Ok so brief background, I did my bachelors of Fine Arts in Photography and now am about to finish my Masters in Digital Media (Film) here in Australia at UNSW College of Fine Arts http://www.cofa.unsw.edu.au .The course is a general course that touches on a very 'overall' aspect of film production i.e. Directing, Editing, Cinematography, Sound and so on.
I want to be a cinematographer and want to complete a intensive Cinematography Diploma or additional degree at a prestigious school or university.
Can you recommend the schools or universities that i should apply to? It can be anywhere around the world but i prefer to study in the U.S. or Australia.
You say that you want to be a Cinematographer and then follow that with your wish to get a diploma for it at a prestigious school. Before you act on recommendations, I just hope you understand that the diploma and the "prestigious" school will have very little to nothing to do with you building and maintaining a sustainable career as a Cinematographer.
I'm not suggesting that you won't learn a lot and that there is no value to receiving a higher education at a prestigious school, but it would be very easy to spend quite a lot of money and time earning a degree from a place like that and never receive a decent return on your investment. Arguably, once you have a relatively solid foundation in how to expose film/video, you'll learn a lot more by just going out and doing it. The alternative to formal cinematography schooling is to take the money you were going to spend and use it to sustain yourself (food, shelter) while you work for little or no money on small independent projects learning "on the job."
Again, I think that there are more reasons to get an advanced degree than not, but if you want a life and career in the professional film industry, that degree isn't necessarily the key to achieving it. Most filmschools really only teach the basics of "filmmaking," but learning about the BUSINESS end of things doesn't tend to be high on their list of priorities. And experience dealing with personalities and logistical challenges can only come from putting in time on as many sets as possible. School may give you a decent jumping off point, but carefully weigh the time/money you'll spend/invest in that diploma with your current base of knowledge and whether or not you feel confident about just getting out there and starting your career.
You can find the most comprehensive list of worldwide filmschools at http://www.realfilmcareer.com
. Just click on the "Filmschools" link on the tab on the top.