Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) 40405SA CourseSydney Theatre School invites you to take part in a program that has earned acclaimed recognition throughout the performing arts industry across Australia – the fully-accredited Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting).

The next intake for this course will be in January 2016. Applications are now open!.

Offered full-time over three years, this outstanding course covers the essential skills required to work as professional actors in theatre, film, television and related industries including intensive study of acting for both stage and screen; voice (including singing); movement (including dance); and historical, theoretical and technical theatre elements. Theatre projects develop throughout the course leading to full-scale productions marketed to the public and industry professionals such as agents and casting directors in the third year.


The outcomes of the Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) are consistent with the distinguishing features of an AQF level 6 qualification under the Australian Qualifications Framework. The course achieves this by ensuring that graduates will have:

  • The practical techniques and skills required to become professional actors
  • An embodied knowledge of a wide range of historic and contemporary techniques and approaches to acting
  • Personal resources professional knowledge and skills required for a career in the theatre, television, film and related industries
  • The necessary individuality, self-sufficiency and empowerment to contribute to the profession of the future
  • The inter-personal skills of team-building, conflict resolution and the development of positive and constructive relationships
  • The personal and professional self-knowledge to guide a career intelligently
  • The mindset of a healthy, community-focused artist
  • Respect and high-regard for the audience


Unlike some acting & drama schools in Sydney, our students regularly perform in full-length productions (not just short scenes or excerpts from plays) in front of paying audiences in our new on-campus performance space. All productions are directed by industry professionals with many years of experience (see teachers’ biog page for full details) who also regularly work for major independent and professional theatre companies in Sydney and around the country.

The production schedule is as follows:

SEMESTER 1: Text-based and Devised Scenes

SEMESTER 2: Devised Production

SEMESTER 3: Australian Theatre and Shakespeare Scenes 

SEMESTER 4: Shakespeare Play

SEMESTER 5: Musical Theatre or Variety Performance

SEMESTER 6: Contemporary Production/s plus Industry/Agents Showcase Performance

These production opportunities give students the opportunity to apply the skills; knowledge; values and attitudes gained in class in a practical, real-world environment that replicates a professional workplace as much as possible. Only doing class-work or scene-work does not provide for a fully-rounded and comprehensive learning experience.

On completion of this course, graduates are equipped with the experience and vocational skills to play a significant role in the performing arts. Graduates of this diploma are eligible to join the M.E.A.A. (formally Actors Equity).

NRT Recognised Acting CourseNationally Recognised

The Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) 10260NAT is a nationally-recognised training course approved by the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA). Through recognition and the schools registration as a VET approved Nationally Recognised Training (NRT) institute, students may be eligible to apply for financial assistance through the Australian government VET Fee Help,  Austudy, Abstudy and Youth Allowance. For more information please use our ‘Contact Us‘ section.


The Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) course is available to domestic students through the VET FEE-HELP program (VET Provider ID 7371)

VET FEE-HELP is a loan scheme for the Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector that is part of the Higher Education Loan Program (HELP). VET FEE-HELP assists eligible students undertaking certain VET courses of study (diploma, advanced diploma, graduate certificate and graduate diploma courses). The scheme allows students to borrow funds up to their FEE-HELP limit to help pay for all or part of their tuition fees. Students who access VET FEE-HELP assistance will have a loan with the Australian Government who will, on the student’s behalf, pay their tuition fees to the approved VET provider (Sydney Theatre School).

Further information regarding the VET FEE-HELP scheme can be found here:

The following documents are also available and contain important information:

STS has a range of policies and procedures in place to support the VET FEE-HELP scheme, relevant policies can be accessed below:

FEES & Census Dates for 2016:

The above schedule of fees relates to domestic students.

The Census Date is the date by which the Request for Commonwealth Assistance form must be submitted on or before for a student to be eligible to receive a VET FEE-HELP loan for that period of study. Optional up-front payments must also be made on or before the Census Date. The census date cannot be extended or changed under any circumstances. Students who wish to withdraw from the course prior to the Census Date are required to attend an exit interview with the Managing Director before their enrollment will be cancelled.

Entry Requirements

Candidates for the course will be required to attend an audition and interview. The audition will comprise two (2) monologues from a play of their choice – one contemporary and one Shakespeare. Each monologue should be no more than 3 minutes duration. Students may also be asked to improvise during the audition process and there will be an interview. Detailed preparation instructions, suggested audition pieces and audition assessment criteria will be provided to all applicants.

The minimum age for enrolment is 17 years. See “Fair Treatment Policy” above for other selection criteria.

Participation & Attendance

Due to the practical nature of the course, and the fact that all the subjects work on the notion of incremental growth, it is essential that students attend no less than 95% of all classes. Attendance at less than 95% of all classes is deemed insufficient for students to achieve the minimum level of competency required to successfully complete a module.

Credit Transfer

The Advanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) qualification will provide credit towards the Bachelor of Dramatic Arts degree at Excelsia College. Credit may also be granted towards suitable degrees at other universities or institutions. Please contact us for more information regarding these arrangements.

SemesterTerm Period 2016TimetableCourse UnitsLocationAccreditation
Semester 128th January to 1st April (10 Weeks)

11th April to 17th June (10 Weeks)

Monday to Friday
8.45am to 6.00pm

Comprising 24 hours in-class plus 14 hours of self-directed and non-supervised off campus activities per week. Some nights will also be required for performances.

6 Units (Modules) of StudyChippendale, SydneyAdvanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) 10260NAT
Semester 24th July to 9th September (10 Weeks)

19th  September to 25th November (10 Weeks)

Monday to Friday
8.45am to 6.00pm

Comprising 24 hours in-class plus 14 hours of self-directed and non-supervised off campus activities per week. Some nights will also be required for performances.

4 Units (Modules) of StudyChippendale, SydneyAdvanced Diploma of Arts (Acting) 10260NAT

* All units are compulsory and students must therefore successfully complete all units to receive the award.

CUSOHS301AFollow occupational health and safety procedures
ACTDCA501ADevelop comprehensive acting skills
ACTDCB501ADevelop comprehensive discipline in body and voice
ACTDCP501ADevelop comprehensive performance skills
ACTEDT501AExplore dramatic theory, history and literature
ACTDBT501ADevelop basic technical theatre skills
ACTRCA501ARefine comprehensive acting skills
ACTRCB501ARefine comprehensive discipline in body and voice
ACTRCP501ARefine comprehensive performance skills
ACTEDR501AExplore drama from the Restoration to the 20th century
ACTDAA501ADevelop advanced acting skills
ACTDAB501ADevelop advanced discipline in body and voice
ACTACP501AApply comprehensive performance skills to productions
ACTEAD501AExplore and write Australian drama
AACRAA601ARefine advanced acting skills
AACRAB601ARefine advanced discipline in body and voice
AACAAP601AApply advanced performance skills to productions
AACEDL601AEvaluate dramatic literature and write for academic purposes
AACDPA601ADevelop professional acting skills
AACDPB601ADevelop professional discipline in body and voice
AACAPP601AApply professional performance skills to productions
AACCAE601ACritically evaluate the performing arts industry
AACRPA601ARefine professional acting skills
AACRPB601ARefine professional discipline in body and voice
AACAIP601AApply industry standard performance skills to productions
AACCEC601ACritically evaluate world cinema

Our ‘How to Apply’ section provides you with all you need to know about joining us here at Sydney Theatre School. Access is via the button below.
If you have any additional questions, please feel free to use the ‘Contact Us‘ page. We look forward to receiving your application.

How to Apply