Admission procedure To Study In New Zealand

Admission Intakes in New Zealand

Chosen New Zealand as your study abroad destination and are confused about how to begin? On this page, you can find out the important information you need to start your application to one of the top universities in New Zealand.

The first steps to applying for higher education in any foreign country are to know about the various intakes available, the universities and programmes on offer along with other amenities such as scholarship opportunities.

In New Zealand, like many other countries, there are two major intakes wherein international students can choose to apply for the programme of their choice. Many universities in New Zealand offer a number of programmes. For a few of the programmes, universities hold more than 2 intake sessions, while for a few, there are specific intake sessions. However, let us start with the two major intakes, which take place in February and July, each year.

Also Read: Timeline for February 2021 Intake to Study in New Zealand

When Should I Start Applying?

Depending on the intake you are targeting, applicants are advised to start preparing to apply, as early as possible, usually, a year prior to the deadlines mentioned. While starting a year ahead may seem an overkill, it will allow you to be thorough with your application and choice of education.

Therefore, if you wish to apply for the January Intake in New Zealand, then begin your preparation for the application and admission process as early as March or April of the previous year.

On the other hand, if you wish to apply for the July Intake in New Zealand, then start your preparation for the intake as early as July or August of the previous year. The need to start early can help you properly prepare for the standardised tests such as IELTS, TOEFL or GRE and GMAT, prepare and compile all the necessary documents.


Application Starts

Applications Ends

Offer of Admission


February to March of Previous Year

December to January

December - February


July - August of the Previous Year

April - June

May to July

Also Read: Timeline for July 2021 Intake to Study in New Zealand

Standardised Tests Accepted in New Zealand

An important aspect of applying for higher education in New Zealand is applying to and attempting the different standardised tests, such the English Proficiency tests like IELTS or TOEFL or other tests such as GMAT, GRE, etc. Here are some of the standardised tests that are accepted in New Zealand for higher education.

English Proficiency Tests

IELTS - International English Language Testing System: Students can attempt either IELTS General or Academic. However, they must obtain a score of 6.5 or higher.

TOEFL iBT - Test of English as a Foreign Language Internet-Based Test: Among the options available, TOEFL is a widely accepted and popular choice among students. Students must secure a score of 79 or higher in the test.

PTE Academic - Pearson Test of English Academic: Another popular option chosen by international students from across the globe is the Pearson Test of English Academic. Those attempting this test must have secured a score of 58 or higher.

Standardised Tests

GRE - Graduate Record Examination: Most international students who have completed their bachelors choose to apply for one of the standardised tests, among which GRE is a popular option.

GMAT - Graduate Management Aptitude Test: Applicable to management aspirants aspiring for PG education, if you plan to pursue an MBA or any other PG management programme, chances are that you will be required to provide a GMAT score.

Note: Each university will specify the admission criteria for each programme and degree. Therefore, while selecting the university, check out the admission criteria for each programme and then apply for the standardised test required by the university.

Pre-Application Process

One of the key elements to successfully pursuing higher education in any country is the preparation phase. In another word, researching and studying about the different facilities and amenities offered by a university in a country, in this case, New Zealand, is highly important.

Here are the pre-application processes that you need to complete in order to choose and apply to the best college, as per your requirement.

1) Research Universities and Courses:

Go through our list of universities and institutions along with the programmes that are available at different levels, i.e. Bachelors, Masters and PhD levels. You can also do your own research by visiting the official website of the university of your choice and shortlist the most attractive ones.

2) Shortlist Universities and Courses:

An important note that you should remember is to shortlist more than one university, as not all universities offer the same programmes, facilities and amenities. This can also be applicable when choosing the course of study you wish to pursue. For instance, you can choose MBA in Marketing as the first option and keep a second option such as MBA in Operations.

3) Read through the Admission Requirements:

Each university will define the admission requirements for international students. If you wish to apply to a college, it is important to go through the admission requirements for international students of that particular university.

Some universities may also define country-specific requirements, therefore, check those admission requirements as well, if it has been defined by the university. Another thing to look out for is the financial aids and scholarship opportunities offered by the university to International Students. Therefore, read about all the scholarship opportunities offered by the university of your choice and check out eligibility criteria and application requirements.

Also Read: Top Courses in New Zealand for International Students

How to Apply to a University in New Zealand?

After choosing universities as per your requirements, you will then be required to complete the application process, defined by the university itself. Here are some of the steps that you may be required to complete in order to enrol in the college or university of your choice.

1) Registration:

All universities in New Zealand require applicants to first register themselves with the universities. The registration process will allow you to apply for admission and check out the admission requirements applicable specifically for you.

Once registered, you will be required to log in using the credentials you used to register.

2) Log-In:

Once you have registered to the university of your choice, you will be able to send in your application forms. Here, you will be required to enter in the correct and complete information regarding your identity and past academic records along with uploading the necessary documents.

You may also be required to attach your Statement of Purposes and Letter of Recommendations along with your academic records and other documents.

At this stage, you will also be required to pay the application fees charged by the university for accepting and processing your application. This fee is usually non-refundable, even if your application is rejected.

Also Read: Top Countries Open to International Students' Admission Amid COVID-19

List of Documents Needed to Apply to a University in New Zealand

Each university will define the list of documents an applicant will need to submit in order to apply. However, there are a few general documents required by all universities in New Zealand. Check out the following list of documents needed to apply to a University in New Zealand.

  • Your ID Proof such as Passport, Two Passport-size Photographs, etc.

  • Documentation proving your academic qualifications.

  • Documentation proving financial stability for the duration of the programme

  • Test scores of different standardised tests such as IELTS, TOEFL, GRE or GMAT, as specified by the university.

  • Statement of Purpose or Intent

  • Letters of Recommendation

Note: Each university in New Zealand will define their requirements, therefore, prior to applying to a university go through the admission requirements and check out the list of documents needed to successfully complete the application process.

Post-Application Process

Once the application forms have been submitted to the university, the university will scrutinize the application forms and all the documents attached with it and call each applicant for further admission processes. Among these admission processes include:

1) Assessment of the Application:

Once the application form has been received by the university, the form along with the documents provided with it will be scrutinised. All the information will be cross-checked and checked for mistakes.

2) Admission Offer:

After scrutinising the application form, the university will decide to send in an offer letter or a rejection letter based on the assessment of the application form. If you receive an offer letter, you will be required to complete the next steps in the admission process, which may include a Video or Personal Interview.

After participating in further selection processes such as Interviews, the candidates will then receive a final offer letter announcing their acceptance to the programme at the university.

Note: The offer letter will also contain information regarding any scholarship opportunities that you, as an international student, are eligible for. Some universities offer international student scholarship opportunities at the time of admission, therefore, look out for such information as well.

3) Reply to the Offer Letter:

After receiving your admission offer letter, you will be given a deadline to accept or reject the offer made by the university. Usually, as acceptance, candidates are required to pay a non-refundable deposit as acceptance of admission to a University in New Zealand. 

4) Apply for Student Visa:

If you wish to pursue higher education in New Zealand, you will be required to apply for a New Zealand Student Visa. Check out our page on New Zealand Student Visa and learn about all the necessities needed to apply and receive the visa.

5) Apply for Student Loans:

Studying in New Zealand is not cheap, therefore, you may be required to apply for a Student Loans. Look out for student loans offered by banks in India and apply for the same.

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