Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography
At Stellenbosch Academy the quality of work produced by the students is the core driver of all decisions made. This singular attention to detail was rewarded when the Loerie Awards rated Stellenbosch Academy the Number one Creative Institution in South Africa in 2012.

At Stellenbosch Academy the quality of work produced by the students is the core driver of all decisions made. This singular attention to detail was rewarded when the Loerie Awards rated Stellenbosch Academy the Number one Creative Institution in South Africa in 2012.

Situated, by choice, in the historic town of Stellenbosch – renowned for Academia and Viniculture, Stellenbosch Academy counts its small size as a vital advantage. Small classes allow one-on-one facilitation in the major subjects, which means the Academy can hold its own against its larger competitors.

Stellenbosch Academy boasts up-to-date facilities in terms of space, equipment, and technology – this results in industry-ready graduates with a strong emphasis on innovative conceptual solutions crafted to industry standards.


As an educational institution of high calibre, the Academy is committed to providing students with an exceptional standard of education and a solid foundation upon which to build a successful professional future in the creative industries.


Our Vision is to set a new benchmark for Visual Communication in higher education. We are dedicated to growing a new generation of highly motivated, thoughtful and technologically adept designers, photographers, art directors and illustrators who are consistently able to produce intelligent, exciting and relevant visual communication.


The Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography (Pty) Ltd trading as Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography is registered as a Private Higher education institution in terms of section 54(1)(c) of the Act and regulation 16(4)(a) to offer the following approved higher education programmes and in accordance with the criteria of providing higher education outlined in section 1 of the Act:

a) Bachelor of Arts in Visual Communication

b) Higher Certificate in Commercial Photography


Over and above Stellenbosch Academy’s high level of industry placement, the accreditation of the programmes offered means graduates attain credits, which can be used at other Universities (both locally and internationally), should they wish to further their studies at a post-graduate level.

Graduates of the Academy have gone on to study in various Honours and Masters programmes offered in both private and public institutions both nationally and abroad, including Honours in Visual Studies (Theory) and Honours in Brand Leadership, an MPhil in Illustration and a Post-Grad Diploma & MPhil in Sustainable Development.


All lecturers are chosen according to their mix of industry experience, educational qualifications, knowledge and passion for their subject. All have a proven ability to motivate and teach students at the highest possible level. Collectively, the lecturers also present a healthy range of diverse thinking, which results in the Academy not being limited to a distinct ‘style’ of work. On their own initiative, lecturers also moderate externally at other tertiary education institutions and serve on the Advisory Boards of others, including the Design Education Forum of South Africa (DEFSA).


Stellenbosch Academy considers awards as an industry benchmark to gauge perceptions and assess competitiveness against other tertiary education institutions in South Africa. Students have achieved consistently at the Loerie Awards in a number of categories including art direction for print campaigns, collateral and three dimensional and environmental design.

This led to the Academy being recognised as the number one creative educational institution by the Loerie Awards in 2012. A graduating design student from 2012 was also awarded the very elusive Eagle Print Award (there is only one given out per year).

For the past three years, one designer has been chosen from the Academy to join the Jupiter Drawing Room’s Utopia Project under the mentorship of their legendary CEO, Graham Warsop.

The Academy’s high standing also has historical precedent, being rated in the Top five design institutions from 2008-2010, based on portfolios submitted to the SAPPI Think Ahead Awards.

In terms of photography, the Academy has won a number of awards including:
-Student Focus Africa Award at the Sony World Photo Awards
-Sony Profoto Silver award
-Fujifilm Professional Student Gold Award

In the past, two third year students were selected for the International Summer School of Photography and in 2011, two third year students were selected to work alongside the Large Blue film crew in Tanzania documenting the African Medical Research Education Fund’s project on HIV/AIDS.


-Member of Icograda – the International Council of communication design, a partner of the International Design Alliance.
-Member of DEFSA – the Design Education Forum of South Africa

For more information on Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photogaphy Curriculum

Student Support:

Qualified staff assist students in every aspect of academia from research, writing and referencing for written articles to counseling, should the need arise.

Transfer of Credits and Recognition of Prior Learning:

Courses or qualifications studied at other tertiary education institutions are transferrable should the course content be deemed similar and on the same NQF level. Work or industry experience, based on a portfolio of proven ability within the field of Visual Communications, is also assessed for possible acknowledgement.

All cases are assessed on an individual basis.

Industry Placement:

Graduates of the Stellenbosch Academy have been able to find employment at some of South Africa’s most reputable advertising agencies and design, illustration and photographic studios based on the quality and level of their individual portfolios.

Awards and Recognition:

Photography students from the academy have received a number of awards and accolades and have been featured in a range of magazines and exhibitions both locally and internationally.

Language policy:

English is used as the language of instruction at the Academy and assistance is provided by staff to address any academic difficulties.

Contact details:
021-880 2623
41 Tegno Road
Techno Park

Overlooking the mountains The Stellenbosch Academy is situated in Techno Park 5km along the R44 from the vibrant centre of Stellenbosch town.

Download the Stellenbosch Academy of Design and Photography brochure

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Contact Details

For more info on Stellenbosch Academy
Contact number: 021-880 2623
Contact email: [email protected]

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