Diploma in Visual Arts and Design

Course information for - 2023 entry

Offered at 3 locations

Study mode
1 year full-time or equivalent part-time
Fees (first year)*

$10006 CSP

Start dates
Semester 1 intake: Not available
Midyear (Semester 2) intake: Beginning July 2023
Applications open April 2023


Follow your passion and explore a broad-based visual arts and design program that integrates the areas of studio-based art, graphic design or history and theory of art and design combined with relevant communication and industry skills. You will gain the knowledge and skills to prepare you for a career in the creative industries. This course can be used as a pathway into the Bachelor of Visual Arts and Design degree or as a starting point into teaching.


The course assists students to prepare for a career in the visual arts and design industries.

Course details

Course structure

To complete the Diploma in Visual Arts and Design, a student must complete 80 credit points (cp).

View course rules

Sample program map

Year - Study periodUnit 1Unit 2Unit 3Unit 4Unit 5

Year 1 - Semester 1

BA Elective

ARTS109 Drawing


BA Elective

(fully online students only)

ARTS236 Ceramics/Multimedia

DESN120 Graphic Design Thinking data-versionlabel=2 >

Year 1 - Semester 2 

ARTS241 Painting

ARTS112 Art in the Early 20th Century

DESN242 Design for Publication

UNCC100 Self and Community: Exploring the Anatomy of Modern Society


PHCC102 Being Human


PHCC104 Ethics and the Good Life

This is a sample program only and units will vary depending on your campus and mode of study. Please refer to the handbook for the prerequisite units and the current listing.

Students enrolled in the fully online course take an additional elective unit instead of ARTS109 Drawing.

AQF framework

Diploma - AQF Level 5

Additional course information

The Diploma in Visual Arts and Design course is available as a UniAccess-International program.

The aim is to provide an opportunity for students from diverse backgrounds to study a selection of units of interest to them in a program that offers a pathway to a relevant Bachelors degree. The course is offered on a fee-paying basis and is available to international students (UniAccess-International).

Entry requirements

An applicant must also comply with the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

To be eligible for admission to the course, an applicant must have completed the equivalent of year 12 level.

International students must meet the English Language Proficiency requirements as defined in the Admission to Coursework Programs Policy.

Disclaimer: The course entry requirements above are for 2023 Admission.

English language requirements

Overall score: 6.0. Individual score of 5.5 in all tests.

Inherent requirement

There are essential components of a course or unit that demonstrate the capabilities, knowledge and skills to achieve the core learning outcomes of that course or unit. You will need to be able to meet these inherent requirements to complete your course.

Learn more about inherent requirements for your course and how they affect you


Further study

A UniAccess-International student who successfully completes eight units specified by a UniAccess program may either leave with a Diploma qualification or continue their studies with a place in the Bachelor of Visual Arts and Design course. Domestic students are also able to use this degree as a pathway into the Bachelor of Visual Arts and Design program.


Payment options

You should be able to concentrate on getting good marks instead of worrying about how you’ll pay your fees. We have a number of options that can help you ease the financial burden, including government assistance, scholarships and income support. 

Explore your options 


You could be eligible for one of the hundreds of scholarships we award each year to help students from across the university with the cost of studying, accommodation or overseas study opportunities. Some of our scholarships are awarded on the basis of merit, but these aren’t just for the academically gifted; ACU also recognises excellence in community engagement and leadership. We also offer a range of scholarships for those who may be struggling financially or who have faced other barriers to accessing education.  

Search our scholarships 

How to apply

Domestic applicants

Direct application

Apply now

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