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Postgraduate Diploma in Arts

This course is available


Level of Study

Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma


1 year

Next start date

Expected Jul 2023


University of Canterbury


This postgraduate diploma is ideal for graduates wishing to undertake advanced study in a humanities or social studies specialisation. Like its sister programme, the Postgraduate Certificate in Arts, the PGDipArts is very flexible; students can choose between a number of course combinations, and it offers a convenient taught pathway to other postgraduate study opportunities.

A graduate with a Postgraduate Diploma in Arts will have an advanced level of knowledge in one discipline or area of specialisation cultivated over a full year of study or equivalent. During this time they will have developed such skills as:

  • the ability to analyse and evaluate academic literature in that area
  • the ability to synthesize information and communicate their findings in both oral and written form
  • self-directed learning and intellectual independence.

How do I plan my degree?

A student must complete at least 120 points from taught courses, as approved by the Head of Department and the Dean of Arts (Academic).

Subjects and courses

The diploma requires 120 points at 400-level in one of the following subjects.

Note: a student may substitute PACE 495 Professional and Community Engagement Internship or DIGI 403 Digital Project for 30 points in the Postgraduate Certificate, subject to approval. Relevance of the internship or project to the course of study will be assessed.

Contact the College of Arts for information about these subject areas:

  • Anthropology
  • Art History
  • Art Theory
  • Chinese
  • Cinema Studies (as an English major)
  • Classics
  • Cultural Studies
  • Economics
  • Education
  • English
  • European Studies
  • French
  • Geography
  • German
  • History
  • Human Services
  • Japanese
  • Linguistics
  • Maori and Indigenous Studies
  • Mathematics
  • Media and Communication
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Psychology
  • Russian
  • Sociology
  • Spanish
  • Statistics
  • Te Reo Maori

Further study

  • Bachelor of Arts with Honours
  • Master of Arts
  • Master of Arts (Thesis)
  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Career Opportunities

Postgraduate study can bring many career benefits eg, specialist skills and enhanced knowledge, possible into specific occupations, higher starting salary/progression rates, research capability/achievement and evidence of high academic attainment/self-discipline.

Entry criteria

Applicants must have qualified for a Bachelor of Arts, or an equivalent degree, and satisfied the prerequisites for the subject concerned. Prerequisites vary between departments, but normally good grades in 300-level courses in that subject are required.

Applicants must also satisfy our English language entry requirements:

  • IELTS (Academic): Minimum overall score of 6.5, with a minimum of 6.0 in reading, writing, listening and speaking.
  • TOEFL (IBT): Minimum overall score of 90, with a minimum score of 19 in Reading, Listening and Writing.
  • PTE (Pearson Test of English - Academic): Overall score of 58 and no communicative skills score below 50.

Application deadline: At least 6 months before the planned start date.

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