Otago Polytechnic

National Diploma in Journalism (Multimedia) (Level 5)


Dunedin (Cumberland Street Campus - see map)

One year full-time

On campus (360 Cumberland Street, Dunedin)

This programme will not be available in 2018

If you have an interest in current, local, national and international news, a broad education, an interest in people, an inquiring mind and the ability to work under pressure, then you could utilise these strengths to create a career in journalism.

This entry-level journalism programme is tutored by an experienced journalist. As well as theory studies you will write and publish stories for local newspapers, gaining real experience on the requirements of a working journalist.

Please note: This programme is not being run in 2018 as a result of the Targeted Review of Qualifications that is being carried out by NZQA across New Zealand tertiary institutions. We are currently reviewing our Journalism offering for 2019. 

Career possibilities
  • Journalist – reporter or sub-editor
  • Photojournalist
  • Public relations
  • Advertising features writer 
What will this programme cover?
  • Learn interviewing skills
  • Master another language = shorthand
  • Write news stories for publication
  • Write a feature article
  • Produce and load video, audio and written material for the internet
  • Analyse daily news coverage
  • Debate media ethics
  • Spend three weeks working in real newsrooms
  • Attend council meetings and court hearings
  • Design and layout pages
  • Produce a photographic portfolio
  • Write and record radio news. 
Further study options 
  • Bachelor of Communication Degree (major in Public Relations, Communication Management, Journalism Studies, or Marketing Communication)
  • Bachelor of Broadcasting Communications Degree (major in Radio Broadcasting, Screen and Television Production, or Broadcast Journalism)
Entry requirements
  • We prefer that you have successfully completed a 60 credit (minimum) Level 4 tertiary qualification in journalism or similar media-related programme such as the Certificate in Media Communication OR that you have relevant life or work experience.
  • The tasks undertaken require you to provide evidence of competence as specified above.
  • In addition, you should have:
    •  a commitment to journalism
    • a broad education
    • an interest in people
    • an inquiring mind
    • the ability to work under pressure
    • knowledge of local, national and international current news, and
    • a keyboarding speed of at least 20 words a minute. 
  • Applications from mature students (over 20) are welcome.
  • You may be asked to attend an interview and complete a pre-entry test to indicate your level of literacy skills, current events knowledge and your keyboarding speed.
  • International students will be individually assessed to ensure you are ready for this study.
  • If English is not your first language, you must demonstrate English language skills equivalent to an IELTS overall band score (academic) of 6.0, with no band score less than 6.0.

If you don’t have the entry requirements above, talk to us about whether you have the equivalent skills and knowledge or to determine if this is the right programme for you. 

Please note: this programme is subject to minimum numbers.

Additional documentation 

You must supply certified copies of proof of identity and proof of residency (where appropriate). 

Additional costs
  • Textbooks.
Student loans and allowances

Student loans and allowances are for domestic students only. For information about student loans and allowances please visit the Studylink website. It is important to apply for your student loan/allowance at the same time as you apply for this programme, due to the length of time Studylink take to process. Loan/allowance applications can be cancelled at any time if you decide to withdraw your programme application or if it is unsuccessful. 


While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.