NIDA Children and young people FAQs

Children and young people FAQs

Here are the most common questions people ask about NIDA Open courses for Children and Young People.

What is your cancellation and refund policy?

What ‘grade’ class should I enrol my child in at NIDA

  • NIDA groups students as state education departments do, by school year level or grade. So if your child is in year 5 at school, they could enrol in a grade 3-6 or 5-6 course with NIDA. The grade range does sometimes vary between courses in response to programming demands and course content so please check the grade range carefully for your chosen course before enrolling. Parents of students who are home-schooled or attend International schools should contact the office to discuss the best option to suit their child.

Do I have to audition to get into a NIDA Open course?

  • Generally, NIDA Open courses are open to all. There are some courses, which have been designed to suit people with more advanced skills or experience. This is indicated on the information for courses. Studios for Young People and NIDA Young Residencies courses are selective and require an audition, interview or written application.

What happens in a NIDA Open classroom?

  • NIDA offers workshop style term courses for Children and Young People aged 2-5 years and grades K-12 in Creative Play, Drama, Musical Theatre (singing and acting) or Acting on Screen. All term courses focus on a different skill set each term, providing a varied, holistic and practice based approach to artistic training and personal creative development. Term 1: Improvisation and Acting, term 2: Voice and Character, term 3: Movement and Devising, term 4: Script and Performance.
  • There is a range of Studio and ‘ensemble’ courses offered throughout the year that include performance outcomes, personalised feedback and a rigorous approach to performing arts training suitable for children and young people in grades 4-12.
  • NIDA offers short courses for Children and Young People in a range of specialised performing arts disciplines in every holiday period.
  • Our course work is not assessed. We provide an enjoyable and engaging learning environment that supports our children and young people at every stage of their creative development, catering to the needs of the individual student.
  • NIDA only employs industry professionals who have a passion for teaching. Our teaching artists are professionally trained, employed in the performing arts industry and engage in regular professional development with NIDA.

What is Creative Play?

  • NIDA Creative Play is designed as a fun introduction to drama and creative performance for pre-school children aged 2-5 years. Creative Play actively engages children and parents in storytelling and artistic practice through voice, movement and dramatic play based activities.

Children and their parents are supported by our experienced tutors to:

  • Develop self-confidence
  • Explore social contexts and group dynamics
  • Develop voice and communication skills
  • Discover the physical world and cultural landscapes
  • Engage their personal creativity and artistry in a fun environment, designed specifically for growing artists and their families.

Can I find out which teaching artists will be teaching me prior to the course?

  • You can contact us one week prior to the commencement of the course to find out who is teaching. Please keep in mind that at times it is necessary for us to make staffing changes at short notice.

How do I book a course?

  • You can enrol online using a Visa or Mastercard credit card. Alternatively, you can send in an application form with a cheque or money order or call us and enroll over the phone using a credit card.

Where do I go on my first day?

  • We will send you information via email which will identify the venue details. If your course is taking place at the NIDA Kensington campus, enter through the glass doors, 215 Anzac Parade, check in at the reception desk and then wait in the foyer until further instruction.

What does NIDA organise and what do I need to arrange?

  • NIDA arranges your course tuition. You need to make your own arrangements for travel or, if appropriate, for accommodation. But remember to call the office to confirm the course is going ahead before confirming your travel bookings.

What should I wear or bring?

  • All students must wear loose, comfortable clothing for any performance related course. Clothes that restrict movement are inappropriate – no high heels, short skirts or jeans please.
  • All students must wear closed in shoes that may be removed in the rehearsal room on the direction of the class tutor. Design and technical courses may take place in workshop areas or in theatres, and to access these areas you need to wear close toe footwear (shoes or boots).
  • All students should bring a water bottle to class. Students in grades 6-12 should bring a notepad, something to write with and/or a device or tablet to take notes.

Is lunch provided as part of my course?

  • Courses are not catered. Please bring your own refreshments.
  • We advise you to bring a water bottle to every class.

Are Young People supervised during breaks?

  • Students in grades 10 and under are supervised during breaks, at all times when attending a NIDA course and cannot leave the advertised venue without written parental permission.
  • Students in courses for grades 11 and over are not supervised at break times and are free to leave the campus should they wish. Students must inform their tutor or a member of NIDA staff if they are not planning on returning to class after a break.

Do I get a certificate from attending a course?

  • NIDA issues a Certificate of Attendance for all courses for Children and Young People.
  • Studio students receive a Certificate of Achievement provided the minimum attendance requirements are met.

Can I take photos or video footage at NIDA?

  • Photography and digital recordings are permitted however the publishing and sharing of these images in the media, including social media (including emailing/texting/posting on social media such as Facebook or Instagram), are not permitted unless written consent is provided by the parent of guardian of all students featured in the image.

Do I receive a copy of the work I created or was in during my film or screen course?

  • Recordings of class work are not provided to participants unless stated in the course description. Where recordings of student work are provided, this material remains the copyright of NIDA and can only be used by the participant for personal use, it may not be copied, sold, screened publicly or submitted to festivals or school projects.

Are NIDA Open courses accredited?

  • Currently none of the course for Children and Young People are accredited or certified. Certificates of Attendance are provided at the conclusion of each course as evidence of participation.

How do I get feedback about my progress in the Course?

  • In-class and informal feedback is a part of the learning process within each course, however, students are not formally assessed or reported upon in any of the NIDA programs for Children and Young People. Teaching artitsts are unable to provide individual feedback about students' performance or progress outside of scheduled class times.
  • Students enrolled in Studio Courses or Performance Lab and Next Stage will have opportunities for one-on-one feedback as a part of the structure of the course.

How do I provide feedback on my experience at NIDA?

NIDA values your comments and uses your feedback as part of the continual development of our programs.

  • Students in grades K-7 receive a paper evaluation form at the end of the course.
  • Students in grades 6-12 and parents/guardians of children aged 2-5 and grades K-7 will receive an online feedback form via email. This allows the opportunity to provide feedback on the course, tutors, venue and the organisation.
  • If you have any questions about your NIDA experience during the course, please direct your questions to the class tutor or our Administration team.

How do I find out more about what goes on at NIDA?

  • The NIDA Website has all the information on NIDA courses and activities. Participants will receive regular email updates and students can sign-up to additional email distributions via the website. Brochures are printed regularly throughout the year and a Newsletter for Children and Young People is distributed during Term time. Students are also encouraged to engage with NIDA via social media such as Facebook and Instagram.

If I do a NIDA Open course, will it help me to get into a NIDA Higher Education course?

  • NIDA Open courses help you to know whether a career in the entertainment industry is something that you want to pursue; help you recognise what aspect of the entertainment industry suits you best and help you decide whether NIDA fulltime training is for you. For details regarding the application for NIDA Higher Education, please visit the NIDA website.

Can I get an agent or professional work by completing a NIDA Course?

  • NIDA does not act as an agency or agent for performers and NIDA is unable to recommend or endorse any agencies or managers however we do suggest that you make an informed decision. You can find a list of Actor’s Agents at the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance.

Can I smoke at the venue?

  • Smoking is not permitted in any of the venues or on the grounds used by NIDA.

Why does my child have to be in ‘full time formal education’ prior to enrolling in a Kindergarten grade class?

The formal education requirement refers to compulsory full time school or equivalent, this could be through home school, independent schools or a government education program. The rules for when a child must start school varies significantly in each Australian state and the first year of school is often called different things. For example, in New South Wales Kindergarten is the first year of formal schooling whereas in South Australia, Kindergarten refers to non-compulsory pre-school. As a general guide children start full-time primary school in the year that they turn 5 years of age, if their birthday is in the first part of the year. See the education department websites in your state for exact admission requirements.

In NSW and WA the first year of full time schooling is referred to as Kindergarten, in VIC, TAS and QLD it is called Preparatory or Prep and in South Australia it is called Reception. NIDA currently offers Kindergarten grade classes in NSW and Victoria only, in all other locations our classes commence at primary school grade 3. Our K-2 Grade branding refers to the first year of full time school, or equivalent in NSW. The intention is that all children that enrol in a NIDA K-2 grade or equivalent class have the experience of full-time schooling prior to undertaking our course work. The content of our K-2 Grade classes is not suitable for children aged 2-5 who attend pre-school or child care, even if it is held at a school facility.

If your child is pre-school aged and excited to learn and be creative, you might like to consider our Creative Play classes. These classes are designed specifically to engage and excite pre-school aged children. Please contact us on 1300 450 417 if you have any further questions or concerns about which class is suitable for your child.

What can I do if I have any problems, questions or want some advice?

  • Please phone us on 1300 450 417 or email, if you would like to discuss any aspect of your course.

We are committed to ensuring that the standard of our customer service and the quality of our training is of the highest possible standard.