Diploma in Arts

Broaden your worldview and start your university studies with our Diploma in Arts. It’s a great way to try different subjects and prepare yourself for further study.

Interested in communication studies, education, hospitality, language and culture, Māori and indigenous development, or social sciences? Our Diploma in Arts is perfect if you’re not entirely sure what to expect from uni or missed out on getting into your dream degree.

You’ll take the same courses as our first-year bachelor’s degree students, and study in a supportive environment with additional academic and student support. Once you’ve completed your diploma you can then move into Year 2 of our Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Communication Studies or Bachelor of International Hospitality Management, which means you can still complete your chosen bachelor’s degree in three years.

Minimum entry requirements for the Diploma in Arts

  • University Entrance OR
  • 42 NCEA level 3 credits, including UE literacy and numeracy, with:
    • 10 credits in each of three approved subjects OR
    • 12 credits in each of two approved subjects and 14 credits across two further subjects

International student entry requirements

English language requirements

  • IELTS (Academic) 5.5 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in Writing and a minimum of 5.0 in other bands, or equivalent

English language requirements

You’ll become familiar with different concepts related to culture and society, or communication studies, and improve your academic knowledge and study skills to give you the confidence for further study.

The courses you study are from the first year of the Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Communication Studies or Bachelor of International Hospitality Management. After you’ve completed this diploma, you can then cross-credit your courses and transfer to the second year of your chosen bachelor’s degree.

Your Diploma in Arts courses can help you decide which subjects you might like to focus on later once you move into our bachelor’s degree. We'll work with you to help you identify where you want to go and which Diploma in Arts courses will help you get there.

Choose from a range of subjects

As part of the Diploma in Arts, you can study courses from the subjects below1:

  • Communication studies2
  • Creative writing
  • Culinary arts3
  • Economics
  • Education4
  • Event management
  • Global tourism
  • History
  • Hospitality
  • International studies
  • Māori development
  • Māori media
  • New Zealand Sign Language and Deaf Studies
  • Psychology
  • Social sciences
  • Spanish

1. If you've narrowly missed UE, we'll guide in your selection of courses Only some subjects are offered at the South Campus.
2. Communication studies: only the full-year intake is available.
3. Culinary arts courses: The practical side of the culinary arts courses involves using commercial kitchen tools and equipment and requires you to demonstrate a level of skill tha
t doesn’t compromise any health and safety standards for yourself and others. Skills needed for culinary arts courses
4. Bachelor of Arts in Education only. You won't be able to move into the second year of the Bachelor of Education.

Because you study the same first-year courses as our bachelor’s degree students, you can move into the second year of your chosen degree once you’ve completed this diploma.

Quick facts
Programme code:
1 year full-time / part-time available
Part-time not available to students who have narrowly missed UE. 1 year full-time only starting in February.
City Campus
South Campus *
* South Campus only has a February intake
15 Jul 2024
3 Mar 2025
21 Jul 2025

Key semester dates
$8,435 (for 120 points)
($7,289 tuition fees + $1146 student services levy)
$33,846 (for 120 points)
($32,700 tuition fees + $1146 student services levy)
  • Fees shown are based on a full-time workload for the points indicated next to the fee. The exact fee charged will depend on which courses you select at the time of enrolment.
  • Fees are subject to change year to year. If you are planning for study beyond the current year, fees may vary from those stated.
  • There may also be other fees and charges you need to pay.
  • International students' tuition fees reflect the full cost of tuition. Domestic students' tuition fees are less due to a proportion of the tuition fees being funded by the New Zealand Government.
  • Fees-free study may be available for domestic students


The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.