First Step Educational Consultancy | Why Study in New Zealand?
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Why Study in New Zealand?

Why Study in New Zealand?

If you’re wondering whether New Zealand is the right place to study for you, we outline some of the main reasons why the international student population in New Zealand has grown rapidly in recent years.

Broad range of study and research opportunities

The eight institutions that make up the New Zealand university system are located in cities across the country’s two main islands, the North and the South.

This distribution gives students the chance to pursue a wide range of opportunities in study, work, recreation and culture. The proximity of all eight universities to New Zealand’s diverse natural environment offers students the chance to research anything from endangered marine mammals to earthquake engineering.

Although all the universities offer core degrees in the arts, business and science, each also has its own distinctive profile. For example, Auckland and Otago have the country’s two medical schools, featuring hospital-based learning, whereas Canterbury and Auckland have an international profile for their engineering courses.

A high quality learning experience

The New Zealand university system is research-based, as it is historically based on the British higher education model. This means there are a number of similarities between the 2 systems, such as the names of qualifications, teaching methods, and the look and feel of the university campuses.

All academic staff are expected to be active researchers as well as teachers. This insistence on research-informed teaching ensures a high quality learning experience.

The universities’ representative body, the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors’ Committee, has legal responsibility for university course approval and moderation procedures.

The New Zealand Universities Academic Audit Unit supports this quality assurance method. These systems certify that university education in New Zealand is of a consistently excellent standard.

A degree is recognized and value all around the world
Moderate entry requirements

Unlike the situation in the UK and many other countries, New Zealand does not have massive competition to enter the first year of a university degree. This is because the New Zealand government has invested heavily in university education over the years. As a result New Zealand has more capacity than it has students. Good students with moderate grades can gain entry to most Bachelor degree programmes without any problems. Therefore, entry requirements are moderate compared with most of the top universities in the UK.

A welcoming destination

International students are welcomed by New Zealand society, both for the cultural diversity they bring and their contribution to the economy.

They are gladly received into New Zealand homes and student social networks. New Zealanders are well travelled, with a great interest in people from other cultures, so visitors and international students soon feel more than welcome.

Campuses are highly international, with students from all corners of the globe studying and socialising together. Students come from Europe, South East Asia, the UK, North Asia, Japan, South America, India, and Australia, amongst many others.

New Zealand also has a well-developed system of pastoral care for international students, backed by a government-monitored Code of Practice. This means you will be well looked after during your time studying there.


The country has a comparatively low cost of living, abundant fresh food at reasonable prices and a wide variety of student accommodation options.

Transport is also moderately priced, affording easy access to rivers, mountains, lakes, forests and beaches and the recreational opportunities they provide.

Beautiful location

New Zealand is renowned for its natural beauty and its adventure activities, and all this is readily accessible from all eight universities in the country.

Cities in New Zealand:

Rank City name Region Population
1 Auckland Auckland region 1,377,200
2 Wellington Wellington region 393,400
3 Christchurch Christchurch region 380,900
4 Hamilton Waikato Region 206,400
5 Napier-Hastings Hawke’s Bay Region 124,800
6 Tauranga Pay of Plenty Region 121,500
7 Dunedin Otago Region 117,700
8 Palmerston North Manawatu-Wanganui Region 82,400
9 Nelson Nelson Region 60,800
10 Rotorua Bay of Plenty Region 56,200
11 New Plymouth Taranaki Region 52,500
12 Whangarei Northland Region 52,200