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Programme Overview Modules Entry Requirements Fees How to Apply
Course Overview Modules Entry Requirements Fees How to Apply
Duration: 1 Year
Mode: Full-time


The NAFA Foundation Programme (NFP) is a bridging programme that prepares students for a successful completion of a diploma programme in their area of interest at NAFA. In this programme, a wide range of subjects will be taught, equipping our students with broad skill sets and knowledge that are necessary for tertiary-level studies. Through a practice-based learning environment, students will develop their technical and artistic skills.

Practice-based Learning

A hands-on learning environment ensures you have the opportunity to acquire and apply subject-specific foundational skills in your chosen field of the arts.

Skills for Tertiary Education

Gain a solid foundation in understanding the arts, research, as well as language and communication, so you have the crucial academic and study skill sets required to start tertiary education on the right foot.

Foundational Discipline Specific Skill Sets

Elective modules in areas of visual arts, performing arts, and arts management will hone and prepare you for your targeted area of interest in your diploma programme.


Our Foundation Programme comprises five broad-based core modules and two elective modules that are specific to the diploma programme. You will also have to complete a final project in a practical Studio Practice module.

Core modules

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

Pathway Elective modules

Faculty of Art & Design
  • Design Essentials
  • Drawing essentials
Faculty of Performing Arts
  • Music Appreciation
  • Faculty Studies
  • Dance Techniques Foundation
  • Acting Techniques Foundation
Faculty of Interdisciplinary Practices
  • Introduction to Stage Productions*
*This module provides an overview of how stage productions are managed. Students will be introduced to the various stage and performance spaces, and the types of show that are performed in those spaces.

Module Title: Credits: Contact Hours per Week:
Trimester 1
Core Modules
Language and Communication 1 4 4
Mathematical Literacy 1 4 4
Understanding the Arts 1 4 4
Learning and Technology 1 4 4
Pathway Elective Modules^
Drawing Essentials 4 4
Introduction to Stage Productions 4 4
Dance Techniques Foundation 1 4 4
Music Appreciation 4 4
Trimester 2
Core Modules
Language and Communication 2 4 4
Mathematical Literacy 2 4 4
Understanding the Arts 2 4 4
Learning and Technology 2 4 4
Pathway Elective Modules^
Design Essentials 4 4
Acting Techniques Foundation 4 4
Dance Techniques Foundation 2 4 4
Faculty Studies 4 4
Trimester 3
Core Modules
Arts in Practice 4 4
Research and Enquiry 4 4

^ Students will only need to attend the pathway elective modules relevant to their Diploma programme.

Core Modules

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

Mathematical Literacy
This module helps students develop skills required to apply mathematics in everyday situations. Emphasis is placed on the understanding and appreciation of mathematics within the arts. Students are expected to apply numeracy skills to sharpen their logical reasoning and problem-solving abilities.

Understanding the Arts
This module introduces students to the key concepts and elements in 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 competencies required 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. It aims to enhance the student’s learning ability through individual, group and exploratory assignments. Topics include self and group management; learning strategies; problem solving; communication and collaboration; and information and technology.

Research and Enquiry
This module introduces students to the foundational principles of arts research through the study and identification of social issues pertaining to the arts industry and its practitioners. It aims to introduce primary concepts in research methods, interpretation and analytical skills necessary in an academic research process.

Arts in Practice
This module aims to introduce a methodical work process that will guide students through an extended project to produce a creative group outcome. It allows students the opportunity to reflect on their acquired skills, knowledge, and experiences through the programme and to apply them as they produce their art work.

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 the 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 skills required for Ballet or Contemporary Dance. Areas of emphasis include technique, aesthetics, fitness, kinaesthetic awareness, movement efficiency, and safe practices.

Music Appreciation
This module aims to help students reinforce 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 classes.

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

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


Trimester Week From (Monday) To (Sunday)
Orientation – 2 Mar 2023 (Thursday)
Trimester 1 Week 1 - 15 6 March 2023 18 June 2023
Mid-Trimester Week^ Week 8 24 April 2023 30 Apr 2023
Assessment Week Week 16 19 June 2023 25 June 2023
Vacation* 26 June 2023 6 August 2023

Trimester Week From (Monday) To (Sunday)
Trimester 2 Week 1 - 15 07 August 2023 19 November 2023
Mid-Trimester Week* Week 8 25 September 2023 1 October 2023
Assessment Week Week 16 20 November 2023 26 November 2023
Vacation* 27 November 2023 7 January 2024

Trimester Week From (Monday) To (Sunday)
Trimester 3 Week 1 - 7 8 January 2024 25 February 2024
Assessment Week Week 8 26 February 2024 3 March 2024

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

^ Programme may conduct academic-related activities such as make-up classes during the Mid-Trimester Week.


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entry requirements

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. Applicants who score 4 and above in English Language will be required to attend an interview.

The NFP is also available to Secondary 4 Normal (Academic) students who have sat for GCE ‘O’-Level subjects. These students are allowed to combine their ‘N’- and ‘O’-Level examination results to compute their eligibility. If a student takes the same subject at both ‘N’ and ‘O’ Levels, only the better grade will be computed into his or her aggregate.

The following GCE ‘O’-Level Grade conversion matrix will be adopted during the computation of aggregates.

‘O’ Level Grade Aggregate Point for NFP
A1 - B3 1
B4 - C6 2
D7 3
E8 4

  • O-Level grade of F9 does not count towards your ELMAB3 aggregate score. If you have taken the same subject at both the N-Level and O-Level examinations, the better grade will be used to compute your ELMAB3 aggregate score to determine eligibility.
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 conditional 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.


Applicants may select either (A) Portfolio Submission or (B) Admission Test.

(A) Portfolio Submission
You are to submit 10-15 images of recent art or design work, which should include a range of finished artwork as well as development work in preparing the finished artwork (sketches, mood boards, etc). Portfolios are assessed with the aim of identifying your creative and technical potential to undertake a programme in art and design.

Allowed image file types: .pdf,.jpg,.jpeg,.png,.gif,.tif,.tiff,.bmp. Maximum file size: 5 MB)
(Allowed video file types: .mpeg,.mp4,.mov,.m4v,.avi,.wmv,.flv,.asf,.mpg,.mp3. Maximum image file size: 200 MB)

The work submitted should preferably be not more than two years old. It may be the result of assigned class projects or independent exploration. It is recommended that the selected examples of work reflect your interests, experience and competencies in art and design.

While compiling the contents of the portfolio, you may concentrate on a single medium or show work in a breadth of media. The portfolio may include, but is not limited to the following: drawing, prints, photography, painting, film, video, animation, sculpture, ceramics, digital work, etc.

You are also expected to write a statement of intent - in about 100 words - stating your reasons for pursuing a programme of study in art and design. Please include your goals, interests and aspirations for the future.

(B) Admission Test
The duration of the admission test is 2 hours 15 minutes.

Part 1: Drawing from Observation (90 minutes) Part 2: Written Ability (45 minutes)

Materials for the Admission Test:
  • Any type of drawing/colouring materials, e.g. 2B pencils, colour pencils, water colour, poster colour, markers, etc.
  • Blue/black pens, pencils and eraser
  • Set Square
  • Drawing Board (Optional)
Personal Statement and Testimonial
You are required to submit a 500-word personal statement and a testimonial here.

Personal Statement
Your personal statement should articulate your interest for the arts and future career goals. Through your personal statement, you will be evaluated based on your:
  • Past experiences in artistic practice, arts management and/or attending arts events
  • Aspiration to work in the arts and cultural industries
  • Written communication skills
The testimonial should be written by an official (e.g. teacher, principal, advisor, etc.) of an educational institution you have attended. Through the testimonial, you will be evaluated based on your:
  • Personality traits
  • Participation in co-curricular activities
  • Leadership ability or potential
    (Allowed document file type: .pdf. Maximum document file size: 10 MB)
You are required to attend an audition. The audition consists of two sections - Practical Assessment and Interview.
  • You are required to report to the audition venue 30 minutes earlier to register, warm up and change into appropriate attire for dancing. You must bring your own attire.
  • The audition may take up to 3 hours
Practical Assessment
You are expected to prepare and perform two contrasting solos of any dance genre/style (e.g. Ballet and Cultural Dance; Chinese classical dance and Chinese folk dance). Each dance should not exceed 90 seconds. The solo dance can be choreographed by yourself or by someone else (e.g. your dance teacher). You are required to bring your own music which can played from a CD or from your own media device (e.g. phone, tablet, MP3 player with a 3.5mm audio output jack. A costume (e.g. tutu for female ballet classical solo) may be worn. Through your performance, assessors will evaluate your:
  • Technique - coordination, control and alignment
  • Artistry - spatial awareness, musicality, dynamic range and performance quality
  • Fitness - strength, control, flexibility, coordination, speed, stamina and stretch
You are expected to discuss why you want to study dance during the interview. You will be evaluated based on your:
  • Existing knowledge of and experience in dance performance
  • Dance-related interests and career aspirations
  • Dance proclivity and learning attitude
Applicants who are unable to attend a live audition may request for an online audition. For the Practical Assessment, applicants can choose to perform the two solos through the Internet or submit a current pre-recorded performance. Both options will be followed by an online interview.
You are required to attend an audition. The audition consists of three sections — Workshop, Audition Monologue and Interview.
  • You will be given three audition monologues at least one week prior to the audition and you will need to choose one. You are expected to memorise or be very prepared with your chosen piece
  • You are required to report to the audition venue 30 minutes earlier to register
  • The audition may take up to three hours
  • Wear comfortable clothing that allows for ease of movement
You are expected to participate enthusiastically in the improvisation exercises and theatre games during the workshop. Through your participation in the workshop, you will be evaluated based on your:
  • Openness to improvisation and willingness to work with others
  • Vocal response in an improvisation – projection, range, tone and clarity
  • Physical response in an improvisation – expressiveness, spontaneity and range
Audition Monologue
During the audition, you will be asked to perform one of the three pieces of dramatic texts. You are expected to arrive with your chosen monologue memorised. Through your performance of the monologue, assessors will evaluate your:
  • Ability to perform a dramatic text – comprehension, characterisation and creativity
  • Physical skills – presence on stage, spatial awareness, physical range, movement vocabulary and physical portrayal of character
  • Vocal skills – projection, clarity, range and tone
You are expected to discuss why you want to study theatre during the interview. You will be reviewed based on your:
  • Existing knowledge of and experience in theatre and/or performance
  • Personality traits
  • Innovation and creativity
You are required to attend an entrance audition of approximately 15 minutes on your intended principal study. Non-pianists are advised to bring along their own accompanist for the audition. If necessary, please contact the Student Admissions Office for a list of accompanists. The accompanist fee is S$100, for a 45-minute rehearsal and the audition. Applicants are required to make arrangements with the accompanists directly for practice sessions and payment.

The audition consists of the following:
  • Performance of two contrasting works of your choice. Pieces selected from popular music repertoire would not be considered for the
  • purposes of this audition.
  • Sight-reading
  • Aural awareness
  • Music theory*
  • Short interview with the audition panel about your musical experiences, interests and your ambitions for future studies and career
*The music theory paper (approximately 60 minutes) will test applicants in various areas at a level similar to ABRSM Grade V.

Applicants who present documentary evidence of ABRSM Grade V Music Theory or its equivalent will be exempted from the test. Further information about the requirements of ABRSM Grade V Theory can be found at

Composition Portfolio Interview
Composers should submit a portfolio of at least two, but not more than five, contrasting examples of your compositions. Do submit your portfolio one week in advance of your scheduled audition. You may submit your work as written scores, recordings or a combination of the two.

Please ensure that your written music is clear and legible, and that you include full details, where necessary, of instrumentation, scoring, and performance details. Do not send Sibelius files unless they are accompanied by PDF files of the same material. Recordings should either be on a CD or DVD, or in a file format that can be read in VLC or Windows Media Player.

Individual works should be clearly indexed on both the CD and accompanying documentation. All recordings should be clearly labelled with your name and the title of the piece on both the CD and its cover. Portfolios will be returned to you immediately at the end of the audition or mailed back to you after the audition period upon request.

Online Audition
Though live auditions are preferred, applicants who are unable to attend a live audition may submit a video recording for their audition. If they pass the video screening round, an interview via Zoom or MS Teams with applicants will be arranged by the Student Admissions Office. Applicants will be tested on their sight-reading and aural awareness during the interview.

Guidelines for Video Recording:
  • The recording should be a clear and accurate representation of your playing. Do not edit the audio/video of your recording
  • The camera should be stationary for the performance of each work
  • The video should show the performer in full body if possible

How to Apply

Apply online
Apply online here from 18 December to 29 December 2023.

Keep the Application Acknowledgement for your reference and submit the required documents

Keep the Application Acknowledgement for your reference and submit the required documents for verification within five working days from the application date at:

Nanyang Academy of Fine Arts
Campus 1 (Admissions counter at level 1)
80 Bencoolen Street
Singapore 189655

Operating Hours
Monday to Friday: 9am to 5pm
Closed on Saturday, Sunday, and Public Holidays

Alternatively, you can email a copy of the required documents to [email protected].

Required documents for verification:
  1. Certified true copies of academic certificates and transcripts: Secondary 4 N(A) School Preliminary Examination (for applicants waiting for GCE O-Level results in Jan), 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.

Receive a test advisory

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.

Attend an admission test

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.

Application outcome

Receive the outcome of your application via email within 4 – 6 weeks after your Portfolio Submission/Interview/Audition or Admission Test.

*Admission test is only applicable for programmes under Faculty of Art and Design.