Studying at Auckland

Information about subject options, campuses, timetables, and academic support services at the University. Plus, learn about selecting courses, prerequisites and course restrictions for Study Abroad and Exchange students.

Pacific dancer
Use your Study Abroad experience to try something unique to NZ or unavailable to you at home. Popular subject options at the University of Auckland include Pacific Studies, Māori Studies and Wine Science.


At the University of Auckland, we offer an impressive range of subjects across eight faculties. Study Abroad and Exchange students may select courses from most subjects, provided the relevant prerequisites are met. There are a few restrictions, detailed below.

Explore new areas of learning, such as New Zealand-based subjects, or disciplines unavailable in your own home institution, or simply an elective that you have always wanted to study.

You can also extend your major discipline and add significantly to your knowledge with new perspectives.

Undergradate subjects offered at the University of Auckland

Browse the course catalogue

Popular subjects

This is a selection of some of our subjects which are popular among study abroad and exchange students:

Language of instruction

The language of instruction is English. Some courses may be taught in other languages, eg language learning courses.

Academic dates

Semester One: February-June
Semester Two: July-November

For more detailed information, see Academic dates.

Course selection

Course load

The standard course load for fulltime study is 50-60 points per semester or 100-120 points per year. Most courses are weighted 15 points and students generally take four courses per semester. The conditions of your student visa require you to be enrolled fulltime.

A standard semester course of 15 points represents 150 hours of study or 10 hours of study per week for 15 weeks (12 teaching weeks and three weeks of study break and examinations).

Example of a study timetable

How to select your courses

  • Look at the subject areas.
  • Browse the course catalogue.
  • Discuss your course selection with an advisor at your home institution.
  • Choose backup courses and have them approved by your home institution, in case there is any difficulty enrolling in your preferred courses.

The course catalogue lists all subjects and courses, and includes course codes, point values, short descriptions, relevant semester, and prerequisites (if any) for each course.

More detailed course descriptions may be found on faculty websites or in departmental handbooks.

Subject areas

Course catalogue

Changing your courses

Changes can be made to course enrolments, but there are some important points to note.

There are strict deadlines for course enrolment changes. Some courses require an enrolment concession to be requested before you can enrol, and these requests have an earlier deadline. For the current deadlines, please see Deadlines for changing your enrolment.

For information on the enrolment process and enrolment concessions, please see Course enrolment.

Ensure any changes to course enrolments, or withdrawals from courses, are approved by your home institution or provider.

You must maintain a full-time course load. See the "Course load" section above.


Frequently asked questions

Question Answer

What level course can I take?

You should take courses that are at a suitable level for you, based on your prior studies and your home university degree requirements. You will need to discuss this with your home university or your Study Abroad provider.

For information about course levels at the University of Auckland, see What level course can I take?

Can I take courses from outside my major subject?

Most Study Abroad and Exchange students can enrol in courses across different subjects as long as your previous study meets the prerequisites, and you have approval from your home university or Study Abroad provider.

If you are coming to the University of Auckland on a subject-specific exchange, you may be required to take courses from within that subject only. Please contact your home university or Study Abroad provider for clarification.

Can I do research (eg a dissertation or thesis) during my Study Abroad or Exchange semester(s) at the University of Auckland?

No – the Study Abroad and Exchange programmes are restricted to coursework only. This does not include dissertation/thesis writing or supervision. For more information, see the "Postgraduate courses" section below.

Can I take courses on different campuses?


Nearly all courses are taught in four campuses in Auckland.

  • The City Campus is the main university campus.
  • Grafton Campus is within walking distance from the City Campus.
  • Tāmaki Campus can be reached using the University's free shuttle bus service from the City Campus.
  • Epsom Campus is a short bus ride from the City Campus.
  • The Newmarket Campus supports our research activities for the faculties of Engineering and Science. 

You can choose courses at different campuses, but make sure you have enough time to get from one campus to another between classes.

Which campus is my course on?

To check which campus a course is taught at, please see the Course Catalogue in Student Services Online.

Course catalogue

Prerequisites and Restrictions

Courses not available to Study Abroad and Exchange students:

  • Courses offered in Medicine, Surgery, Pharmacy and Optometry.
  • Courses running for the whole academic year - e.g. PSYCH 308A and 308B (except students enrolled for the whole University of Auckland academic year – February to November).
  • 100 level courses in Fine Arts, Architecture and Planning (unless the student is majoring in the subject at their home university)
  • BUSINESS 101 and BUSINESS 102.
  • Graduate School of Management courses running on a quarterly basis – e.g. BUSACT, BUSADMIN etc.
  • Courses ending with the letters F or H - e.g. HISTORY 91F or MAORIHTH 14H. These are foundation year courses and not appropriate for Exchange students.
  • Stage I Engineering courses (ENGGEN 115, ENGGEN 121, ENGGEN 131, ENGGEN 140, ENGGEN 150, ENGSCI 111, ELECTENG 101, CHEMMAT 121) except for those ending in G.

Courses with very limited enrolment availability:

  • Psychology and Biological Science
  • Courses ending with the letter G, eg PHYSICS 107G
  • 700 level Finance and Accounting courses
  • Nursing is only available to undergraduate students coming through special arrangements with our School of Nursing

We recommend that students have a second choice option for each course with limited enrolment availability. Students from these areas must apply early, in particular for Semester Two.

Courses with prerequisites

You can directly enrol into most courses (some exceptions apply). 

However, you should apply for “concession” to enrol in courses that require University of Auckland faculty approval. In this process, faculties assess whether your prior study meets relevant course prerequisites and will notify you accordingly. In some instances, you may be asked to provide course outlines/syllabi in English for courses equivalent to University of Auckland prerequisite requirements.

For more information, see Course enrolment.

Postgraduate courses

Students who hold the equivalent of a New Zealand bachelors degree may be able to take postgraduate courses if course prerequisites are met and accepted by the faculty. The Study Abroad and Exchange programme is restricted to coursework only and does not include thesis writing and supervision.

Students who wish to study for a full year at postgraduate level are advised to apply for a one-year degree or diploma programme at the University of Auckland. For more information see Study options.

Courses with additional application requirements

Courses in Fine Arts, Architecture and Music require submission of supplementary information such as a portfolio or DVD audition. For more information please contact the National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries (NICAI) or visit National Institute of Creative Arts and Industries.

NICAI email:

For language courses students must complete a Language Ability Declaration to ensure that they are placed at an appropriate level.

For more information please contact the Faculty of Arts or visit First time enrolment in language courses.

Faculty of Arts email:

Academic support

The University has an extensive range of support services to help you achieve your best while enjoying student life.

To find out about our library system, English language programmes, Centre for Academic Development, Student Learning Centre, faculty advisers and more, visit Academic and learning support.