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Programme overview

Are you passionate about theatre and screen? Creative practice in the arts is socially and culturally important because what results from it is often endowed with attractiveness, utility, power, meaning, authenticity or value. The Graduate Diploma in Creative Practice allows you to focus on a specialist theatre and screen discipline during this year-long programme. You'll gain the in-depth knowledge and specialist skills you need to realise creative possibilities and solutions that are imaginative, appropriate and professionally presented.

Highlights

  • Practical production projects: gain in-depth skills about the business of theatre and screen as you realise your own creative projects from initial concept through to development and completion.
  • Well-equipped dance and television studios, drama theatre, wardrobe and production workshops. You'll also gain on-set experience when making short films on location.
  • Lecturers with years of experience in the entertainment industry.
  • Strong industry links: we're active members of SPADA (Screen Production and Development Association), WIFT (Women in Film and Television), Playmarket, New Zealand Writers Guild, Entertainment Technology NZ and New Zealand Film and Video Technicians' Guild.
  • Tailor-made study pathways: we tailor your individual study pathways to help you to become a highly versatile professional with the technical and creative expertise to engage independently in a range of activities.
  • Frequent visits from international experts through our partnerships with groups such as Script to Screen and the New Zealand Film Commission.
  • A chance to collaborate with design, acting, dance, film and television, directing, writing and production students.
  • Highly regarded graduates who now work on Hollywood blockbusters and local independent features, and produce prize-winning short films and documentaries.
  • Some courses may also be offered in the evening or weekends.

You may also be interested in further specialist or postgraduate-level study in the performing and screen arts. The Graduate Diploma in Creative Practice is the ideal stepping stone for those with no formal qualification or who need to gain some foundational experience in the field before entering higher study.

Interviews

Everyone who applies is offered an interview to help decide what specialist pathway is right for you. You'll be given clear information at the time of your application about how to prepare and what to bring.

For more information visit see Auditions and interviews.

Admission requirements

For this programme, you will need the following:

1. A recognised degree, a professional qualification in a relevant discipline or the ability to demonstrate competencies equivalent to the above
2. A minimum of 8 credits at NCEA Level 2 in English (4 in reading, 4 in writing) 
3. You’ll be required to attend an interview or audition, submit a portfolio or a combination of all three – we’ll notify you of what is required
4. If English is your second language, you will need one or more of the following:

  • Have achieved NCEA Level 3 and New Zealand University entrance
  • Be able to provide evidence you satisfy our criteria for existing English proficiency
  • Have achieved at least one English proficiency outcome in the last two years

Don’t meet the requirements? We also accept:

  • Provide sufficient evidence to be eligible for special or discretionary admission.

For more information download the programme regulations:

Programme Regulations

Courses and timetables

For more details on the courses including timetables, please click on the course names below.

CoursesCreditsAim
Audience, Context & Interpretation (PASA6901) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to examine the ways in which the creator/performer communicates with their audience in an interactive multi-disciplinary learning environment which includes an artist hui at Te Noho Kotahitanga marae. This course focuses on understanding through the analysis of the modes of address and conventions of representation and interpretation commonly associated with performing and screen arts culture.
CoursesCreditsAim
Acting Studio 3A (PASA7213) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to examine local and global perspectives and issues influencing the continuing evolution of contemporary theatre and performance and develop the ability to apply critical judgement to creative decisions. This course employs a noho marae to allow students to evaluate and develop responses to cultural/political perspectives as an emergent creative arts practitioner.
Dance Practice 3A (PASA7223) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to confidently and critically participate in a variety of creative processes, choreographic collaborations and teaching scenarios; while developing the students’ ability to apply critical judgement to creative decisions. This course employs a noho marae to allow students to evaluate and develop responses to cultural/political perspectives as an emergent creative arts practitioner.
Screen Projects (PASA7304) 45 credits (0.375 EFTS)To provide students with a practical learning experience in which they can employ advanced theories, concepts and techniques in specialised screen creative practice for. This course focuses on enabling students to consolidate their ability to create and realise complex screen work in a variety of contexts. There is also a focus on the ability of students to critically evaluate their own performance.
Professional Development 3 (PASA7902) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to transition into the industry by acquiring advanced professional development skills. This course focuses on setting personal and professional goals for academic and professional achievement as well as the business and management practices associated with the performing and screen arts profession.
CoursesCreditsAim
Acting for Non-Actors (PASA6231) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to gain a practical understanding of the techniques of acting presentations skills, voice and movement. This course focuses on giving a hands-on experience to participants in workshop and classroom exercises.
Hybrid Art Practice (PASA6243) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To gain theoretical and practical understanding of hybrid art practices as a process for creating live art in a collaborative, practical learning environment.
Writing and Directing for the Theatre (PASA6251) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To introduce students to a range of effective directing & writing techniques for the theatre using a variety of practice based individual and collaborative approaches. This course provides a practical interdisciplinary hands-on workshop based learning environment.
Skills in Screen Directing 2A (PASA6253) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To introduce students to specialised theories, concepts and techniques for directing. This course focuses on enabling students to practically engage with skills in directing for screen media.
Skills in Screen Directing 2B (PASA6254) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to extend specific skills, knowledge and practices for screen directing needed to achieve standards that enhance creative decisions.
New Zealand Cinema (PASA6304) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to locate New Zealand films in their historical, social and political contexts and to explore the role they play in constructing or reflecting national and/or cultural identity.
Screen Development & Production 2A (PASA6355) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to increase understanding of specialised theories, concepts and techniques for screen development and production. This course focuses on evolving a personal methodology that will give expression to individual creative development and practice in the two areas of writing and production.
Negotiated Creative Project 1 (PASA6605) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to engage practically in a theatre and/or screen production project in a negotiated role using a variety of individual and collaborative approaches. This course provides a practical environment for students to engage in collaborative creative projects from their own specialist perspective.
Costume Props & Breakdown Workshop (PASA6755) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To introduce students to a range of specialist techniques and technologies associated with the creation of costume props. The course focuses on the development of specialist skills through a range of hands-on practical workshops.
CoursesCreditsAim
Acting Studio 3B (PASA7214) 45 credits (0.375 EFTS)To enable students to employ acting theory and technique in specialised creative situations while consolidating the ability to participate in complex work. This course focuses on enabling students to consolidate range of advanced specialist theories, concepts and techniques in a variety of practical settings to demonstrate how these concepts contribute to their personal voice as a creative artist/practitioner.
Acting Techniques 3 (PASA7215) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to establish a critical understanding of advanced acting skills, knowledge and practices while developing the ability to critically evaluate their own work and that of others. This course focusses on the intergration of techniques into all acting work.
Dance Practice 3B (PASA7224) 45 credits (0.375 EFTS)To enable students to gain the confidence to create, critically examine and realise a personal practice, specific choreographic projects and dance performance. This course focuses on enabling students to demonstrate how these concepts contribute to their personal voice as a creative artist/practitioner.
Contemporary Dance Techniques 3 (PASA7225) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to articulate a personal methodology for technique and training while consolidating a body of advanced theories, concepts and techniques relating to contemporary dance practice.
Playmaking (PASA7231) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To critically employ theoretical and practical understanding of playmaking as both a process and an outcome for creating performance presentations. This course focuses on giving a hands-on experience to participants in workshop and classroom exercises.
Writing the Short Film (PASA7257) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To acquire the theoretical, creative and technical skills required to develop short scripts for the screen (or associated medium).
Contemporary International Cinema (PASA7301) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to examine local and global perspectives and issues influencing the continuing evolution of media screen production and develop the ability to apply critical judgement to creative decisions. This course employs a noho marae to allow students to evaluate and develop responses to cultural/political perspectives as an emergent creative arts practitioner.
Scriptwriting 3 (PASA7351) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to establish a critical understanding of advanced skills, knowledge and practices for scriptwriting. This course focuses on students employing professionalism in creative and collaborative practice while developing the ability to critically evaluate their own work and that of others.
Documentary Filmmaking (PASA7392) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To interact effectively and professionally in creative partnership with creative production staff and production crews to realise production of original/selected documentary material. This course focuses on giving a hands-on experience to participants in workshop and classroom exercises.
Creative Practice 1 (PASA7601) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To provide a practical course in which students employ advanced theories, concepts and techniques in specialised creative practice. This course focuses on consolidating the ability to create and realise complex work in a variety of contexts. Students demonstrate self-reliance and expertise appropriate to the profession while applying critical judgement to creative decisions.
Creative Practice 2 (PASA7602) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To provide a practical course in which students employ advanced theories, concepts and techniques in specialised creative practice. This course focuses on consolidating the ability to create and realise complex work in a variety of contexts. Students demonstrate self-reliance and expertise appropriate to the profession while applying critical judgement to creative decisions.
Creative Practice 3 (PASA7603) 45 credits (0.375 EFTS)To provide a practical course in which students employ advanced theories, concepts and techniques in specialised creative practice. This course focuses on consolidating the ability to create and realise complex work in a variety of contexts. Students demonstrate self-reliance and expertise appropriate to the profession while applying critical judgement to creative decisions.
Negotiated Creative Project 2 (PASA7605) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to creatively contribute to a theatre and/or screen production project in a negotiated role and develop the ability to apply critical judgement to creative decisions. This course provides a practical environment for students to engage in collaborative creative projects from their own specialist perspective.
Production Design and Management 3 (PASA7701) 15 credits (0.125 EFTS)To enable students to establish a critical understanding of advanced practice for production design and management. This course focuses on advanced methodologies and specialist techniques in a range of production scenarios while establishing the student’s ability to evaluate their own work and that of others.
Production Design and Management 4 (PASA7702) 45 credits (0.375 EFTS)To provide students with a practical learning experience in which they can employ advanced theories, concepts and techniques in specialised creative practice. This course focuses on enabling students to consolidate their ability to create and realise complex creative work in a variety of contexts. There is also a focus on the ability of students to critically evaluate their own performance.
Production Stage Management (PASA7721) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to consolidate a critical understanding of advanced skills, knowledge and practices for stage management and production management practice. This course focuses on students employing professionalism in creative and collaborative practice.
Entertainment Lighting (PASA7731) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to consolidate a body of advanced theories, concepts and techniques relating to specialised design and technical management for events, theatre, dance and entertainment practice. This course focuses on the articulation of a personal voice for production lighting design and the employment of professionalism in creative and collaborative practice.
Performance Sound (PASA7733) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to consolidate a body of advanced theories, concepts and techniques relating to specialised design for theatre and dance. This course focuses on the articulation of a personal voice for production sound design and the employment of professionalism in creative and collaborative practice.
Art Direction (PASA7741) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to consolidate a body of advanced theories, concepts and techniques relating to the role of the art director in screen production. This course focuses on the articulation of a personal voice for art direction and the employment of professionalism in creative and collaborative practice.
Costume Design and Management (PASA7751) 30 credits (0.25 EFTS)To enable students to consolidate a body of advanced theories, concepts and techniques relating to specialised design and management for events, theatre, dance and entertainment practice. This course focuses on the articulation of a personal voice for production costume design and management and the employment of professionalism in creative and collaborative practice.

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Disclaimer

The 'Key Information for Students' below does not reflect any international student information.

Please take this information as a guideline only. For example, you will often see a difference between these tuition fees and our estimate above. This is because there are a number of variables, such as the specific courses chosen within a programme.

The national graduate outcomes information is for all tertiary New Zealand providers including Unitec. This information is provided by the New Zealand Government and is derived from a national database that links educational and income information.



Key Information for Students

Entry requirements

Minimum requirements: A recognised degree, professional relevant qualification or ability to demonstrate equivalent competencies plus English language requirements and proof of work. Additional information may be required. Special and discretionary admission also accepted. .

Detailed requirements: See the above "Admission requirements" section for more information about entry to this progrogramme.

Duration

1 Year

Tuition Fees

Annual

Total Qualification

Student fees:  $8,330$8,330
Government tuition subsidy: $8,791$8,791
Total:$17,121$17,121

Compulsory Student Services Fee
Student loan information available at StudyLink.

National graduate outcomes

(3 years after completion)
Median earnings$46,309
Earnings range$34,122 - $52,364
In employment83%
In further study8%
On a benefitN/A

Note:All KIS information is the most recent available relating to domestic students only. Click here for more information about the Key Information for Students.