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Home > Study in New Zealand > Application Procedure - Post Graduate Programs

Application Procedure for Postgraduate Courses

This section explains the process of applying to New Zealand universities and colleges for postgraduate (Masters’ & Doctorate Degree) courses. 

Application Requirements
  1. University Academic Transcripts
  2. Evidence of Graduation
  3. English Language Tests
  4. Work History
  5. Letters of Recommendation
  6. Statement of Purpose (SOP)

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Send enquiries at least 8 to 12 months before the proposed date of admission. There are three ways to get application forms.
  1. Requesting Application Forms via email : You can request application forms from the university websites. Most universities have a form on their website which can be completed online to request application material.

  2. Downloading from the Net : Many universities have a downloadable and ready to print versions of their application forms on their websites. They can be used for applying.

  3. Collect Forms from University Representatives : Most New Zealand universities have representatives in most major cities across the world. You can contact agents/representatives for application forms as well application guidance.


Most New Zealand universities accept the Indian graduation system of three years for entry into most postgraduate courses. An Indian bachelor degree like B.A., B.Com. or B.Sc. is equivalent to a New Zealand Bachelor (Ordinary) Degree.

However, some courses and universities may require a qualification equivalent to New Zealand Bachelor (Honours) Degree, which requires 16 years of formal education, which would mean another year after graduation or a four year degree course like B.E., B.Tech or other such courses.

For most Universities, a good first degree from a leading university in India or its equivalent is essential.


Application Requirements

Full details of your education including your course subjects and grades are required in the applications. Transcripts or official records of your previous academic qualifications are crucial for your application.

Students applying for admission are required to submit an official transcript from each college or university that they have attended after secondary school with complete details of the subjects, credits involved and other details like correspondence courses, diplomas etc. Most universities ask for the transcript to be sealed in an envelope and signed and attested across the seal by the registrar. This procedure is to be done for each and every college that you have attended. Some universities may ask for more than one transcript but most require only one.
 
If the originals are not in English, copies and a good English translation must be enclosed.  Documents may be certified as true copies by a justice of the peace, or a notary public, or a solicitor, or a commissioner of oaths, or an official of the institution that issued the document.


Most Universities would require copies of your first degree certificate as evidence of your graduation. The certificate should either be in original or as a certified true copy.

Documents may be certified as true copies by a justice of peace, or a notary public, or a solicitor, or a commissioner of oaths, or an official of the institution that issued the document.

English Language Tests

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If the student is not proficient in English, he may be required to take the IELTS (International English Testing System). Every institute has its own minimum scores with respect to this test.

IELTS : For most courses and institutes, International students are required to take IELTS (International English Language Test) which is regularly administered by the British Council. A minimum score of  6.5 is usually required by most institutes.

If the student does not obtain the minimum score required by the institute, he/she will have to go in for a 3 to 9 month bridging course in English at the institute before the start of the chosen program of study.

Universities may accept TOEFL scores instead of IELTS score.


Work History

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A number of professional and vocational courses require relevant work experience. For instance, many MBA’s or Master’s courses in Information Studies require at least a couple of years’ work experience. Most New Zealand universities are pretty strict about this.

A detailed Résumé is an important part of your application. It should include all information of professional work experience along with the details like positions held, achievements and range of work. 

Find Resumes a problem? Check out our Resume section for tips.

Letter of Recommendation

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Letter of reference or recommendation letters can play an important part in admission. It should be from someone who has taught you in some course or someone you have worked under. It should list your positive and negative qualities, strengths and other such information.

The teacher must indicate his/her position, how long he/she has known the applicant and in what capacity. He/she should briefly discuss the need, importance and usefulness of the study the applicant proposes to undertake. You may like to request your author to give concrete examples that may show your qualities and help your case.

Note : Even if not mentioned, it is advisable to include about two letters of recommendation in your applications as they increase your chances of getting admissions.

For more details on letters of recommendation, formats and tips, check out Letters of Recommendation

Statement of Purpose

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The personal essays, and/or statement of purpose, if required for the course you are applying to, also play a very important role in the process of evaluating your application for admission because it gives the faculty assessing your application their most significant impression of you as an individual.

A personal statement should include your reasons for choosing a particular course, the suitability of your education and experience for the chosen course, your personal interests and career goals.

For more details on various essay topics, tips, sample essays, check out our Essays/Statement of Purpose section.
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