What Makes AFDA Different?

Fully Equipped Campuses
Over 2500 Students
6 Degrees | 3 Higher Certificates | 1 Postgraduate Diploma
Over 260 full-time Academic & Admin Staff
Over 200 Industry Professionals as Visiting Lecturers
Over 5 200 Alumni

AFDA is One of the Leading Outcomes-based Film Schools in the World

The Overall Goal

To develop a value-driven educational institution that contributes to transformative nation building and rewards all stakeholders by providing a relevant, stimulating, rigorous and globally integrated learning experience that empowers students with productive innovative skills, enabling graduates to grow sustainable creative economies.  

  1. AFDA is the no. 1 Film, TV and Performance school on the continent.
  2. AFDA is a fully accredited institution with 25 years’ experience in the tertiary education landscape.
  3. AFDA is an internationally recognized institution and is a full member of CILECT – an international organization that represents over 170 Film and TV schools and includes USC (LA) and UCLA (LA), TISCH (NY), Columbia (Chicago), La Femis (Paris), GVIK (Russia), to mention but a few.
  4. AFDA Alumni are award-winning, skilled and networked. They continue to make a significant contribution to the growth of the local entertainment industry.
  5. AFDA is an Academy award-winning institution and the first and only African film school to win the Best Foreign Student Film Academy Award in 2006, and runner up as a finalist in 2013.
  6. AFDA employs a number of South Africa’s top academics and practitioners.
  7. AFDA has a unique learning system that provides students with authentic undergraduate & postgraduate learning environments that are relevant to vocational opportunities, both locally and abroad.
  8. AFDA students are trained to produce commercially viable entertainment products for local audiences and niche online global markets.
  9. AFDA offers students a genuine opportunity to seek out their aptitude in order to discover their passion and by extension their successful vocational path.
  10. The AFDA learning process encourages and rewards innovation, leadership and entrepreneurship.


AFDA is One of the Leading Outcomes-based Film Schools in the World

AFDA graduates are taught to conceptualize, create and develop indigenous products and commodities for the local and international market.

In the course of a rich entrepreneurial history dating back to 1994, AFDA has earned a reputation as one of the leading institutions of its kind in the world today. Although our track record speaks for itself, we continually renew our commitment to facilitate an environment that develops high-quality human and intellectual property with the relevant skills to deal with the rigors of a fast-expanding and ever-changing entertainment industry.

At our fully equipped campuses in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth, we train graduates to contribute to one of the largest growth industries in the world: entertainment. In the globalised economy, cultural exchange is a valuable currency. 

Our students are educated not only to forge profitable and sustainable careers in this market, but are encouraged to develop themselves as employment providers – the cultural entrepreneurs of the future. Our alumni have reinvigorated their industries with the quality of their intellectual property, skill and talent. More than 90% of our Honours alumni are working and employed in their chosen field of specialization.

AFDA films are exhibited at numerous international festivals and have been broadcast worldwide, winning many prestigious awards, including the Student Academy Award winner and Cannes Festival finalist in 2006, as well as eight SAFTA (South African Film and Television Award) awards for Best Student Film. AFDA is a full member of CILECT – the International Association of Accredited Film and Television Schools.

The Educational Promise

To provide students with the conceptual, perceptual and concrete skills that will enable them to originate meaningful narrative concepts and human behaviors that are relevant to target audiences, and to truthfully and accurately deliver these narratives through appropriate use of medium and aesthetic form and the employment of resources to accurately and economically produce and sell the completed production.


AFDA Educational Objectives
  1. To provide conceptual, perceptual and concrete skills that will enable students to originate meaningful narrative concepts and to understand why these might be relevant and the impact they may have on target audiences and society in general.
  2. To understand why human behavior and culture are the agent through which narratives are embodied and made emotionally relevant to target audiences.
  3. To understand how their chosen medium of expression can be considered and used to truthfully and accurately produce their narrative.
  4. To understand how aesthetic elements might be used to establish and produce the appropriate form of the world in which the narrative is set.
  5. To understand how to plan and employ resources to economically produce and sell a production to achieve return on investment.

Are you #MadeforAFDA?

While AFDA is a unique institution, it caters and facilitates multiple intelligences. If we refer to Gardner’s multiple Intelligence test – AFDA’s diverse spread of electives / disciplines caters for all these intelligences. Who are you?


What makes AFDA unique?
  • AFDA offers a learning system that utilises a diverse number of learning strategies and methodologies which include tacit learning, learning by approximation, collaborative learning, scaffold learning and learning through socialisation.
  • The AFDA learning and assessment system caters to what Howard Gardner refined to as ‘Multiple Intelligences’. These diverse intelligences are:
    • Visual-Spatial
    • Bodily-kinesthetic
    • Musical
    • Interpersonal
    • Intrapersonal
    • Linguistic
    • Logical –Mathematical
  • The creative industries require diverse specialization (intelligences) that are able to collaborate in an economically viable manner to achieve high standards of production.
  • AFDA students are given the opportunity to explore and discover their aptitude and by extension their career path.
  • AFDA uses a learning system designed to deal with the opportunities and challenges of the knowledge economy and the future. It is a market related learning system focusing on the audience and the target market.
  • We offer an outcomes-based learning system which requires a hands-on approach, focusing on leadership, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. This mimics the industry and takes place in an authentic learning environment.
  • AFDA focuses on the goals of the learner.
  • AFDA students do not write traditional exams. Students are assessed on a individual basis and team/group focused research. An application of theory and research in the creation and exhibition of entertainment content or in development and monetisation of entrepreneurial business and disruptive technologies is what primarily constitutes assessment at AFDA.
  • AFDA’s learning process is highly effective and creates a network of skilled graduates who are able to forge careers in the entertainment, media and other creative industries.
AFDA has a culture of constantly investing in the upliftment, upgrading and on-going development of our campus equipment and facilities. This is an essential part of our overall goal of creating a stimulating learning environment in which a pool of talent may be nurtured that will grow the current and future entertainment industry in South Africa. We pride ourselves on our ability to provide practical but technically advanced facilities and equipment to meet the intellectual, aesthetic, craft, technical and attitudinal skill demands of the industry. 

Each campus is equipped for parity in delivering the programme according to the qualification criteria and the needs in equipment and facilities. Based on the campus offering, these include lecture facilities and sprint venues for the BCom/BCT as well as state-of-the-art post production facilities for editing, animation, visual effects, and studios for sound design, recording and mixing with the work stations and software required for the outcomes of the courses. Each campus has at least one or more studios equipped to service production of film or television outcomes, as well as for design, costume and performance outcomes.

AFDA has a number of relationships with key industry facility houses like Arri, Media Services, Adobe and Apple. These relationships are critical for AFDA to deal with the input of the exponential changes on the equipment & facility demands in the digital domain.

As students rise through the undergraduate ranks at AFDA and become more focussed on a particular discipline, they have progressively increased access to an ever-wider array of high-end and industry-related equipment and facilities, allowing them to experience leading-edge technology and to produce work of the highest possible production standards. AFDA students are provided with a standard kit of equipment for the various projects produced over the year based on the qualification, year and discipline choice. Hundreds of film, TV, stage, music productions and business / tech projects are produced annually. 

AFDA was founded in 1994 by Garth Holmes, Bata Passchier and Deon Opperman. 

From its early beginnings of 6 students, a rented VCR and broken TV it has become one of the leading institutions of its kind in the world today. AFDA has over 2000 students, a permanent staff of over 260 academics and administrators and 4 fully equipped campuses in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth.

It has produced some of the top film-makers and actors in South Africa today and has made a significant contribution to developing a sustainable local entertainment industry.


AFDA has a unique learning system that provides students with authentic undergraduate & postgraduate learning environments that are relevant to vocational opportunities, both locally and abroad.


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