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Key details


1 year/s

The length of time to complete this qualification will depend on the location, study mode and selected units.

* - Student Visa holders must study internally full time


Alice Springs, Casuarina
Not available to international students.

Course code



This qualification reflects the role of individuals who are beginning to develop their own artistic voice and command of techniques in a range of art forms. It applies to work in different visual arts, craft and design work environments. Practice at this level is underpinned by application of broad and integrated technical and theoretical knowledge and the ability to analyse and use information from a range of sources. Individuals at this level usually operate autonomously, however they may provide some leadership and guidance to others with limited responsibility for the output of others.

The job roles that relate to this qualification may include Artist, Visual Artist, Arts Practitioner, Jewellery Designer, Studio Artist and Ceramic Artist. It also provides pathways to other visual arts, craft and design job roles.

Career opportunities

Occupations relevant to this qualification in industry sectors such as Visual Arts and Craft, Jewellery include:

>Jewellery Designer,
>Ceramic Artist
>Studio Artist

Credit transfers and advanced standing

Skill recognition

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

RPL is the acknowledgement of a person's skills and knowledge acquired through previous training, work or life experience, which may be used to grant status or credit in a subject regardless of how and where they were attained, including overseas.

This can include skills from:

  • Previous study excluding courses at another VET/TAFE institution, but including courses at school or college, through adult education classes or training programs at work;
  • Work experience (including both work that is paid and unpaid); and/or
  • Life experience (for example leisure pursuits or voluntary work).

RPL is a form of assessment. It is used to determine whether a person has acquired, through formal or informal learning, the skills and experience consistent with the stated competency standards that comprise a qualification. RPL is not time referenced, so there are no parameters on how or when the skills are acquired. However, the skills that have been acquired through life experience etc., must be current and must match the elements and performance criteria contained in the individual unit.

Students seeking RPL need to indicate this on their enrolment form at the time of enrolment.

For further information please refer to the Applicant's Guide to the Recognition of Prior Learning or contact Student Central on 1800 061 963 (free call) or email

Credit Transfer

Charles Darwin University as a Registered Training Organisation recognises the Australian Qualifications Framework qualifications and Statement of Attainments issued by any other Australian Registered Training Organisation.

Students are encouraged to submit any requests for credit from previous studies at the time of enrolment, to ensure they are not enrolling in units they may not need to undertake.

In order to apply for exemption/credit transfer from units completed at another training organisation, you will need to complete an Application for Exemption Form available from any campus, centre, or team, or a copy of the form can be obtained from the web.

Your completed Application for Exemption form together with attached documentary evidence (certified copy of Qualification/Statement of Attainment) to support your request for exemption/credit transfer should be submitted directly to the University either in person or by mail. Requests without documentary evidence will not be processed and will be returned to students. There are no fees attached to Credit Transfers.


VET to Higher Education Pathway Mapping for completed Awards in the same field or discipline.

Students who successfully complete VET qualifications at the Certificate IV level or above and subsequently enrol in a Bachelor degree in the same field or discipline, will receive advanced standing as detailed in the table below.

Completed Award Course Level
to a HE Award
Credit granted for a completed award in the same field
Certificate IV
3 year Bachelor award
up to 40 credit points
Certificate IV
4 year Bachelor award
up to 40 credit points
3 year Bachelor award
up to 80 credit points
4 year Bachelor award
up to 80 credit points
Advanced Diploma
3 year Bachelor award
up to 160 credit points
Advanced Diploma
4 year Bachelor award
up to 160 credit points
Associate Degree
3 year Bachelor award
up to 160 credit points
Associate Degree
4 year Bachelor award
up to 160 credit points


Domestic Course Fees
2022 Course fees for students who are eligible for an NT Government supported place range from $2,835.00 - $3,325.00, and for students who are not eligible range from $10,125.00 - $11,875.00 dependent on the units chosen.

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Why study at CDU?

Whether you learn on campus or online, you will be studying with a proud multi-sector university that’s a leader in research and flexible study delivery. CDU is innovative, industry-relevant and student-centred. Our students are at the heart of all that we do.

  • Benefit from smaller class sizes for more personalised attention
  • Online learners receive the same support as their on-campus peers
  • Enjoy inclusive, welcoming learning environments
  • Utilise our deep connections with industry, businesses and communities in the Northern Territory, across Australia, and beyond

What will I study?

To achieve a CUA41320 Certificate IV in Visual Arts a total of fifteen (15) units of competency must be completed comprising six (6) Core and nine (9) Elective units as detailed in the packaging rules and listed below.

Course structure

The total nominal hours for the sequence listed below is 810-950.

Code Module/Unit of Competency Hours
Core units of competency
CUAACD311 Produce drawings to communicate ideas 90
CUAPPR411 Realise a creative project 90
CUAPPR414 Develop self as artist 60
CUAPPR415 Develop and discuss ideas for own creative work 70
CUARES403 Research history and theory to inform own arts practice 70
CUAWHS312 Apply work health and safety practices 30
  Total nominal hours for core units 410
Elective units of competency (Select 9)
CUADES301 Explore the use of colour 50
CUADES303 Explore and apply the creative design process to 3D forms 60
CUAACD411 Integrate colour theory and design processes 40
CUADES411 Generate design solutions 70
CUAPHI403 Enhance, manipulate and output photo images 80
CUADES412 Interpret and respond to a design brief 30
CUAACD412 Experiment with moulding and casting techniques 50
CUACER411 Experiment with techniques to produce ceramic works 50
CUACER412 Experiment with throwing techniques 50
CUACER413 Experiment with ceramic surface treatments 50
CUAPAI411 Experiment with techniques to produce paintings 50
CUAPRI411 Experiment with printing techniques 50
CUAPPR417 Select and prepare creative work for exhibition 30
CUASCU411 Experiment with techniques to produce sculpture 50
MSTTD4005 Produce screen printed textiles 80
CUAILL401 Develop and refine illustrative work 50
CUAACD313 Produce technical drawings 50
  Total nominal hours for elective units 400-540
  Total nominal hours for the qualification 810-950


Entry requirements

Admission criteria

There are no entry requirements for this qualification; however students may be required to undertake a Language, Literacy and Numeracy (LLN) assessment to determine applicable support requirements.

Essential requirements

English language requirements

Having lecturers who were practising artists themselves gave me a greater understanding of the art world and their guidance was invaluable.


CDU Student

Alumni awards finalist, illustrator Jonathon Saunders

Course details


This is a current, nationally accredited qualification from the CUA Creative Arts and Culture Training Package .

Employability skills

Employability Skills are embedded in the training and assessment of national training package qualifications. Information on the Employability Skills relevant to your qualification can be obtained by visiting this website and keying in the national code for the qualification:

Location and study mode

Delivery at all locations is subject to sufficient demand and resources.

Locations: Alice Springs, Casuarina

Study Mode: On campus

Subject to demand other locations and modes may become available throughout the year.

Additional information

Vocational Education & Training
Industry groups
Occupation types
Visual Arts And Crafts Professionals Nfd
Area of study
Creative Arts and Design, Arts, Creative and Performing Arts, Communications and Design

Contact details Phone: (08) 8946 7766 or 1800 061 963 (free call).

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How to apply

How to apply for domestic students

CDU VET has several pathways for you to apply.


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