Visual Merchandising Arts

2023/24 | Conestoga College

Program Code: 1206
Creative Industries

Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning

This is a companion document to the current Conestoga College Student Guide

Program Handbook Guidelines

​The purpose of this handbook is to provide students with program-specific details and other important information. The material in this handbook is accurate at the date of posting and is applicable for the current academic year. Students will be informed of handbook changes that occur, if any, through college email. Program handbooks are updated yearly, and students must check their program handbook for the current edition.

This handbook must be read in conjunction with general information about Conestoga College found on the website and in the Student Guide. The information in the Student Guide and on the college website​ applies to all students, regardless of program.

The Student Guide provides details regarding Student ServicesSafety and SecurityStudent Rights and Responsibilities and more. 


​​​​Welcome to the School of Creative Industries! You are embarking upon a journey into one of the world's most dynamic emerging sectors.

Conestoga offers a wide range of programs to set you on the right path toward building an exciting career in the creative economy. Our certificates, diplomas, advanced diplomas, degrees, and graduate certificates will prepare you for your future by providing you with hands-on applied learning and work-integrated educational opportunities.

Our high-quality faculty, technologists, and support staff will help you gain a competitive edge with their extensive industry experience and our first-class facilities, labs, studios and learning spaces will enhance your education and provide you with authentic environments for learning.

What you do here…counts out there; and what you do in our School will prepare you for an exciting future in the dynamic world of creative industries.


Pejman Salehi, PhD

Executive Dean, School of Creative Industries

Program Staff Contact Information

Cherie Bowker

Program Coordinator
Andrea Hein 

Program Faculty
In addition, other faculty will work with students for the duration of this program. (i.e faculty from other schools for breadth and/or general education courses, as well as faculty with particular expertise in specific areas of program focus). Contact information for faculty will typically be provided by the individual Professor on the first day of the related course.

For all other program support contacts, please see the School of Creative Industries Contact page:  School of Creative Industries Contacts | Conestoga College

​​Communication and Emailing Requirements

Conestoga College student email accounts are used for all official communication with students. Students are expected to regularly check their student email accounts. Faculty are not expected to respond to emails from non-Conestoga email addresses.

Faculty and staff are only expected to communicate through your educational/professional profile as it relates to a specific course project and/or assignment.  All official course information is to be communicated through the use of Conestoga College e-mail.  All students and Faculty are assigned a Conestoga e-mail account. Students are expected to regularly check their student email accounts. Students cannot count on Faculty responding to emails from non-Conestoga email addresses.

​Student Concerns/Issues

We appreciate that concerns/issues may arise during the learning experience. Our goal is to promote collaboration between students, faculty and staff to resolve situations of concern quickly and to learn and improve from these situations.

Please see the Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy & Procedure (under the "Student Affairs" tab) for further details on the steps to be followed. Here you will find formal and informal procedures for the resolution of concerns and issues.

If you need assistance or clarification, please contact your Student Success Advisor. 

​​Managing Stress

Attending post-secondary and completing studies can be exciting, but at the same demanding. Juggling school and life will no doubt be stressful at times. Stress is a normal aspect of life. H​ow you handle stress can make a difference. If you're feeling overwhelmed at any time, talking to someone helps! A conversation with your Faculty or Program Coordinator can help identify and alleviate stress associated with assignments or course content. For more serious stress-related issues, Conestoga also offers free counseling services​ to students. At Doon Campus, Counselors are located on the lower level, between the atrium and the cafeteria – across the hall from the Medical Care Clinic.

If your stress is caused by health issues that are getting in the way of your academics, notify Faculty or your Student Success Advisor, and seek help as soon as possible.

College Hours

The College is open and offers classes seven days a week.

Program Overview

​Program Description

Imagine pursuing your passion in the highly creative industry of visual merchandising, the art and science behind retail design and development. You will combine the art of window displays, prop making, graphic design, event planning, photo styling, and e-commerce with the science of floor planning, planogramming, branding and marketing, and entrepreneurship. Visual Merchandising Arts is the process of creating an inviting and interactive environment for the consumer, utilizing a variety of on-trend materials, software, and technology. This two-year diploma program focuses on project-based, hands-on learning for the creative problem solver. A field placement opportunity is provided in the second year of the program to gain industry experience in the field of visual merchandising, as well as make new partnerships with industry members. ​

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. Present and coordinate merchandise so that related goods are shown in a unique, desirable and saleable manner.
  2. Communicate ideas professionally using oral, written, and visual skills in order to convey concepts to specified audiences.
  3. Apply sound retail and commercial business practices in order to plan and execute projects that meet client expectations or entrepreneurial goals.
  4. Choose appropriate materials and/or technology to illustrate and display creative concepts and execute project plans in 2 and 3 dimensions.
  5. Synthesize the elements and principles of design to create visually-effective promotional displays.
  6. Utilize digital imagery to effectively communicate concepts for promotional and business purposes.
  7. Research and interpret how past, current, and emerging trends and cultural influences impact consumer behaviours.
  8. Implement various strategies within bricks-and-mortar and/or online retail environments to meet operational goals.
  9. Perform effectively and efficiently using professional interpersonal skills to succeed within independent and collaborative environments.
  10. Brand or re-brand products and services using various marketing techniques to attain a unified identity.
  11. Utilize industry standard tools, techniques, technologies, and best practices to effectively execute concepts.

Current Program Design

Students can find their program design on the Student Portal by following the steps below:
  1. Log in to Student Portal
  2. Click on 'My Courses' tab
  3. Select 'View Progress Report' button
Courses are listed by level/semester. Please be aware that General Education/Interdisciplinary electives are listed at the bottom of the student's progress report and indicate the specific level/semester in which they are to be completed.  ​

Academic Information

Academic Dates

It is the student's responsibility to be aware of various important academic dates throughout the year. These academic dates are posted on the college website.

Please note that Continuing Education courses and Apprenticeship programs may have different start dates and exam dates for courses. 

Course Add/Drop

It is strongly recommended that students consult their Program Coordinator and or Student Success Advisor prior to dropping a course. Some courses have co-requisites and pre-requisites which may be affected by dropping individual courses.

​Special Timetables/Adding Dropped or Failed Courses

Please note that when students are not taking the program in the prescribed sequence, they will be on "special timetables". Students must meet with the Program Coordinator or Student Success Advisor before the beginning of the semester to discuss their timetable. 

Students who require longer than the designed program duration to complete their studies are accountable for completing any new or additional courses or requirements that may result due to changes in the program of study. Unless otherwise stated, students registered in non-cohort delivered programs must complete the program of study within seven years of being admitted to the program.

General Education Electives

Students are required to complete General Education elective courses as part of their program requirements. General Education elective course requirements are listed at the bottom of the progress report, which is found on the Student Portal under My Courses. The progress report indicates the level/semester in which the course must be taken. Students are responsible for adding General Education electives into their schedule for the designated semester. Eligible courses are posted each semester by the School of Interdisciplinary Studies on the College's elective website. For more information and to view the current elective course offerings, visit Questions regarding General Education electives can be directed to the School of Interdisciplinary Studies:

Credit Transfer, Pathways & PLAR

Conestoga recognizes you may have formal post-secondary education that may allow you to enter a program at an advanced level or provide for individual course exemptions. To ensure your credits are eligible for transfer, please contact our Credit Transfer Office at: 

The Credit Transfer Policy and Procedure are available on the college website.

For more information, visit the Credit Transfer webpage and the PLAR webpage.

If you are currently a Conestoga student and want to continue studying at Conestoga, there are a number of different pathway opportunities available to you.

Whether you wish to transfer to another program or apply to a new program after graduation, Conestoga has established pathways, to help you meet your goals.

Conestoga College has articulation agreements with many domestic and international institutions. These agreements allow students to transfer into a specific program with advanced standing. Students must meet the academic requirements stated in the agreement.

For more information regarding pathways at Conestoga, contact the Credit Transfer Officer at 519-748-5220 ext. 2166.

​Program Transfer

Prior to transferring to another Conestoga program, it is recommended that the student meet with the Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator of the other program to confirm admission eligibility. Admission to a newly-chosen program by a student who has withdrawn or was discontinued from their original program will be dependent upon:

  • meeting all newly-chosen program admission standards
  • competition with other candidates
  • availability of space in the program cohort

Students who decide to change programs and wish to transfer into Level One of another program must apply through OCAS.

Students who decide to change programs and wish to transfer to a level beyond Level One of another program (i.e. advanced standing) may do so by completing an Advanced Standing Application Form and submitting it to the Registrar's Office.

If considering transferring to a program outside the school in which they are currently enrolled in, students may want to discuss options with a Career Advisor via the Community Career Centre.

When a student moves from one Conestoga program to another, and where courses numbers/codes are identical or equivalent, automatic credit is given if passing grades are met. Please discuss with a Student Success Advisor to confirm course transferability.

​​Academic Assistan​​​​ce​

Academic assistance is available to students through a variety of avenues. The Program Coordinator and/or Student Success Advisor can advise on specific program and course information, as well as on the wide range of supports available at the College. Conestoga's St​​udent Success Services Department can provide assistance with Counselling, Accessible Learning, and Career Services. Visit the Student Success Services website for further information.


Conestoga has more than 400 awards, bursaries, scholarships, and academic grants available to Conestoga students. These funds are made available to Conestoga students through the partnerships the College has established with local business and industry leaders. To be considered for an award, students should complete the application available through your Student Portal (under the "Financial" tab). Notifications and instructions to complete the application are sent to all full-time students' email accounts in the fall semester (Deadline: first Friday in October) and winter semester (Deadline: first Friday in February). Visit the Financial Aid and Student Awards Office on Conestoga's website.

Attendance and Program Expectations

Working Together to Plan Your Success

Your success matters!  Regular, punctual attendance, and active participation in scheduled classes, field and clinical placements, labs and any on-campus and off-campus activities scheduled by your program will help you to understand and master the learning complexities of your program.

If extenuating, unplanned circumstances require you to miss a class or an assessment, please note that it is your responsibility to follow up with individual faculty members prior to the class/assessment and access any missed information.

Attendance for Evaluations

Evaluations are critical components of each course and your overall success in your program. It is your responsibility to attend all evaluations (e.g. test, exam, presentation, etc...). If there is a concerning pattern of absence from evaluations across your program, you may be asked to meet with the Program Coordinator and/or Student Advisor to discuss strategies for success.

While circumstances such as religious holidays and academic accommodations may necessitate rescheduling of evaluations and will be accommodated, please note that there will be no special arrangements made for rescheduling evaluations due to personal conflicts such as work, commuting, or vacation plans.  

Faculty Responsibilities

  • To communicate the dates of each evaluation at the beginning of each semester through the Instructional Plan.
  • To communicate, in writing, any unplanned extenuating circumstances that may require changes to the course schedule.
  • As per the Religious Holiday Procedure, provide alternative evaluation arrangements for missed evaluations due to recognized religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council.
  • To provide all accommodations requested by Accessible Learning.
  • To consider alternative evaluation requests in good faith and examine the unique circumstances (e.g., unexpected family obligations, personal emergencies, etc...) and collaboratively determine an appropriate solution.
  • Note, do not request doctor's notes from students.

Student Responsibilities

  • To review the instructional plan and familiarize with the dates of evaluation.
  • As per the Religious Holiday Procedure, inform your faculty member in writing that the religious holiday defined by the College Employer Council will occur during the semester and may require considerations for evaluations to be rescheduled.
  • If you must be absent from any scheduled evaluation, report your absence on the Student Portal using the procedure below. You must do this prior to the start of the evaluation or risk receiving a mark of zero.

How to Report Absences on the Student Portal

  1. Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
  2. Indicate whether or not there is an assessment scheduled on that day by clicking 'Yes or No', as well as the reason for the absence (illness or other).
  3. Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
  4. Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
  5. You will receive a confirmation email that your absence has been recorded.

Important! Please note the following:

  • The earliest you can record an absence for a particular day, is after 8:00 p.m. the day before. You must report each day you are absent.
  • The Absence Recording System will show you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you recorded the absence. For example, if you record your absence on a specific day at 11:00 a.m., the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11:00 a.m. that day.
  • If you are going to be present for any other classes on the day for which you recorded an absence, please let the faculty member know by attending or following up by eConestoga or college email.
  • As soon as possible, email the faculty member associated with the evaluation you missed and arrange for appropriate follow-up. 

Documentation for Absences

Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances, such as brief illness, do arise during the term. As a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary or possible, we do not ask you to provide a doctor's note except in exceptional circumstances.       

If the evaluation cannot be rescheduled, (e.g., experiential activity, lab, or a group presentation) your professor may provide you with a revised assignment or allocate its marks to another evaluation item, so long as the combined total does not exceed 40% of the course grade. This will be communicated to you by email.

Evaluations (deadlines, tests, examinations)

Please see course outlines and instructional plans for details on evaluations.

​Late Submissions of Assignments/Projects


The School of Creative Industries has programs directly associated with industries that require commitment to deadline.  As such, it is expected that students adhere to the school's late submission of assignment policy.

All students are expected to submit their assignments on the due date and time specified by their Faculty.  If a student fails to do so, the following late assignment policy applies:

  • Assignments received on or before the due date and time will be marked out of 100%.
  • Assignments received within 24 hours of the due date and time will receive a 20% reduction and be marked out of 80%.
  • Assignments received after 24 hours from the initial due date and time will receive a mark of zero (0).

NOTE:  Assignments, projects, presentations, quizzes, tests and or exams requiring in-class attendance, scheduling of facilities and participation, and/or participation with a group or an external or industry-based participant must be performed on the assigned date and time.  Failure to do so without a substantiated reason will result in a mark of zero (0).

In cases whereby, there is an unsubstantiated late submission of an assignment the student will be awarded a zero (0) grade for the assignment. Students are advised to meet with the respective Faculty member to discuss how the zero grade will impact their overall academic standing. Assignments are posted with reasonable advance notice for students. It is the responsibility of the students to plan ahead to ensure the work is completed on time. It is recommended that students balance commitments and time to account for unforeseen delays.

 Substantiated late submissions are as follows:

  • Due to formal accommodation, as arranged and confirmed through Accessibility or Counselling Services and with the Faculty member well in advance of the submission deadline.
  • Due to a medical illness, with completion of reporting the absence on the Student Portal.
  • Due to an accident, with submission of a police report.
  • Due to a death in the immediate family, with a copy of the death certificate required.

Students must provide the supporting formal documentation with the late submission and submit the items to the appropriate Faculty member, Program Coordinator and/or Student Success Advisor.

This process ensures that all students within the School of Creative Industries are following academic and industry protocol and are treated fairly and equally in their evaluations.

If you require further information and/or clarification on the process for late submission(s) please contact your Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator.

What is Academic Integrity?

Having academic integrity means acting fairly and honestly when engaging in academic activities. 

By having and applying an Academic  Offences Policy and Procedure, Conestoga ensures graduates complete their studies fairly and honestly through hard work and dedication, and thus are well-prepared for their future careers.

Copyright at Conestoga 

Conestoga facilitates access to print, media, and electronic resources to support and enrich learning, teaching, and research in compliance with the following:


Plagiarism is submitting or presenting work of another person(s)/organization in whole or substantial part as one's own without proper citation and referencing.


Intellectual Property (IP) under copyright is an extremely important tool within Creative Industries.  The proper use of IP is essential and reflects industry and legal standards.  

Whether your work appears in print, over the air, online, or in another form, copyright laws apply. These laws also protect the work you produce. Work submitted for assessments and assignments must conform to copyright requirements, unless otherwise stated by Faculty.  Elements under copyright can include, but are not limited to, music, text, images, and designs. If in doubt, do not use elements that could be under copyright protection. 

For further guidance, please see Conestoga's Academic Offences Policy or the Conestoga College Library Services' Academic Integrity page.


You are entering a field in which protection of intellectual property is of paramount concern. Plagiarism involves knowingly presenting someone else's work as your own, be it text, an illustration, photograph, part of a video, audio track or design. If within your assignment non-original work is permitted to be used, you must still credit the source of that work. You can provide this credit through a recognized citation format, like APA, or as directed by your Faculty.

In the School of Creative Industries, we have many assignments centring on your original creative ideas and work. In these cases, purely citing someone else's work will not be enough. You must ensure that your work is original. 

Penalties for plagiarism can be severe, and can include receiving an F for the entire course. There are many resources that can help you with proper citation, and help you understand when you can and cannot use other sources as influence for your work. 

The mandatory course, Conestoga 101 (which will be one of your first term courses), and modules presented in your classes in the School of Creative Industries will address issues of plagiarism, and the expectations faculty have of you regarding the creation of original work while you are a Conestoga student.  If you have questions or concerns regarding your work, please speak to your professor. 

For more information about plagiarism and academic integrity, consult the Academic Integrity page from Conestoga College Library Services.


One of the overriding goals of all Creative Industries programs at Conestoga is to create and foster a culture of professionalism that will prepare students to function effectively in the workplace.

Though professionalism is a complex and nuanced concept, some useful definitions have been proposed that can guide both students and faculty as we undertake the program of study. The Chief Justice of Ontario Advisory Committee on Professionalism struck a Working Group on the Definition of Professionalism in 2001 and arrived at this simple but provocative definition:
"Professionalism as a personal characteristic is revealed in an attitude and approach to an occupation that is commonly characterized by intelligence, integrity, maturity, and thoughtfulness" (Chief Justice of Ontario Advisory Committee on Professionalism, 2002, p. 1).
The lectures, activities, and assessments that comprise the program curriculum are designed to foster in students an intelligent and informed approach to their industry. The high standards for academic integrity described elsewhere in this handbook will help to foster continual integrity and ethical standards in the choices you make throughout your career.

A career in creative industries requires respect, tact, fairness, and helpfulness. Course content will reinforce this aspect of the practice. 

Social Media Use and Considerations 

As part of the School of Creative Industries you will have courses that require you to use Social Media as a professional tool. As such students are expected to separate their personal Social Media use from their educational and professional use. One of the easiest ways to do this is to create a separate profile for school and career.

​If you are working with School of Creative Industries or your program's social media or web-related platforms, all posts and up-dates must be done in a professional manner adhering to the guidelines below.

Ensure that your posts reflect you as the professional you are and wish to become – if a potential employer were to see your posts!

  1. When using any Conestoga College or School of Creative Industries Social media accounts, including ones used for specific programs (such as Spoke Online), all posts must be professional, respectful and non-defamatory.
  2. Assume that information you post or send can be accessed or altered by anyone. 
  3. Consider whether any posting may reflect poorly on you, your school, or your profession. 
  4. Avoid online criticism about other students, colleagues, professors or field placements. 
  5. Avoid impulsive, inappropriate or heated comments. 
  6. Pictures should not be taken, posted to social media sites, or shared without the express permission of all individuals involved. 
  7. Pictures and posts related to field placement and lab activities should only be made with permission of the supervisor involved.
  8. Remember that online sites you visit are not anonymous. 
  9. Make sure your on-line name and e-mail reflect professionalism. 
  10. Ensure that your postings will not be considered harassment or defamation of a peer, colleague, Faculty or others.        
  11. Many types of social media encourage instantaneous, casual dialogue. It is important to remember that even an innocent comment may be easily misunderstood.


"Electronic messages are not anonymous. They can be tracked, misdirected, manipulated and live forever on the internet. Social media sites create and archive copies of every piece of content posted, even when deleted from on-line profiles. Once information is digitalized, the author relinquishes all control."

"Online identities and actions are visible to the public and can result in serious repercussions or embarrassment. As the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Ontario notes, users may intend to share their online existence solely within their own network, but in theory anyone can access the user's musings, photos and information. Further, the words can be altered, forwarded and misquoted.*

*Professional Advisory. 2017. Maintaining Professionalism- Use of Electronic Communication and Social Media. The Council of the Ontario College of Teachers.  

Failure to comply with the social media policies will result in disciplinary action, and may jeopardize your progression in the program. Students may be asked to meet with the Academic Chair and/or Vice President of Student Affairs. In addition, students who breach the social media policy will not be allowed on the College's public-facing platforms for a period of time.

Please respect the fact that your Faculty and staff will not invite you to their personal web pages when you are a current student (Keep Faculty and staff as resources to connect with after you have graduated or after you have left the college)

Use of Electronic Devices in Classrooms and Labs

Electronic devices may be used for learning or instructional purposes. Professors or Technologists may request devices be put away when a safety issue or distraction occurs. Devices used for accommodations are always welcome. Use of an unauthorized device in a testing situation will result in an academic offence and a mark of zero. 

Figure Drawing and Life Model Classes

With respect to our figure drawing models, all technical devices (including cell phones) must be kept in your bag or pockets while the model is working. If you need to use your device during the figure drawing session, please leave the room or wait until the break. Use of an unauthorized device in a life drawing class when a model is present may result in an academic offence and a mark of zero.

Technology and Social Media in the Classroom

A respectful classroom ensures both students and faculty are able to focus on the lesson. Recording of audio or video, unless a student has a documented disability for which assistive technology is required and defined as an accommodation, is not permitted, without direct consent from faculty.

If you are working with the School of Creative Industries' or your program's social media sites or web-related platforms, all posts and updates must be done in a professional manner.

During class time a student will refrain from:
  • Text messaging or phone calls on mobile devices
  • Emailing
  • Using Facebook or any other on-line social media or video sites
  • Listening to recordings without headphones
  • Using the computer for anything other than what the instructor is asking for in class time. (Including projects due in other classes)

Students who use these (and other) media tools during class time other than for taking notes may be asked to turn them off, and may even be asked to leave the classroom. Repeated occurrences will result in a meeting with the Faculty and/or Program Coordinator for a possible Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy and Procedure violation.

Academic Progress Through the Program

Academic Progression

The college's approach to academic progression is governed by the Promotion Decision Procedure.

A student's academic achievement results in a promotion decision, such as eligible to continue, graduate, and discontinued.

Progress from one level to the next in a program is dependent upon the successful completion of courses and/or meeting program promotion standards.

​Academic Standing and Promotion

It is the student's responsibility to ensure that all program course requirements for credential completion are fulfilled. Faculty and administrative staff are happy to assist by answering student questions and concerns about progress through the program. If you are having difficulty in a course, be proactive! 

A student must pass every course in the program design in order to receive their credential, including field placements, co-ops, and electives, where applicable. Please refer to course outlines for confirmation of the passing grade requirements for each course.

Pre-requisite courses must be successfully completed before taking the subsequent course. Successful completion of all previous level core courses must be achieved before a student may take on their capstone or thesis course.

Should a student fail a course, the student may end up on a special timetable out of sequence with their cohort.

Please contact your Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator if you have questions regarding program progress.

​Academic Probation

The School of Creative Industries recognizes that a student may have trouble adjusting to college workload or may require extra support in order to successfully complete an academic semester.

In certain cases, a student will be placed on Academic Probation.

Academic Probation consists of a set of terms and conditions that must be met by a student in order to remain in the program. In such cases, the Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator will meet with the student and clearly outline the conditions under which the student will be permitted to remain in the program.

Eligibility for Academic Probation:

A student will be placed on probation if:

  1. They fail or drop two core courses including COMM1085. (Note: Policy regarding General Education courses falls under the School of Interdisciplinary Studies.)
  2. They fail to meet the minimum GPA requirements of the program.
  3. They violate the Student Rights and Responsibilities policy.  
  4. They violate the Academic Offences policy.  

While on Academic Probation, a student will be discontinued if:

  1. They fail two core courses.
  2. They violate the Student Rights and Responsibilities policy.
  3. They violate the Academic Offences policy.

End of Probationary Status:

Once a student meets the terms and conditions of their Academic Probation, the probation status will be removed and the student will be permitted to complete the program under normal academic conditions.

A student who does not fulfil the terms of their academic probation will be discontinued from the program.


A student will be discontinued from the program if:

  • Their academic achievement in any individual semester results in a GPA below 1.0 (D).
  • The student fails or drops three or more core courses (policy regarding General Education courses falls under the School of Interdisciplinary Studies).
  • The student is on Academic Probation and fails an additional two core courses or fails to meet the terms of their probation.

A student may also be discontinued for failure to meet the standards of conduct set by Conestoga, as stated in the Academic Offences Policy or Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy, and such discontinuances may occur at any time during the academic year.

Students who are discontinued from a program may not apply for re-admission to the program for at least one semester from the effective date of the discontinuance. Students are advised to meet with the Student Success Advisor, Program Coordinator and/or Chair to clarify any requirements or recommendations for re-admission to the program.

A discontinued student may find themselves re-admitted to a program that has undergone a change in curriculum. Should there be a change made to the program design or standards, the student is responsible for making up for the change. As a result, the student may be required to take additional course/s to meet the new requirements.

A discontinuance from one program does not affect a student's ability to apply to other programs at Conestoga or to complete General Education courses as a part-time studies student. 

​Program Withdrawals

The School of Creative Industries expects students to commit to their studies and practice. 

Voluntary withdrawals from the Program are supported from an academic perspective. Students may assess their own capabilities in meeting the academic requirements of a program and decide to withdraw. It is recommended that a student considering withdrawal speak to the Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator before doing so.

Students need to carefully consider the impacts of withdrawing from the program or individual course. Program designs and graduating requirements are established on a per-year basis. As programs are integrated and continually evolving to meet industry needs, withdrawing from a program and returning at a future date may mean that students will require additional credits, or need to retake courses that have updated curriculum. Some courses have co-requisites and/or pre-requisites which may be affected by dropping individual courses. Please review with your Student Success Advisor or Program Coordinator before dropping a course.


Please see the Program Withdrawal and Refund Procedure regarding refunds of fees.

A student must complete a Withdrawal Form to formally activate their withdrawal. Withdrawal Forms, and other useful forms, can be found on your Student Portal. 

A student who formally withdraws (i.e. submits the Withdrawal Form) from the program/course, by the date for "drop without academic penalty", will receive a W on their transcript. A student who withdraws after this date will receive an F on their transcript.

Re-admission Requirements

A student who has withdrawn or been discontinued from the program may apply to be readmitted to their program after an absence of at least one semester. Prior to applying for program re-admittance, the student must meet with the Student Advisor and Program Coordinator and/or Chair to provide an update on their situation. If the student has completed courses online or via another postsecondary institution, official transcripts are required.

Re-admittance is not guaranteed and is dependent on:

  • Meeting all program standards (or new standards/ new program design requirements put into place during the student's absence)
  • Recommendation of the program team
  • Previous program performance
  • Competition with other candidates
  • Availability of seats in the class
  • Completion of all requirements or recommendations for re-admission

A student who has withdrawn or been discontinued from one School of Creative Industries program may wish to apply to another School of Creative Industries program or study at another Conestoga program.

Grade Appeal

A student who wishes to appeal grades or discontinuance should refer to the Academic Dispute Resolution and Appeal Policy and Procedure, clicking on "Academic Administration" and referring to both the "Academic Dispute Resolution Appeal Policy" and "Academic Dispute Resolution Appeal Procedure" documents. 

For further information and assistance, please contact your Student Success Advisor. 

Supplemental Evaluations (Clearance of Academic Deficiency)

As per college policy, the School of Creative Industries recognizes the requirement for supplemental assessments. The following establishes the standards associated with the clearance of an academic deficiency.

A student may be eligible for a Supplemental opportunity if:
  1. The student's final grade in a course that has a minimum passing grade of 55% is no less than 50%. If the course has a minimum passing grade of 60% or higher, the failing grade may be no more than 10% below that grade.
  2. The student has failed only ONE course in the semester.
  3. The student has passed at least one evaluation in the course
All the terms and conditions published by the college apply, see Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy with the following stipulations as determined by the School of Creative Industries:
  1. Only one supplemental opportunity is given for a course in an academic semester.
  2. A student will undertake individual work as a Supplemental in a course where group work evaluations occur unless the academic deficiency is related to course learning outcomes requiring participation of a production team and/or demonstrations of teamwork skills which cannot be evaluated through individual work. In such cases, a Supplemental will not be granted; a student must meet the course learning outcomes.
  3. Supplemental evaluations will not be granted in instances where an academic offence has occurred. An academic incident resulting in a warning is not considered an academic offence.
  4. The final grade as a result of the supplemental will be automatic and is ineligible for appeal.
It is the student's responsibility to monitor their own academic standing and to submit a supplemental request should they meet the conditions above. Supplemental opportunities occur at the end of an academic semester once a final grade has been posted for a course. The student should confirm that they have failed only one course with the Program Coordinator or the Student Success Advisor before completing the Student Supplemental Form within 5 working days after the final grade is posted for the course. The Faculty member will determine the student's eligibility to clear an academic deficiency.

Upon approval, the Faculty member, in consultation with the program team, determines the terms and type of the supplemental evaluation, whether it is a supplemental test or exam (comprehensive or modified version of the final examination) or supplemental work (submission of a final paper, project, or assignment). All terms will be clearly documented on the Supplemental Authorization and Terms form. The student, Faculty member and Program Coordinator must sign the form and it is the student's responsibility to pay the Supplemental fee. 

Upon completion of the Supplemental, the Faculty member will mark the Supplemental and submit a Grade Change form. If the student is successful, the original mark will be changed to the minimum passing grade for the course. If the student is not successful, the failed grade stands.

​Program Progression

Students actively registered in cohort delivered programs who take longer than the designed program length of time to complete their studies are accountable for completing any new or additional courses that may result due to changes in the program of study. Unless otherwise stated, students registered in non-cohort delivered programs must complete the program of study within seven years of being admitted to the program.


Students are eligible to graduate upon successful completion of all academic requirements in their program of study, including field placement or co-op term, where applicable. 

Students are expected to respond to their invitation to graduate through their Student Portal. Convocation ceremonies are held in the spring and fall of each academic year.

Students who take longer than the advertised program length to complete their studies are responsible for completing any new or additional courses due to a program design change.

Students who complete their program after the scheduled completion date are required to fill out an Application to Graduate form and submit it with payment to the Registrar's Office.

Students who were discontinued or withdrew from a program and have subsequently been readmitted to a program must complete the current program design in order to graduate.

Equipment and Facility Information

Program Technology Requirements

Program technology requirements are posted on the program web page. Students in hybrid delivery courses will require a device, webcam functionality, and reliable Internet access. 

Design Kits and Program Supplies

Information regarding required design kits and/or program supplies will be communicated in course outlines.

​​​​​​​Equipment and Facilities Sign-Out and Use ​Policy

All currently registered School of Creative Industries students may borrow equipment and access facilities free of charge. Prior to borrowing any equipment, students must have completed the Health and Safety Training module, which is administered in the first two weeks of classes. 

Equipment and Facilities Sign-Out is: 

- on a first-come, first-served basis;
- to be used for curriculum-based projects only;
- dependent on the program and/or course needs; and
- based on confirmation of adequate training in the use of the equipment. 

Access to Equipment
Prior to sign-out, students must have received adequate training on the equipment by Faculty or a Technologist.

School of Creative Industries reserves the right to adjust the order of equipment sign-out requests as required. The Equipment Room Technician, School of Creative Industries Technologists, Faculty and staff reserve the right to query the student on correct and safe use of equipment and reserve the right to deny student access to equipment at their discretion.

The priority for access to equipment and facilities is as follows:
  1. In-class instruction
  2. Other program delivery requirements 
Recording Media
The School of Creative Industries does not provide or sell recording media (such as flash drives, portable hard drives or media cards) to students. Students must provide their own recording media. Please double check your program's requirements.

Reserving Equipment for Sign-Out
The duration of equipment rentals is now for 2 days. The equipment must be returned by 9:30 a.m. on the day it is due. If the equipment is signed out on a Friday it must be returned on Monday morning before 9:30 a.m. (or the next business day if Monday is a holiday). Under special circumstances equipment may be loaned for longer periods of time. This must be approved by Faculty and the Equipment Room Technician. 

It is the responsibility of the student to never leave the equipment unattended, either on campus or at off-campus locations, as it could be stolen.

If the equipment is found unattended, a fee of $50 will be charged to the student and the sign-out will be immediately revoked.

Equipment signed out overnight must be always secured. Leaving equipment in a vehicle is not secure. Equipment must be brought indoors and secured in a residence or locked office.

It is the responsibility of the student to check the operation of all gear at the time of sign-out and to make sure that the correct gear and accessories (lights, batteries etc.) are included in the sign-out before leaving the Equipment Room.

Many projects that are assigned will be group projects. If the group wants to share responsibility for the equipment, everyone in the group should sign out the equipment.

Equipment Room Hours of Operation
The Equipment Room is open to School of Creative Industries students from Monday to Friday. Specific hours will be posted at the beginning of each semester. Hours may change based upon School of Creative Industries program needs. 

Late Returns
Late returns of equipment will cause delays for others who wish to sign-out that equipment and will adversely affect planned in-class instructions or other program delivery requirements. Extenuating circumstances must be communicated with your Program Coordinator.

Students who return equipment late will be charged a late fee of $25 per business day.  

If the equipment is not returned within:

  • 5 business days - OneCard/Fob access will be de-activated and the Chair notified.
  • 10 business days - it will be considered a violation of the Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy, and Campus Security will be informed to take further action to retrieve the equipment and related costs.
  • End of the semester - grades will be withheld and forward progress in the program will be suspended. Those who are not in good financial standing with the College are not eligible to graduate.
Loss or Damage
The Manager, Broadcast and Educational Technology will arrange for the equipment to be assessed and, in the case where repairs or replacement of parts or in whole is necessary, will request an invoice with a breakdown of charges. The School of Creative Industries Chair, Manager, Broadcast and Educational Technology, and Program Coordinator will review the incident as reported on the Equipment Report Form and will determine the amount owed by the student based on a fair assessment.

Should there be any resulting dispute, the School of Creative Industries will ask that an external Conestoga reviewer be brought in to review and determine the outcome.​

If a student is assessed to have been fully responsible for the damage or loss of School of Creative Industries equipment, or if their maliciousness is deemed to have resulted in damage or loss of School equipment, or if leaving the equipment improperly secured resulted in damage or loss, then the student will be required to pay 100% of the replacement cost of the equipment.

If a student is assessed to have been partially responsible for the damage or loss of School of Creative Industries equipment, such as an unforeseen accident, or demonstrably inadequate in-class training on the proper use of equipment, then the student will be required to pay 50% of the replacement cost of the equipment.

Equipment Faults, Damage or Loss
Damage (even if minor) to the facility or equipment, including operating faults or loss, must be immediately reported by the student. Send an email to attaching a description of the issue or damage and photo of the issue, if possible.

A Student Responsibilities violation may result if the damage or loss is determined to be a result of malicious or negligent behaviour.

Technical equipment faults will not necessarily result in extensions to project deadlines. Please discuss with appropriate Faculty.

Access to Facilities
Currently registered School of Creative Industries students using the facilities must comply with all health and safety regulations and procedures. Non-compliance will result in loss of after-hour and weekend access to facilities and may result in a Student Rights and Responsibilities violation.

Only School of Creative Industries students and their pre-approved talent may use the facilities. Security Officers have the right to ask others, and students who are violating the rules, to leave.

School of Creative Industries Technologists, Faculty and staff reserve the right to question the student on correct and safe use of the facility and equipment and reserve the right to deny student access to the facility and equipment at their discretion.

Access Hours to Facilities
Access to all School of Creative Industries classrooms and facilities is valid during the semester(s) of study for currently registered students only.

In-class instruction and other program delivery requirements have priority access to facilities.

After hour access and weekend access requires that all School of Creative Industries students sign-in with Security.

Access to the School of Creative Industries Facilities

Access to the School of Creative Industries facilities is gained through OneCard or Fob access.  Fobs can be obtained from the Equipment Room with specific Faculty permission.

The student who signs out the Fob is fully responsible for the Fob during the length of time it is signed out and the student is fully responsible for the activities that take place in the School of Creative Industries facilities. 

Lost Fobs must be reported to the Equipment Room technician ASAP so the Fob can be deactivated. The lost Fob replacement fee is $20.

All Fobs must be returned to the equipment room at the end of the academic year, or a $20 replacement fee per Fob will be levied, and grades will not be released.

Reserving/Booking of Facilities
Students may access the Broadcast Studios, Photo Studios, and Audio Booths for rehearsals or assigned productions on evenings and weekends. Students will be provided the link to book online by Faculty and will be notified when access is permitted. 

Facility bookings are limited to two-hour increments.

Student Responsibility – Facility Booking
The student who booked the facility takes responsibility for ensuring:
  • the time frame of the booking is respected;
  • the facility and the equipment are used in a safe, respectful, and professional manner; and
  • the facility is returned to its original clean and organized state for the next scheduled booking.

On entering the facility, students are expected to check the following:

  • the facility is in a clean and organized state;
  • equipment appears to have been properly put away and undamaged by the previous user; and
  • all equipment normally kept in the facility is accounted for.

Any issues should be documented (including photos, as appropriate) and reported to  If a safety hazard or issue is encountered, the student should report the issue to Conestoga College Security immediately.

Photo, Audio and Filming Guidelines
It is the student's responsibility to ensure that they have permission to record video or audio, or take photos of any and all businesses and/or individuals appearing in their productions. 

Consent forms for such recording will be available on eConestoga.

It is imperative that every student review the School of Creative Industries Standard Filming Protocol in this Handbook. It provides clear guidelines as to the student's responsibilities when filming, and provides useful guidance regarding appropriate activity for photography and audio recording. 

​​​​School of Creative Industries Standard Filming Protocol​​​

As part of exercises and assignments within the School of Creative Industries, students may be asked to produce creative works on video.  

Students are advised that they must avoid creating and filming any scenes which may cause a level of misunderstanding or distress to the public, the production team, or members of the school community.  These include mock scenarios, unusual behaviour, or other disturbances to regular day-to-day activities that may cause members of the public to contact emergency or police services.  

Therefore, the following scenarios are not permitted: 

  • the use of a real weapon
  • the use of a prop weapon
  • pyrotechnics
  • filming of nude scenes

In addition, where filming includes the following:

  • ​cranes
  • car mounts
  • drones
  • filming on streets - action, people or cars in the streets
  • people in water
  • ​fistfights or other violent activity
  • foot chases
  • police cars and/or actors in police uniforms
  • ​​working with minors / children
  • night shooting
  • loud scenes in public, including mock protests
  • blocking sidewalks
  • use of special parking permits
  • use of generators
  • potentially illegal activity, such as drug deals or kidnapping​

Students must review the scene and filming plan with their professor, and adhere to all industry protocols, which may involve obtaining appropriate permits for such activity.  Please note that the above is not an exhaustive list, and reviewing your script and filming plan with your professor is highly recommended. 

If permits are required, a written request must be sent in advance to the applicable municipal services.  Applying for such permits may require approval from the School of Creative Industries, and/or proof of insurance. Students are therefore advised to request any such approvals from their professor and the Program Manager for the School of Creative Industries well in advance of the planned filming activity (a minimum of 5 business days).​​ 

It is also highly recommended, and in some municipalities required, ​ that students go door-to-door in the affected filming area, and provide residences and businesses written notice of the date and time ​of filming​.  Please note that, in some instances, non-compliance with filming guidelines could result in the issuance of tickets to the students under municipal nuisance or other bylaws. ​ Such fines will be the sole responsibility of the students. ​

Work Integrated Learning

Student Health & Safety 

All students within the School of Creative Industries are required to complete the Health and Safety Training module provided by their program.

As members of the School of Creative Industries, students have a responsibility to keep the learning and workspaces safe. The Ontario Health and Safety (OHS) Act applies to all persons, including students who are on co-op work terms, unpaid field placements, and work study.

You have the right to refuse to do unsafe work and you have a duty to report unsafe conditions.

Student Engagement

Conestoga 101

The Student Engagement Department is here to help you transition to the Conestoga College experience, connect with your community, and build your skills. 

Start your college experience by completing Conestoga 101 (CON0101) on eConestoga, a mandatory course for all new full-time students that will take you approximately one hour to complete. CON0101 provides an overview of the supports, services, and opportunities available to you throughout your time at Conestoga. Make sure you complete it early on in the term, as it contains valuable information that will help you transition to Conestoga.

​​Student Feedback

​Student feedback is an essential component of our continuous improvement process. Our opportunities for student feedback include:

Key Performance Indicators

All college programs in the province are evaluated using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) through the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU). This Student Experience Survey is conducted each academic year in select classes. Strategic goals to improve the programs are developed from these results. This data and other data specific to the campus and the program/school are collected so that Conestoga College can continually improve quality.

Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT)

The Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT) allows direct feedback from students on teaching for a particular course. Completion of the SAT forms give teachers and academic managers valuable information to use for the improvement of teaching at Conestoga.

The SAT process has two components: the Early Course Check-in and Full-SAT. The Early Course Check-in is 5 questions, occurs during week 10 of classes and provides early feedback to faculty about the student experience within their classroom. The Full-SAT is 43 questions and occurs late in the semester; a summary of the results goes to the faculty member and their academic manager. Typically, about one-quarter of the faculty is appraised per term. All full-time faculty have a SAT review at least once every two years. Part-time faculty may be reviewed more frequently. Continuing Education students may have an opportunity to complete a SAT form during their Continuing Education course.

Program Advisory Committees (PACs)

Program Advisory Committees (PACs) provide the necessary link between Conestoga and the community it serves. PACs operate in an advisory capacity to Conestoga administration with the objective to keep Conestoga responsive to current and future workforce needs, trends or opportunities in industry and the marketplace.

All post-secondary education programs of study at Conestoga, both full-time and part-time, which lead to an employment related credential, or are approved by the Ministry of Colleges and Universities (MCU), will be associated with a PAC, with the exception of apprenticeship and pre-apprenticeship programs. For any program not leading to an employment related credential, such as foundation programs, PACs are optional.

At the beginning of each year, the coordinator(s) of the program will ask for student volunteers. The coordinator(s) will select which student(s) will represent the program at PAC. Student attendees are important members of the PAC and are expected to be present at all meetings and are responsible for preparing and submitting a report based on guidelines provided by the program coordinator.

Students who participate in PACs will receive credit on their Co-Curricular Record (CCR) . Your CCR is an official document, complementary to your academic transcript, which recognizes and records learning that you have achieved through approved Co-curricular experiences at Conestoga.

College-wide Polices and Procedures

​​Student Protection Acknowledgement

A Student Protection Acknowledgement confirmation pop-up will appear when a student logs into the Student Portal on a yearly basis. This will direct students to policies and procedures relevant to their academic responsibilities. All Conestoga College wide academic policies and procedures are listed on the college website under "About Conestoga", "Policies and Procedures". 

Students are advised to review and comply with all policies and procedures, including the following:         
  • Academic Dispute and Resolution Policy & Procedure
  • Academic Offences Policy & Procedure ​
  • Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy & Procedure
  • Convocation Procedure
  • Co-operative Education Policy
  • Discontinuance Procedure
  • Evaluation of Student Learning Policy & Procedure
  • Grading Procedure
  • Program and Course Withdrawal and Refund Procedure/International Student Withdrawal and Refund Procedure
  • Readmission Procedure
  • Religious Holiday Policy & Procedure
  • Student Expectations for Online Engagement
  • Student Feedback Policy
  • Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure
  • Student Rights and Responsibilities Policy & Procedure

Students must follow all of the policies and procedures for Conestoga College and it is expected that faculty will accept, fulfil and enforce these standards.​​ 

Web-based Tools

​Program courses may use web-based services with data centres outside of Canada. Students may be expected to complete assessments where information is transmitted outside of Canada. Students who do not wish to submit their information to other countries have the right to opt-out. It is the responsibility of the student to notify the instructor if they, in the first week of term or at the time assignment details are provided, wish to submit an alternate assignment.

Course examinations may be administered through a remote proctoring service to assure academic integrity. Ensure that you meet the system requirements that will allow the recording of your computer screen, webcam, and microphone.

Accommodation Disclaimer

​Conestoga College provides an equitable environment where all students have the opportunity to participate in College life. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code, Conestoga recognizes its responsibility and legal obligation to provide education, information and services in an accessible manner.

Conestoga's Accessible Learning services provide support for students with permanent and temporary disabilities who feel they are encountering barriers to learning. They work with students to understand the impact of a disability in the college environment and will help develop a success plan that considers student goals and required academic accommodations. Accessible Learning will also communicate necessary accommodations to professors on behalf of the student. 

To consult with an Accessibility Advisor about accommodations please make an appointment by emailing or calling 519-748-5220 ext. 3232.

Exceptions for non-accessibility focused issues need to be consulted on with your professor. Final approval for exceptions unrelated to academic accommodations rests with the program chair.

Program Handbook Revision Log

​​ July 2015 - All sections updated

May 2016 - All sections updated​

June 2017 - Select sections updated

June 2018 - Select sections updated

June 2019 - Select sections updated

June 2020 - Select sections updated

July 2021 - Select sections updated​

June 2022- Select sections updated

June 2023- Select sections updated

Visual Merchandising Arts