Dalhousie BEDS - Fall 2012

Nicole B

Has anyone heard back yet from Dalhousie about application decisions for the BEDS program this fall?

Apr 26, 12 2:29 am

Results are typically not released until the first week of May.

Apr 26, 12 2:12 pm
Nicole B

Yes -- but one can be optimistic. :)

Apr 26, 12 4:28 pm

Did you find out yet?

May 7, 12 7:20 pm
Nicole B

No I haven't heard anything back yet. Keeping my fingers crossed for this week. I have two more courses that I need to take this summer to get my full credits (had family issues last term and couldn't do a full course load), and one starts next week, so I am really hoping to hear before then -- and for the sake of the stressing to end.

May 7, 12 9:17 pm

I have been holding my breath for the last week! I'm guessing they will start sending them out this week if they haven't already. I need to know soon so I can decide whether to accept a research grant at UVic (if I don't get in to Dal). Good luck :)

May 7, 12 10:37 pm
Nicole B

Thanks. You too! Are you currently at Uvic?

May 7, 12 11:32 pm

I'm really interested in this program and I'm going to apply next year! Have you guys visited the school yet?

May 8, 12 1:57 am
Nicole B

@kavvyr - No I have not. Living on Vancouver Island, it's a fair trek, and I haven't been that far out east yet.


May 8, 12 2:05 am

I'm also waiting on word here in Newfoundland. I haven't done a tour but I visited the school briefly and what I saw was very nice. It's in the old Nova Scotia Technical College and the facade is beautiful. It's also right downtown and close to just about everything you could want.

I know someone who called regarding admissions and they said that late May would be more likely. They might be behind with the near-strike last term, etc. Of course they could be playing it safe so I'm still checking every day.

May 8, 12 6:40 am
Nicole B

Late May? Oh snickerdoodles -- may the stressing continue.

May 8, 12 2:24 pm

They will give you a phone call if you get in or are put on a wait list. The letter usually follows shortly after. They don't send out a response for quite some time to anyone so don't be worried if you don't hear from them for a while! 

May 9, 12 12:30 am

@LittleGreenBeetle - yes I'm studying biology at UVic but I'm currently on exchange in New Zealand. Are you in Victoria as well?

May 9, 12 3:08 am

I gave them a call 2 days ago and they confirmed my acceptance! Apparently, from what I've been told, they're still going through applications and will be notifying people who've been accepted via email shortly.

May 9, 12 5:14 am

Congratulations Endooo!
I'm interested to see your portfolios, if you guys don't mind sharing them.

May 9, 12 6:27 am
Nicole B

@ emilytw - Yes I am currently at UVic (I'm a Victoria born and raised gal). @ Endoo - Congrats! Hoping to hear soon then I guess. Not sure if I want to try calling.

May 9, 12 9:36 am

Have been waiting anxiously, but just received a call from Susanna today, and I'm in for the BEDS 2012 fall intake.

I am thinking of taking a trip out to Halifax to check out the school and talk to some people. Is anybody else thinking of checking out the school as well? or have already been and have any insight on the school. I'm coming from Vancouver and have never been to the east coast!

May 10, 12 4:30 pm

I'm in as well! Huge sigh of relief. I got the email this morning.

@a.carnochan - I visited the school last spring and loved it. Halifax is a great city and the campus is in the best location. It is a small school but they have lots of resources. It sounds like a challenging and stimulating program, very focused on hands on skills and creative exploration - exactly what I was looking for. I think the coop terms and condensed structure are what convinced me to apply. I'm from the west coast too so it will be a completely new environment for me. Hopefully see you in the fall :)

May 11, 12 8:29 pm

Hi all. 

Its hell on the nerves waiting to hear if you got in.  I know (I was there not so long ago I remember; I just finished Beds and started the Masters program last week). But for those of you still waiting, Dal was a little behind this year.  Staff were out due to colds etc, and a re-work of the first year masters design assignments meant that things got behind a little. I would say don't stress to much, but I know you will anyway lol. Anyway fingers crossed for all of you. Im not on here everyday but if you have any question about the program etc , feel free to ask.

May 12, 12 10:32 pm
Nicole B

@Hathor - Thanks for the words of encouragement. With everyone else hearing, I am starting to get quite nervous. I also have been waiting to hear because I need to take two more courses this summer to get my full two years of credits, and one course starts tomorrow, so it looks like I will be going. Will be an interesting course either way (Egyptian art and architecture). Anywho, thanks for making the biggest worry wort who had almost given up, fell a wee bit better.

May 13, 12 11:32 am

Just wanted to also note that BEDS has a pretty extensive waitlist... I was waitlisted last year and soon after accepted. I believe everyone on the "upper" waitlist was eventually accepted, Susanna at least noted that was what happened in years prior. I didn't end up attending, but it was one of my two realistic options financially. Good luck!

May 15, 12 3:43 pm
Nicole B

Finally got an email today -- on the high wait list. Keeping my fingers crossed. 

May 16, 12 12:17 am

Great to hear, LGB. Sounds like you have a good chance!

May 16, 12 3:32 pm
sam goods

Hi everybody,

I was accepted to BEDS 2012 on May 11th and 95% I am going to attend. Congrats to everyone who was accepted and good luck to those still waiting.  

2 Hathor - a few questions about the program to you since you so generously invited everyone to fire them:

1. how is the co-op structured? did you have any troubles finding a firm and where did you take it if it is not a secret (I mean location)?

2. how hard are the profs with regards to grading? what seems to be the average in class? 

3. how hard is transition from BEDS to MArch (application/admissions)? Were there any people who did not get into MArch? Do you know if somebody got into any MArch programs in other universities?

4. how is the workload? what are the average hours students spend in the studio/at home preparing the assignments (even though I realize that it will be different for everyone)? I am not fearing the workload, just want to have a realistic idea - I know that any architecture school is not easy and requires major commitment

That is all the questions I can think of right now, but I am sure I will come up with some more later. Just like a.carnochan, I am from out West but I cannot take a trip to Halifax before the start of the program (work/money reasons) so I am trying to find out about as much as I can about school now to make an informed decision (I have another acceptance on hands but leaning towards Dal right now).

If there is anybody else here from Dal with answers /opinions about my questions, please feel free to chime in as well.


May 17, 12 11:51 pm

Hi Makaron,

I went to Dal for BEDS from 2007-2009. I can answer some of your questions.

1. When I attended, the co-op was partially organized by an administrator named Paula Costello and there was an internal job board (online) where Paula tracked down some internships you could apply for. In the B3 term we had a short representation unit on making a portfolio. You were also free to look for internships yourself just by applying to different firms. I was first offered a job in Calgary (where I am from) but turned it down in favor of an internship in Amsterdam. In the year I did my co-op I think there were 5 or 6 students who didn't get internships and had to do 'supervised research' instead. Most people stayed in Canada but a few went to London and there were 3 others in Amsterdam with me (at different firms).

2. The grading was not realistic, in my opinion. People were marked much higher than they should have been. In the first few semesters I think it is pretty hard to fail, but the ones who ended up doing 'okay' (low b's) ended up either failing B5 or not getting into Masters. At Dal a C- is essentially a fail.

I tended to feel like every semester was a gong show with grading. I know people who got an A+ on one design project only to get a C on the next with no real feedback on how it happened.

3. I quickly decided to do my masters elsewhere so I can't give advice on the transition. I know people who did not get into MArch despite having done fine in BEDs. A few people failed BEDs. Some left of their own volition. I took my masters at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in Copenhagen, and one of my friends who was not accepted to MArch is taking her masters of sustainable urbanism in Lund, Sweden. Another is doing her thesis in Barcelona. I was also accepted to Pratt, UBC, U of T, Dessau.... so yes, a life after BEDs is possible :)

4. It's absolute crap. BEDs was the hardest part of my whole architecture degree, including thesis. Working until 11pm was an early night. Time is sucked up with lectures, group work, and trying to prepare something for design studio. But I suppose it is the same pretty well everywhere. There is something due at least once a week, sometimes twice.

If you want more info, you are welcome to check out my blog from that time:

Best of luck with your decision :)

May 18, 12 8:21 am

Hi Makaron,

Some of what Stephanie said it still true of the program other things seem like they have changed in the past few years.

1) The co-op is still structured the same, with Paula organizing an internal job bank. In my year we had students work in China, Amsterdam, across Canada, and I think a few in the States to. Personally I needed to stay in Halifax to work, I got two job offers in Halifax and accepted the one where I thought the work was more interesting, allowing me to do design work rather than just being a cad monkey (no offence to cad monkeys I used to be one).   I only heard of one person who did not find a job, and rather than do research they chose to take a year off for personal reasons. In B3 the main representation class project was to create your work portfolio...I think they are started to introduce this in an earlier term for the folks who are in Beds now.

2) Yes I heard the school had issues with grading a few years back, being marked higher than they should etc. This was clearly noted by the school and in my year they were attempting to correct this. I found that the marking was much more reflective of the work being produced. The average marks being in the B range. There were A's given out and they are definitely achievable if you want to put in the effort (hence many late nights.) I did hear of C's and lower being given out..again these did seem to reflect the work that was handed in. (The people who got those lower marks may beg to differ.)   

3) Masters...I didn't apply anywhere else, I wanted to do my Masters at Dal and I know a bunch of us felt the same way. I'm not sure how many of my class applied to Dal for Masters. Only 4 of those who did apply did not get in that I know of for sure. Some /a lot of people decided to take a year off and didn't apply anywhere. And a handful did apply elsewhere and were all accepted in to the schools they applied to.

I was told that Dal has an 85% acceptance rate into the Masters program and this does seem accurate. The 4 who did not get in were told it was due to low GPA.

4) Workload...sleepless nights long hours. Same as what Stephanie said. But in talking with students from other Architecture programs this seems to be how it is in Architecture school. And looking back on the past two years...the all nighters, the lack of sleep, the swearing at printers at 5 am...I would do it all again.

Also when we as a class would feel that the workload was to much or unreasonable, we would approach the faculty with a solution. When we did the teachers were agreeable to coming up with a change that suited all. As in lowering the amount of work required or when it was due. 

For me I have loved being at Dal, but as with anything personal preferences come into play. 

Hope that helps



May 23, 12 8:01 am

Hi Everyone,

I found out I was on the wait list a few weeks back and was wondering if anyone on the wait list has been given a spot ye?

May 23, 12 1:02 pm
Nicole B

@juliaweir - Are you on the 'wait list' or the 'high wait list' ? I am on the 'high wait list' and haven't heard anything yet.


May 23, 12 1:07 pm

@LittleGreenBeetle - Just on the wait list but it still said in my email that most people on the wait list got accepted eventually. Keep me posted!

May 23, 12 1:34 pm
Nicole B

@juliaweir - Best of luck to you! I had heard before that everyone on the high wait list in previous years had been offered a spot, but was unsure about the wait list. I will keep you posted and let you know if I hear anything.


May 23, 12 1:48 pm

Hi all, glad to hear more people are hearing back from Dalhousie about their acceptance. I've decided I'm going to make a trip out to Halifax to check out the school/city and do some east coast day trips. Just wondering if anyone here will be in the city to meet-up and chat about the city and school, or at least recommend some things for me to see. I'll be around from June 4-8, and I do plan to rent a car for one of the days to see some of the rural treasures. 

Thanks in advance,

May 27, 12 2:23 pm

I'm a current BEDS student.


1. The co-op is structured so that you basically go find your own job, there are job postings within the co-op office but many seek jobs outside of this system. (From what I've heard, everyone gets a job eventually). As far as locations, people get jobs all over the world - it's really up to you, and what your current situation allows you to do.

The summer term is focused to prepare your portfolio and resume to apply for jobs for the fall. In previous years and in this year, some people have taken it upon themselves and applied for positions well in advance (this is a good idea if you're planning on going over seas - dealing with VISA's and what not).


2. Grading is quite. The architecture students association and class reps here are very involved. If deadlines for projects are impossible they will be ammended.

3. I can't answer this one yet!


4. Workload is very demanding. Be ready for many many sleepless nights. (This is standard practice for any architecture, or design program).

If you have any other questions feel free to ask!

May 27, 12 5:01 pm
sam goods

Thanks to 1234567890, Stepahnie and Hathor for your responses.

a.carnochan, I wish I could visit the school myself but like I said already I can't cause of work/budget limitations. Do you mind posting your impression of the school here when you come back. I am sure everyone accepted and thinking of going would appreciate it  (I know I will). 

May 27, 12 5:40 pm
Nicole B

To anyone that has gotten in for next year, or I guess already there. What kind of supplies do they require you to have? Are there many computer programs that you have to purchase? Any expensive items that you require? (other than a laptop of course)

May 27, 12 11:04 pm

@makaron. While it is costing me a bit to do the trip(all the way from Vancouver) I chose to just take a few days off work to do it, plus its an easy excuse to finally visit the east coast(something I've been meaning to do for years now!). I know lots of people have made their decisions based on actually going to the schools. Also with being accepted to other schools out west here, I can challenge some of the staff and students on their ideas of the direction of the education in comparison to other schools. I will definitely put up a blog or something with photos, and while I'm not the best wordsmith, I will try to answer any questions!

@LGB just the laptop for now and probably basic drafting/model making supplies, I have been working with(and have read) that the adobe creative suite(illustrator, photoshop and indesign) and a drafting program would be essential to first year. While I know there will be a large focus on manual drafting, something I'm excited to get back into(after being a technologist for 4 years and stuck on computers), I'm sure knowing either AutoCAD or Vectorworks will be in the mix of the curricula. Personally I prefer VW, not only formatted easily for mac, but way more simple and intuitive, and you can get student licences through the company websites. 


May 29, 12 2:42 am
Nicole B

@a.carnochan - Thanks for the info. Did you get a supplies list sent out at all? Being on the high wait list I haven't been sent anything at all.. Still on the waiting game. Where did you get the creative suite from? From what I've seen it's rather expensive to purchase them.. I'll check out Vectorworks for sure though. I'll definitely be working on learning it in my free time this summer. What were you doing for your work? I see that you're from Vancouver, did you go to UBC before? I have to admit, I feel kind of out of place with all the other applicants that have been commenting on here as I am only currently in second year at UVic, and it seems like most have/will be completing degrees before the fall.

May 29, 12 2:57 am

I don't know about the rest but I haven't received anything past the initial phone call/email (other than emails from other students trying to sell things). I'm not sure how big any one factor is in the decision. I will have a degree by the fall but in something unrelated, and I have little experience either with the software or visual arts in general. I was worried because of the graduate portfolios on their website I noticed many had gone in with degrees in fine art. My plan for the summer is to get acquainted with AutoCAD, which is free for students, and to refine the old motor skills. I signed up for a figure drawing class to push myself a bit. I have some experience with the Adobe programs and their free equivalents which I'm hoping will be enough to get by.

May 29, 12 7:26 am
sam goods

Same here cocococo - no correspondence since the initial offer yet

Jun 7, 12 11:59 pm
Nicole B

@makaron - Thanks for posting. I was starting to wonder if anyone that got in had heard anything yet. It makes me feel a bit better, since I'm guessing since you guys haven't heard anything that there wouldn't have been any offers made to the wait list yet. I am on the high wait list and patiently awaiting. Can you guys keep us updated? (since I think there are only two of us here wait-listed, and the rest got in.)

Jun 8, 12 12:33 am

@LGB - I got an email today saying that they will be sending out the "official" offer letters shortly. My guess is that they won't make any waitlist offers until people officially decline or accept based on the letter. I'll let you know when mine arrives. Also I haven't finished my degree either, don't worry! And I'm in a completely unrelated field as well. I was told that about half of students have a full degree before starting the program.

Jun 8, 12 10:22 am
Nicole B

@ Emilytw- thank you very much. I figured since no letters were recieved no offers cpuld be accepted or declined, so no offers to the waitlist. That thinking was keeping me sane with the waiting. Are you still in New Zealand, or back in Victoria to the crummy June weather we've been having?

Jun 8, 12 10:53 am

I just found out about a week ago that I'm on the "high wait list" for acceptance into the BEDS program. Does anyone know what that means, how many people are on the high wait list? Did you have to call and confirm that you wanted to remain on the wait list LGB? Any information would be helpful. Thanks.

Jun 9, 12 4:03 pm
Nicole B

@ stad89 - From what I know the "high wait list" is the first 15 people after the 60 admissions offers. You have to call or email back saying that you wish to remain on the wait list. There is also a "wait list" section and they are the next 15 after the "high wait list" . I found out at the middle of May that I was on the "high wait list." I'm surprised you are hearing so late. They seem to be reallyyy behind this year with everything. 

Jun 9, 12 7:03 pm

@ LGB - I heard late because of a mix up with my email address, I just hope they didn't give away my spot on the high wait list because i didn't confirm that i wanted to stay on it. I'll call Susana on Monday to see if I'm still on the list. Let me know if they offer you a position as i seem to be in the same boat as you. ps. I'm form Halifax so if you or anyone else from out of province have questions about the city just post them and I'll try to answer them the best i can.

Jun 10, 12 7:03 am

omg, I am so glad I came across this discussion!!
I too am on the high waitlist, and waiting for a confirmed acceptance! So anxious!!

Jun 10, 12 9:27 pm
Nicole B

The more the merrier for info on the high wait list. Glad I'm not the only one on here anymore. :)

Jun 10, 12 10:02 pm

Hi all BEDS applicants,

I have just come back from a visit to Dalhousie and the city of Halifax. I'm trying to set up a tumblr site or something similar here in the next couple of days with photos of the city(& tourist traps! ), the countryside (Lawrencetown Beach, Peggy's Cove & Lunenburg) and the school itself. 

I had a great whirlwind of a trip and I was able met up with a couple of the students and professors to talk about the program. Luckily the B3 students were participating in something called structures week, a design build event over the span of a week. Teams designed and constructed an informal, inflatable "stage canopy" for a jazz band to play in the upcoming jazz festival. 

Overall I got a very good impression from the school and student culture. I hope to get something sorted over the next week, so stay tuned for more. 

Jun 10, 12 10:55 pm
sam goods

Hey a.carnochan, welcome back! Photos of Halifax and the school would be super awesome. Great idea! How are the spirits of B3 students? Are they liking the program so far?

Jun 11, 12 2:36 am
Nicole B

Hey guys,
As it has been a month since my last correspondance from Dal, I was wondering if anyone had heard anything more since their original email/call?

Jun 15, 12 12:15 pm

Nope :(.... i was thinking the same thing as you.

Jun 15, 12 1:40 pm
Nicole B

@maximillian - I'm guessing that we won't be hearing anything until people who got in have gotten letters, since our admittance would be dependant on their responses... It's quite the frustrating situation. Where are you from? Are you already in Halifax, or from elsewhere?

Jun 15, 12 1:47 pm

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