Study in Wellington with Go to New Zealand
Find out about your study options in Wellington: Universities, Colleges, Polytechnics English Schools, High Schools
Study in Wellington New Zealand
Wellington is not only New Zealand’s national capital, but it is also the arts and culture capital of New Zealand. Being located between a beautiful harbour and rolling green hills, it offers an unforgettable city experience in a natural setting.
- Wellington is only two kilometres wide so it can be explored easily on foot.
- Wellington is the world's most southern capital and the only capital in the "Roaring Forties" latitudes.
- Nearly all Wellington residents are within 3 km of the sea.
- Wellington has the greatest proportion of open space land per capita at 17.3 ha for every 1000 people.
- Wellington City 163,824
- Wellington Region 423,765
The Wellington region includes Kapiti, Porirua, Hutt Valley and Wairarapa
City 28,990 hectares or 290 sq kms.
(Source: National Institute of Water & Atmospheric Research)
More than 2035 hours per year.
Sunniest main centre in 1995, 1997, 2000 and 2002
- Mean daily maximum in summer (January) 20.3 C 69F
- Mean daily minimum in summer 13.4 C 56F
- Mean daily maximum in winter (July) 11.3 C 52F
- Mean daily minimum in winter 6.2C 43F
- Annual rainfall mean 1249mm
Academic Year in Wellington
The New Zealand academic year matches a calendar year. It is always a good idea to start application and enrolment processes as early as possible, to leave time for visa and other arrangements. The following is a rough guide of timetables in a variety of New Zealand educational institutes.
The school year begins in February and ends mid-December. Classes are held Monday to Friday, from about 8.45am till 3.15pm (some schools differ slightly). Extra-curricular activities and sporting events take place outside of school hours during the week and on Sundays.
Secondary schools in New Zealand have four 10 week terms. School breaks for a two week holiday in April, July and September. Students enjoy a longer break at the end of the year.
During the last three years of schooling, some qualifications are based on an assessment undertaken throughout the year. If you are planning to transfer during the senior years of school, you may not be allowed to enrol late.
The academic year begins in late February or early March and ends in October. The year is generally split into two semesters of about 12 weeks, with a short, two-week break in the middle of the year and a longer, six-week break at the end of the year. This is not a definitive guide for all universities – one notable exception is Victoria University of Wellington, which has trimesters. Students generally spend their break studying or working full time.
The majority of courses are a full year, which requires you to be enrolled from February till October. In some circumstances, you may enrol in the middle of the year. Classes are held Monday till Friday. Sometimes, examinations take place on a Saturday.
Some universities offer summer school. The summer school takes place during the end of year break. By undertaking extra study during your holiday, you reduce the amount of time it takes to finish your degree.
Institutes of Technology and Private Training Establishments
Polytechnics have two semesters, February till June, and July till November, with holidays similar to secondary schools. In some circumstances, you may be able to enrol in the middle of the year.
Private training establishments run on a similar timetable.
Language schools run all year long. Courses can be a short as a week or as long as an academic year. Classes run Monday to Friday. They sometimes offer related excursions on weekends.
Ten Reasons to Study in Wellington, New Zealand
New Zealand’s capital city is a great place to live and an even greater place to study. Here are ten good reasons why you should consider Wellington to study abroad.
- You’ll gain a quality New Zealand education
New Zealand universities are constantly ranked amongst the highest in the world, while the cost of tuition is comparatively low. Class sizes are smaller and students work in a research-based environment with a heavy emphasis on practical work and work experience. Accredited degrees are based on the British educational system, which means qualifications earned in New Zealand transfer to most universities in English speaking nations. Victoria University of Wellington is the nation’s oldest and one of its most prestigious universities.
- Enjoy an affordable lifestyle.
According to a 2009 Mercer study, Wellington has the twelfth best quality of life, compared to 215 major cities around the world. The survey considered the political, natural and socio-economical environments of the cities, as well as public services, health care, recreation and educational and employment opportunities.
A Cost of Living survey by the same organisation ranked Wellington very low on their most expensive cities to live list (139 out of 143.) Students who seek an affordable lifestyle in a first class city should look no further than Wellington.
- The Perks of Living in a Capital City.
Wellington is the capital city of New Zealand, which means all the nations most important buildings and landmarks are located here. The best libraries and archives in the country are just a short walk from your front door. This is especially relevant if you are considering studying law or politics – the Law Faculty at Victoria University of Wellington is located within the Government Buildings.
- Sophistication and Style
Wellington, with its sparkling harbour and beautiful bushland surroundings, is a naturally beautiful town. The city has managed to find a balance between restoring and protecting relics of the past and introducing modern and innovative design. Quaint, historic buildings exist next to towering glass skyscrapers in many parts of Wellington. An increasingly cosmopolitan destination, Wellington has a multi-cultural population that is evident in the various restaurants, cafes, galleries and other attractions throughout the city. And lovers of coffee should be pleased to know that Wellington has more cafes than any other city in the world.
- Adventure Galore
Wellington offers a plethora of action-packed outdoor activities. On sunny days, you can hire a kayak and paddle across the harbour. If you enjoy exploring, there are a range of bike trails for inexperienced and experienced riders (including Makara Peak, which is famous amongst mountain biking enthusiasts.) Why not hire a four-wheel drive and head down Wellington’s south coast, where native fur seals are abundant? And if you’ve got some spare time, you can try snorkelling, quad biking, indoor rock climbing, surfing, fishing...
- Gateway to the South.
The Interislander takes passenger between Wellington and Picton in the South Island. The ferry terminal is located at Aotea Quay, Pipitea (close to the CBD).
- Lord of the Rings Nostalgia.
Wellington was the main filming and production location for the New Zealand phenomenon that was Lord of the Rings. While none of the sets remains, the city still houses many reminders of the experience. Many scenes were filmed against Mount Victoria, which is a beautiful spot for a day trip, and director Peter Jackson has a house in the seaside suburb of Seatoun. There’s a myth that everyone in New Zealand was either involved with Lord of the Rings or knew someone who was so if you’re a true fan, have a chat with the locals for all the "behind the scenes" goss.
- Confessions of a Shopaholic
Shopaholics will fall in love with Westfield Queensgate, one of the largest shopping centres in New Zealand. Queensgate houses two department stores, several supermarkets, a cinema and over 170 specialty stores.
Wellington has eight other major shopping centres.
- Wellington Cable Car.
The Wellington Cable Car is one of Wellington’s most iconic landmarks and is one of the few working inclined cable railways left in the world. It is a quaint throwback to earlier times and offers a gorgeous view of the city. The Cable Car runs between Lambton Quay, Wellington’s main shopping region, and the hilly suburb of Kelburn. Students who attend the Kelburn campus of Victoria University of Wellington can enjoy this trip on a daily basis. The Skyline Restaurant at the Kelburn terminal was built in 1984 and won a design award from the Institute of Architects in 1986.
- Wellington Food and Wine Festival.
Calling all foodies... twenty-five of New Zealand’s best wineries, Monteith Beer and Murhpy’s Irish Stout, as well as a sampling of Wellington’s best cuisine, converge upon the city every St Patrick’s Day. The day-long festival also offers free tutorials on food and wine and loads of live entertainment. This is a must for lovers of good food and wine and only takes place in Wellington.
For more information, you can also visit the official study wellington government website here
Insurance for your studies in Wellington
All tertiary institutes in New Zealand insist that international students have appropriate travel and medical insurance. Most universities offer can arrange insurance for you through their chosen provider, or you can choose your own. It is best to organise insurance before you leave.
Students from all countries except Australia and the UK need medical insurance in order to be treated by a New Zealand health practitioner. Your insurance will typically cover the cost of hospital fees, doctors visits, ambulance services and specialist treatment. Tertiary students can use their institutes' health care centre for a small fee.
Vehicle drivers in New Zealand usually take out third-party insurance, which covers the cost of any damages caused by you, and also any relevant medical bills.
The New Zealand Accident Corporation Compensation (ACC) is a no-fault compensation scheme offered to anyone, including tourists, who is injured in an accident. You will receive subsidised medical and dental care in all situations, regardless of fault and the circumstances of the accident. Accepting these services waives your right to take any legal action.
It is definitely a good idea to investigate relevant insurances before you arrive in New Zealand. Without insurance, something as innocuous as a tetanus needle can be a costly experience.