How to study in New Zealand without IELTS



Updated On 23 November 2022


Read Time 5 minutes


Most well-known study abroad locations demand that students pass language competence exams. One such test well-liked by international institutions is the IELTS exam (also known as the International English Language Testing System). It evaluates a student's reading, writing, and English proficiency.
Nevertheless, some universities do not require students to give the IELTS exam. This implies that you can still pursue an international education even if you have never taken the IELTS test.

New Zealand is joining the league of most sought-after countries for studies abroad. Along with destinations like the US, UK, Europe, and Canada, New Zealand has several institutions you can apply to without an IELTS exam scorecard. However, to get into New Zealand universities without IELTS, the student would be subjected to certain conditions fulfilling the expected criteria. Here’s a complete guide to study in New Zealand for Indian students.

Why Study in New Zealand?

Many people ask if it is worth it to study in New Zealand for Indian students. New Zealand is a beautiful country with picturesque landscapes. It is emerging as one of the most preferred study-abroad destinations for Indian students. New Zealand has a lot to offer, with internationally accredited qualifications, ample research opportunities, world-class education, and quality of life. Students studying here are welcomed in a friendly society with an excellent support system for international students. Below are some reasons to consider pursuing your higher education in New Zealand.

Globally Recognised Qualification

Eight universities in New Zealand consistently rank high in the QS World Rankings and Times Higher Education Rankings. A degree from any of these universities is recognised globally with excellent prospects.

Excellent Scope for PhD Scholars

There are many research opportunities for PhD scholars with additional privileges. PhD scholars are eligible to pay the exact tuition fees as the locals. Also, PhD scholars can work full-time during education courses, unlike other degree students.

Excellent Education

New Zealand focuses on research-based training influenced by the UK education system. This also means that students will learn by dealing with situations in a systematic and organised manner. Students are taught to work independently and as a team at various levels. Pursuing your higher education from New Zealand universities will help you to think critically, question and then benefit from student-teacher interaction.

Innovation and Research,

New Zealand universities provide excellent opportunities in the research sector for students. The country has well-functioning laboratories, access to the latest technology, and highly experienced faculties.

Is IELTS Mandatory in New Zealand?

Submitting an IELTS exam scorecard to study in New Zealand is not mandatory. Although there are other English proficiency exams accepted besides IELTS for admission to New Zealand universities. The table below shows some other English language proficiency exams to study in New Zealand universities without IELTS, along with the minimum score requirement.

Other ELP Tests To Study In New Zealand Universities Without IELTS

Test Name

Minimum Scores Required

PTE Academic



iBT: 90 | paper-based: 68



English New Zealand Accredited Pathway Assessment

Assessment Level 3 overall and no skill below Level 2



The New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) grants special exceptions for IELTS to international students whose first language is not English for non-university tertiary education providers in New Zealand. Institutions in Category I have their process for assessing internal students' English language competency; thus, IELTS and TOEFL scores are not required for admission.

How to Study in New Zealand Universities Without IELTS

For students who do not have IELTS scores, New Zealand has many options. You can still apply to New Zealand universities if you meet their language requirements and criteria. Some examples are

  • Applicants must show proof of attending an English medium school from classes 8 to 12, with the medium of instruction clearly stated as English, regardless of the board or country of study.

  • You can also provide proof of having completed 5 years of English medium education at the primary level or 3 years of higher secondary education.

  • The New Zealand Immigration authority conducts a special interview for students who do not have IELTS when applying for a study visa in New Zealand.

  • Some universities conduct interviews to assess the English proficiency of prospective students.

  • You can also get admission if you provide scores of any alternative English proficiency test like TOEFL or PTE.

New Zealand Universities Without IELTS

Here are some of the top New Zealand universities where a student can apply to study without IELTS. It is recommended to check the courses and university requirements directly from the university portal before moving forward with your application. One can also contact the course advisor of the department personally for guidance and help.

  • The University of Auckland

  • Lincoln University

  • The University of Canterbury

  • The University of Otago

  • Natcoll Design Technology

  • Victoria University of Wellington

  • Eastern Institute of Technology

  • New Zealand Management Academies

  • International College of Linguistics

  • Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology

  • International Travel College of New Zealand

  • University Institute of Technology

Cost of Studying in New Zealand for Indian Students

New Zealand universities are ranked amongst the top universities in the world. To cover the tuition fee of any of the New Zealand universities, you will require funds between NZ$ 22,000 and NZ$35,000 annually. Generally, arts, education, and humanities courses are cheaper, while medical and engineering ones are relatively expensive. The tuition fees for postgraduate study are typically higher, and the costs vary depending on the program.

The below list provides information on the cost of studying in New Zealand for Indian students at various study levels.

Cost of Studying in New Zealand for Indian Students


Average Tuition Fees

Undergraduate degree

$20,500 - $25,000 annually


$19,000 - $29,000 annually


$31,000 - $50, 000 annually


$6,500 - $9,000 annually

Moreover, the students who wish to enrol in New Zealand universities without IELTS exam may contact our expert counsellors at any branch of Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC). Our expert counsellors will provide the best guidance and support for the admission and visa process. For more information or queries, mail us at or 1800-1230-00011.

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