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Visual Merchandising Arts Ontario College Diploma

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  • Objectives
    This program provides students with the opportunity to develop skills and knowledge associated with design and staging across all areas of merchandising. The main focus will be modern retail/storefront operations and point of purchase displays. Students will also be exposed to visual merchandising for special events, trade shows, home fashion/real estate, and wedding planning.
  • Entry requirements
    This program will be of interest to both individuals considering employment in retail operations and entrepreneurs who want to focus on specific merchandising opportunities.
  • Academic Title
    Visual Merchandising Arts Ontario College Diploma
  • Course description
    Level One
    ARTS1180     Colour Theory

    Description: This course explores the effects of colour; both from a holistic schemata and a human environment perspective. Students will identify the physical, chemical and psychological aspects of colour via a blending of theory and practical applications with specific relationships to their field of studies.
    Hours: 30
    Credits: 2

    ARTS1190     The Dynamics of Sound and Light
    Description: This course provides students with the technical and artistic knowledge required to complete assignments relating to lighting, contrast control, composition and layout of materials and the contribution these areas provide in the creation and control of an environment. Students will also study sound and the impact composition and layout have on acoustics through a combination of theoretical and practical applications.
    Hours: 30
    Credits: 2

    COMP1125     Computer Applications Media and Design

    Description: This practical computer lab course will develop the student keyboarding and computer skills to an intermediate level. Students will be exposed to a variety of industry specific software technologies and gain a basic operational skill with an ongoing integrated application via other courses.
    Hours: 45
    Credits: 3

    DSGN1030     Design and Fabrication I

    Description: This is the first course in a series that will provide students with a combination of theoretical and practical skills associated with the design and fabrication of specialized environments. Students will generate designs to address briefs associated with specific client applications and formulate strategies that identify fabrication options.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    DSGN1070     Introduction to 2D and 3D Design
    Description: This course will provide students with the design elements of two-dimensional graphics and package designs, and build to explore the three-dimensional design demands of cartons, bottles, cans and other containers associated with their program of study. The course will be a blending of theoretical and practical applications which will contribute to other conceptualization and design courses within areas of specialization.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    LIBS1640     History of Art and Design
    Description: History of Art and Design is a lecture based series that chronologically explores art through the ages, up to and including modern times. Changes in style will be examined through projects, visual presentations and group discussions that examine the impact of art on society and culture. The journey will examine works of great artists, and the influence these works have had on western civilization.
    Hours: 45
    Credits: 3

    PHOT1140     Digital Imaging-Image Capture

    Description: Students will develop skills and knowledge related to digital imaging in still and motion formats. The main focus will be on still image (photographic) applications with a basic introduction to videography as a tool in various applications. Focus, composition and exposure will form the groundwork that will combine with other technical skills to provide students with a strong foundation of practical imaging skills.
    Hours: 45
    Credits: 3

    Level Two
    ARTS1200     Scale Modeling

    Description: Students will explore the technical skills associated with the design and fabrication of scale models. Designs will migrate from the concept and drawing stages to executed models in a variety of mediums. The primary focus for this course will be in a paper and/or wood based medium with the opportunity for students to explore other viable modeling options.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    ARTS1210     Illustrative Techniques I
    Description: This practical hands-on course will engage students in techniques associated with the field of illustration and will contribute to other courses within the program design. Students will work on projects that will develop skills in drawing, rendering, drafting and perspectives with opportunities to move concepts to illustrations, on to actual commissioning in related courses.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    COMM1050     Technical Communication I-Basic Writing

    Description: This course will review and develop the student's writing skills as they relate to the workplace. Students will learn how to convey a message and create audience interest. Sentence structure, grammar, punctuation and the rules of composition will be covered. An introduction to research techniques and resources through project-based learning will form the basis for applications in other courses in the program of study.
    Hours: 45
    Credits: 3

    DSGN1100     Design and Fabrication II
    Description: Students will build on skills acquired in Level One - Design and Fabrication ? I and the Level Two ? Scale Modeling courses, moving concepts from paper to wood, metal, plastic and other mediums that are utilized in retail and commercial environments. Projects will be detailed in design briefs that culminate in the fabrication of a ?point of purchase’ display.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    PHOT1150     Digital Imaging-Image Manipulation

    Description: In this continuation of the Level One - Digital Imaging course, students will migrate images into various software programs and manipulate images to meet specific design requirements. Students will work primarily in the photographic discipline, combining technical and aesthetic elements to create an image that speaks to the viewer while addressing design requirements. Students will utilize creative and innovative approaches, technology, and software to generate distinct elements for client presentations and display environments.
    Hours: 45
    Credits: 3

          Electives: General Education

    Description: Student must complete a minimum of 36 Hours

    Level Three
    ARTS2000     Illustrative Techniques II

    Description: Students will build off the skills and knowledge acquired in the Level Two Illustrative Techniques I course and integrate computer and software technologies into the illustrative process. Students will work on projects that demonstrate their ability to integrate acquired skills and knowledge into concrete examples of concept to creation methodologies.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    DSGN2180     Visual Merchandising I
    Description: This is the cornerstone course of the program that allows students the opportunity to develop and demonstrate the skills and knowledge associated with design and staging across all areas of merchandising. The main focus will be directed towards modern retail/storefront operations and point of purchase displays, with students also exposed to special events, trade shows, home fashions/real estate, as well as wedding planning. Students will work on projects that span a range of practical applications, incorporating the use of models/mannequins to address traditional, formal, outerwear, casual and fashion trends in retail and event environments.
    Hours: 90
    Credits: 6

    DSGN2190     Styling and Staging
    Description: This course assists students in developing their own distinct approaches in the designing, styling and staging applications. Students will start with a grounding of traditional methodologies associated with development of retail and commercial applications of storefront and window treatments and then explore and develop unique approaches that address specific design briefs that expand to include trade show and real estate applications.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    MKT2170     Retail I
    Description: This practical course focuses on strategies and decision making in the retail environment. Students will integrate practical retail mathematics and financial skill to all major retail topics. Some topics of interest include trading, area analysis, retail budgeting, open-to-buy, layout, mark-ups, turnovers, and retail pricing.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

          Electives: General Education
    Description: Student must complete a minimum of 36 Hours

    Level Four
    ADVT2000     Promotion and Advertising

    Description: Students will examine the principles of advertising and promotion, their individual roles and how they combine into an effective relationship. This is a practical, hands-on course that encourages creative thinking and problem solving; providing students with experience in a variety of advertising problems, and the software required to solve these problems. Students will refine their graphic design abilities and associated computer skills by designing and producing effective advertising and promotional material for retail and commercial applications and explore applications in special events.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    CDEV2000     Work Experience
    Description: Work Experience is an integral part of the Visual Merchandising Arts program. Students are required to satisfactorily complete 80 hours of work experience during the fourth semester of studies. Work Experience is monitored and evaluated by faculty and must be successfully completed before graduation.
    Hours: 80
    Credits: 3

    DSGN2200     Visual Merchandising II
    Description: Building off the Level Three ? Visual Merchandising I course, students will conceive and commission comprehensive strategies associated within a selected area of visual merchandising, and build a portfolio that demonstrates their skills and knowledge related to their area of specialization.
    Hours: 90
    Credits: 6

    MKT2180     Marketing-Promotion and Research
    Description: This is an introductory course in Market Research. The role of research in the marketing process and the various types of approaches are examined with the student preparing research reports. Both secondary and primary marketing research is covered with an integrated final project that contributes to student portfolios.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

    MKT2190     Retail II
    Description: This course builds off the Level Three Retail ? I course and is a basic study of the functions of a retail store operation. Store location and layout, shopping centre analysis, retail market segmentation and strategies, and the merchandise mix are examined. This course contributes to the student portfolio with the creation of a detailed, integrated retail project that combine skills and knowledge acquired from related courses in the program.
    Hours: 60
    Credits: 4

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