Diploma of Arts (Acting)The Sydney Theatre School part-time Diploma course admits individuals with a strong desire and commitment to pursuing a professional acting career. Delivered on two evenings per week plus Sundays over three years, the program combines in-depth classroom training in acting technique for both stage and screen; voice & singing; movement; and contexual studies with extensive performance work in full-length productions.

The next intake for this course will be in January 2015 with auditions conducted from November 2014.

Applications are now open!

Performing on stage (in productions) for public and industry audiences is at the core of the training. This allows students the opportunity to apply the skills, knowledge values and attitudes they are learning in a professional, on-the job environment (as opposed to an institutionalised, classroom-like environment). Most drama schools delay performance opportunities until it is felt students are ‘ready’ for an audience. We believe this inhibits progress and un-necessarily delays the development of students’ full potential as actors. As renowned acting teacher Viola Spolin states:

“We learn through experience and experiencing, and no one teaches anyone anything…If the environment permits it, anyone can learn whatever he chooses to learn; and if the individual permits it, the environment will teach him everything it has to teach.”

Directors and teachers employed by STS are all working professionals and maintain active careers in theatre, film and television in Sydney and around the country. They bring the energy and vitality of that activity into their work with the students.

Course Outcomes

The outcomes of the Diploma of Arts (Acting) are consistent with the distinguishing features of an AQF level 5 qualification under the Australian Qualifications Framework. This course achieves this by ensuring that graduates will have:

  • The practical techniques and skills required to become actors in film, television and/or theatre
  • A knowledge of a wide range of historic and contemporary techniques and approaches to acting
  • Personal resources, knowledge and skills required for work in the theatre, television, film and related industries
  • The interpersonal skills of team-building and the development of positive and constructive relationships
  • The mindset of a healthy, community-focused artist
  • Respect and regard for the audience

Who can benefit from this course?

At Sydney Theatre School we look to train people who are enthusiastic, open-minded and self-disciplined. We enjoy teaching people who can approach the intensive nature of the course with a positive attitude and willingness to learn.

The performing arts industry is a rewarding, yet demanding and highly competitive, industry; and, with this in mind, Sydney Theatre School requires that each student take full responsibility for their own progress and development. In order to get the most out of your time with us, you will be required to commit to all aspects of the course, including attendance, punctuality, participation, preparation and performance.

Course pre-requisites.

While not essential, candidates should ideally have had some (basic) acting experience prior to entering the course. This experience may include: H.S.C. level drama; beginner or intermediate-level acting courses; community theatre; musical society; or film and television roles.

Applicants without any prior experience, training or qualifications are welcome to apply, providing they are able to demonstrate during the audition and interview stages that they have the right aptitude, qualities and desire required for a professional acting career.

NRT Recognised Acting Course

Nationally Recognised

The Diploma of Arts (Acting) 10259NAT 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 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 2015:

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 pay a $100 withdrawal fee and 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.

SemesterSemester Dates 2015Attendance TimesCourse ModulesLocation Accreditation
Semester 127th January – 13th June

Tuesdays & Thursdays




10.00am – 5.00pm

6 Units of Study

Chippendale, Sydney

 Diploma of Arts (Acting)

Semester 230th June – 14th November

Tuesdays & Thursdays

6.30pm – 9.30pm



10.00am – 5.00pm

4 Units of Study

Chippendale, Sydney

Diploma of Arts (Acting)


Semester 1 & 2Units
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
 Semester 3 & 4Units
ACTRCA501ARefine comprehensive acting skills
ACTRCB501ARefine comprehensive discipline in body and voice
ACTRCP501ARefine comprehensive performance skills
ACTEDR501AExplore drama from the Restoration to the 20th century
Semester 5 & 6UnitsACTDAA501A            Develop advanced acting skills
ACTDAB501A            Develop advanced discipline in body and voice
ACTACP501A            Apply comprehensive performance skills to productions
ACTEAD501A            Explore and write Australian drama

The Diploma of Arts (Acting) part-time course consists of two x 20 week semesters per year over three years. Students attend classes and rehearsals for 12 hours of class time per week.

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