New Zealand International Scholarships 2020/2021

Last Updated on March 18, 2020 by

About Scholarship

The New Zealand Government offers full tertiary scholarships for eligible international students to study fulltime at a New Zealand education institution or a Pacific university.


Host Institution(s): Eligible New Zealand universities and institutes of technology.

Levels/Fields of study: Undergraduate and Postgraduate Degrees in preferred fields of study that are most relevant to the development needs of your country (i.e. renewable energy, agriculture development, disaster risk management, private sector development, public sector development).  Find out the preferred subjects for your country.

Target group: The scholarships are open to citizens of selected countries in the Pacific, Africa, Asia, Latin America, Carribbean as well as Commonwealth countries. Please see the complete list of eligible countries.

Scholarship value/inclusions

The scholarships include full tuition fees, a living allowance (NZ$491 per week), an establishment allowance (NZ$3000), medical insurance when you are in New Zealand, travel to and from your own country and New Zealand at the start and end of your scholarship, travel insurance, travel home during your scholarship (one or two trips home are allowed, depending on the length of your scholarship), and help with research and thesis costs for many postgraduate students.


Age Requirements

To apply for a full New Zealand Scholarship, you must be 18 years old or older when you start your scholarship. This means if you are 17 years of age when you apply, you must have your 18th birthday before you start your scholarship in semester one. Exception for Samoa: Scholars from Samoa can be 17 years of age when they commence their scholarship.


There is no upper age limit for applicants. This means if you are 18 and over, you can apply. However, applicants who are under 40 years of age are preferred for New Zealand Scholarships for university or tertiary students.


Student Visa Requirements


Student visa requirements and application form for New Zealand (external link)


Academic Requirements

As part of the New Zealand Scholarships application process, you need to choose your preferred education institution and preferred courses. Scholarship applicants don’t need to apply for admission to their preferred education institution and courses but they need to check that they are likely to meet the minimum academic requirements and the minimum level of English required for their courses.


Course entry requirements are set by your chosen education institution so you must check minimum entry requirements on their website before you apply for a New Zealand Scholarship.

English Requirements

Each university or education institution sets the minimum level of English you need for your preferred courses, so check their website.


Generally, to study for a postgraduate qualification, you must have at least:


•  an overall IELTS score of 6.5 and no band less than 6.0
• a TOEFL score of 90 on the internet-based test with a writing score of 21
• an overall PTE Academic score of 58 with no communicative skills score less than 50
• a Cambridge Academic English (advanced) overall score of 176 with no bands less than 169.


Generally, to study for an undergraduate qualification, you must have at least:


• an overall IELTS score of 6.0 and no band less than 5.5
• a TOEFL score of 80 on the internet-based test with a writing score of 21
• an overall PTE Academic score of 50, with no communication skills score less than 42
• a Cambridge Academic English (advanced) overall score of 169 with no bands less than 162.

Contribution to their Country’s Development

Scholars are expected to contribute to their country’s social or economic development for two years after completing their scholarship study. The purpose of a New Zealand Scholarship is to fund the training of citizens from developing countries, so they can positively impact on their country’s development by sharing new skills and knowledge gained from their study. That is why scholars are expected to return home after their scholarship for at least two years to contribute to the social and economic development of their own country.

Work Experience Requirements

When assessing scholarship applications, applicants who want to study courses that align strongly with their current work experience and applicants who will continue working in their current job sector after they finish their scholarship are preferred.


*Refer to the complete eligibility criteria at this link.

Application instructions

The New Zealand Scholarship application process differs depending on which country or region you are from. You can apply between the application opening and closing dates for your country as found in this page. Most countries have a closing date of 28 February 2020 or 27 March 2020 (for Commonwealth Countries), except Kiribati (20 March) and Samoa (TBC).


Visit the country-specific pages and the official website (link found below) to access the online application form and for detailed information on how to apply for this scholarship.

Application Deadline

28 February 2020 or 27 March 2020 (for Commonwealth Countries), except Kiribati (20 March) and Samoa (TBC).


Official Scholarship Website:

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