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University of Canterbury

New Zealand


The University of Canterbury (UC), with its 150th anniversary on the horizon in 2023, is a prestigious higher education institution which is rated among the top 300 universities worldwide (QS World Universities rankings, 2023). itis in the world's top 1 percent of universities thanks to its outstanding teaching quality, support services and impressive graduate outcomes.

UC, located in Christchurch, New Zealand, prides itself on being home to a world-leading community of lecturers and professors at the forefront of their fields, who are passionate about offering their students the best possible educational experience. UC and its staff consistently lead the delivery of globally important research that seeks to address society's biggest challenges. The QS World University Rankings demonstrate this, with the university achieving a 5-star ranking for research and teaching.

Students learning at UC can access everything they require for a successful academic journey and rewarding lifestyle, whether it's one of four distinct libraries, cutting-edge sports and fitness facilities like the Rec Centre, modern workshops, laboratories and art galleries, or the wide range of cafes, restaurants and bars – it's all right there on campus.

The university's specialist Student Care team are always on hand to support, whether it's a personal or academic issue. The university is committed to the growth and success of its students, with mentoring programmes, ESL support and comprehensive orientation for all international students from day one.

UC is found on New Zealand's South Island, which is home to breath-taking natural landscapes and outdoor activities ranging from skiing to surfing. The leafy green campus is nestled between Moana (sea), Maunga (mountains) and Rangi (sky) offering students the chance to learn and experience many different worlds from adrenaline to art, biculturalism, biodiversity, innovation, southern lights, sustainability, and more.

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What's new

What's new

Top ranking

The University of Canterbury ranks among the world's top 401-500 in the 2021 Shanghai Ranking (AWRU)

UC Business School receives global reaccreditation

EQUIS re-accreditation is a welcome accomplishment for the UC Business School, which continues to hold the prestigious ‘triple-crown' of international business school accreditations after achieving AACSB and AMBA accreditations. EQUIS is the most comprehensive institutional accreditation system for business and management schools.

Asteroid hunters name space rock for Distinguished Professor Roy Kerr

University of Canterbury asteroid hunters have named an asteroid they discovered in honour of eminent mathematician University of Canterbury Distinguished Professor Roy Kerr, renowned for his influential work in astrophysics resulting from his solving Einstein's equation of relativity relating to rotating black holes. These are now called Kerr Black Holes.

Visit the University of Canterbury website for more on recent events.

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Graduate outcomes

Graduate outcomes

UC Careers staff at the University of Canterbury are both experienced and professionally qualified career consultants, as well as specialists in student and graduate recruitment. UC Careers helps students to develop their career management competencies to improve their employability, as well as become resilient career managers.

It works directly with academic departments as well as students both individually and in groups, in order to deliver career support. The services provided by UC Careers include:

  • Career education seminars, tools and resources
  • Interview preparation
  • Cover letter and CV development
  • Career Hub services
  • Career counselling
  • Job search strategies
  • Employer contact/networking
  • Graduate and student recruitment activities
  • Careers fairs, events, as well as employer presentations

UC Careers also encourages its departments as well as students to use the careerhub website, which promotes and lists several career activities and opportunities like internships, jobs, scholarships, career appointments, employer events, and seminars.

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Department structure

Department structure


UC Arts is both, academically vibrant and culturally diverse environment. With many critical research centres and over 40 subjects, UC Arts is the place to broaden students' perspective and gain an outstanding education.

UC Business School

It offers students the opportunity to gain internationally recognised qualifications with courses underpinned by research in a vibrant learning environment.

Education and Teaching. Youth and Community Leadership

At UC, students will undertake professional practical placements to build teaching and management skills and connect with students and community.


UC Engineering is internationally recognised for excellence in teaching and research, and high calibre graduates. It offers unique qualifications in global humanitarian engineering, forestry science, and product design.

Health Sciences. Sport Coaching

Health is becoming more about wellness and prevention, with a stronger focus on community. Sport is now more professional, and not just about performance but wider participation - ultimately, it's all about people.

UC Law

It is one of Aotearoa New Zealand's leading law schools, consistently ranking in the top 200 law schools worldwide, and combines academic and practical legal skills. The university has a strong reputation in traditional areas of law and offers a range of innovative courses.


UC's convenient location provides a living laboratory for its science students' work. Lab and field work can be part of students' studies from day one.

Digital Screen Campus

In 2023 UC is aiming to welcome students into the new interdisciplinary Bachelor of Digital Screen with Honours programme.

International partnerships

The university is part of a strong international network which ensures that its students have many excellent opportunities to obtain global experience while they study at UC, including spending one semester abroad as a part of its student exchange programme or taking part of a short course.

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Entry requirements

Entry requirements

The English language test scores required for entry to the University of Canterbury includes:

Undergraduate qualifications

  • IELTS (Academic) - An overall score of 6.0, with no section having a score of less than 5.5
  • TOEFL (iBT) - An overall score of 80, with a score of 19 in writing, reading, and listening
  • Pearson (Academic) - 50 as an overall score with no section having a score below 42

Postgraduate qualifications

  • IELTS (Academic)- An overall score of 6.5, with no section having a score less than 6.0
  • TOEFL (iBT) - An overall score of 90, with a score of 19 in listening, reading, and writing
  • Pearson (Academic) - An overall score of 58 with no section having a score below 50

Some programmes may require higher test scores. For example, students need to give proof of an IELTS (academic) result (or approved equivalent) of at least 7.0 or 7.5 overall, with no band score below 7.0 or 7.5, for entry into teacher education programmes.

If international students do not meet the entry requirements, the university's partners provide several preparatory programmes on campus to help them meet these requirements, and they include:

  • CCEL (Christchurch College of English Language)
  • UCIC (UC International College)
  • Foundation Studies Certificate
  • University Transfer Programmes

Check here to see what requirements each programme has.

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There are a number of facilities which will support students' education at UC, and they include:

  • innovative learning hubs and modern lecture theatres
  • more than 1.9 million research items in the university's three libraries
  • computer suites which are open 24/7
  • online portals as well as interactive resources
  • well-equipped laboratories, with learning spaces which are flexible, and modern specialist teaching as well as research laboratories.


Many UC students recall their time in the halls of residence as the time of their lives. Halls offer safe and comfortable accommodation for all students, from school leavers to postgraduates. With over 2,600 quality rooms on campus, the halls of residence provide a diverse student community, a supportive living, learning, and study environment, where they are located 5 to 15 minutes' walk from lectures.

Students over the age of 18 years who apply for a stay at Ilam Apartments are guaranteed accommodation.

All halls of residence provide:

  • Residential Advisor support
  • students' own fully-furnished room - with a bed, desk, chair, wardrobe, and bookshelf
  • heating and power
  • computer rooms
  • unlimited wi-fi for UC students
  • recreational facilities
  • study areas
  • events and social activities
  • academic support
  • meals are provided, or the facilities to enable students to cook for themselves
  • laundry facilities
  • carparking and bicycle storage.

For more information about each hall, refer to the University of Canterbury website

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Scholarships & funding

Scholarships & funding

UC offers International First-year Undergraduate Scholarships to top-achieving international Students:

  • UC First year International undergraduate scholarship up to NZ 15,000
  • UC Engineering International Scholarship NZ 15,000

There are other scholarships and Awards for high achieving candidates such as the UC Dean's Award, Fast Track Award, South East Asia Award.

UC International Mobility Inbound Study Abroad Award

For students who are already studying at an overseas university and seek to study here as a non-degree student for one or two semesters on UC's Study Abroad programme, the university has a number of UC Study Abroad Awards available.

UC Doctoral Scholarships

UC offers a diverse range of scholarships to support students for study towards their research doctoral degree. The UC Doctoral Scholarship is offered up to NZD 28,000 per 120 points of thesis enrolment and tuition fees for thesis enrolment only, at the domestic tuition fee rate.

For a full list of scholarships, including master's and doctoral study, visit The University of Canterbury website.

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International students

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