Specialist Diploma in Arts Education


Taught by lecturers from NIE International (NIEI) and supported by the National Arts Council (NAC), the Specialist Diploma in Arts Education aims to enhance the professionalism of arts instructors with a structured approach to the concepts of teaching and learning in an arts environment.


Spanning 240 contact hours over the course of a year, this specialist diploma programme seeks to refine the participant’s understanding of approaches in knowledge acquisition as well as instructional techniques in the teaching of the arts. Communication and classroom management skills, methods of lesson and curriculum planning as well as assessment and evaluation are taught, with a focus on arts pedagogy. 21st century skills such as problem solving, critical thinking, creativity and collaboration in today’s classroom are also discussed.


Upon completion of the programme, participants would be able to better engage and raise students’ interest levels through the scaffolding of knowledge and planned activities to support the learning framework. They would also be better equipped to handle the challenges faced delivering arts programmes in the modern classroom.



  1. This programme is offered to all instructors conducting arts programmes with a Diploma in any discipline and 


  1. Participants should be engaged in working with an industry/possess school experience of at least 1 year or as a practitioner in the specified art form for 4 years, at the time of enrolment. 


In exceptional circumstances where candidates have not attained the prescribed Diploma, other qualifications may be considered on a case-by-case basis. These may include:


  • Certifications from arts institutions (e.g. Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM), Trinity Guildhall, Commonwealth Society of Teachers of Dancing (CSTD) etc.)


  • Certifications from stand-alone courses (Script Writing, Drama Directing, Modern Music, Contemporary Dance, Basic and Intermediate Percussion, etc.) relevant to their art form. The course should have been completed within the last 5 years at the time of application. 


  • School/industry teaching experience with evidence of a teaching portfolio (focused on pedagogy and curriculum) or as an arts practitioner with evidence of an industry portfolio


  • Participation in at least 2 formal or informal arts performances/exhibitions locally and/or internationally over the last 4 years


  • Reference letter from the school, institute or organization which they are working with or had worked with.



The full course fee is S$5,136.00 (including 7% GST).


Arts instructors who meet the following criteria will pay only $513.60 per person after a 90% course fee subsidy: 


        a. Approved to conduct programmes under NAC-AEP 2015/2016 OR


        b. Approved to conduct programmes under MOE schemes (e.g. CCA/PAL) and 

            Possess at least a Diploma in Art Form (or equivalent training especially for traditional arts practitioners) and

            Have at least 2 years of teaching experience in schools.


Arts instructors who do not meet the subsidy requirements may apply to NAC for a Capability Development Grant in order to defray a portion of course fees. For more information on the Capability Development Grant, please visit here.


For more information on the NAC-AEP scheme, please visit here



5th Intake (starting Jan 2017) 


  • Duration: 240 hours (8 modules over 1 year, or to be completed over 3 years)
  • Timing: 6.30 - 9.30pm, Tue & Thu 
  • Dates: 4 Jan 2017 – 24 Jan 2018
  • Venue: NTU @ One-North Executive Centre, 11 Slim Barracks Rise (off North Buona Vista Road) 


Click here for the class timetable.


Participants are required to complete 8 modules for a total of 240 hours under the Specialist Diploma in Arts Education programme. Participants must satisfy all requirements for a pass grade for courses under the programme for consideration of completion of programme. 


A minimum attendance of 80% is required for each course. Attendance during the programme forms part of the requirements towards the award of the Specialist Diploma. Please note that approved absences would also be included in the computation of attendance percentages.


Participants who successfully graduate from the course will be awarded the Specialist Diploma in Arts Education by the National Institute of Education (NIE).




Since 2012, three runs of the Specialist Diploma in Arts Education have been successfully completed with over 50 graduates. These are some thoughts from past graduates: 

The Specialist Diploma in Arts Education is an excellent platform to provide traditional arts instructors with an opportunity to upgrade their understanding of present and future issues around Arts Education. Besides gaining the knowledge through tutorial sessions by the lecturers, participants gained great knowledge through sharing by peers from the various arts disciplines.  For me, this is life-long learning, and age is never a barrier.

Mdm Som Said, Artistic Director/ Sri Warisan Som Said Performing Arts (Cultural Medallion recipient, Dance)

I decided to take up this course because in order to provide a holistic education through the arts, you need to know what is relevant. The course had helped an artist-facilitator like me to better my delivery.

Syed Ibrahim, Programme Director/ OneHeartBeat


Registration for this course is now closed. Please check back regularly for more updates on the next run of the programme. 


Please note that the Specialist Diploma satisfies the minimum pedagogical requirement for NAC-AEP instructors wishing to conduct NAC-AEP Experience workshop programmes from 2017 onwards. It is NOT compulsory to attend the pedagogy training courses if you are not an approved instructor under the NAC-AEP.


If you already possess a minimum of 10 years of teaching experience or other relevant pedagogical qualifications necessary for exemption from EM, please refer here for more information about the relevant verification processes. 


Please contact us at if you have any queries or require any clarifications.