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Certificate in
Photography Studies

Photography has become an important medium of communication in industry, sales and advertising, government, education, the press, and the arts; consequently, there has been a rise in the demand for properly trained and qualified personnel to work in these fields. This certificate program addresses these needs by offering a basic professional program of study in photography for those who wish to upgrade their present level of expertise, retrain or make a career change, establish their own business, improve opportunities for advancement or job placement in photography-related fields, or prepare for entrance into the degree program at an advanced level.

The courses in the certificate program are usually equivalent to one-half or one-quarter of similar courses in the undergraduate degree program. In some cases full credit for an undergraduate degree course may be granted by completing specific certificate courses (see course descriptions). Transfer Credit students will not be considered unless they have already taken the Image History, Image Theory, and Visual Studies courses.

For detailed certificate and program information, please visit

See more courses and programs relating to Communication and Media.

Individual Courses

Students not wishing to complete the Certificate in Photography Studies may take individual courses from the certificate program for general interest.

Admission Criteria

It is recommended that applicants have the following:

OSSD with six Grade 12 U or M credits (including English), with a minimum average of 60 percent, or equivalent, or mature student status with relevant professional experience.

Advanced Standing

Mature students may be eligible on the basis of work experience in a relevant field. Applicants possessing higher qualifications will be considered for advanced standing on individual merits.

Undergraduate students wishing to pursue a continuing education certificate program should be aware of possible restrictions; please refer to Curriculum Advising for complete details.

Program Open House

Students who have questions about the admission criteria and/or would like to know more about this certificate are invited to attend a Program Open House. Please see Open House for dates, times, and location.

Certificate Requirements

The successful completion of eight single-term courses, with a cumulative grade point average of 1.67 or higher, is required for the certificate.

Certificate Registration

Students may be registered in only one certificate program at any one time. To allow maximum flexibility in crediting external courses and/or courses previously taken at Ryerson, students should register in the certificate at the beginning of their first course (see also Courses and Programs FAQ). For complete details on the advantages of early registration, registration deadlines, and Transfer Credit restrictions, all students should read Registration in a Certificate Program.

Awards and Financial Aid

If you require financial assistance, you may apply for merit-based awards and/or need-based financial aid. As well, students officially registered in a Chang School certificate program may be eligible for funding through the Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP). For a complete list of certificate programs approved by OSAP, visit the Student Financial Assistance website.

Requirements for Graduation

To graduate, you must successfully complete, within your official timespan, the published certificate curricula from the year you registered in the certificate program. In some circumstances, certificate requirements may change, resulting in courses no longer being available. In such cases, Course Substitutions/Directives may be requested. Also, you must apply on RAMSS to graduate, prior to the appropriate application deadlines (see Important Dates). For complete details, all students should read Graduation.

Equipment/Facilities Use

Please note that equipment and facilities use outside of class time will not be provided. ALL work for courses must make use of class time only.

Required Courses

CDFP 328   Photography:  Photography Production I
CDFP 329   Photography:  Photography Production II
CDFP 391   Photography:  History of Photography I

Electives (select five 39-hour courses. Two 19.5-hour courses may be completed as the equivalent of one 39-hour course.)

39-Hour Courses

CDFP 320   Photography:  Analog Photography
CDFP 322   Photography:  Photography for Ad Agencies
CDFP 332   Photography:  Digital Printing
CDFP 333   Photography:  Photography and Digital Imaging
CDFP 353   Photography:  From Still to Motion
CDFP 358   Photography:  Photography and the Web
CDFP 367   Photography:  Photoshop for Photographers
CDFP 378   Photography:  20th Century Photography
CDFP 381   Photography:  Advanced Fashion Photography
CDFP 382   Photography:  Advanced Portrait Photography
CDFP 389   Photography:  Studio Lighting I
CDFP 390   Photography:  Studio Lighting II
CDFP 392   Photography:  Documentary Photography
CDFP 398   Photography:  History of Photography II
CDFP 403   Photography:  Creative Wedding Photography
CDFP 404   Photography:  Magazine/Editorial Photography
CDFP 405   Photography:  Architectural Photography
CDFP 415   Photography:  Studio Lighting III
CDFP 905   Photography:  Contemporary Photographic Art
CDFP 918   Photography:  Photojournalism
CFPN 532   Media Studies:  Advanced Studio Lighting
CFPN 536   Media Studies:  Media Business Studies
CFPN 539   Media Studies:  The Human Figure
CFPN 543   Media Studies:  Historical Processes Workshops

19.5-Hour Courses

CDFP 414   Photography:  Intro to Silver Photography
CDFP 432   Photography:  Digital Printing Workshop
CDFP 907   Photography:  Using a 4X5 View Camera

An intensive, 12-week program

Students now have the opportunity to obtain the Certificate in Photography Studies over 12 intensive, 5-day weeks. This unique fast-track program covers all required production, technology, and studio courses.

CDFP 999   Photography:  Photography Studies Intensive