Frequently asked questions
- Do you offer scholarships for citizens of my country?
- Where can I study?
- What subjects and qualifications can I study?
- What are priority sectors?
- What types of scholarship are available?
- Where can I get a scholarship application form?
- Do I need an offer of place at an institution before I apply?
- What does the scholarship cover?
- Can I bring my family with me to New Zealand?
- What is the deadline for applications?
- Where do I send my application form? Can I apply online?
- I don’t have an IELTS or TOEFL score. Can I still apply for a scholarship?
- Do I have to return to my home country at the end of my study?
- I want to begin study this year/I want to begin study late next year. When do I need to apply?
- I don’t meet the criteria to apply. Are there other scholarships I can apply for?
- Who can I contact for more information?
The New Zealand Aid Programme offers scholarships to citizens of a number of developing countries for full-time tertiary level study in New Zealand. A full list of eligible countries can be found here.
As a small country, we focus on providing educational opportunities to our neighbours in the Pacific, as well as to selected developing countries in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Caribbean and other developing regions.
For Tertiary education Scholarships, you can study at one of ten eligible New Zealand universities and institutes of technology. A full list of eligible institutions is available here.
For selected Pacific countries only, Tertiary Scholarships are available for study in the Pacific region; otherwise, study in another country is not supported.
It is important to find a tertiary institution that will meet your personal as well as academic needs. Each institution specialises in different subjects. There are a number of places you can find additional information:
- Information on some relevant qualification options can be found on each of the country pages on our website.
- The websites of New Zealand and Pacific universities have a variety of information on what you can study, and what it’s like to study there.
- For more information on studying in New Zealand visit Study in New Zealand (external link)
- For information on cost of living in New Zealand visit New Zealand Now (external link)
- For Short Term Training Scholarships, study at diploma and certificate level are available at a range of New Zealand institutions (note, these Scholarships are only available in selected Pacific countries and Timor Leste). For more information about where you can do a Short Term Training Scholarship click here.
The types of qualifications available and priority subjects vary for each country and are listed on the information page for your country or region. For some countries, only postgraduate scholarships are available, and for other countries both undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships are available.
Scholarships are offered in priority sectors that are most relevant to the development needs of your country. This is so you can contribute to making a real and positive difference to your country on your return home at the end of your scholarship.
Preference will be given to candidates intending to study within the priority sectors for their country. Applications outside these areas may be considered where they demonstrate a clear link between your intended area of study and the sustainable economic development of your home country.
Priority sectors are areas in your country where a skill shortage has been identified by your government, which are a priority for investment in order to improve social and economic development of your country, and/or where New Zealand has particular expertise.
Study directly related to these priority sectors is preferred so that your country gets the most out of the investment made in training someone through a New Zealand Scholarship.
The main types of scholarships available for full-time tertiary level study in New Zealand are:
- New Zealand Pacific Scholarships
- New Zealand Development Scholarships
- New Zealand ASEAN Scholarships
- Commonwealth Scholarships.
Two other scholarship types are available:
- Scholarships for full-time tertiary level study in the Pacific (under the New Zealand Regional Development Scholarships) are available to citizens of selected countries in the Pacific.
- Scholarships for short-term (up to one year) professional development or vocational training in New Zealand (under the Short Term Training Scholarships) are currently available to citizens of selected countries in the Pacific and ASEAN.
We encourage online applications. Most eligible countries are able to apply online at this website from February 2017.
While we prefer you to apply online, we understand not all locations have access to the internet. Paper applications are available for certain countries.
You will need to contact the New Zealand High Commission or Embassy in your country to obtain a paper application form. Contact information for each New Zealand High Commission or Embassy can be found here.
For New Zealand Scholarships you do not require an offer of place at your selected institution before you apply. If you are shortlisted for a scholarship we will seek a place at the institution you have requested in your application form on your behalf. However for PhD applicants and Masters by Thesis applicants, when you reach the shortlisting stage, you will need to have a Letter of Support from your proposed supervisor.
The entitlements of the Scholarship include full tuition fees, a living allowance (paid fortnightly), an establishment allowance, medical and travel insurance, travel between your home country and New Zealand at the start and end of your scholarship, home leave or reunion travel for some eligible scholars, pastoral and academic support at your institution, and assistance with research and thesis costs for most postgraduate research students.
- A top quality education at one of New Zealand’s world-class tertiary institutes or a major Pacific education institution.
- Fully funded tuition
- Financial support including a fortnightly living allowance, an establishment allowance, medical and travel insurance, travel to and from your home country at the start and end of your scholarship, home leave or reunion travel for some students, and assistance with research and thesis costs for most postgraduate research students.
- Personal and academic support: We have international student advisors to help and support you with any issues with your scholarship, study or well-being. When studying in New Zealand you will also have the assurance of the Code of Practice for the Pastoral Care of International Students which sets minimum standards to ensure international students in New Zealand are well informed, safe and properly cared for by their education provider.
- Help getting prepared: To help you get prepared for studying in New Zealand, you’ll have a pre departure briefing in your home country, and you’ll get support when you arrive in New Zealand. We also offer a programme in New Zealand to help you prepare for academic studies here.
The Scholarship does not provide any funding for you to bring your family with you to New Zealand or to support them while they are here.
The scholarship funding is not sufficient to cover the costs of supporting a family in New Zealand. You cannot bring any family members with you unless you have access to other funds. More information is available here.
If you decide to bring your family with you to New Zealand, Immigration New Zealand will require evidence of funds when your dependants apply for visas. For more information, visit Immigration New Zealand (external link).
The deadline for application and the application process varies between countries/regions. Please check Application dates and method to confirm the deadline for your country/region. For most countries applications will close in March 2017.
You are able to apply online through this website from February 2017.
If you do not have internet access and can only apply using a paper application, and you are from a country which allows paper applications, you must submit this to your nearest New Zealand High Commission or Embassy to arrive no later than 15 March 2017.
Contact information for each New Zealand High Commission or Embassy can be found here. If you do not have a New Zealand High Commission or Embassy in your country, send your application to the following address:
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade
195 Lambton Quay
- All applications and supporting documents must be sent in hard copy to the address listed on the information page for your country
- Applications sent by email will not be accepted
- Ineligible applications will not be accepted
- Incomplete applications will not be accepted.
Yes, you can still apply for a scholarship, however you will not be successful unless your English language ability is good enough to be able to study at an English speaking institution.
If you are shortlisted for a scholarship, you will be asked at that stage to sit the appropriate English language test. However, if you already have IELTS or TOEFL test scores which are no more than two years old you can enter them on your application. You will not be disadvantaged if you have not sat the test when you apply.
IELTS is the International English Language Testing System. TOEFL is the Test of English as a Foreign Language. These are the two tests we use for assessing scholarship applicants.
As a general rule, for those wishing to complete a postgraduate qualification an overall IELTS score of 6.5 and no band less than 6.0 is the minimum required. For those wishing to complete an undergraduate qualification an overall IELTS score of 6.0 and no band less than 5.5 is the minimum required. For those wishing to complete short term vocational training an IELTS score of 5.5 is the likely minimum. Similarly, a TOEFL score of 80 on the internet-based test is required for undergraduate study and 90 for post graduate study.
Scholarships are for people who want to make a difference at home. All New Zealand Scholarships recipients and their families must return to their home country for at least two years at the conclusion of their study.
The purpose of the scholarship is to provide academic training so that you can gain new skills and knowledge to assist in the social and economic development of your country on your return home at the end of the scholarship.
There is only one selection round per year for all tertiary scholarships, and applicants apply in one year for study beginning the following year. For example, all applications received in the 2017 selection round will be considered for study beginning in 2018.
Depending on the programme, you may commence study in either Semester 1 (usually February/March) or Semester 2 (June/July). The main academic year in New Zealand starts in February/March. The application deadline is the same for all applications, regardless of intended start date of study.
There are a range of other scholarships available to international scholars for study in New Zealand.
Visit Study in New Zealand (external link) for more information. You may also wish to check the Scholarships Office of the education institution at which you wish to study.
Read the information on the website carefully, including the information page for your country and the scholarships home page. If there is a specific question not answered by our website, you can email us via our Enquiry Form (external link)