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International student means; you are not an Australian citizen or permanent resident, a New Zealand citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder.

Diploma of Live Production and Technical Services Costume

VTAC Code: CUA50420 CRICOS: 111352H VTAC Number: Prahran 6900810194



1 year full time


1 year

Next Intake


Next Intake


All the materials needed for a career in costume design

Turn your passion for theatre and fashion into a costume-making career. Our Diploma of Live Production and Technical Services CUA50420 (Costume) is a hands-on course that prepares you for employment in costume designing and costume making, as well as a career working in costume wardrobe departments. The demand for personnel to work in all areas of costume design, making and maintenance both on screen and on stage has never been so high, and opportunities to build a career are plentiful.

Hone your creative skills

In this immersive and highly practical course, you will spend the year designing, constructing, making, and altering a variety of costumes. Gain expertise in novelty and period costume making, millinery, tailoring, costume history, and film and television wardrobe. Taught at Melbourne Polytechnic’s Prahran campus, you will be among the hustle and bustle of a lively creative arts community. Melbourne Polytechnic’s costuming facilities have individual work stations equipped with modern sewing machines, a wet area for costume dyeing, designing and cutting tables and materials and costume storage. Your teachers have specialised skills and ongoing contracts in the industry, and as a result, you will have the opportunity to work on industry related events. Melbourne Polytechnic’s dramatic arts program has enduring industry connections with small and large-scale theatre companies such as Arts Centre Melbourne, La Mama, Carlton Courthouse, Red Stitch Theatre Company, Victorian Opera, The Australian Ballet, and the National Institute of Circus Arts (NICA).

A future that’s a great fit

As a graduate, you will have the skills to set up your own business as a freelance costumier. You will also be qualified to work in the theatre, film and television industries - as well as in the broader clothing and fashion industries - making and designing costumes, period and character costumes, creating hats and headpieces, as well as securing jobs in running wardrobe departments.

Career Pathways

Where will the Diploma of Live Production and Technical Services - Costume CUA50420 take me?

Graduates will be skilled to work in the Creative Arts Industries as costume designers and makers, millinery assistants, wardrobe technicians, sewers, makers of wearable art and setting up a business.

  • Location Wardrobe Manager
  • Costume Construction
  • Costumier
  • Theatre Wardrobe Manager
  • Stand-by Wardrobe on film sets
  • Costume Coordinator

Study Pathways

You may wish to take your costume studies further into higher education and a Bachelor of Production, or pursue other courses in fashion or production design. For further study options, discuss with Melbourne Polytechnic teaching staff.

Course Details

Delivery methods

You will be expected to complete a certain number of hours of industry related experience throughout the year. You can organise this yourself or Melbourne Polytechnic staff will help you organise it. Alternatively, you can collaborate with the staff to set up your work placement. Details of industry hours will be determined at the commencement of the course.

Blended delivery (combination of face to face learning on the Prahran campus, remote delivery, self-directed learning and project work including performances and productions).

  • Performances and Productions
  • Computer Lab
  • Costume Studio
  • Work placements
  • Project work

How you will study

Each course has a dedicated learning method that is designed to let you thrive in your studies.


Interactive learning in a face-to-face environment. Classes will be held at a Melbourne Polytechnic campus or partner institute. Visit the How You'll Study page for more information.

Assessment Methods

A combination of observation, written assignments and project work, with small and large scale events based learning. The course is designed to engage students in hands-on practical learning wherever possible. This may be delivered on campus, online or in the related industry where possible. Consequently, assessments will vary throughout the course, depending on the unit. As required by the training package, employability skills will form part of the assessment of the qualification, including communication, teamwork, problem solving, initiative and enterprise, planning and organising, self-management, and learning and technology. It is anticipated that learning activities and assessments will involve working with students and staff from other Dramatic Arts courses.

Units of Study

The hours displayed are nominal, actual classroom hours delivered may differ. Please contact us for the latest student contact hours information.

Code Subject Elective Hours
BSBLDR522 Manage people performance Core 70
BSBPMG541 Manage complex projects Core 60
BSBWHS521 Ensure a safe workplace for a work area Elective 60
CUACOS405 Develop expertise in pattern development for costume Elective 80
CUACOS501 Make period costumes Elective 160
CUACOS502 Make character costumes Elective 80
CUACOS503 Create theatrical millinery Elective 140
CUACOS507 Construct costume corsetry and undergarments Elective 100
CUACOS508 Cut and drape complex period costumes Elective 100
CUACOS510 Realise costumes Elective 60
CUACOS515 Coordinate costume manufacture Elective 60
CUACOS516 Manage an off-site costume department Elective 60
CUACOS519 Design costumes Elective 100
CUAIND512 Enhance professional practice using creative arts industry knowledge Core 60
CUAPPR515 Establish and maintain safe creative practice Core 40

Fees & Costs

Tuition Fees
Government subsidised fee Non-subsidised fee
Tuition fee $13600 $19950
Maximum annual amenities $250 $250
Total payable $13850 $20200
Per year $22800
Per semester $11400

The student tuition fees as published are subject to change given individual circumstances at enrolment.

Displayed course fees are indicative only. There are many variables that impact the total amount of your full course costs including qualification for government subsidies, concessions or recognition of prior learning. Tuition fees do not include the cost of student amenities or material costs.

This training is delivered with Victorian and Commonwealth Government funding. Contact us to find out if you’re eligible for a Government subsidy.

Melbourne Polytechnic offers a range of payment options to help you pay your tuition fees, so you can get on with your studies.

Fees displayed are effective for new applications received on or after 1st of November. Tuition fees do not include textbooks, course materials or overseas student health insurance and visa fees.

After initial deposit, international students are able to pay tuition fees in installments, four times per year.

For more detailed information please read the International Student Fees.


Lists of required materials, books and timetables will be provided at course induction or class enrolment by the teaching department.

Fees explained

The fees for those ineligible for a government-funded enrolment. 

Check your eligibility here.

The cost of tuition for those eligible for government funding.

Check your eligibility here.

Additional expenses

The Student Services and Amenities Fee is charged at forty cents (40 cents) per student contact hour and is capped over a twelve (12) month period, effective from the enrolment date, to:

  • $250 for full fee-paying students; and
  • $175 for concession-paying students studying Certificate I, II, III, or IV.

Amenities fees are used to improve non-academic services including libraries, counselling services, student support, and recreational activities.

A sewing kit is included as part of fees. Timetable and a list of other required materials will be provided at course induction of class enrolment by teaching department.

Students are supplied with haberdashery items, boning materials and fastenings for corsets and calico to create working toiles for all major costume pieces.

All materials are provided by Melbourne Polytechnic as part of the tuition fees.

Book an interview

This course requires an interview for entry. Please make a booking for your interview time by clicking book an interview


  • Apply through VTAC or direct to Melbourne Polytechnic
  • Attend an interview
  • More than a basic level of sewing preferred

To assess applicants meet Entry Requirements - It is required that candidates undergo an interview on the Prahran campus before offer of a place can be made and submit:

  • Resume or CV which includes evidence of technical skills and previous experience in sewing, costume making, or design.
  • A written statement with the reasons for wanting to undertake course.
  • Photograph of themselves – head and shoulders only.
  • A Folio of photographs, or drawings, or examples of sewing work or costume creation.

To enter this specialist qualification, individuals must provide evidence of their technical abilities in sewing, costume or clothing construction, or design, and the ability to:

  • develop solutions in at least one area of the costume solving process.
  • Produce examples of work, demonstrating skills in costume making – design, or sewing.
  • Respond effectively to workplace challenges and requirements in line with current industry standards.
  • Apply knowledge of trends and traditions in costume design or making.

These skills and knowledge may have been acquired through personal or work experience, or through formal study at secondary or tertiary level.

Academic: Australian Year 11 equivalency
English: Academic IELTS 5.5 with no individual band below 5.0, or Melbourne Polytechnic recognised equivalency.
Other: An interview is required before an offer can be processed. More than a basic level of sewing preferred.

Next Steps

The first step to enrolling is completing the application short form from the Apply Now page.

After you complete that form we will send you an email with a link to an application form webpage. If you don’t receive the email, check your spam and junk folders.

Complete the application form on the application form webpage.

You will be required to complete an online literacy and numeracy assessment.

We’ll ask you to attend an interview to ensure that this is the right course for you.

Once you are ready to enrol, you will be invited to attend an enrolment appointment over the phone or on campus.

For Diplomas and Advanced Diplomas, you may be eligible for a VET Student Loan. Read more about them here.

If you need assistance with your application and the next steps, you can contact one of our Education and Course Advisors on 1300 635 276 or follow a step-by-step guide to enrolling for vocational education local students.

When we receive your application, the International Office will be in contact with you shortly to discuss your application and provide you additional instructions.

If you'd like to speak to one of our International Office staff directly, call 1300 635 276

Recognising Organisations

Nationally Recognised Training

Nationally Recognised Training This course is government accredited and has national recognition.

You are currently looking at information for local students

Local student means; you are an Australian citizen or permanent resident, a New Zealand citizen or a permanent humanitarian visa holder.