The Right Way
New Zealand has multiple types of higher education institutions: universities, colleges, private institutions and polytechnics. 8 universities are available in New Zealand, which all offer high quality education. All 8 of these universities are ranked within the QS World University Ranking top 500. The highest ranked is the University of Auckland, which sits in 85th place, followed by the University of Otago in 194th place.
One great advantage to schooling in New Zealand is the unique approach to education. Students are inspired to think as an individual and find their own solutions, which is how many bring up unique strengths and ideas while studying in the country. You are able to study in New Zealand at all of the traditional levels; undergraduate (bachelor’s), postgraduate (master’s) and doctoral (PhD). There are options to gain specific qualifications, such as Graduate Diplomas and Honours. These types of study generally last one year.
New Zealand is an island country located in the Pacific Ocean. The country is mainly made up of two islands. These are the North Island and South Island, although there a lot of smaller islands. The closest countries to New Zealand are Australia and the Pacific island nations: Fiji, New Caledonia and Tonga.
- Capital: Wellington
- Language: English, Māori, New Zealand Sign Language
- Population: 5.1million
- Area Size: 268,021 km²
- Academic year: March - October
- Calling code: +64
- Time zone: NZST (UTC+12)
- Currency: New Zealand Dollar ($)
Universities in New Zealand are allowed to set their own tuition fees. This means that what you pay will be different based on your institution of choice. International students can anticipate to pay between $22,000 and $32,000 for a bachelor’s degree, and between $26,000 and $37,000 for a postgraduate course. However, if you pick a course such as medicine, engineering or veterinary science, your fees could be higher. All PhD students pay the same, which is $6,500 to $9,000 per year. For information about the cost of your specific course, contact your institution.
Living costs are based on where you choose to live in New Zealand. As in most countries, the urban areas will require a larger living budget than the smaller cities and towns. It is recommended that you allow between $15,000-$27,000 per year. If you will be studying in New Zealand for more than one year, you will be required to show that you have at least $15,000 to support yourself for the first year. If you are studying for up to a year, you are required to prove that you have at least $1,250 for each month of study.
If you have a student visa, you are able to work up to 20 hours per week during term time, and full time out of term time. Students completing Masters by Research or PhD are able to work full time throughout their studies, including term-time.
In order to study in New Zealand, you might have to purchase health insurance. This will depend on where you are from. If you hold a student visa, you are not eligible for publicly funded health services. The exceptions to this rule are students from Australia and the United Kingdom or PhD students. These students are entitled to publicly funded health care for immediately necessary treatment. If you are from any other country, or need to access further medical treatment, you will need to make sure that you have valid medical and travel insurance throughout your stay. Your chosen institution will be able to provide more information regarding this.
If you will be staying in New Zealand for more than 3 months, you may need to apply for a student visa. Students from Australia or other countries that have an agreement with New Zealand do not need to apply for a visa.
Once you have your visa, you can stay in the country for up to four years and have permission to work up to 20 hours per week. You must be enrolled with an approved institution and have the money to pay for your course.
In order to be eligible for a student visa, you must have a confirmation letter on having been accepted to an NZQA-accredited course and on having paid the necessary fees. This documentation must include:
- The name of the course and the minimum time required for completing it
- Proof that the course and course provider meet New Zealand’s requirements for international students
- Proof that you have paid for the course in full, or if the course is longer than one year, the first annual fee
- Whether you have to pay course fees and whether the rate of fees is at the lower domestic rate or the higher international rate
- Whether you are studying full-time or part-time
The institution application process itself may take several months if you have to have your existing qualifications assessed. Besides your transcripts, you will need to produce a passport valid at least three months past your leaving date, as well as proof of sufficient funds to support yourself and to pay future tuition fees throughout your study.