Diploma in Computer Aided Design Diploma in Computer Aided Design

A-Z study guide
Diploma in Computer Aided Design

DiplomaFull-time, 1 year | Part-time up to 5 years

Annual Fees(indicative 2019)

Programme code



$6,700 -$7,400


February, July





Course related costs

Advised before enrolment



Domestic Applications due

Received all year

International Applications due

20 January for February start; 23 June for July start


Christchurch - Madras Street


Develop your CAD skills and open the door to a multitude of career pathways.

With this diploma you'll learn how to install, operate and manage CAD software applications and systems.

Our Diploma in Computer Aided Design will equip you with the skills and knowledge to make a significant contribution to the design and associated information technology systems of a business enterprise. You will develop expertise in installing, operating and managing CAD software applications and systems.

Made up of 75 compulsory credits and 45 elective credits, the Diploma in Computer Aided Design will develop you as a skilled and creative practitioner ready to apply your knowledge on the job or enrol in further study and/or undergraduate level research.

Credit recognition

If you have work experience in this area, or a relevant prior qualification, you may be eligible for credit recognition towards this qualification.

Programme structure

To complete this Diploma you are required to complete 120 credits. Please browse the guide below to view the course options currently available within this qualification.

Core courses
Elective Courses

To be a full time student you need to maintain a workload of 120 credits per year. We recommend you talk with us to ensure you choose electives to benefit your future career.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements
  • Certificate in Computer Aided Design Level 4 or equivalent

    OR Successful completion of a qualification at Level 4 or above in Engineering, Construction or Architecture.

    OR If you have undertaken examinations other than NCEA (e.g. International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Examination), Ara will assess your qualification for academic entry equivalency.

Alternative requirements
  • Evidence of literacy, numeracy and an ability to study at the appropriate level. This can be through study, work and/or life experience. Literacy and numeracy assessments are available.

Additional requirements
English requirements
  • If English is not your first language you may also be required to provide evidence of your English language skills. If you have no evidence of your English language skills and are a New Zealand citizen or permanent resident, contact us for an assessment.

    Note: If you have achieved NCEA Level 3 University Entrance requirements you are not required to provide evidence of English Language Skills.










Acceptable Alternatives Chart

Next steps

To apply for this programme please:

  • complete an Admission and Enrolment Form or an International Application Form

If you don't meet the criteria for entry into this programme, we can help you meet entry level with our foundation and bridging programmes.

Alternatively, if you feel you have gained your learning through on the job experience talk to us about recognition or assessment of prior learning .

Application documents

Career opportunities

Having CAD know-how means you will be able to field employment in various fields such as mechanical product design, civil engineering, landscape design, architecture, industrial design, and character animation.

CAD designers are in high demand globally and you may wish to use this qualification for permanent and freelance contracts.

Create new horizons and new opportunities for yourself or specialise in tasks related to the electrical or mechanical industries such tasks include CAD software and hardware analysis, budget considerations and job/project analysis and planning.

Study pathways

After completing your study you will be equipped to apply for further study in related disciplines at diploma and advanced levels.

Recommended school subjects

  • Computing
  • Technology
  • English
  • Mathematics