Bachelor of Visual Arts Te Tohu Paetahi mō Toi Ataata

Passionate about art? Our visual arts degree prepares you for the demands of a career in contemporary art, whether as an artist or in the many other roles within the art sector.

Study visual arts and enjoy a student-centred and studio-based programme where you can follow your interests in art – including painting, printmaking, drawing, photography, sculpture or moving-image.

As a graduate of our visual arts programme, you’ll have a sound understanding of the trends and concepts driving contemporary art, the importance of mātauranga Māori, and how to work collaboratively to produce objects, craft, images, taonga and artefacts.

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Minimum entry requirements

If you have New Zealand qualifications

If you have qualifications from another country

See entry requirements for students from other countries. Select your country from the dropdown menu.

English language requirements

  • IELTS (Academic) 6.0 overall with all bands 5.5 or higher; or equivalent

English language requirements

Useful New Zealand school subjects

Classical Studies, Computing, Construction and Mechanical Technologies, Design (Practical Art), Design and Visual Communication, Digital Technologies or Hangarau Matihiko, English, Geography, Hangarau, Hauora, Health, History, History of Art, Mathematics/Pāngarau, Media Studies, Music Studies, Ngā Mahi a Rēhia, Ngā Toi, Ngā Toi Ataata, Ngā Toi Puoro, Painting (Practical Art), Pāngarau, Photography (Practical Art), Physics, Printmaking (Practical Art), Processing Technologies, Psychology, Pūtaiao/Science, Sculpture (Practical Art), Technology/Hangarau, Te Ao Haka, Te Reo Māori, Te Reo Rangatira, Technology, Visual Arts

Don’t meet the entry requirements?

Consider starting with:

Transferring to AUT (recognition of prior learning)

You may be eligible to enter Year 2 or Year 3 of our visual arts degree if you have completed all or part of a design or visual arts degree at another approved tertiary institution. Applications for cross-credits will normally be assessed after you receive an offer of place for the Bachelor of Visual Arts Te Tohu Paetahi mō Toi Ataata.


You can build your degree in a way that suits you and your interests, and include subjects from outside of visual arts as part of your studies.

To graduate with this degree you need to complete:

Core courses (120 points)

These are courses all students in this degree need to take. They cover fundamental visual arts principles and processes, and help you decide which subject to focus on later in your studies. Two of the core courses are the courses Integrated Visual Arts Practices and Professional Contexts in your final semester, which give you a chance to apply what you’ve learnt in a practice-based project and further your understanding of what to expect from a career in the art industry.

Your chosen major (120 points)

Your major is the subject area you want to specialise in. This makes up one third of your degree and consists of courses related to your chosen subject. You can view the list of majors in this degree in the ‘Majors’ tab.

Flexible component (120 points)

You can choose one of the following options

  • Two minors (60 points each); or
  • A minor (60 points) and elective courses (60 points); or
  • A second major (120 points)

Your second major, minor(s) and elective courses can be from different AUT degrees; they don’t need to be from visual arts.

Build your degree

Use our online tool to build your own degree and see what your three years of study could look like.

Build your degreeBuild your degree

Your major is the subject area you want to specialise in. It makes up one third of your degree.

Choose one of these majors as part of your degree

Add a second major

If you want to include a second major, you can:

A minor is smaller than a major. It usually consists of four courses.

Visual arts minors you could choose

If you decide to include one or two minors in your degree, you could choose one minor from:

Your minor can't be the same subject you're studying for your major. For example, if your major is Painting, Printmaking and Drawing you can only take a minor in Photography, Sculpture and Moving-image. If your major is Photography, Sculpture and Moving-image, you can only take the Painting, Printmaking and Drawing minor.

Add a minor from outside of visual arts

You can also choose your minor(s) from subjects outside of visual arts to complement your degree.

View more options from different AUT degrees

Postgraduate study

Kalisolaite ‘Uhila
Via Tuimaseve
Hope Manaakitia Korewha
Caitlyn Manning
Tony Guo
Quick facts
Programme code:
3 years full-time / part-time available
City Campus
3 Mar 2025

Key semester dates
$8,435 - $8,488 (for 120 points)
($7,289 - $7,342. tuition fees + $1146 student services levy)
$40,646 (for 120 points)
($39,500 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.