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Study in New Zealand

The Education System

University education in New Zealand is closer to the British than the American system, therefore you will find bachelor degrees to be three years long and the education more focused rather than "liberal". The academic year extends from late February or early March to November with a long summer vacation from mid-November to mid-February.

In each subject the student is required to attend a given number of lectures, tutorials and/or laboratory periods per week. These are supplemented by personal reading and research. The student is expected to develop independent study skills with a minimum of professional supervision. Grades given in tests, assignments and practical work count toward the final grade for a course.

University Education

New Zealand has eight national universities offering degree programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate levels in academic and professional studies. All universities offer a broad range of subjects for degrees in commerce, science and the arts. Each university has also developed its own specialist subjects, such as technology, engineering, computer studies, medicine, agriculture and environmental studies.

Institutes of Technology and Polytechnics

There are 20 Polytechnics and Institutes of Technology. These provide education and training at tertiary levels ranging from introductory studies through to full degree programmes. Courses emphasise practical experience and application to work situations. Qualifications are designed to allow students to enter and exit at different levels appropriate to their academic level and English language ability. ''Staircasing'' allows you to enrol for a certificate that will give you credit towards a diploma or degree if you continue to study.

Courses in disciplines such as agriculture, art and design, building and construction, business, engineering, marine studies, forestry, science and technology, media studies and tourism and hospitality are developed in association with advisory groups representing industry, commerce, the professions and the community. Contributions from these groups ensure that courses are relevant, up-to-date and innovative, so that graduates have skills that are valued by employers. A degree from one of these institutions has equal status with a university degree. Many ITPs also offer English language training.

Colleges of Education

Specialised training for teachers is available at Colleges of Education, which provide studies in early childhood, primary and secondary education. Additional university studies may be undertaken as part of the courses. All colleges offer advanced courses for trained teachers.

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