-century design, the influence of Modern Art, Pictorial Modernism, the new language of form, Bauhaus, the modern movement in America, the International Typographic Style, the New York School, the evolution of corporate identity and visual systems, conceptual images, national visions within a global dialogue, Post-Modern Design and the Digital Revolution.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1080

Structural Drawing 201

Develop conceptual thinking and the ability to solve visual problems graphically using vector illustrations. Discover the strategies and methods to produce effective design and to solve visual challenges. Utilize time management, research skills, design principles, typography, colour choice, and drawing skills to create vector illustrations.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-1090

Typography 201

Learn how to skillfully apply typography to create page layouts that utilize information hierarchy. Study various software applications with an emphasis on contemporary typographical principles. Assess client needs and design type solutions that effectively communicate a suitable tone.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2000

Design Projects 301

Explore a series of typical design problems such as branding, corporate packages, annual reports, marketing materials, brochures, editorial magazine spreads, posters, packaging and more. Experience the design process from start to finish: identification, concept development, art direction pre-press production speficiations and presentation.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2010

Prepress 301

Learn the development, selection, and evaluation of production processes. Explore "the back end" of graphic design including the ability to get design solutions to production and print, while meeting client and production process limitations.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2020

Technology 301

The technology of graphic design ranges from the pencil and swatch book to the computer's hardware and software. Knowing how and when to effectively use these tools is an essential skill for any graphic designer today. Develop skills in digital hardware and software as identified by the graphic design industry. Graphic, draw/paint, page layout and image manipulation software are the key components.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2030

Typography 301

Build professional typography solutions for personal and client-focused design projects. Design a custom typeface and learn how to create a font for installation. Produce original type solutions that demonstrate skill and creativity. Develop your own design and typography perspective through research and project based learning.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2040

Web 301

HTML is the foundation of all web pages as it defines the structure of a page while CSS defines its style. Students will explore HTML and CSS to learn how to structure files and optimize images to produce professional, vibrant webpages that meet client needs.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2050

Design Projects 401

Produce effective design solutions that meet client needs. Develop the ability to write client briefs, explore ideas individually and as part of a team, establish and meet deadlines and design to meet project objectives.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2060

Prepress 401

Develop proficiency in designing custom production workflows for print projects. Learn how to generate colour separation, create multi-page design documents, produce paper dummies, collect files for layout and proof and evaluated printed products.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2070

Design for Digital Media 401

Develop an understanding of how social media platforms can be used to reach target markets and optimize graphics for various platforms. Use analytics and testing to determine how to be effective social media content creators.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:GDES-2080

Web 401

Expand knowledge of HTML and CSS to build more complex and experimental web solutions to meet client and end-user needs. Build custom website using content management systems. Publish web content to a server.

Credit Value:3

Course Code:PROF-2090

Professional Development 401

Explore career options in graphic design with a focus on freelance work or working as an employee. Develop an understanding industry standard business practices, government regulation and ethics. Learn about various business models and how to employ time management skills, research industry competitiors, price design services, create estimates and invoices and design personally branded documents.

Credit Value:3

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Over the course of the two years, I have grown so much, starting with no knowledge or experience in Graphic Design to feeling extremely confident now in my abilities as a professional designer. I have had opportunities to work with creative professionals in the industry and had hands-on experience working on real-life projects. Taking this program was the best decision I have ever made and has completely set me up for an amazing and successful future, I would recommend it to anyone!

Chloe, Class of 2022 | Read more graduate testimonials


Fundamental Arts

Study Fundamental Arts & develop your skills as an artist with this 1-year certificate. Courses in art history, drawing, design, animation, & digital photography help you build your portfolio and prepare for a career in the arts.

Photography and Videography

The one-year Photography and Videography certificate prepares you to become a professional content creator. You'll learn the technical skills and advanced techniques to capture dynamic images & video as a professional photographer /videographer. Study photography basics in lighting, exposure, and composition and use those skills to capture and edit video, master Photoshop, design a portfolio, and develop creative visual content for online & traditional platforms.

Video Game Art and Animation

Improve your drawing skills and learn the latest software techniques to create 2D & 3D animations in the 2-year Videogame Art & Animation diploma program. In this art-based program, you will develop the core skills needed to generate artwork using Adobe™  and Autodesk™ products, and the technical aspects required to integrate your work into the production pipeline.