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New Zealand Diploma in Digital Media and Design (Level 5)

International Close Date: Received all year

Start your career in design with a solid foundation of core skills.

This diploma aims to develop the technical and thinking skills needed to work in visual communication or graphic design at an introductory level.

Core skills taught include creative idea generation, drawing, design strategies, graphics, branding and communication and photography. As part of this, you’ll be introduced to using Adobe Creative Suite software.

As well as studio courses, you’ll complete a contextual studies course. This is the main academic subject, and includes communication skills, a background in the history and sociology of creative practices and insights into contemporary professional ethics and bi-cultural issues.

Fees for 2024

Domestic Fee
$6,768 - $7,627 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$350 per year
Valid To
December 31, 2024

NCEA Level 2

OR New Zealand Certificate in Arts and Design (Level 4)

OR New Zealand Certificate in Creativity (Level 4)

OR New Zealand Certificate in Digital Media Design (Level 4)

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

Still want to study but don't meet the Academic Requirements?

If you show that you have equivalent skills for tertiary study gained through study, work and/or life experience, you may be able to gain alternative entry.

What if English is not my first Language?

If English is not your first language, we want to make sure that you will be successful in your chosen programme of study.

  • Please provide a result from a test or qualification on the acceptable alternatives English Proficiency Outcomes Chart.
  • If you are a New Zealand Citizen or Permanent Resident, complete an Admission and Enrolment form and Ara will contact you regarding a free assessment.
  • If you are not a New Zealand Citizen or Permanent resident, book an IELTS or other test through the Ara Examination Centre or in your home country.
  • IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form and are valid for two years from the date of the test.
  • What if I have achieved NCEA Level 3 University Entrance?
  • You do not need to provide additional evidence of English Language skills.

Overall IELTS 5.5 Academic

  • 5.0 Listening
  • 5.0 Reading
  • 5.0 Writing
  • 5.0 Speaking
  • 5.0 Speaking

Funding assistance

If you face unexpected financial hardship during your studies, we have several funds that you can apply for. These are designed to enable you to continue your current course of study. We also have a wide range of scholarships and awards that can provide financial assistance.

Find out more

Career opportunities

This diploma will equip you to work at entry level under professional supervision. You’ll be able to lay out artwork as well as generate your own to an introductory level. You’ll also have a good basic knowledge for more advanced study.

Study pathways

This programme will equip students for further study at higher levels. If you have a sufficient level of success in the diploma, you may be able to enter the second year of Ara’s Bachelor of Design.

Recommended school subjects

  • English
  • Visual arts
  • Design
  • Photography
  • Art history
  • Graphics

New Zealand Diploma in Digital Media and Design (Level 5)

FULL-TIME - 1 Year

Start your career in design with a solid foundation of core skills.

Type Diploma
Code NZ2638
May be available for Study Visa? Yes
International application close date Received all year
Credits 120
Level 5
May be eligible for Fees Free? Yes
Reference NZ2638-STRU

Fees for 2024

Domestic Fee
$6,768 - $7,627 per year
Indicative Student Services Fee
$350 per year
Valid To
December 31, 2024
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With an internationally-recognised Ara qualification, the world is your oyster. Our graduates can be found working and making a difference across the globe…


Credit Recognition

If you have prior relevant experience or previous related study credits, you may be eligible for credit recognition towards this qualification.

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Area of Interest

Key Information for Students

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