Types of Higher Education Institutions in New Zealand

New Zealand is considered as one of the most prominent education destinations for international students. If you are planning to move to a country where practical approach is more emphasised than theoretical studies then New Zealand can be your best option. There are different type of institutions in New Zealand offering higher education including universities, polytechnics, colleges, wananga and private tertiary providers. 


In total, there are 8 universities prominent in New Zealand offering best in class education to local and international students. Every university has a dedicated international student unit to facilitate foreign students to study in New Zealand.

Degree programmes offered by New Zealand universities are recognised globally and appear in international university rankings including Times Higher Education Top 500 and Shanghai Jiao Tong Top 500. Admission in universities is considered on the basis of credit of student in National Certificate of Educational Achievement in high school. Hence, most of the students are 18 years of age when enrolling in UG degree. 


In all, there are 24 polytechnics in New Zealand ranging from small institutions in rural areas to major institutions in urban areas. These institutes of technology offer higher education in form of vocational and professional courses. These polytechnics adopt practical approach rather than theoretical means. This is due to the fact that industry experience plays a vital role and focused on developing student’s personality. Hence, work experience is part of courses. Studying at polytechnics is flexible than universities. However, number of study hours is less and duration of courses is more. Students can opt for open education and earn pre-certificates and foundation courses. 


Colleges of Education are meant for teachers and focused on training them. They can get primary, secondary, higher and even degree education here. There are two colleges of Education in New Zealand Christchurch and Dunedin. 


Wananga are basically opened for tribal people i.e. Kiwi and for people who wish to study in Maori environment. There are total 3 Wanangas in New Zealand. These are state funded institutions where research is carried by Maori students. In Wanangas, special emphasize is given on using Maori language and protocol in all areas of studies.

Private Tertiary Providers

There are total of 9 private tertiary providers in New Zealand offering higher education in different areas such as tourism, English, international studies, bible studies etc. These institutes have large number of international students and small class sizes. Private tertiary providers offer both part time and full time study options to students who are also working. 

These are various types of institutions in New Zealand. There are dedicated cells for foreign students that provide them with necessary guidance and assistance to study in New Zealand.
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