New Zealand Diploma in Digital Media and Design (Level 5)

Through workshops, real-world projects and engagement with industry professionals, you’ll develop technical industry skills across a variety of areas such as camera expertise, lighting, and post-production and editing. You’ll also start to build your professional skills so can feel confident when responding to briefs and working to deadlines.

About the programme

This hands-on programme covers all aspects of photography and moving image production.

It will provide you with the knowledge and skills required for any career in professional photography, video production, moving image or related fields. 

Through workshops, real-world projects and engagement with industry professionals, you’ll develop technical and industry skills across a variety of areas such as camera expertise, and post-production and editing. 

You’ll also start to build your professional skills so can feel confident when responding to briefs and working to deadlines. 

Plus, you’ll learn from experienced tutors who work part-time in the industry and enjoy access to our industry-standard studios and editing software and equipment. 

Courses

Our programme combines practical skills in both still and moving image production across a variety of contexts including advertising, portraiture, fashion, events, news media, web TV, documentary, live streaming and vlogging. 

You’ll learn about: 

  • camera expertise including still images, video production and moving images, recording sound
  • lighting
  • post-production and editing
  • image analysis and criticism
  • iterative design processes
  • workflow and process management
  • interpersonal skills including teamwork, collaboration and networking
  • business skills including licensing, permissions and copyright, Health and Safety laws and practices, analysing web data
  • professional skills including working independently, research and problem-solving, working intuitively, responding to briefs and working to deadlines. 

This diploma consists of six, four-week project courses running consecutively and one longer project at the end. The courses grow in complexity and we expect more independence from you as the programme progresses. 

Course name Course description
Photographic Techniques 1: The Image

Learn how to apply practical skills of lens-based content creation in portraiture principles.

  • Meet a client brief in relation to portraiture.
  • Select and apply appropriate tools and processes to meet a client’s brief.
  • Reflect on photographic processes and outcomes in relation to meeting the client’s brief. 
Photographic Techniques 2: The Studio

Learn how to apply the practical skills of lens-based content creation in a controlled environment.

  • Respond to prescribed objects with appropriate tools and processes.
  • Document and reflect on photographic processes and outcomes of work. 
Photographic Techniques 3: On Location

Learn how to apply practical skills and principles to the creation of location-based imagery.

  • Design and plan location-based imagery, incorporating relevant sustainable and cultural principles.
  • Apply appropriate tools and processes to implement the design.
  • Document and reflect on processes and outcomes of location-based imagery. 

 

Photographic Techniques 4: The Event

 Learn how to apply relevant lens-based approaches and strategies to a dynamic environment.

  • Respond to a dynamic environment by adapting tools and processes to obtain effective outcomes, incorporating relevant sustainable and cultural principles.
  • Reflect on the effectiveness of chosen lens-based approaches in relation to dynamic environments. 
Photographic Practices 1: The Tableau 

Learn how to apply practical skills and principles to the creation of a composed scene.

  • Design and plan a tableau for a fixed vantage point.
  • Work in a team to implement tableau designs.
  • Document and reflect on processes and outcomes of tableau designs. 
Photographic Practices 2: Reportage

Learn how to capture live action in order to give an account of events.

  • Plan a strategy for capturing live action, incorporating relevant sustainable and cultural principles.
  • Execute a plan to capture live action to present an account of an event.
  • Document and reflect on processes and outcomes of the live action account. 
Photographic Practices 3: Storytelling

Develop a client-driven or self-initiated project that tells a story to an audience.

  • Research, plan and produce a narrative project, incorporating relevant sustainable and cultural principles.
  • Document, present and analyse processes and outcomes of the narrative project.

Career options

Graduates of this qualification will have the skills and knowledge for various entry-level positions in many areas within creative industries. With a focus on digital content creation in photography, video and sound, areas can include:

  • advertising
  • food
  • fashion and editorial
  • news media, photojournalism and documentary
  • sports and events
  • weddings and portraiture
  • post-production editing
  • travel and vlogging
  • corporate and commercial
  • stills and video in the film industry.

Further study options

This programme provides a pathway into the New Zealand Diploma in Photography (Level 6) where you can develop your photographic practice to a professional level. With a focus on self-initiated projects and entrepreneurship, you’ll build your technical and business skills within your chosen specialist field or industry.

You’ll develop an industry-ready portfolio full of your best practice, experience and digital content so you’re ready to hit-the-ground-running when you graduate! 

Or, you might choose to move into the Bachelor of Visual Arts or Bachelor of Design (Communication). Entry to year two of these degrees may be possible.

A change for 2023 enrolments

When you apply to study with Otago Polytechnic in 2023, you will be enrolled with Te Pūkenga, the new national network of vocational and applied education in Aotearoa New Zealand. You will learn in the same way, in the same place, and with the same people. The great news is that this enables us to share skills and knowledge across a network of passionate education providers, to better help you succeed. Enrolling in programmes that start in 2023, means that you will graduate with a Te Pūkenga qualification.

Disclaimer

While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.