grad school abroad - New Zealand
An increasing number of students are considering New Zealand for grad school. Perhaps some are doing so for the absolute beauty of the country and lifestyle the people enjoy, but many are doing so because NZ is becoming more and more recognised around the world as a quality educational destination. Nearly 120,000 international students now study in new Zealand.
Another important factor is the costs associated with studying in New Zealand. The cost of undertaking university study in New Zealand is certainly less than it is in the USA and even less compared to fees just across the Tasman in Australia. They range from around approximately USD12,000 to USD22,000 per annum.
Two main islands
The country is made of of two main islands (called North and South Island) and mostly known these days because of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, is a small nation of four million people. The Maori people are the indigenous people of New Zealand, but people of European descent make up the largest proportion of the population. However there are many peoples from other nations migrating to New Zealand and it is a multicultural mix these days. The temperature hovers around the 40 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit and there are four distinct seasons. New Zealand absolutely beautiful with its rivers and lakes, mountains, green rolling hills, beaches, trees,and active volcanos.
A different education system
The education system is close to that of its origins the British education system. Higher Education takes the form of a 3 year Bachelor degree and Masters degrees (by course work) that are 1 or two years. PhD’s take around 3-3.5 years. There are only 8 universities in New Zealand and they are of very high standard. They are regularly evaluated and audited by the Academic Audit Unit of the New Zealand Vice-Chancellors Committee.
The eight universities are geographically spread across New Zealand’s two main islands with five in the North Island and three in the South Island. These eight universities cover a wide range of subjects and some are known for certain specializations than others. So it pays to do your home work especially if you are interested in undertaking a research based graduate program.
You can undertake the Masters by coursework degrees, Masters by research as well as PhD programs in many different research areas. Most universities also offer two semester long graduate diploma degrees which are suitable for those students seeking either a change in career or academic direction. These programs can also be used as alternative pathways or as a stepping stone for a Masters degree program if you do not have the necessary background for a specific program of study.
A number of scholarships are offered to graduate (international students) students both by the new Zealand government as well as the individual universities. Last year (2007), the New Zealand International Doctoral Research Scholarships (NZIDRS) program offered 100 scholarships that covered tuition fees as well as living expenses for three years. Further details about these scholarships and the application deadlines can be found at the following URL:
You will find further information about New Zealand, its education system, the 8 universities via
or via our grad schools abroad search engine.
* photos courtesy of Tourism New Zealand