Regional Rural Admission Scheme

We are dedicated to providing a solution to the critical shortage of rural health care workers in New Zealand.

Rural New Zealand beach.

We are dedicated to providing a solution to the critical shortage of rural health care workers in New Zealand.

Our Rural Regional Admission Scheme (RRAS) is designed to encourage people to train and return to their rural area to work and utilise their education and skills. Evidence shows that students identifying with regional or rural backgrounds are more likely to work outside urban areas.

Places in the following undergraduate programmes are allocated for students of regional or rural origin to ensure equitable access:

Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB)
Bachelor of Optometry (BOptom)
Bachelor of Medical Imaging (Hons)
Bachelor of Pharmacy (BPharm)


As defined by the University of Auckland, you qualify under RRAS if you meet one of the following criteria:

  1. Undertaken your whole pre-secondary education (Year 1 – Year 8) in a regional/rural area OR
  2. Spent at least three years at a secondary school which is located in a regional/rural area

A regional/rural area is defined as any part of New Zealand that does not fall within the local authority boundaries of the:

  • Auckland City Council
  • Hamilton City Council
  • Tauranga City Council
  • Wellington City Council
  • Porirua City Council
  • Hutt City Council
  • Upper Hutt City Council
  • Christchurch City Council
  • Dunedin City Council

Applying under the Regional Rural Admission Scheme

You must indicate your desire to be considered under this scheme. An official letter from the regional/rural education institution you attended must be received by our Faculty Student Centre by the application closing date.

The letter should be signed by the principal or nominee, sent by the regional/rural education institution and needs to outline:

  • Your full legal name
  • The duration of your study, e.g. “31 January 2012 to 31 November 2016 (Year 9-13)”
  • The physical location of the institute and the name of the local district council
  • The programme(s) that you are applying for (MBChB, BOptom, BMedImag(Hons), BPharm)

Send to: Faculty Student Centre
Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences
The University of Auckland
Private Bag 92019
Auckland 1142

Selection under the Regional Rural Admission Scheme

The selection processes and minimum requirements for RRAS applicants are identical to the general category MBChB, BOptom, BMedImag(Hons) or BPharm admissions. However, RRAS applicants are ranked separately for interview consideration and final offer of place.

If you indicate that you wish to be considered for RRAS entry but are not accepted in the dedicated places, you will still be considered under the general category. This ensures that no candidate will be disadvantaged by applying for RRAS.

For more information on the Regional Rural Admission Scheme entry eligibility and selection contact the faculty's Undergraduate Admissions Office.

Phone: +64 9 373 7599 ext 84888