General School Info

Welcome to South Seas Film & TV School

  • Thank you for your interest in South Seas and our training courses.

    We are a leading New Zealand Film, Television, Screen Acting, Animation and Photography training institution with an excellent reputation for delivering professional industry training. Our intensive hands-on practical courses have proven to be the best way of training people to gain the experience and confidence they need to work effectively in the media industry.

    South Seas Film & Television School is part of New Education Group, New Zealand’s leading independent provider of vocational training.

    NZQA carried out an External Evaluation & Review (EER) in June 2015. The outcome of this review resulted in South Seas being granted Category 1 status: “Highly Confident” in both Educational Performance and Capability in Self-Assessment.  Category 1 Providers have an audit carried out within 3-4 years. You can find the latest EER report (PDF) here.

    With the continual development of exciting new digital media technology now is an exciting time to join us to learn new skills. By coming on-board what some graduates have aptly described as ‘a fast ride to future success’ you are preparing to take off and become part of an industry that is really going places.

    School Overview
  • Gerben Cath with South Seas students

Mission Statement

Mission Statement

  • At South Seas we believe production skills and knowledge are best learned through practical experience. We therefore offer a range of hands on, industry related, training courses. As a training institution our aim and mission is to:

    • To provide a positive safe, learning environment that is friendly towards our students and supports all their personal requirements.
    • To acknowledge and nurture the creativity and full potential of each student without prejudice to race, creed, colour or socio-economic background.
    • To act with integrity, maintain a sense of responsibility towards students and staff and adopt high ethical standards in all our business practices.
    • Provide a quality service that is consistent, reliable, result driven and available at a realistic cost.
    • Maintain an industry relevant training institution that has the respect and support of the industry and clients it serves.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

Training Aims

Training Aims

    • To provide students with a competent knowledge and appreciation of the overall structures and business practices of the Film, Television, Digital Media and Animation Industries.
    • To introduce students to the operational practices and technical/creative vocational skill requirements of the above Industries.
    • To provide students with the practical knowledge, skills and confidence to enable them to successfully take up trainee positions within these Industries and then develop a professional career in their chosen specialist skills.
    • To provide students with the knowledge, skills and confidence that will allow them to produce their own, or participate in, the production of film, video, television programmes, digital media and on-screen acting work to a professionally recognised skill level.
    • To encourage students to enjoy using their imagination, talents, skills and creativity while experimenting with and exploring the full potential of the communication/craft medium that they will be working with.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

Training Methods

Training Methods

    • All courses have a strong emphasis on Accelerated Learning techniques and a ‘Learning-Through-Action’ philosophy.
    • Class sizes are restricted to ensure that each student has access to the required equipment and facilities.
    • All essential course subjects are taught by qualified industry experienced tutors. Additional qualified industry practitioners are employed to provide further training in specialised subjects as and when required.
    • Each diploma course has been allocated appropriate industry relevant equipment, computers and software with additional access to shared school facilities in order to enhance course delivery.
    • To achieve our stated aims all courses are designed to teach the theoretical aspects in conjunction with a wide range of practical exercises using professional training equipment and industry work practices. Experience has shown that this is the most reliable and rewarding method of training students in the essential film, television, animation, photography and other digital media production skills.
  • South Seas Film & TV School

    South Seas Film & TV School

School Background

South Seas Panorama@72 dpi

South Seas Film and Television School was founded in 1991 by Gerben Cath using his film production company studio facilities on Auckland’s North Shore. In 1992 David Coddington joined South Seas and the company started delivering its Film and Television Production course, In 1993 Rob Verhoeven and in 1997 Nerida Cath joined Gerben and David as shareholders and directors of South Seas.

After the departure of Rob in 2004 Gerben, David and Nerida developed South Seas into New Zealand’s leading Film, Television, Animation and Media industry relevant practical raining institution with a network of over 1,870 graduates who have obtained industry work.

In 2016 South Seas entered into negotiations initially with Animation College NZ and later with ACG Group in order to join their proposed vocational training division so that the future development and aims of South Seas as a leading Film, Television and Media training provider could be fully realised.

On the 1st of December 2016 South Seas officially became part of Academic College Group’s NZ Vocational Group which for 2017 consists of:

  • ACG Yoobee School of Design
  • Animation College
  • AMES – Institute of IT
  • South Seas Film & Television School
Statutory Declaration

South Seas Film and Television School is a Private Training Establishment (PTE) that has been registered as such with the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) since 1992.

As a registered PTE, South Seas is bound by the NZ Government Education Act 1989 and the NZQA Private Training Establishment Registration Rules 2013, South Seas is quality assured by NZQA and attained the NZQA highest Category 1 provider rating based on its last external review conducted by NZQA in 2015.

All full time study programmes delivered by South Seas are approved by NZQA under section 249 of the Education Act 1989 and South Seas is accredited to deliver them under section 250 of the Education Act. These programmes are subject to on-going monitoring and quality assurance by NZQA.

South Seas receives government funding for New Zealand students attending its study programmes, and these domestic students (who meet the eligibility criteria) are able to apply for loans and allowances. As such, South Seas is subject to the funding rules and conditions set by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC).

South Seas is a signatory to the Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016. This is a requirement to be able to enrol international students.