If you are considering studying fine or performing arts in Canada, your post-secondary planning process should begin as early as high school. Fine and performing arts programs in Canada can be competitive and are rigorous. Therefore, it is important to plan your high school courses accordingly. Some of the courses you will want to take include English/communications, math, creative arts and music to ensure that you are well prepared for the schools and programs that make your list.

There are several additional things that international students can do to prepare and increase the chances of being accepted:

  • Your portfolio represents you to a college as a potential student. Spend time preparing your portfolio in school and at home. This same advice applies to auditions and interviews. For most schools your portfolio/audition/interview will play a determining factor in your admission to that particular school.  

  • Consider attending a summer or spring break academy in your home country to develop your skills and expand your knowledge of possible fields of study. 

  • Undertake to read and study independently. This is a good way for international students to develop interests, expand knowledge and improve the vocabulary and reading comprehension skills needed for school in Canada. This will also help you if admission requirements include a personal essay, since you will be able to impress the committee with the knowledge you have built up of terms and issues specific to this area of study.

  • Validating your interest by volunteering or providing other kinds of service is a good way to demonstrate your commitment and can make a difference to your being accepted into highly competitive arts fields. 

  • Consider how you can develop leadership skills while you are still in high school. Admissions committees value international applicants who can demonstrate leadership potential. You can acquire leadership in school clubs, volunteer programs, and through an internship or summer job.