Creativity, motivation, energy and curiosity are the main ingredients to enter our Propaedeutic Year. This preparatory stage is aimed at students who wish to work in the fields of art or design and allows them to acquire the necessary skills for a Bachelor's program. During one year, this training offers the possibility to holders of a Maturité or a Baccalauréat to familiarize themselves with the methods of the discipline in which they wish to work (Visual Arts, Industrial Design, Photography, Graphic Design, Media & Interaction Design, Cinema). Immersed in the ECAL itself, they learn the essential workings and current techniques inherent in the various fields of contemporary creation.
On the basis of intensive cross-disciplinary courses given by recognized practitioners and theoreticians, students take up numerous subjects (Photography, Drawing, Color, Graphic Design, Art History, History of Architecture, Cinema, Industrial Design, etc.) and become aware of their future orientation one day a week. In addition, they benefit from conferences, exhibition visits and other events that take place in the school.
By benefiting from the know-how of our institution, students can then present a quality portfolio that will allow them to take the entrance exam for a Bachelor's degree at the ECAL or at a university in Switzerland or abroad.
Foundation Year Diploma
Yearly fees (materials included)
from CHF 1 725.– to CHF 21 025.– (according to the residence),
CHF 8 845.– (if a reduction is granted)
Familiarise yourself with contemporary artistic practice through issues, quotations or statements drawn from plastic, literary, film or musical works (Image Workshop).
Test your theoretical and practical knowledge of physical, chemical and physiological colour, whose main elements are the values, contrasts, harmonies, hues and language codes (Colour Course).
Draw by observing and understanding lines and surfaces in order to transform 3D elements into two dimensions (Drawing Course).
Draw by highlighting research and experimentation from a purely artistic perspective (Creative Drawing Course).
Become aware of your graphic environment and learn about the vocabulary of shapes and colours, in addition to understanding the relationship between typography and image (Graphic Design Course).
Create a visual universe “in motion” through video and interaction design (Moving Image).
Become familiar with the computers and the main creative software used at ECAL (InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop) and create a portfolio of the best works produced during the Foundation Year, using a combination of the different tools taught (Computer Science Course).
Practice photography using basic techniques: natural and artificial light, space and perspective in the field of architecture, still life and portraiture (Photography Course).
Acquire background knowledge via theory courses (history of art, film, graphic design, industrial design, photography, interaction design, video art in relation to each of the six major options, etc.).
In addition to theory and practical courses, every Friday student stake a course on their BA major.
Fine Arts option
Develop artistic expression and singularity by tackling sculpture, painting, installation or performance in targeted exercises.
Experiment and learn the basics of the main practical aspects: filming, editing, viewing and teamwork.
Industrial Design option
Research ideas, create relevant and technically simple objects and prototypes and learn how to work in the studio.
Graphic Design option
Deepen the basic formal and colour vocabulary by addressing the relationship between image and text and acquire a working methodology and thinking skills in line with the development of graphic projects.
Media & Interaction Design option
Encourage introduction to digital practices, enabling students to tackle screen and network interaction design, as well as to design and develop personal projects (applications, websites, video clips, video games, connected objects, etc.).
Reinforce basic knowledge in technical and practical areas such as digital colour photography, lighting, working with models, sequencing and photo editing.
This section contains a selection of emblematic or recent projects related to the disciplines taught in the foundation year.
Matthieu Minguet David Monnet
Romane de Watteville