The country is made up of two main islands: the North and South. It also has several islands that may be at least a hundred miles away from the main island groups. New Zealand follows a British model of parliamentary government, wherein the Parliament (House of Representatives) has the power.
In the 2021 Index of Economic Freedom by the Heritage Foundation, New Zealand is regarded as the 2nd freest in the world, with an overall economic freedom score of 83.9, higher than regional and world average scores.
In the past years, New Zealand has evolved tremendously, gaining an international
reputation as a strong proponent of quality education. The higher education institutions (HEIs) have adapted
a progressive education system by hiring top educators, offering state-of-the-art facilities, and providing
a safe learning community.
New Zealand has a total of 117,276 international students in 2018, with the university sector posting the highest enrolments in six years, according to the ICEF Monitor. Here are some of the reasons why students choose to study in New Zealand:
Through these concerted efforts of different ministries, the country has been recognised around the world as the leading destination that cultivates top-tier talents. In fact, it has held the third spot of the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Worldwide Educating for the Future Index 2019 for two consecutive years.
Many of the institutions in New Zealand have also made it to global education rankings.
|81||University of Auckland|
|184||University of Otago|
|223||Victoria University of Wellington|
|270||University of Canterbury|
|375||University of Waikato|
|437||Auckland University of Technology|
All these numbers support that New Zealand was able to establish its name in the international education scene by offering top-quality education excellence recognised by institutions and employers all over the world.
While the tuition fees for international students are much higher than those of domestic students, the rates are still reasonable considering the level of academic excellence that students receive. International students, such as those taking PhD programmes, may be exempted from shouldering foreign student fees.
All of the universities in New Zealand are given the freedom to set their own fees, depending on the subject and the study level. In general, students can expect to pay from NZ$22,000 to NZ$32,000.
Postgraduate degrees will have fees ranging from NZ$26,000 to NZ$37,000 annually. Specialty courses, such as veterinary science and medicine, have much higher costs. Compared with Australia, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom, New Zealand has one of the most affordable tuition fees.
The country also offers scholarships for international students. A New Zealand Scholarship covers a student’s full cost of tuition fees, living allowance (NZ$491 per week), establishment allowance (NZ$3,000), tutoring costs (NZ$1,000) medical insurance during the entire duration of the study, travel insurance, research and thesis cost, and airfare tickets to and from New Zealand at the start and end of the program.
The scholarship also allows travel costs during the course of the scholarship, with the frequency depending on the length of study.
New Zealand is one of the most diverse countries in the world. As an inclusive country, international students will have no problem assimilating.
In 2019 alone, roughly 114,000 migrants were accepted in the country, with most of them hailing from Asia. The schools have also become more multicultural over the years. Based on the data from the Education Review Office, New Zealand has an ethnically diverse roster of students.
The country has attracted a wide range of students with different backgrounds. Most of its international students are from China, the United States, India, and Malaysia.
New Zealand is also regarded as one of the countries with the highest life satisfaction.
Another major reason why students flock to New Zealand is because of the government’s strong support for research. In addition, most learning institutions have more than 21,000 full-time teaching staff, and a majority of them have received the National Tertiary Teaching Excellence awards.
All these factors contribute to making New Zealand a top destination for international students all over the world. With the nation’s strong economic resilience and policies on top of academic excellence, students have much to get when they choose to study in New Zealand.
New Zealand is among the most welcoming countries in the world. For several years, the country has been welcoming thousands of immigrants, who did not encounter any major problems assimilating into the cultures and traditions of New Zealand.
Many universities also encourage students to join different organizations that will help them grow and learn beyond the classroom.
The New Zealand International Students’ Association (NZISA) is the main representative body for all international students in New Zealand. It is responsible for spearheading activities and conferences, such as the Mental Health and Wellbeing Conference.
NZISA also encourages students to join special groups like the Future Female Leadership initiative, which also organises virtual group meetings to help one another cope with difficulties and empower each other.
Some of the international groups under the umbrella organisation include:
Students interested in studying in New Zealand must be aware of the eligibility requirements that apply to their course or programme of choice. For acceptance to higher education programmes, students must have at least completed Grade 12 or its equivalent. Additionally, prospective students should also submit proof of English literacy, such as IELTs or TOEFL.
New Zealand educational institutions have two admission seasons, which occur every January and July. Some universities, however, may offer September and November admissions. It is important to note these schedules because students should ideally start their admission process at least six months before the deadline.
As mentioned, students must pass an English language test before they can be accepted into a programme. Some of the tests accepted by HEIs in New Zealand include:
Before applying for a visa to study in New Zealand, students need to prepare a few things. Here are some of them:
International students can apply for one of these visa types:
This student visa allows students to enrol in a full-time programme at a New Zealand accredited institution for four years.
The exchange student visa allows students to study in New Zealand under an exchange student programme, and is valid for up to four years.
Students granted New Zealand funding or loan should get this visa, which allows them to enrol in a short-term course for three months or a full programme lasting for four years.
For students financially supported by the New Zealand government, they should apply for this visa, which will allow them to study in the country for up to four years.
This visa was a pilot programme introduced in 2015 and allows students to study up to three consecutive programmes under one student visa. The visa lasts for five years.
The government understands that students need to support themselves and their chosen activities while studying. That’s why the country has allowed international students to work during their stay. Before applying for any part-time work, students must first verify if they are allowed to work under the provisions of their student visas.
Full-time international students can have a part-time job while studying, provided that they only do so for 20 hours a week. They must also make sure that their course has a two-year completion date and that their programme qualifies them to secure a Skilled Migrant Category Resident Visa.
Take note that there may be courses in which students will need to have work experience to complete their academic studies. The work hours that fall under this category should be done on top of their 20 hours per week limit.
Students can only work full-time during school breaks and holiday seasons. PhD and master’s students can apply for part-time work or engage in a 40-hour work week.
It is also a requirement for students to secure an Inland Revenue Department (IRD) number from the tax department, Inland Revenue, before starting any work.
While students can work while studying in New Zealand, they are prohibited from starting any business or undertaking a self-employed status while in the country.