• Two acting students in a performance
  • Actor in a performance
  • Acting students in a performance
  • Two Acting students in rehearsal

Acting

NIDA’s Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) equips students with the specific knowledge and skills to pursue careers as actors across the breadth of today’s arts and entertainment industries – in main stage and smaller independent theatre companies, radio, film, television and commercial arenas.

Apply now

Through practice-based learning, students develop technical skills in the disciplines of voice, movement, music and acting. They extend their technique through the study of screen and recorded media. Students participate in classroom exercises, in-depth scenework, rehearsals and full-scale productions enabling them to explore their individual talents, develop their working process and hone their artistic voice.

In the second and third years of the course, all students undertake one of four Studio Electives (Applied Theatre, Classical Theatre for the Contemporary Stage, Music Theatre and Physical Theatre) to enable them to engage in an area of particular interest at a deeper level.

Final-year students undertake public productions, industry-standard film and television shoots and a professional orientation program focusing on the practical realities of the entertainment sector. The year culminates in a showcase performance for industry representatives.

Overall, the course teaches future professional actors to be compelling, imaginative and engaged ensemble members who are capable of being truthful, transformative and courageous in their work.

As this is a highly competitive career, there is an emphasis on collaborative and self-directed work throughout the course. This prepares students to engage with a wide range of communities and initiate their own creative opportunities.

The preparation of professional actors has been at the heart of NIDA’s education since our earliest days. Our Acting alumni include two-time Academy Award® winner Cate Blanchett as well as Hugo Weaving, Richard Roxburgh, Sam Worthington, Miranda Tapsell, Jessica Marais and Ryan Corr.

Want to know more about this course? John Bashford, Head of Acting explains.

Contact NIDA


Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) CRICOS CODE 083696J

Auditions and how to apply

Application Process

Applications will be open July–September 2017, to study at NIDA in 2018.

Entry to the BFA Acting is by audition. Applicants will need to prepare several audition pieces prior to their audition. Monologues and full information about how to apply will be available by July 2017. All applications received by 30 September will receive an audition place. Auditions will be held across Australia between late October and early December 2017. Late applications may be considered if audition places are still available.

How to apply

Applications for the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) 2018 intake are open from 3rd July to 30 September 2017.

Before applying you should read the course details below and application guide carefully. This will help you prepare the content and supporting documents for your application in advance.

Complete and assemble the following documentation. Further information about these documents can be found in the Application Guide and Checklist.

  • A photograph/headshot
  • Proof of Identification
  • Evidence of change of name, if relevant
  • Evidence of most recent qualification
  • Academic IELTS or equivalent evidence (International students only)
  • A certified official translation of any document not in English

NIDA only accepts online applications.



There are five steps to successfully applying for a NIDA course.


Step 1 Create your NIDA account (one time only. Former applicants can use an existing account created previously).

Step 2 Complete the online application form clearly and in full.

Step 3 Attach a headshot/photograph and all requested documentation evidence (see above).

Step 4 Select an audition location & time. Please note that locations/dates/times are subject to availability, NIDA reserves the right to amend these if necessary.

Step 5 Make payment of AUD$150 application by credit/debit card.

  • When you complete the process you will receive a receipt and further email correspondence related to your choice of audition date including the address, time, arrival instructions and options for amending these details if required.
  • All eligible applicants who submit their applications by the deadline will be invited to audition.
  • Applications open 3 July to 30 September but late applications will be accepted as long as there are interview spaces available.

Audition dates

Auditions in 2017 are expected to take place in Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Darwin, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney (NIDA Kensington), Townsville and Western Sydney. Please note: NIDA reserves the right to amend and otherwise alter audition dates and locations, subject to minimum applicant numbers per region.

Adelaide

  • Friday, 24 November 2017
  • Saturday, 25 November 2017
  • RECALL, Monday, 27 November 2017

Brisbane

  • Tuesday, 14 November 2017
  • Wednesday, 15 November 2017
  • Thursday, 16 November 2017
  • RECALL Friday, 17 November 2017

Canberra

  • Tuesday, 14 November 2017
  • RECALLS at NIDA (see Sydney dates below)

Darwin

  • Wednesday, 15 November 2017

Hobart

  • Thursday, 30 November 2017
  • RECALL Friday, 1 December 2017

Melbourne

  • Monday, 20 November 2017
  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017
  • Wednesday, 22 November 2017
  • Thursday, 23 November 2017
  • Friday, 24 November 2017
  • RECALL Tuesday, 28 November 2017
  • RECALL Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Perth

  • Monday, 20 November 2017
  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017
  • Wednesday, 22 November 2017
  • RECALL Thursday, 23 November 2017

Sydney (NIDA)

  • Thursday, 16 November 2017
  • Friday, 17 November 2017
  • Monday, 20 November 2017
  • Tuesday, 21 November 2017
  • Wednesday, 22 November 2017
  • Thursday, 23 November 2017
  • Friday, 24 November 2017
  • Saturday, 25 November 2017
  • RECALL Monday, 4 December 2017
  • RECALL Tuesday, 5 December 2017
  • RECALL Wednesday, 6 December 2017
  • RECALL Thursday, 7 December 2017
  • RECALL Friday, 8 December 2017

Townsville

  • Tuesday, November 14 2017

Western Sydney (Campbelltown)

  • Wednesday 15 November 2017
  • RECALLS at NIDA (see above)

Please ensure you select a date and time suitable to you during application process, if you cannot attend the available dates please select the option ‘Other- Dates provided not suitable’ and email applications@nida.edu.au to discuss further  options

After you have completed your application, you are able to change audition dates once, if necessary. Instructions will be provided with your receipt or please contact applications@nida.edu.au for further details.

How to prepare

Prepare your audition monologues

  • Please download and read the Application Guide and Checklist.
  • Read the instructions carefully and prepare well ahead of time. Do not leave it until the last minute.
  • Download the Suggested Shakespeare Monologues (available soon).

Course requirements

Entry requirements

We select students who:

  • demonstrate commitment, motivation and passion in relation to the arts, entertainment and related industries, to their chosen discipline, and to the course of study
  • provide evidence of their capacity to work creatively and imaginatively
  • demonstrate an aptitude to collaborate with peers as part of a creative process
  • demonstrate a range of knowledge, skills, technical abilities and/or problem-solving techniques relevant to their discipline
  • demonstrate cultural and contextual awareness
  • articulate and communicate ideas clearly

NIDA encourages applications from students from diverse backgrounds, with different levels of experience in theatre, film, television or other areas.

  • All applicants applying for any undergraduate course at NIDA must have completed their Higher School Certificate or equivalent qualification prior to the start of their chosen course.
  • Applicants must also be 18 years of age by 31 March in their first year of enrolment. Only in exceptional circumstances can this condition be waived.
  • Students must be proficient in written and spoken English.

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS

We require all international applicants for our Bachelor of Fine Arts courses to:

  • Attend an audition in Australia (Acting only)
  • Be aware of the visa conditions and financial obligations you are required to meet as an overseas student
  • Accept full responsibility for all arrangements concerning entry into, and residence in, Australia (including visas and health insurance)
  • Have an English language proficiency equivalent to an overall band score of 7.0 IELTS (8.0 for Acting) and bring evidence of your English language capability to your interview. Information on IELTS and testing centres in your country is available at http://www.ielts.org/

Additional information

  • The Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees are 3 years, full-time
  • Timetabled hours are 9am-6pm, Monday-Friday. During production terms students may also be required for rehearsals after hours and on weekends.
  • Additional time also needs to be allocated to library work, research, preparation for classes and private study. For this reason it is difficult for NIDA students to maintain regular part-time jobs. Studying at NIDA is a big commitment so students need to manage their time and resources carefully.
  • Due to the highly competitive nature of NIDA’s admissions process, you must enrol for the year for which you have been offered a place. You cannot defer acceptance of a place.
  • The scheduling and delivery of this course each year is subject to minimum enrolment numbers.

Your Audition

Monologue information

There are four pieces of work you will need to prepare in total;

Two for the first round and, if asked to return for a recall audition, two for that occasion.

AUDITION

Prepare and memorise two (2) short monologues:

  1. One piece by William Shakespeare of Jacobean playwright: This must be in verse. It cannot be a sonnet or a poem. You may choose a piece from the Suggested Shakespeare Audition Monologues (available soon) or a piece of your own choosing.
  2. One modern/contemporary piece: One short monologue from a play (Australian or international). These can be any play spanning the period of Anton Chekhov (early 1900’s) to the present day.

Your monologues must be no longer than two minutes. You will not be timed, but you should try and stick as close to two minutes as possible.

Your monologues must be memorised and fully prepared for the audition.

Bring two hard copies of the Shakespeare/ Jacobean piece if you have not selected from the Suggested Shakespeare Audition Monologues

Bring two hard copies of your modern/ contemporary piece with you (one for you to have on hand, and one for the audition panel).

NIDA Auditions 2017 –Suggested Shakespeare Monologues.pdf (107KB)

RECALL

In the event that you are invited to attend a recall audition you will need to have prepared two (2) additional pieces of work as outlined below:

  1. The NIDA BFA (Acting) has four Studio Electives from which the students can choose to study in their second year of training. These are: Applied Theatre, Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage, Movement Theatre & Music Theatre.

    Create, prepare and memorise a piece of work applicable to one of the Studio Electives that interests you at present:

    • Applied Theatre: Create a short monologue (no more than 2 minutes) that speaks to your cultural heritage. This could be a verbatim piece based on an interview or an exploration of an idea seen through a particular cultural lens.
    • Classical Theatre for the Contemporary Stage: One short monologue (no more than two minutes) from either a Shakespeare play or Jacobean playwright.
    • Physical/Visual Theatre: A physical exploration of a piece of text that inspires you. Your piece (no longer than 2 minutes) may include elements of text, music (that you must provide on a device e.g. phone/ipod) and physical language/skills to safely express the chosen theatrical context or character.
    • Music Theatre: A song selected from the music theatre song list. All songs are available for purchase online in your preferred key at music notes.
    • Not A Day Goes By (from Merrily We Roll Along)

      Stephen Sondheim

      M/F

      I Remember (from Evening Primrose)

      Stephen Sondheim

      M/F

      Waving Through A Window (from Dear Evan Hansen)

      Justin Paul & Benj Pasek

      M

      Stars And The Moon (from Songs For A New World)

      Jason Robert Brown

      F

      Gravity 

      Sara Bareilles

      M/F

      Ordinary People

      John Legend

      M/F

  2. A duologue: You should choose to portray a character from the selection of duologues that will be available soon

    You should memorise the part and be prepared to work with an actor in the room on the day. The doulogues can be accessed via the NIDA 2017 Application guide

What to expect on the day

AUDITION PROCESS

The first round audition will run for half a day, in either a morning (9am-1pm) or afternoon (2pm-6pm) session.

Firstly, a NIDA staff member will run through some information about the Acting course and you’ll have an opportunity to ask any questions about the course or the audition process.

The whole group will then participate in some movement and vocal warm ups, before starting the monologue presentations.

In the first round audition you will have an opportunity to present two monologues to the panel.

RECALL PROCESS

If the panel would like to see more from you, they will invite you back for a recall audition, which will take place on a separate day.

Those applicants invited back to a recall audition will have a chance to present their third piece of work relating to one of the four Studio Electives.

Applicants that are invited to the final, afternoon stage of the recall audition will be expected to be able to work on their duologue with an actor and participate in a practical workshop to assess their vocal, physical and theatre making skills

Dos and don'ts

Do:

  • Only select monologues from published plays. Excerpts from TV programs or films are not acceptable
  • Read the whole play that your monologue comes from – research is important
  • Choose characters close to your current age range – while you don’t need to stick to your exact age try to avoid the extremes, such as Shakespeare’s King Lear or Willy Loman from Death of a Salesman
  • Choose characters who are in circumstances you can identify with and that you will enjoy exploring
  • Select pieces that are new to you and that you have not presented before
  • Pick monologues that will showcase you and your acting choices
  • Feel free to use contrasting material when selecting your monologues; for example, serious and comic or internal versus external
  • Think about who you are talking to in the monologue and what you want from them – know what you mean and what you say
  • Make all of your monologues active, use an invisible partner – for example, your audience – as a friend, conspirator, confidant or whatever is needed for the scene
  • Relax and enjoy yourself – we find that most applicants manage to relax and enjoy the experience and we hope that you will too!

Don’t:

  • Don’t use a book of monologues, except as a reference – if you find a piece in an audition book that you like you must still read the whole play
  • Don’t select material for shock value, as this often backfires – while there are no real rules around this we suggest that you avoid material with strong sexual references or excessive use of expletives
  • Don’t present monologues you have prepared and presented at previous NIDA auditions
  • Don’t present any monologue other educational institutions have on their audition monologue sheets – we understand that this may result in extra work if you are auditioning for other institutions, but we are interested in your curiosity, hunger and level of preparation.

Tips for the day

Remember:

  • that this is your audition – while it is useful to test out your monologue on a friend, do not worry about acting coaches and don't let anybody tell you how to act it
  • to wear suitable clothing – any casual clothing that does not limit your movement is acceptable
  • that you will be asked to work in bare feet, so do not wear closed-toe tights
  • to wear little or no make-up.

Selection Process

Selection of students

We select students who:

  • demonstrate commitment, motivation and passion in relation to the arts, entertainment and related industries, to their chosen discipline, and to the course of study
  • provide evidence of their capacity to work creatively and imaginatively
  • demonstrate an aptitude to collaborate with peers as part of a creative process 
  • demonstrate a range of knowledge, skills, technical abilities and/or problem-solving techniques relevant to their discipline
  • demonstrate cultural and contextual awareness
  • articulate and communicate ideas clearly

NIDA encourages applications from students from diverse backgrounds, with different levels of experience in theatre, film, television or other areas.

Due to the volume of auditions carried out, we are unable to provide you with individual feedback. The decision of the audition panel is final.

It is not possible to defer an offer of a place at NIDA.

Age and education requirements

  • All applicants applying for any undergraduate course at NIDA must have completed their Higher School Certificate or equivalent qualification at the end of high school.
  • Applicants must also be 18 years of age by 31 March in their first year of enrolment. Only in exceptional circumstances can this condition be waived.
  • Students must be proficient in written and spoken English.

International students

We require all international applicants to:

  • attend an audition in Australia.
  • be aware of the visa conditions and financial obligations you are required to meet as an overseas student.
  • accept full responsibility for all arrangements concerning entry into, and residence in, Australia (including visas and health insurance).
  • have an English language proficiency equivalent to an overall band score of 8.0 IELTS for the Acting course. Information on IELTS and testing centres in your country is available at www.ielts.org This requirement may be waived for applicants that have completed their high school studies in English.

For more information on applying as an international student, see international students.

Contact

If you have any further questions about the application process, please contact:

Email: applications@nida.edu.au

Phone: +61 (02) 9697 7614
+61 (02) 9697 7611
+61 (02) 9697 7654

Mail:

Applications
NIDA
215 Anzac Parade
Kensington NSW 2033

Course structure

Course dates and times 

Course duration and contact hours

Students are at NIDA from 9am to 6pm from Monday to Friday. During production terms students may also be required for rehearsals after hours and on weekends.

Additional time also needs to be allocated to library work, research, preparation for classes and private study. For this reason it is difficult for NIDA students to maintain regular part-time jobs. Studying at NIDA is a big commitment so students need to manage their time and resources carefully. 

All NIDA Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees are three-year full-time courses. All NIDA Master of Fine Arts courses, except for Cultural Leadership, are 15-month full-time courses. 

2017 course dates

SEMESTER 1

Term 1: 23 January–7 April

Mid-Semester Break: 8–23 April

Term 2: 24 April–23 June

MID-YEAR BREAK: 24 June–16 July

SEMESTER 2

Term 3: 17 July–1 September

Mid-Semester Break: 2–10 September

Term 4: 11 September–10 November

The semester continues until early December for those involved in the Directors’ productions.

2018 course dates

SEMESTER 1

Welcome week- 5 February-9 February

Term 1: 5 February-13 April

Mid-Semester Break: 14–29 April

Term 2: 30 April–29 June

MID-YEAR BREAK: 30 June-22 July

SEMESTER 2

Term 3: 23 July–1 September

Mid-Semester Break: 2–7 September

Term 4: 17 September–15 November

The semester continues until early December for those involved in the Directors’ productions.

The scheduling and delivery of this course each year is subject to minimum enrolment numbers.

Course requirements

Entry requirements

We select students who:

  • demonstrate commitment, motivation and passion in relation to the arts, entertainment and related industries, to their chosen discipline, and to the course of study
  • provide evidence of their capacity to work creatively and imaginatively
  • demonstrate an aptitude to collaborate with peers as part of a creative process
  • demonstrate a range of knowledge, skills, technical abilities and/or problem-solving techniques relevant to their discipline
  • demonstrate cultural and contextual awareness
  • articulate and communicate ideas clearly

NIDA encourages applications from students from diverse backgrounds, with different levels of experience in theatre, film, television or other areas.

  • All applicants applying for any undergraduate course at NIDA must have completed their Higher School Certificate or equivalent qualification prior to the start of their chosen course.
  • Applicants must also be 18 years of age by 31 March in their first year of enrolment. Only in exceptional circumstances can this condition be waived.
  • Students must be proficient in written and spoken English.

INTERNATIONAL APPLICANTS

We require all international applicants for our Bachelor of Fine Arts courses to:

  • Attend an audition in Australia (Acting only)
  • Be aware of the visa conditions and financial obligations you are required to meet as an overseas student
  • Accept full responsibility for all arrangements concerning entry into, and residence in, Australia (including visas and health insurance)
  • Have an English language proficiency equivalent to an overall band score of 7.0 IELTS (8.0 for Acting) and bring evidence of your English language capability to your interview. Information on IELTS and testing centres in your country is available at http://www.ielts.org/

Additional information

  • The Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees are 3 years, full-time
  • Timetabled hours are 9am-6pm, Monday-Friday. During production terms students may also be required for rehearsals after hours and on weekends.
  • Additional time also needs to be allocated to library work, research, preparation for classes and private study. For this reason it is difficult for NIDA students to maintain regular part-time jobs. Studying at NIDA is a big commitment so students need to manage their time and resources carefully.
  • Due to the highly competitive nature of NIDA’s admissions process, you must enrol for the year for which you have been offered a place. You cannot defer acceptance of a place.
  • The scheduling and delivery of this course each year is subject to minimum enrolment numbers.

Subjects

First year

Acting Studio

SEMESTER ONE 

ACT7101A ACTING STUDIO (30 credit points) 

This subject introduces students to the theoretical, technical and practical foundations of acting, voice, movement and music for the professional actor. It aims to cultivate the uniqueness of self to reveal and release habitual physical patterns that impede effective communication. Technical cognizance coupled with knowledge and critical awareness of self will aid the actor in making imaginative connections to body, sound, words, emotion, and the creative world of stage and screen. The subject begins the process of cultivating the technical craft required of the individual actor, releasing imagination and creativity within a developing ensemble. Self-discipline and awareness are developed through practical experiential exercise with classes examining particular theatrical and screen forms, individual and group research, vocal, physical and music training. 

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7101B ACTING STUDIO (30 credit points)

This subject further engages with the theoretical, technical and practical fundamentals (acting, voice, movement and music) for effective communication for the professional actor. It aims to continue the process of unlocking habitual physical patterns that impede self-expression, individualism and creativity, and, through the exploration of the principles of voice, body and music, release and reveal textual and physical constructs (i.e. ownership of language, form and structure of verse, rhythm, length of words and imagery). The embodiment of technical facility and flexibility, coupled with knowledge and critical awareness of self, will aid the actor in making imaginative connections to words, emotion, and the creative world of stage and screen. The subject solidifies the personal technical craft of the individual actor, releasing the individuals’ imaginative response within an ensemble. Classes examine particular theatrical and screen forms, individual and group research, vocal, physical and music training.

Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration

SEMESTER ONE 

ACT7102A ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (15 credit points)

This subject offers students with the opportunity to engage with theories and techniques that encourage creative collaborative stagecraft and performance practice for the actor. The subject aims to support and transfer technical proficiency discovered in the Acting Studio subject enabling and revealing cognisance of self (self-awareness) within/through a text or non-text based collaborative performance context. Through the interface with collaborative theatre practice and the rehearsal process students acquire an appreciation of the roles and responsibilities that inform theatrical production and actively contribute and participate in the forming of a creative ensemble. Classes examine particular theatrical constructs, as well as individual and group research for collaborative in-house performance outcomes.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7102B ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (15 credit points)

This subject requires the transference of theoretical, technical and practical skills acquired to collaborative performance practice for the screen actor. The subject enables students to further acquire an informed cognisance of self towards self-actualisation within/through text and/or non-text based cooperative production contexts. The subject places an emphasis on the individual actor’s aptitude for self-expression within collaborative rehearsal and production processes in theatre and screen. Students will acquire a detailed and practical understanding of the roles and responsibilities that inform stage and screen production, and actively participate and engage creatively and imaginatively within an ensemble for stage and/or screen production. Classes and rehearsals examine particular theatrical and screen forms, as well as individual and group research.

Performance and Ideas

SEMESTER ONE

COM7101A PERFORMANCE AND IDEAS (10 credit points)

This subject investigates six different play texts to create a trans-historical understanding of the tragic form and the ideas that have influenced tragedy across the centuries.

Students interrogate three main questions:

  • What is tragedy?
  • In what way has innovation in the tragic forms sprung out of a tradition of practices?
  • In what way does this tradition influence our meaning making and practice today?

Students investigate these questions within the broader context of the ‘world views’ through which we can examine tragedy critically, the responses that these ‘world views’ have provoked to tragedy, the way we have responded to them artistically, and what tragedy can teach us about ourselves and about society.

SEMESTER TWO

COM7101B PERFORMANCE AND IDEAS (10 credit points)

This subject’s focus is on comic forms and intercultural analysis. It investigates five different play texts to create a framework of understanding of the comic form and the ideas that have influenced comedy across the centuries, in particular interculturalism.

Students consider three main questions:

  • What is comedy?
  • In what way has innovation in the comic forms sprung out of a tradition of practices?
  • In what way does this tradition influence our meaning making and our practice today?
The subject sets these questions within a broad sociological and historical context and provokes students to reflect on the impact of comedy in the theatre and in wider society

Introduction to Collaboration

SEMESTER ONE

COM7102A INTRODUCTION TO COLLABORATION (5 credit points)

The focus of Introduction to Collaboration is the theory and practice of collaboration.

This subject introduces students to the principles of collaboration, which includes defining collaboration and creativity and examining how ethics, values and behaviours of collaboration are generated. Students investigate notions of ownership, agreement, creative conflict and how to generate ideas and create innovative practice.

This subject provides a theoretical, conceptual and practical scaffold for other BFA subjects including Student-led Projects and Interdisciplinary Collaboration.

SEMESTER TWO

COM7102B INTRODUCTION TO COLLABORATION (5 credit points)

This subject builds upon the principles of collaboration, skills and conceptual tasks featured in the previous semester. The concepts previously explored are now realised through practice in a group collaborative project. These small cross cohort collaborations are supervised and mentored. They have strategies and articulated milestones for the collaboration built into the conceptual plan so that students remain accountable to the learning outcomes of the subject.

Second year

Second year at a glance

ACT7201A (30 credit points) and ACT7201B (30 credit points)

Acting Studio in Second Year continues to build on the core training of acting, voice, movement and music. Students explore complex text and language (classical dramatic, heightened verse and prose), physicality, voice and speech (such as accents and dialects) as well as engaging with three Studio Majors: Music Theatre, Applied Theatre, Physical Theatre and Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage.

The Applied Theatre Studio Major gives students the tools to create performance that is based on a process of dialogue between contemporary theatre practice and diverse communities. The emphasis is on creating performance through engagement with people and places from a broad social, political and ideological spectrum.

The Music Theatre Studio Major engages students with a range of specialist skills necessary to the music theatre repertoire. Students will investigate traditional music theatre forms, studying a variety of texts and scores focusing on the transition from scene to song, music as subtext, the function of underscore and song structure

In the Physical Theatre Studio Major students will be exposed to a variety of physical theatre techniques with a view to question and challenge traditional theatre forms. These will include forms such as Biomechanics, Contemporary Dance, Advanced Acrobatics, Suzuki, Butoh and Wire Work.

Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage will develop and deepen the individual student’s knowledge and understanding of the theory and practice of European classical text in order to create original interpretations of characters for today’s contemporary audience.

Acting Studio

SEMESTER ONE

ACT7201A ACTING STUDIO (30 credit points)

In this subject, particular emphasis is placed on the interaction between the imaginative, theoretical, technical and practical skills of acting, voice, movement and music for the actor. It has a particular focus on the application and integration of technical facility and creative expression to reveal character. It is linked specifically to the exploration of complex text and language (classical dramatic, heightened verse and prose), physicality, voice and speech (such as accents and dialects) as well as the engagement with three Studio Electives - Music Theatre, Applied Theatre, Physical Theatre and Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage. In the elected Studio Electives students investigate a distinctive creative modality in order to concentrate on and cultivate a broad range of skills as professional actors and/or artists

The subject aims to develop well researched, self-disciplined, determined and creative actors and/or artists that constantly challenge their understanding of the creative process by undertaking a series of projects that develop skills in cultural interfacing, observation, imagination and character development. Classes examine particular theatrical and screen forms, individual and group research, vocal, physical and music training.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7201B ACTING STUDIO (30 credit points)

In this subject, students are encouraged to embody the theoretical, technical and practical applications of acting, voice, movement and music within theatrical and screen constructs for public performance. The subject places particular emphasis on the actualisation and transformation of character, through the exploration of highly complex text and language (dramatic, comedy, heightened verse and prose), voice, physicality and continued creative engagement with specialist Studio Electives (Music Theatre, Applied Theatre, Physical Theatre and Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage).

The subject aims to develop technically creative and imaginative artists who are able to appreciate and express various styles and forms (American comedy and American theatre) inherent in theatre, screen and societal contexts for the actualisation and expression of text, character and meaning. Students explore performance styles and production contexts by undertaking a series of projects to develop skills in cultural interface, observation, imagination and actualisation of character.

Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration

SEMESTER ONE

ACT7202A ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (15 credit points)

This subject introduces students to interdisciplinary collaboration and performance for public production. It encourages actors to engage responsibly with other disciplines across NIDA and clearly define their role and responsibilities within a professional production. The subject is designed to interface with the Acting Studio subject, supporting and transferring technical proficiency to investigate character development within the collaborative rehearsal process for a public theatrical production. Students engage and participate in professional rehearsal room expectations, interfacing with stage managers, costume designers, prop makers, lighting designers, voice coaches, etc. and with resident and other professional directors. The rehearsal process aims to replicate as fully as possible current professional practice, the director and acting tutors placing emphasis on the actors’ craft with the focus on marrying technique and expression for interesting, imaginative and involved behaviour in creative collaborative situations.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7202B ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (15 credit points)

Students develop the ability to transfer skills developed in Acting Studio to realise character in and through interdisciplinary rehearsal and public performance. The subject demands that the actor engage with initiative in the creative process of theatre and screen making. Students use emerging leadership skills and technical proficiency discovered in Acting Studio to realise character through the collaborative rehearsal process, public production and practice from stage to screen. The rehearsal process aims to replicate as fully as possible current professional practice. The focus is on the seamless integration of acting technique and creative expression for interesting, imaginative and involved behaviour in production/public performance. Classes examine particular theatrical, and screen forms, and individual and group research within a collaborative context.

Performance and Ideas

SEMESTER ONE

COM7201A PERFORMANCE AND IDEAS (10 credit points)

This subject draws together some of the earlier learning about tragedy and comedy and brings into focus twelve

different play texts through which students form an understanding of the tragi-comedic form and the ideas that have influenced it across the centuries.

SEMESTER TWO

COM7201B PERFORMANCE AND IDEAS (10 credit points)

This subject builds upon the knowledge and analytical skills built in the earlier semesters of Performance and Ideas, and culminates in a study of nine different works to develop an understanding of non-Aristotelian experiments as they have impacted on the development of contemporary performance. The subject addresses the questions:

  • What can performance be?
  • What are the ethics of performance?

In what way has innovation in performance ruptured, adapted and affirmed a tradition of practice?

Student-led Projects

SEMESTER ONE

COM7203A STUDENT-LED PROJECTS (5 credit points)

Student-led Projects derive from the theoretical and methodological frameworks explored in introduction to Collaboration. Students self-select their collaborative teams with cross cohort representation. Together each team shapes an idea for presentation drawing on the individual knowledge and ability of each member to problem-solve in the development and realisation of the collaborative endeavour. Collaborative groups request input from staff or external mentors when it is required. In this subject, students apply their acquired knowledge of behaviours, innovation in practice, leadership, followership, emotional intelligence and negotiation skills to devise a collaborative performative work.

Each group draws on the collective knowledge of different performance forms and processes to decide on the particular shape of their work and has strategies and articulated stages for the collaboration built into a written conceptual plan. A peer-review framework for assessment makes each student individually and collectively behaviourally accountable to the vision of the work.

SEMESTER TWO

COM7203B STUDENT-LED PROJECTS (5 credit points)

In this subject students build on the collaborative practice project established in the preceding semester by bringing their project to realisation and, if they wish, presenting it in a public or semi-public setting.

Students complete their documentation of the whole project in this semester, refine and finalise their framework for peer review, and document the outcome of the peer review process after final presentations of the work.

Third year

Third year at a glance

ACT7301A (15 credit points) and ACT7301B (15 credit points)

Acting Studio in third year focuses on acquiring the professional competencies required of the ‘industry-ready’ artist. These subjects are designed to consolidate the skills learnt in acting, voice, movement and music within contemporary professional industry contexts. These subjects provide students with a broad range of industry specific skills (such as voice-overs, ADR/looping recording, commercials etc.) and a detailed rigorous focus on the Studio Majors.

In the Applied Theatre Studio Major students are asked to work in collaborative teams to make a work for performance. Students will develop the confidence to call themselves community arts activists and are encouraged to see themselves as independent theatre makers and self-generating artists, who can, through their work, create spaces, collaborations and projects that have the possibility within them to create change.

In the Music Theatre Studio Major students explore specific musical styles, such as European cabaret, its composers and performers and the political and social conditions that encourage growth and allow the creation of style and form.

In the Physical Theatre Studio Major students will begin to devise their final presentation utilising skills gained in second year. All aspects of the work will be self-directed by the student. The work may or may not be narrative driven.

In Classical Acting for the Contemporary Stage will further develop within the student a critical framework that can be applied to the practical aspect of bringing to life classical text through the creative embodiment of voice, physicality and kinesthetic practice.

These subjects also aim to prepare the students for the industry by building networks both internally and externally. Classes are designed to accompany and complement Showcase, Showreel and the final year productions in ACT7302A and ACT7302B Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration, as well as examine particular theatrical, screen forms, individual and group research, voice, physical and music training.

Acting Studio

SEMESTER ONE

ACT7301A ACTING STUDIO (15 credit points)

This subject focuses on acquiring the professional competencies required of the ‘industry-ready’ artist. It is designed to provide students with a broad range of industry specific skills (such as voice-overs, ADR/looping recording, commercials etc.). It also continues a detailed rigorous engagement with the Studio Electives with a view to realising students’ potential as interesting, imaginative and engaged artists.

Classes are designed to accompany and complement productions in Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration, as well as to examine particular theatrical, screen forms, individual and group research, vocal, physical and music training.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7301B ACTING STUDIO (15 credit points)

With a continuing focus on the application of technical, imaginative and expressive skills, students take part in presentations that enable them to demonstrate skilled and industry- ready leadership and transformation of emotional, physical, and vocal range to creating a variety of roles. The subject aims to prepare students to be the creative and artistic leaders of the future, capable of contributing to the professional industry (both nationally and internationally) to a high standard. The subject is designed to establish the individual student actor in an industry context by consolidating three years of conservatoire education and training in an industry Showcase. Classes are designed to complement ShowcaseShowreel and final productions, as well as to examine particular societal contexts, theatrical and screen forms, and individual and group research. 

Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration

SEMESTER ONE

ACT7302A ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (30 credit points)

This subject focuses on performance-orientated competencies for the professional actor through the collaborative process in a range of different cultural and personal territories for stage and/or screen and various media. The subject encourages actors to engage with the principles and practices of the professional actor in collaborative, devised and contemporary performance. The subject is designed to provide students with a broad range of industry specific skills supporting and transferring technical proficiency discovered in Acting Studio to develop and actualise character in the devising and rehearsal process, as well as in a public theatrical production with a focus on professional competency in the role. Classes examine particular theatrical constructs, and individual and group research within a collaborative context.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7302B ACTING INTERDISCIPLINARY COLLABORATION (30 credit points)

The actors/artists demonstrate career-ready competency through the collaborative process in a range of different cultural and personal territories. The subject is designed to enable students by providing them with a broad range of industry specific opportunities and a final public performance/production. The productions are designed to support and showcase technical proficiency of the student actor to the contemporary professional industry. Students participate in professional rehearsal room expectations, interfacing with stage managers, costume designers, prop makers, lighting designers, as well as internal and professional external directors. The rehearsal process aims to replicate as fully as possible current professional practice. The focus is on the advanced application and amalgamation of technique and expression for interesting, imaginative and involved behaviour in production/public performance. 

Acting Professional Practice

SEMESTER ONE

ACT7303A ACTING PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE (15 credit points)

This is a cross-disciplinary subject designed to prepare the actors/artists for professional industry practice by providing opportunity to create a professional portfolio, as well as demonstrating a responsible and consistent attitude towards the self-management required of an independent career in the performing arts. The subject formalises the transition from personal development to a career-orientated model and aims to foster an in-depth understanding and knowledge of industry and industrial relationships, such as presenting a Showcase, agents’ visits, developing auditioning skills, maintaining employment contracts, clarifying the role of casting agents, casting directors, and becoming knowledgeable about policy-making and funding bodies. Students perform unplugged (i.e. without theatrical conventions) for agents and industry professionals from across Australia.

SEMESTER TWO

ACT7303B ACTING PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE (15 credit points)

This subject aims to be the stepping-stone into the professional industry and assists in building business skills (websites, self-testing, and marketing) and industry relationships with directors, agents and casting directors. Students develop and present a fully supported Showcase and Showreel for the industry, completing their professional portfolio.

Careers

Graduates of the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) will have the performance skills and theoretical knowledge to be employed in a range of industries, including television, film, theatre and radio.

Students will graduate having studied one of three Studio Majors: Music Theatre, Applied Theatre, or Physical Theatre. Graduating students will also have a professional portfolio through which to showcase their talent and have ample opportunities to connect with industry professionals including agents and casting directors.

Potential careers

  • Stage actor 
  • Film actor 
  • Television actor 
  • Radio actor 
  • Voiceover artist 

Fees

Tuition fees

Tuition fees for domestic students, see international students for costs for international students.

The tuition fees are reviewed each year and if you enrol you are liable for the additional tuition costs if the tuition fees rise during the course of your enrolments.

Tuition fees overview

Degree Course duration 2018 Annual tuition fee $AUD* Estimated total course tuition fee*
Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) Three years $14,277.96 $42,833.88

Tuition fee details

Year 1, 2018
Subject code Subject Credit points EFTSL** Tuition fee*
Semester 1, 2018



ACT7101A Acting Studio 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7102A Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 15 0.125 $1,784.75
COM7101A Performance and Ideas 10 0.083 $1,189.83
COM7102A Introduction to Collaboration 5 0.042 $594.90
Total for Semester 1, 2018
60 0.5 $7,138.98
Semester 2, 2018



ACT7101B Acting Studio 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7102B Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 15 0.125 $1,784.75
COM7101B Performance and Ideas 10 0.083 $1,189.83
COM7102B Introduction to Collaboration 5 0.042 $594.92
Total for Semester 2, 2018
60 0.5 $7,139.98
Total for Year 1
120 1.0 $14,277.96
Year 2, 2018
Subject code Subject Credit points EFTSL** Tuition fee*
Semester 1, 2018



ACT7201A Acting Studio 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7202A Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 15 0.125 $1,784.75
COM7201A Performance and Ideas 10 0.083 $1,189.83
COM7203A Student-led Projects 5 0.042 $594.92
Total for Semester 1, 2018
60 0.5 $7,138.98
Semester 2, 2018



ACT7201B Acting Studio 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7202B Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 15 0.125 $1,784.75
COM7201B Performance and Ideas 10 0.083 $1,189.83
COM7203B Student-led Projects 5 0.042 $594.92
Total for Semester 2, 2018
60 0.5 $7,138.98
Total for Year 2
120 1.0 $14,277.96
Year 3, 2018
Subject code Subject Credit points EFTSL** Tuition fee*
Semester 1, 2018



ACT7301A Acting Studio 15 0.125 $1,784.75
ACT7302A Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7303A Acting Professional Practice 15 0.125 $1,784.75
Total for Semester 1, 2018
60 0.5 $7,138.98
Semester 2, 2018



ACT7301B Acting Studio 15 0.125 $1,784.75
ACT7302B Acting Interdisciplinary Collaboration 30 0.25 $3,569.49
ACT7303B Acting Professional Practice 15 0.125 $1,784.75
Total for Semester 2, 2018
60 0.5 $7,138.98
Total for Year 3
120 1.0 $14,277.96

*The tuition fees are reviewed each year and you are liable for the additional tuition costs if the tuition fees rise during the course of your enrolment.

** EFTSL - Effective Fulltime Study Load: indicates the relative study load of a subject against a full time study load of 1.0 for an academic year.

Additional costs

Acting students must wear 'blacks' to class every day; students need to make sure they have at least a couple of sets of blacks to get themselves through the week.

As a NIDA student you can receive a 20% full time student discount in store at Bloch, or alternatively Dance Direct Online offers reasonable online prices.

Acting Class Requirements

  • Plain black pants (not jeans)
  • Several black short and long sleeved T-shirts
  • Black socks
  • Black leather soled shoes

It is suggested that students purchase clothing of a suitable quality to avoid rapid dis-colouration or wear. Acting students must also supply their own make-up and soft black shoes. 

Movement/Dance Requirements

The following items are essential for the start of the course as you will need them in the second week of term when full classes commence.

Clothing

  • Black dance pants
  • Black leotard (Female)
  • Black convertible tights (Female)
  • Black T-shirt (Male)
  • Black leggings (Male)
  • Men’s support

Shoes

  • Flexi jazz shoes
  • Black stage shoes
    - Female – S0320L Bloch Show-Case Women's Stage Shoe or similar
    - Male – S0310M Bloch Karacta Men's Canvas Shoe or similar

Equipment

  • Yoga mat
  • Knee pads (soft)

Recommended Reading

While students are provided with the script of any plays they are involved in as part of the NIDA Production Program, students are encouraged to purchase other scripts and textbooks for subjects such as Performance and Ideas. 

Information Technology Recommendations

To access NIDA wireless (iWIRE) network, students are required to have access to a Laptop (Windows 7 and later), Macbook (Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or later) or a Tablet (less than three years old with wireless facility). All the devices should comply with 802.11a/b/g/n WPA-Enterprise security. All notebooks should be secured with a Kensington lock to help prevent theft.

For file transfers and data backup, a 500GB hard drive or higher and an 8GB USB stick are also recommended, as is a DVD burner, for optimum visual graphics on your computer(Laptop/MacBook/Desktop etc.) a 1GB dedicated graphics card is recommended but not required. 

Download the NIDA Domestic Undergraduate Student Fees Schedule 2017 (PDF 757KB).

Download the NIDA Domestic Undergraduate Student Fees Schedule 2018 (PDF 597KB).

Domestic and international students are required to pay tuition fees by the due date each semester. Domestic students are Australian citizens, Australian permanent residents and New Zealand citizens.

International Students

Fees and financial assistance vary for International students see International Students for full details.

Further financial information

Australian citizens and holders of permanent humanitarian visas are eligible for an Australian Government FEE-HELP loan for all or part of their tuition fees. For more information about FEE-HELP please read the information below and visit Study Assist.

FEE-HELP

WHAT IS FEE-HELP?

FEE-HELP is the Australian Government loan scheme that assists eligible students to pay their tuition fees, so that students do not have to pay tuition fees up-front. FEE-HELP can cover all or part of a student's tuition fees. In 2015 the FEE-HELP lifetime limit is $97,728.

A loan fee of 25% applies to FEE-HELP loans for undergraduate courses of study. The FEE-HELP limit does not include the loan fee.

The Government pays the amount of the loan directly to NIDA. Students repay their loan through the tax system once their income rises above the minimum threshold for compulsory repayment.

For more information go to www.studyassist.gov.au

WHO IS ELIGIBLE FOR FEE-HELP?

You are eligible for a FEE-HELP loan if you are either:

  • an Australian Citizen; or
  • hold a permanent humanitarian visa.

The following students are NOT eligible for FEE-HELP:

  • New Zealand citizens - refer to the Study Assist website
  • Australian permanent residents
  • Overseas students.

Financial assistance

Eligible students, who are Australian residents, can apply to Centrelink for financial assistance through Youth Allowance, Austudy or ABSTUDY. Visit Centrelink or call 132 490 for more information. 

While at NIDA, students can also apply for consideration for a NIDA student bursary.

Statement of Tuition Assurance Exemption

Under the Higher Education Support Act 2003, (the HESA) and the Higher Education Provider Guidelines, approved Higher Education Providers must have arrangements in place to protect students if the Provider is unable to continue to offer a course for any reason, unless the Provider has been exempted from this requirement.

As required under 2.5.1.5 of the Higher Education Provider Guidelines of 23 November 2006, NIDA advises that, under section 16-30 (2) of the HESA, NIDA has been granted an exemption from the tuition assurance requirements of HESA. The reason for the exemption is that NIDA is in receipt of funding from the Australian Government. As NIDA is principally funded by the Australian Government, appropriate transition arrangements would be put in place should it be decided to discontinue a course.

FAQs

Entry requirements FAQs

What ATAR score do I need to get into NIDA?

Entry into NIDA courses is by audition or interview only. We do not ask for exam scores or ATAR rankings. However, all applicants applying for any higher education course at NIDA must have completed their Higher School Certificate or equivalent qualification at the end of high school. In exceptional circumstances this requirement can be waived. 

What subjects should I study at school?

NIDA does not require students to have studied any particular subjects at school. However, it is beneficial during their period of study at NIDA for students to have a high level of literacy and to have read widely. A strong working knowledge of subjects such as English and History is helpful to provide an understanding of historical context and literary references in theatre and literature. It is helpful to have an understanding of drama and, if possible, to have attended a range of theatre and films. Applicants for some courses often study Design and Technology, Textiles and Design, or similar subjects such as Art. Knowledge of a language other than English and understanding of other cultures is also beneficial. 

For courses such as Properties and Objects, Staging, Design for Performance, and Technical Theatre and Stage Management there is a need to have some numeracy and basic computing skills. For the Staging and Properties and Objects courses there is a need to be comfortable with basic applied algebra, geometry and physical concepts but memorisation is not required and use of these concepts is very practically focused. 

Is there a minimum age restriction?

The minimum age for entry into NIDA’s full-time courses is 18 years. Students are expected to be at least 18 years of age at the commencement of their first year, or within a few months of commencement. In exceptional circumstances this condition may be waived. Applicants must be at least 17 years of age at the time of their audition or interview.

Applications from those 16 years and younger will not be accepted.

Is there a maximum age restriction?

There is no maximum age restriction. As a guide to the age distribution at NIDA, the ages of students in undergraduate courses at the start of 2016 ranged from 17 years to early 30s, with the average age being 21.

The average age in the Master of Fine Arts courses is 32, with an age range from early 20s to mid-40s.

Application FAQs

How do I apply for a full-time course at NIDA?

The first step is to fill in an application form, available online from 1 July to 30 September. You must then prepare for your audition or interview, the details of which can be found on the course pages.

My application form isn’t working/loading!

Online applications are open from 1 July to 30 September annually.

If you are having difficulty using the online application form, check your internet browser: Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari are the recommended browsers. You should also turn off any security that blocks pop-ups, as this may prevent the application screen from opening.

Can I apply for more than one course?

Yes, however a separate online application form and payment of application fee $150.00 will be required for each course you would like to apply for.

What do I do if the audition/ interview dates are not suitable?

NIDA aims to accommodate all Australian states during the audition/ interview period. If the dates provided are not suitable to individuals we will try to work with you to create a suitable alternative.

If you cannot attend any of the available dates during the application process, please select the option ‘Other- Dates provided not suitable’ and email applications@nida.edu.au to discuss further options

International students (all courses other than acting) should select the option ‘International- Offshore Applicant’ a representative from NIDA will then be in touch via email to organise an interview over Skype which will suit both you and our staff.

What do I do if I haven’t received details of my interview?

Once you have submitted your application and paid your application fee you will be emailed a receipt as well as further details regarding preparation for your audition/ interview. If you do not receive any emails from NIDA please check your junk/ spam filter or promotions filter (Gmail). If you are still experiencing difficulties please contact us at: applications@nida.edu.au

Audition and interview FAQs

What do I need to prepare for my audition/interview?

All the details for audition and interview requirements can be found on the individual course pages under the ‘How to Apply’ tab.

Does NIDA give audition/interview feedback?

Due to the large number of people being auditioned or interviewed, it is not possible for NIDA to provide individual feedback, either orally or in writing. However, the auditions and interviews are learning experiences, particularly through the opportunity in the auditions to observe the presentation of audition pieces by other applicants and any redirection suggestions provided to you or other applicants by members of the audition panel. 

What are my chances of getting into NIDA’s Acting course straight from high school?

There are around 1700 applicants for the 24 places in the Acting course. Most school leavers who apply for the Acting course are not accepted the first time they apply. There are advantages to having some life experience and maturity to be able to cope with a very rigorous course. However, the audition process is a valuable one and provides useful experience for future applications. There were two school-leavers among the 24 applicants selected for entry in 2016.

Where will my interview take place?

During your online application you will have the opportunity to select the date and location of your audition/ interview. The specific location details will be sent to you with your receipt once you have submitted a complete application form. You will also be sent further information for how you can change the location/ date of your audition/ interview if necessary. Please note that NIDA reserves the right to amend your audition/ interview date/ location at any time depending on availability.

What happens after my interview?

Final selections are made for each course by mid- December when study offers will be distributed to successful applicants via email.

Please note applicants who do not make it through to the recall stage for Bachelor of Fine Arts (Acting) and Master of Fine Arts (Directing) courses have not been successful for the 2017 intake.

Studying at NIDA FAQs

What are the contact hours for BFA courses?

Students are at NIDA from 9am to 6pm from Monday to Friday. During production terms students may also be required for rehearsals after hours and on weekends.

Additional time also needs to be allocated to library work, research, preparation for classes and private study. For this reason it is difficult for NIDA students to maintain regular part-time jobs. Studying at NIDA is a big commitment so students need to manage their time and resources carefully.

How are NIDA’s courses structured?

NIDA offers a conservatoire based method of education and training based around intensive practice-based learning.

There is formal class work, practical instruction, lectures and, for some courses, periods of placements in the arts industry. Each course has dedicated time to discipline-specific immersion, as well as common subjects undertaken by students of all disciplines.

NIDA Play Productions and screen work provides practical learning experiences, giving students the opportunity to apply learnt technical skills. Play productions are an important part of NIDA’s higher education courses with usually five productions being produced each semester.

More detailed information about course structure can be found on the individual course pages. 

What facilities does NIDA offer?

NIDA’s award winning campus includes a range of facilities available to students:

  • the Parade Theatre, seating over 700 people, is equipped with advanced technology in sound, lighting and scenery
  • performance spaces of varying sizes. The Parade Studio, Parade Playhouse, Parade Space and Atrium are also utilised for productions
  • the state-of-the-art Reg Grundy Studio is used for film and television recording
  • the Rodney Seaborn Library, specialising in the performing arts
  • computer-aided design (CAD) and multimedia studios
  • rehearsal rooms, teaching spaces and music practice rooms
  • and workshops for the manufacture of scenery, properties and costumes.

What student services does NIDA offer?

Because of NIDA’s close relationship with UNSW, in addition to the NIDA library, NIDA students have access to the UNSW Library, The Learning Centre, health services and the UNSW Fitness and Aquatic Centre, all located close to NIDA.

NIDA students have access to student counselling services provided through UNSW.

Indigenous students can also use the services of the Nura Gili Indigenous Programs Centre at UNSW.

Does NIDA offer credit transfer for study undertaken elsewhere?

Yes, NIDA grants credit for formal study undertaken in recognised higher institutions in Australia, including universities, colleges, TAFE and other post-secondary education institutions and for study at recognised overseas institutions, where the applicant has met the learning outcomes, attained the knowledge and/or developed the skills relevant to a specific subject. An application for credit must be submitted and approved prior to commencement of the course. For further information see NIDA’s credit transfer policy.

NIDA Student policies FAQs

Can I defer my studies at NIDA?

Due to the highly competitive nature of NIDA’s admissions process, you must enrol for the year for which you have been offered a place. You cannot defer acceptance of a place. If you want to enrol in a subsequent year, you will need to apply again the following year and go through the audition/interview process again. There is no guarantee that you will be offered a place next time.

A first year student who discontinues a course of study during the year and wishes to return the following year, must re-apply for admission to NIDA in the normal manner. There is no guarantee of re-admission.

Application for leave of absence by continuing students must be made in writing with reasons to the Head of Course for consideration and recommendation to the Director. Approval for leave of absence can only be granted by the Director/CEO. It should be noted that approval for leave of absence will only be granted under exceptional circumstances.

Can students be suspended from NIDA?

In addition to cancellation of enrolment for non-payment of tuition fees, a student’s enrolment at NIDA can be suspended or cancelled on the grounds of misconduct. Refer to the Student Misconduct Procedures below.

Where can I find more information about NIDA Student Policies?

See NIDA Student Policies for more information. 

Fees FAQs

What are the tuition fees for accredited courses?

Full information about tuition fees and FEE-HELP is available under the ‘Fees’ tab on individual course pages. 

Are there any other costs to study at NIDA apart from tuition fees?

There is an optional annual fee of $40 to join the Student Council of NIDA (SCON).While students are provided with the script of any plays they are involved in as part of the NIDA Production Program, students are encouraged to purchase other scripts and textbooks for subjects such as Performance and Ideas. 

Acting students must wear “blacks” to class everyday i.e. leotards, jogging pants, sweat pants, simple black tops or T-shirts, so students need to make sure they have at least a couple of sets of blacks to get themselves through the week. Acting students must also supply their own make-up and soft black shoes. 

Staging, Design for Performance, Costume, Properties and Objects, Technical Theatre and Stage Management students are required to purchase specific tools and equipment, which should be considered as lifelong investments. Students using workshop spaces are also required to have closed-toe protective footwear. Technical Theatre and Stage Management students should also have a few sets of “blacks” for working on productions. 

Design for Performance students are also expected to purchase their own art equipment, drawing paper, cardboard and other material for models and should allow around $1000 for this each year.

To access NIDA wireless (iWIRE) network, students are required to have access to a Laptop (Windows 7 and later), Macbook (Mac OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or later) or a Tablet (less than three years old with wireless facility). All the devices should comply with 802.11a/b/g/n WPA-Enterprise security. 

For file transfers and data backup, a 500GB hard drive or higher and an 8GB USB stick are also recommended, as is a DVD burner, for optimum visual graphics on your computer(Laptop/MacBook/Desktop etc..) a 1GB dedicated graphics card is recommended but not compulsory.

Financial assistance FAQs

Are there scholarships available for studying at NIDA?

NIDA does not offer scholarships that cover the cost of tuition fees. NIDA students, who are Australian citizens, are able to access FEE-HELP loans for assistance with their tuition fees. For more information on FEE-HELP loans see www.studyassist.gov.au.

NIDA offers students the opportunity to apply for financial assistance (bursaries) at the beginning of each year to assist with living costs. The bursaries are made available through the generosity of donors to NIDA and from bequests. Bursaries are paid on a fortnightly basis during the NIDA year, with the value of individual bursaries in 2014 ranging from $1500 annually to $4000 annually, depending on need and the year and course of study. These funds are allocated to students on the basis of financial need, course of study and year of study. Bursaries are only available to students currently enrolled at NIDA.

What other financial assistance is available to undergraduate students?

Eligible students enrolled in NIDA’s undergraduate courses can apply to Centrelink for Austudy, Youth Allowance and ABSTUDY. Visit Centrelink or call 132 490 for more information. 

Is financial assistance available for students in the Master of Fine Arts?

The Master of Fine Arts courses are not approved courses for students to receive Austudy, Youth Allowance (student) and Pensioner Education Supplement through Centrelink. Master of Fine Arts students are eligible to apply for a NIDA bursary

NZ and international students FAQs

Is there a limit on the number of international students accepted each year?

NIDA welcomes applications from international students. While there is no quota for international students, there are limited numbers of students in each course.

What are the English language requirements for international students?

Students must be proficient in written and spoken English, with international applicants required to have an English language proficiency equivalent to an overall band score of IELTS 8.0 for Acting, Directing and Writing for Performance, or IELTS 7.0 for other higher education courses. Information on IELTS and testing centres in your country is available at www.ielts.org.

International applicants who are short-listed for the Acting course after the recall audition must provide evidence of their English language capability by the end of the first week in December in order to be considered in the final selection process. International applications for other courses should bring evidence of their English language capability to their interview.

Where can I find more information about international students at NIDA?

More information about studying as an international student at NIDA can be found at International students

Student work

Read more about NIDA's Head of Acting John Bashford.


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