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Study in New Zealand For Indian Students

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A less popular yet exotic destination, New Zealand is a delightful country. It is far-flung, with a wealth of well-preserved wildlife, has high living standards, and a thriving economy.

This island country is home to some of the best universities and is the perfect place to hone skills and talents. There are multitudes of opportunities available to study in New Zealand for Indian students or American students, depending upon the course they aspire to study.

All eight universities in New Zealand rank in the top 3% of the QS World University Rankings. This assures an applicant of the high-quality education they will receive as a student in the country.

Moreover, with a tiny population of only 5.1 million, the country is openly accepting applications to the country. Fully equipped with both online and offline courses, there is a diverse range of subjects that students can choose to study.

Why Study in New Zealand?

New Zealand houses eight universities and countless other institutes specializing in technology and culinary arts. These universities rank among some of the best in the entire world. 

Here are a few other reasons a student should consider while planning to pursue higher education in the country.

  • Globally recognized degrees: All the degrees, whether Master's degreesBachelor's degrees, or PhDs, are recognized globally. 
  • Diverse student population: For the last 50 to 60 years, most New Zealand institutions have accepted a substantial fraction of international students. 
  • Affordability: Living expenses in New Zealand are considerably lower than in other prominent locations such as the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, or Australia.
  • Post-study work visa: Students are provided a visa to seek employment after completing their program. 
  • Permanent residency: Graduates from the country have a chance to permanent residency after completing their degree.

Study in New Zealand Requirements

Although each university has differing requirements for application, there are several documents that an applicant must mandatorily present to study in New Zealand.

  • A certified copy of a high school diploma or the previously completed degree
  • Motivation letter
  • Translated course modules and grades, if not in English
  • Documents proving language proficiency. These can be any among the following:
    • AEMG English for Academic Purposes Direct Entry Program (AEAP DEP) Final Exam
    • C1 Advanced (formerly known as Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)
    • C2 proficiency (formerly known as Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE))
    • Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes from the University of Auckland
    • IELTS Academic scores
    • TOEFL scores
    • LanguageCert - International ESOL
    • Michigan English Language Assessment Battery (MELAB)
    • Pearson English Test (PTE) Academic
    • Trinity College London English Language Integration (ISE)
    • University of Auckland English Pathway for Undergraduate Studies (EPUS)
  • Application fee receipt
  • Copy of passport
  • Passport photo
  • The previous academic work sample
  • Resume


Ranked in the leading 500 of the QS world rankings, the universities in New Zealand offer several unique courses and have the best-in-class infrastructure. In addition, these universities are housed on some of the largest campuses in the world.

Here are the eight universities that adorn the list of higher education institutions in New Zealand for international students.

University of Auckland

The University of Auckland was ranked number 1 in New Zealand and 85th worldwide receiving its highest score in the academic reputation index. The country's most prominent institution houses 40,000 students, with 10,000 graduating annually. 

In the QS SDG Ratings, it achieved a "Gold" grade for both Environmental Impact and Equal Opportunities.

University of Otago

The University of Otago, founded in 1869, was New Zealand's first-ever university. Today, it houses 20,721 students from over 100 countries. It holds the 194th rank in the QS World Rankings for 2021/22. 

The university has four divisions and offers over 195 courses for students to choose from.

Auckland University of Technology

The Auckland University of Technology ranks 451st in the QS World Rankings. Moreover, it has been awarded 5 stars by the QS World Rankings in teaching, employability, Research, Internationalization, Facilities, Innovation, Inclusiveness, and Sports as a specialist subject. 

University of Canterbury

The University of Canterbury is a highly regarded institution ranked 258th globally by the QS World Universities rankings for 2022. It also has a 5-Star by the QS rankings for internationally recognized research and teaching.

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Victoria University of Wellington

In the QS World University Rankings, Victoria University of Wellington is routinely ranked within the top 250 of the world's 18,000 institutions. Wellington School of Business and Government is one of just a few business schools to possess the Triple Crown of international accreditations: EQUIS, AACSB (Business), and AMBA. 

The university employs around 2,330 full-time employees, with approximately 1,150 engaged in teaching and research.

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Massey University

Massey is ranked 248th by the QS World Rankings and provides globally recognized qualifications across various programs. 

The university's three campuses in Auckland, Palmerston North, and Wellington have modern infrastructure adding to the institution's appeal.

University of Waikato

The University of Waikato was placed 101-200 overall by Times Higher Education in the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals. According to the QS World Rankings 373rd best university in the world. 

The School of Computing and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Waikato is the first New Zealand member of the international network of iSchools — a collaboration of the world's best information institutions.

Lincoln University

Ranking at 372nd worldwide, Lincoln University, situated in Canterbury in New Zealand, is one of the most revered institutions in the country. The institution is a tight-knit community of 3000 students. 

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Education System

The New Zealand Qualifications Framework or the NZQF is a standard for recognizing the quantity and quality of qualifications issued by education providers in New Zealand.

All credentials registered on the NZQF come with a quality assurance that is accepted worldwide. It is also significant for post-study work permits for overseas students.

The NZQF study level denotes the advancement of a qualification. It is divided into ten levels:

  • Levels 1-4 encompass the National Certificate of Educational Achievement OR NCEA, the primary credential awarded in secondary schools, and basic vocational training.
  • Levels 5 and 6 comprise vocational certifications and diplomas at the sub-degree level.
  • Undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate credentials are covered between levels 7-10.

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Academic Cycle

The academic calendar differs from university to university in New Zealand. However, the academic year often begins in late February or early March (near the end of the summer) and ends in November (spring). 

The majority of New Zealand universities use a semester system. However, a selected few also use a trimester or quarterly system.

Application Process

The application process is relatively similar to all of the other countries of the world. Here is the step-by-step application process for applying to a Kiwi university. 

  1. Choose your university

The first thing that a student needs to do is look for the perfect university. There are 8 universities across New Zealand, all offering unique courses that can appeal to different people. 

  1. Research the requirements

The requirements differ from university to university. It is wise to list these requirements, including mandatory exams and qualifications such as proof of language proficiency.

  1. Fill out the Application form.

Once students know that they meet the required criteria, they can fill out the online applications. The universities may also request scanned documents; therefore, it is advisable to keep them ready for application. Finally, an applicant needs to pay the application fee.

  1. Keep an eye out for the acceptance or rejection letter

The university office will usually send an email stating the acceptance or rejection of an applicant. One needs to be wary of this email. 

  1. Pay the fees

Upon acceptance, the applicant must pay the stipulated fee for international students to confirm their place at the university.

  1. Apply for the visa

On completing all of the above, one can apply for a visa online or at their nearest consulate. Once the application has been screened, the candidate will be asked for an interview where they will present a list of documents confirming their eligibility. 

They will be granted a visa to New Zealand upon clearing this stage. If the visa is rejected, they can apply once again.

Student Visa for Indian Students

There are three ideal types of visas that international students can choose from.

  • Fee-Paying Student Visa: If a person wishes to study full-time in New Zealand for more than three months, they will require a Fee-Paying Student Visa.
  • Pathway student visa: The pathway student visa permits students to study up to three consecutive academic programs for a total of five years
  • Visitor Visa: A visitor visa authorizes a student to pursue one or more courses that can last for three months and are excellent for shorter courses. The study plan detailing all programs or courses must be pre-approved for this visa.


Scholarships to study in New Zealand can cover tuition fees and living expenses. They are provided by the university, the NZ government, or the Indian Government. 

Some of the scholarships for Indian students in New Zealand are as follows:

  • ADB Scholarships at the University of Auckland
  • Lincoln University International Taught Master Merit Scholarships
  • New Zealand Commonwealth Scholarships
  • New Zealand Excellence Awards (NZEA)
  • NZ-GRADS New Zealand Global Research Alliance Doctoral Scholarship
  • Palmerston North City Mayor's Goodwill Ambassador Scholarship
  • Tongarewa Scholarship at Victoria University of Wellington

Living and Tuition Costs as Per University

A Bachelor's degree in New Zealand will cost between NZD 20,000 (INR 11 lakhs) and NZD 40,000 (INR 21 Lakhs) in tuition fees. One may earn many Bachelor's degrees in three years or less. Costs for Master's degrees range from NZD 20,000 (INR 11 lakhs) and NZD 45,000 (INR 24 lakhs), with higher fees for subjects like medicine and veterinary sciences.

International Doctoral students pay the same as New Zealand students, from around NZD 6,500 (INR 3 lakhs) to NZD 7,500 (INR 4 lakhs) per year for most subjects.

The cost of living will differ depending on one's lifestyle and residence. Reduced housing and transportation expenses make a living in a small town less expensive than in a city.

To illustrate, Victoria University of Wellington and the University of Auckland estimate annual living expenses to be between NZD 20,000 (INR 11 lakhs) and NZD 27,000 (INR 15 lakhs), while the University of Otago, located in Dunedin, estimates NZD 18,000 (INR 10 lakhs) to NZD 21,000 (INR 11 lakhs).

Part-time Work Opportunities

Most students with student visas can work part-time while studying. Some students can work full-time during semester breaks or holidays. Masters by Research and Doctoral students are not restricted within the number of hours they can work. 

Here are a few employment options that could work within a student's schedule:

  • Bartender
  • Fruit picker (seasonal job)
  • Restaurant cook
  • A salesperson in a retail shop (a clothing store, equipment store, etc.)
  • Waitress or waiter

Post-Study Opportunities

An individual can look for a wide range of employment opportunities after study in New Zealand. They can apply to obtain a post-study work visa. This allows them to work in New Zealand for up to three years. 

New Zealand is a member of the Lisbon and Tokyo Recognition Conventions, which means NZ certificates, diplomas, and degrees are recognized in more than 50 countries, including the US, UK, France, Italy, Germany, Japan, China, and Australia.

NZ also has agreements with Malaysia, Hong Kong, the EU, and the UAE, to mention a few.

Study in New Zealand with UpGrad

Students who hope to study at prominent New Zealand universities can contact with upGrad Abroad counselors. Students can discover more about the courses and schools they wish to enroll in by scheduling a free consultation. 

upGrad Abroad will serve as the complete study in New Zealand consultants providing information ranging from university requirements to the visa application.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How to get permanent residency in New Zealand after study?

An individual can apply for a post-study work visa for three years. After that, they can apply for a skilled migrant worker visa.

What are the requirements to study in New Zealand for Indian students?

Indian students need to show proof of English-language proficiency and relevant academic documents, such as proof of the previous qualification, to acquire admission into a New Zealand University. However, requirements may differ between institutions.

Why do you want to study in New Zealand?

New Zealand houses great universities, unique flora and fauna, offers a high standard of living, and is one of the most thriving economies. Any student who wishes to have a bright future can choose New Zealand for their higher education abroad.

How to study in New Zealand?

Students need to choose a preferred university and degree. Note the application deadline and complete the form by paying the application fee. On being accepted, students will need to apply for a student visa to study in the country.

How to receive scholarships to study in New Zealand?

You can refer to the university websites or the Study with New Zealand website to learn about the scholarships offered and their eligibility criteria.

How much does it cost to study in New Zealand?

The cost of study can differ based on the degree and the university selected by a student. However, it is estimated to range between NZD 20,000 (INR 10 lakhs) and NZD 45,000 (INR 24 lakhs) for international students in Graduate and Postgraduate degrees.