Professional registration for teachers and social workers

Once you have completed your formal qualification with the Faculty of Education and Social Work, you must become formally certified by the Social Workers Registration Board (for social workers) or registered by the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand (for teachers) in order to legally work as a social worker or teacher in New Zealand.  

How to become a registered social worker

To apply for registration you must:

  • have completed or be enrolled in a recognised New Zealand qualification  or
  • have an overseas equivalent (which has been confirmed by completing a Non-binding assessment) or
  • have enough practical experience to compensate for the lack of a NZ recognised qualification, as per the SWRB Criteria for Section 13 Registration
  • be competent to practise social work, including practising social work with Māori and with different ethnic and cultural groups in New Zealand
  • have enough practical experience in New Zealand
  • be “fit and proper” to practise social work in New Zealand (includes police checks, giving information about any convictions/court orders, your mental/physical condition etc.).

Learn more about how to become a registered social worker.

How to become a registered teacher

There are three categories of practising certificate in New Zealand – provisional, subject to confirmation, and full.

Provisional and subject to confirmation practising certificates

Provisionally certificated teachers are usually newly qualified teachers who don’t yet have enough teaching experience to meet all of the Standards for the Teaching Profession. They need to complete a broad-based programme of induction and mentoring over two years to gain full certification.

Teachers who are certificated subject to confirmation are experienced teachers who have previously met all of the Standards for the Teaching Profession, but have not been able to be assessed as meeting them recently. This is because they haven’t had enough recent teaching experience in an approved setting, or their teaching has been too part-time or casual for a meaningful assessment to have been made by their professional leader.  

If you wish to have your application considered for a subject to confirmation practising certificate, you will need to provide evidence of:

  • holding a senior teaching position (at the level of Head of Department or higher), and
  • more than five years of teaching experience, and
  • evidence of recent professional development, and
  • evidence of professional support and guidance or appraisal involving a mentor/supervisor teacher provided for a period of at least two years

Full practising certificate

Fully certificated teachers are experienced teachers who have completed satisfactory recent teaching experience, and have recently been assessed as meeting all of the Standards for the Teaching Profession.

To move to full certificate from provisional certification you need to:

Learn more about how to become a fully certified teacher