Industrial lighting covers a wide range of different characteristics of working interiors and work tasks. This study investigated the effects of illumination on visual workload in visual display terminal (VDT) workstation. Ten college students (5 males and 5 females) were recruited as participants to perform VDT signal detection tasks. A randomized block design was utilized with four light colors (red, blue, green and white), two ambient illumination levels (20 lux and 340 lux), with the subject as the block. The dependent variables were the change of critical fusion frequency (CFF), visual acuity, reaction time of targets detection, error rates, and rating scores in a subjective questionnaire. The study results showed that both visual acuity and the subjective visual fatigue were significantly affected by the color of light. The illumination had significant effect on CFF threshold change and reaction time. Subjects prefer to perform VDT task under blue and white lights than green and red. Based on these findings, the study discusses and suggests ways of color lighting and ambient illumination to promote operators' visual performance and prevent visual fatigue effectively.