NAFA Foundation Programme


The NAFA Foundation Programme (NFP) is a bridging course that prepares students for a successful enrolment and completion of a diploma course at NAFA. In this course, a wide range of subjects will be taught, which aims to equip students with broad skillsets as well as to develop their technical, artistic and literacy skills.

The course focuses on:

  • Preparing students with subject knowledge in the arts
  • Exposing students to a practice-based learning environment, and
  • Developing students’ academic and study skills for tertiary-level studies

The NAFA Foundation Programme provides the fundamentals in five key areas of learning that are essential in a student’s preparation for tertiary education in the arts.

Core modules

  1. Language and Communication
  2. Mathematical Literacy
  3. Understanding the Arts
  4. Learning and Technology
  5. Research and Enquiry
In addition, students will need to complete two of the following elective modules that are related to their selected diploma course.

Pathway Elective modules
School of Art & Design
  • Design Essentials
  • Drawing essentials
School of Arts Management, Dance & Theatre
  • Acting Techniques Foundation
  • Dance Techniques Foundation
School of Music
  • Music Appreciation
  • Faculty Studies
The course will culminate with a Studio Practice module whereby students will have the opportunity to practice what they have learnt in the form of a final project.

Studio Practice module
  • Arts in Practice

Module Title Credits Teaching Hrs
per week
Semester Offered
Core Modules        
Language and Communication 1 4 4 1  
Mathematical Literacy 1 4 4 1  
Understanding the Arts 1 4 4 1  
Learning and Technology 1 4 4 1  
Research and Enquiry 4 4 1  
Language and Communication 2 4 4 2  
Mathematical Literacy 2 4 4 2  
Understanding the Arts 2 4 4 2  
Learning and Technology 2 4 4 2  
Elective Modules        
Drawing Essentials 4 4 2  
Design Essentials 4 4 2  
Acting Techniques Foundation 4 4 2  
Dance Techniques Foundation 1 4 4 2  
Dance Techniques Foundation 2 4 4 2  
Music Appreciation 4 4 2  
Faculty Studies 4 4 2  
Studio Practice Module        
Arts in Practice 16 16 3  

Core Modules

Language and Communication
This module aims to build the foundation in reading, writing and oral communication skills. In the first semester, emphasis is placed on the development of reading fluency and the expansion of reading, listening, and speaking vocabulary. In the second semester, students will learn to develop their writing skills, as well as the oral communication skills required in classroom settings.

Mathematical Literacy
This module is designed to help students acquire knowledge and develop skills in applying mathematics confidently to different areas in school and everyday situations. Emphasis is placed on the student’s understanding and appreciation of mathematics within the arts context. Through reflective practice, students will apply numeracy skills to develop and sharpen their logical reasoning and problem-solving abilities.

Understanding the Arts
This module introduces students to the key concepts, terminology and elements of both visual and performing arts. It aims to develop a basic understanding and appreciation of the similarities and differences in various arts disciplines. Students will acquire the knowledge, skills and competencies necessary to develop fluency in preparation for their chosen areas of specialisation.

Learning and Technology
This module introduces students to the academic strategies and skills to support their studies. Topics covered include self and group management, learning strategies, problem solving, communication and collaboration, and information and technology. Through individual, group and exploratory work, the module aims to enhance students’ ability to become a more effective learner.

Research and Enquiry
This module introduces the foundational principles of arts research to students through a range of study, information gathering, and identification of social issues that are pertinent to arts industry and practitioners. It aims to introduce primary ideas and concepts in research methods, interpretation and analytical skills necessary to undertake academic research and inquiry.

Elective Modules

Drawing Essentials
This module introduces students to the basic skills of drawing. They will be encouraged to work with a range of drawing materials and techniques.

Design Essentials
This module introduces students to the basic concepts and elements of visual language. They will explore the use of techniques and materials to articulate concepts through visualisation.

Acting Techniques Foundation
This module offers students an opportunity to explore the range of skills required for acting. Through practice-based sessions, they will learn foundation techniques in improvisation, character analysis, voice and movement.

Dance Techniques Foundation
This module aims to develop the foundation in Ballet or Contemporary Dance. Areas of emphasis include technique, aesthetics, fitness, kinaesthetic awareness, movement efficiency and safe practices.

Music Appreciation
This module is designed to help students consolidate their theoretical knowledge, foundations in aural perception and contextual information of the Western classical music. Students will be given opportunities to demonstrate their understanding in musical interpretation and instrumental techniques in performance class.

Faculty Studies
This module provides students with the opportunity to participate in large ensemble rehearsals and performances to develop their aural and music reading skills, and awareness in ensemble skills.

Studio Practice Module

Arts in Practice
This module aims to introduce a methodical work process that will guide students through an extended project. It provides the opportunity for students to reflect on their acquired skills/experiences and put their learning into practice in a final project.

The NFP is a 35-week course which runs from March to February of the following year, and is divided into three semesters. More than half of the curriculum and contact time is dedicated to arts theory and studio/practical components.

Term / Semester No. of Weeks From To
Semester 1 Week 1 - 15 4 March 2019 16 June 2019
Mid-Semester Week^ Week 8 22 April 2019 28 April 2019
Assessment Week Week 16 17 June 2019 23 June 2019
Vacation* 24 June 2019 4 August 2019
Semester 2 Week 1 - 15 5 August 2019 17 November 2019
Mid-Semester Week* Week 8 23 September 2019 29 September 2019
Assessment Week Week 16 18 November 2019 24 November 2019
Vacation* 25 November 2019 5 January 2020
Semester 3 Week 1 - 7 6 January 2020 23 February 2020
Assessment Week Week 8 24 February 2020 1 March 2020

Students may be required to take part in projects, activities and events during Mid-Semester Week and/or vacation period.


Secondary 4 Normal (Academic) students who attained an ELMAB3 (English Language, Mathematics, Best 3 other subjects) aggregate score of 15 points or better, excluding CCA Bonus Points, will be eligible to apply for the course.

In addition to meeting the educational qualification requirements, applicants must pass an admission test or audition, depending on their selected course of study. Applicants may be asked to attend an interview.

Successful applicants will be given a provisional offer of admission to the diploma courses. Upon the successful completion of the NFP, students will be offered a place in their chosen diploma course.

Course fees indicated here apply to students enrolling in the NAFA Foundation Programme in March 2019. The fees are based on the completion of 60 credits, the number of credits required to complete the programme.

Singapore Citizens S$340
Permanent Residents S$2,500
International Students S$8,000

For more information on financial assistance (for Singapore citizens), please refer to the links below:


  Singapore Citizens & PR International Students
Application Fee & Admission Test/ Audition Fee S$70 S$100
Application Fee & Admission Test/ Audition Fee

Singapore Citizens & PR

Application Fee & Admission Test/ Audition Fee

International Students

Miscellaneous Fees refer to any optional fees which the students pay only when applicable. Such fees are normally collected when the need arises.

Purpose of Fee Amount (with GST, if any)
Administrative Fee
(including Student Card & Library Membership)
(refundable only if international student’s pass application is rejected by ICA)
S$100 one-time payment
Hospitalisation Insurance Fee
(refundable only if international student’s pass application is rejected by ICA)
S$60 one-time payment
Late Payment Charge (non-refundable) S$15 per month
Retake Module Fee Prevailing Full Course Fee / Total Credits multiply by number of Retake Module Credits
Resubmission Fee for Grade E module (non-refundable) S$30 per module
Appeal Fee for reconsideration of assessment result
(refundable if the appeal is successful)
S$30 per appeal

For more information on payment, please refer to the links below:

NAFA students taking full-time programs are covered by a medical insurance scheme that provides 24-hour annual coverage of up to S$20,000 per student for hospitalisation and medical treatments in government and restructured hospitals in Singapore and overseas (if student is involved in school-related activities), throughout the course duration.

Singapore Citizens, Permanent Residents or non-Student’s Pass international students who are protected by his/ her own insurance coverage in Singapore can opt-out from the scheme arranged by the Academy if the preceding condition holds. Student’s Pass holders are not allowed to opt-out of the insurance scheme. Students who wish to opt-out from the medical insurance scheme, must submit copy of their medical insurance policy together with their Student Contract.

Please call the Office of Student Care and Internship at 6512 6142 or email [email protected] for enquiries regarding medical insurance claims or application to opt-out from the medical insurance scheme.

The following table indicates the Foundation programme application deadlines for AY2019/2020 intake:

Applicant Type Application Deadline
International applicants 7 January 2019
Singapore citizen and Singapore PR applicants 20 January 2019

Application Fees will be waived if you submit your application online by 12 November 2018.

  1. Apply online from 22 October 2018.
  2. For all courses except Diploma in Arts Management, applicants will be required to take an admission test* or audition. Applicants for Diploma in Arts Management will be required to submit a personal statement and testimonial(s).
  3. Print out the Application Acknowledgement and submit all necessary documents as listed below to the Student Admissions Office, NAFA Campus 1, for verification within five working days from the date of your online application:
    1. Academic certificates and transcripts: Secondary 4 N(A) School Preliminary Examination (for applicants waiting for GCE N(A) level results), GCE N(A) level, CCA record and GCE O level, if applicable.
    2. NRIC for Singapore Citizens and Singapore Permanent Residents (SPR), passport and valid Student’s Pass card (if applicable) for international students.
    3. For Music applicants, relevant Music qualifications such as ABRSM or Trinity certificates and comment sheets, both Practical and Theory.
    4. After verification of documents, proceed to make payment of the Application Fee at the cashier counter in NAFA.
  4. You will receive a test advisory on the details of the admission test or audition from the Student Admissions Office upon verification of the submitted documents and payment of the Application Fee.
  5. You will need to attend the admission test or audition at NAFA with the required materials as indicated on the test advisory. Applicants with English Language score 4 or 5 will be required to attend an interview at a later date.
  6. You will receive a letter via post on the outcome of your application within 4-6 weeks following your admission test or audition.

*Admission test is only applicable for courses under School of Art and Design.

The NAFA Foundation Programme (NFP) is a one-year practice-based programme which aims to prepare students who are interested in the arts to be able to successfully enrol in and complete their diploma courses at NAFA. It covers a range of areas to equip students with broad skill sets, nurturing them in essential technical, artistic and literacy skills that will help them to make the most of their next level of studies.

The course is targeted primarily at Normal (Academic) students who have completed Secondary 4 and have the creative inclinations and aspirations to become artists/designers/performers but have hitherto limited access or opportunity to develop their artistic potential.

The NFP is a through-train pathway for students who have done well in the Secondary 4 Normal (Academic) examination to be admitted directly in an arts institution in lieu of GCE ‘O’ Levels. When students enroll in the NFP, they will be offered provisional places in their pre-selected diploma course, and they will progress onto the first year of the course upon successful completion of the programme.

Secondary 4 N(A) students attaining an ELMAB3 (English Language, Mathematics, Best 3 other subjects) aggregate score of 15 points or better with good grades in English, excluding CCA Bonus Points, will be eligible to apply for the course. Students with other educational qualifications equivalent to Secondary 4 N(A) will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

In addition, applicants must pass an admission test or audition, depending on their selected courses of study. Applicants may also be asked to attend an interview.

Eligibility to apply for NFP does not guarantee a place will be offered in the programme.

The NFP application windows are opened 2 times a year:

  • Early Admissions Exercise is opened from 22 October to 12 November 2018, where Secondary 4 N(A) students may apply to the NFP with their preliminary examination results. Application Fee will be waived during the Early Admissions Exercise. Admission test will be held on 22 November while the audition will be scheduled from 19 to 23 November 2018. Successful applicants will be notified in early-December if they are given conditional offers to the programme. Their place in NFP will automatically be confirmed if they attain the cutoff point at the N-level examination (note: applicants must submit their N-level results to NAFA within a week after the N-level results are released for verification purposes).
  • Normal Admissions Exercise for Singapore Citizens and SPRs is opened after the N-level results are released, and until 20 January 2019. Admission test will be held on 15 and 24 January 2019 while the audition will be scheduled from 21 to 25 January 2019. The application deadline for international N(A) students will be on 7 January 2019 and the admission test will be held on 15 January 2019. Successful applicants will be notified in early-February if they are offered places in the programme.


We are accepting 50 students into the programme each year. As places are limited, applicants are therefore encouraged to apply as early as possible. We will stop accepting applications once all places in NFP are filled.

The school term for the NFP commences in early March 2019 and ends the following year in February.

Students will be engaged in various modes of learning and activities, such as small group discussions, industry visits, field trips and online learning. Assessment will comprise of coursework assignments, projects, reports, presentations or quizzes.

Students who fail a module will be required to submit additional work and to be re-assessed.

Students who fail or drop out of the NFP may apply to ITE’s programme or pursue the GCE ‘O’ level examinations.

A Certificate of Completion will be issued to students who have successfully completed the NFP.

Students who have successfully completed the NFP may request to change courses but these are subjected to approval. They may be required to re-sit the admission test, audition or go through an interview as part of the review and selection process.

No, CPF Education Scheme and Mendaki Tertiary Tuition Fee Scheme are not available for students enrolled in the NFP.

Singaporeans and Singapore Permanent Residents on the NFP will pay MOE-subsidised fees. Eligible students can also apply for the Diploma Foundation Programme Bursary. For more information on the bursary and fees, please contact Student Admissions at [email protected].


Make an Enquiry

Tel: 6512 4071

Please write to us at:
[email protected]