Study Abroad at Victoria University of Wellington

Video and Photos

Friends at Uni Hall final dinner
Friends at Uni Hall final dinner
The sights were pretty amazing and the people were better.
The sights were pretty amazing and the people were better.
Lake Matheson & Mt. Cook
Lake Matheson & Mt. Cook
Roy's Peak, Wanaka
Roy's Peak, Wanaka
Mt. Taranaki
Mt. Taranaki
View of Wellington
View of Wellington
Hobbiton
Hobbiton
White Water Rafting in the Tongariro
White Water Rafting in the Tongariro

About

Wellington prides itself on welcoming people from around the world and providing an experience of a lifetime. New Zealand has an endless list of adventures awaiting any who dare to be bold.

As well as AACSB approved Business courses, Sciences, Architecture and Design, Education, Engineering, Health and Music, Victoria provides a wide variety of courses in NZ's largest Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. Subjects popular with our Study Abroad students Maori/Pacific/NZ/Antarctic studies, Earth Sciences, Environmental Sciences, Design and International Relations.

Located in the southern tip of New Zealand’s North Island, between a beautiful harbor and rolling green hills, the vibrant and cosmopolitan city of Wellington is the political, cultural and creative capital of New Zealand. Sign up with VUW today to make your trip to New Zealand one of a lifetime!

Highlights
  • Study in NZ's political, cultural and creative capital city!
  • Choose from over 120 different subject areas.
  • Take part in the Victoria International Leadership Programme (Only programme of its kind in NZ!).
  • Join the hiking/tramping and club and see more of NZ! There are over 140 clubs & societies!
  • Complete a Specialised Study Abroad Programme in one of 12 study areas & get transcript recognition.

Questions & Answers

Depending, courses are 15/20 points. The normal thing is to choose 3 or 4 depending on the number of points it has. So around 50/60 points would be the normal thing

How was the workload in maor 123? I'm currently taking it, hoping it won't be too difficult. I have a chem lecture that sadly has a final exam... which sucks but hopefully I should be able to do alright.

The hall is around 4.000 NZ $ and you have to pay it all together at once before coming and obviously the flight is also a bit expensive but once here you won't spend much. Traveling is cheap, food is at european price more or less... But there is always a cheap option. It depends on you. I live in a catered hall so food is included so i don't spend more than 50$ per month.

Reviews

9.02 Rating
based on 119 reviews
  • Academics 7.6
  • Support 8.1
  • Fun 8.5
  • Housing 7.9
  • Safety 9.2
Showing 1 - 8 of 119
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Stephanie
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

An Amazing Place to Spend Some Time

I absolutely loved my study abroad experience at VUW. My program is at the graduate level in Canada and undergraduate level in New Zealand, so there was an adjustment going from a graduate to undergraduate program for a semester. But the professors were generally lovely and I learned so much.
Wellington is a great place to live, and a fantastic jumping off point to explore New Zealand further (in-country flights can be very inexpensive!) I completely fell in love with Wellington, and my experience in study abroad was completely fantastic. I would highly recommend studying abroad at VUW for anyone, but especially those who love nature, culture, food, and wine.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
My number one advice is to get out there and DO things. Say yes. Explore opportunities. Walk around the city by yourself if you have nothing else to do. Book a solo trip (I went skiing!) It can be scary, to put yourself out there, but that's where friendships are forged and amazing memories are made!
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Jasmine
9/10
Yes, I recommend this program

You can't beat Wellington on a good day

Going to Victoria University for my student exchange was truly one of the great things that could have happened to me. I learnt so much - how there are so many things out in the world beyond the shores of my small country; the challenges and efforts of people in bridging Maori and Pakeha relations; the reality that learning does not have to be stressful and only about grades. Staying at Helen Lowry Hall, I've made some awesome friends who showed me how living in a community is about caring, sharing and making connections. Wellington is a really accessible city with plenty of nature trails and walks. All you need is your two feet to get to see some plenty awesome views that'll blow you away. Something that I miss a lot about New Zealand are the natural landscapes and the kind people I've met during my journeys around Aotearoa.

What would you improve about this program?
I think the price of food in general is something that I needed to get comfortable with. It'll be great if the food in school could be more affordable with more selections but the staying in a catered hall has helped. Being able to pack seconds at dinners for the next day's lunch was a good solution in reducing expenditure on food.
Default avatar
Katelyn
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Best time of my life

I adored everything about my study abroad. I made most of my friends at my hall. The RAs are incredibly interactive and sweet. The food wasn't amazing but it was still better than most of the food back home. Because of the friends I made, I always had a place to stay when I traveled during the tri breaks. I never had to pay for a hotel, just a bus ride. I was able to see Hobbiton, Rainbow Springs, and the Redwood Treewalk. I was down in Christchurch for a week, where I visited their adventure park, Hanmer Springs and a beach in Sumner. I attempted surfing. The classes themselves were amazing too. If you're sick, they understand you can't come to class. My professors all excelled in the fields they taught and brought in constant real-world expertise and advice. One of my professors was working at Weta, which in general just provides a really cool opportunity to learn from someone active in a field I'm interested in. I took some intense courses so sometimes I was overwhelmed but overall it was a great experience. I love what I learned, the people I met and the stunning views I was able to witness.

What was the most nerve-racking moment and how did you overcome it?
I've always been somewhat shy, and really I did this program to push myself. I've always wanted to go, but learning I was going by myself was startling, as previous people from my major just happened to be able to go in groups of threes. The first week I was there is my biggest regret. I was terrified of everyone and everything. I missed opportunities to meet people intentionally and hid in my room as much as possible. I hung around my roommate in a desperate attempt to wedge myself into her group. It wasn't until someone in my hall directly invited me out that I started talking with people. It was so scary to even just start a conversation but I shoved some words out. By the end of the tri, I was really close with dozens of people between several groups, and we cried together when I left. Sometimes you just need to dive in and go from there. I still keep in contact with most of them.
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Laurance
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Study Exchange in Wellington

My time spent at Victoria University of Wellington was way beyond my expectations. Regarding the academics, the classes were relatively easy and that is even though English is not my first language. The teachers were easy to understand and always open to answer any questions. Also, the workload is not too much which allows you to go travelling and exploring the surrounding nature! The university's staff was always very nice and followed us through the first steps to the last day of exhange. Regarding the accommodation, I was with Stafford House, a university's residence. They organized a lot of activities, mainly in the beginning, allowing international students like me to meet other students and make friends easily. On the social scene, the people in New Zealand and Wellington are very nice, open, welcoming and ready to help. Wellington is the perfect little seaside city; everything is close and there is always something exciting to do. 10/10 for the study abroad program at Victoria University of Wellington, I'll always be grateful for this experience.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
I would recommend attending all the activities that you can, mainly in the beginning; there are so many of them and that is where you'll meet most of your friends for the remaining of your stay. Also, remember that you are not alone, there are a lot of other international/study abroad students that, just like you, are looking to make friends.
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Matthew
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Beautiful

Overall, my abroad experience was amazing. I liked my home university more than my host, but for me, school was not the main focus of going abroad. I tried to travel New Zealand with my girlfriend as much as possible, and those trips were the best part of my abroad experience. The New Zealand landscape is incredibly varied, and all of it is beautiful. It also has some awesome wildlife such as dolphins, stick bugs, weka birds, star fish, Kia birds, (not-so-awesome) possums, jellyfish hedgehogs, (extinct) Moa birds, and so many birds in general. The Victoria University of Wellington Tramping Club was my favorite part about VUW. I would recommend it for exchange students wanting to meet new people and get out of the city to hike or rock climb.

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Cole
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Wellington and VUW are Fantastic

From the ocean to the hills to the city skyline, it would be hard to imagine an environment more desirable to study in. Wellington truly has it all. From an American perspective, it boasts a San Francisco look and an Austin feel. Whether it be a beautiful walk down from Victoria's Kelburn campus, a unique concert on Cuba Street, or hanging out at Oriental Bay between classes, my abroad experience felt authentic and surreal. VUW also has a vibrant international student community; one which allowed me to meet many great friends from over seven different countries. This made for awesome travel possibilities, as we could jointly and affordably explore both islands during our stay. The local kiwis are some of the nicest people you will ever meet, and feeling at home in New Zealand is no problem at all. I will be forever grateful for the opportunity.

What is your advice to future travelers on this program?
Explore all of New Zealand, but really enjoy Wellington and spend time getting to know the ins and outs of the city; it really is a special place.
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Lauren
3/10
No, I don't recommend this program

Amazing Academic Experience, but Don't Live in Stafford House

VicU has amazing faculty and studies! I have learned so much about Maori culture and psychology research there. I genuinely loved the learning experience.
I highly recommend any class with Dr. Peter Adds and Dr. Gina Grimshaw.
They are absolutely amazing lecturers and help you become engaged with the material.
However, it is also very isolating experience, and I had a rough time living at Stafford house.
They were very non-responsive towards our broken laundry and lost my important documents.
I would not have lived there if I had known how terrible it is.
I was struggling a lot with making friends and joining the community.
Even though I signed up with the buddy program, my buddy often flaked on our plans.
For the friends I have made, I got a chance to learn more about New Zealand life style and culture. I am very blessed to have met such amazing people in such a short time.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
I would live in a different hall with a better support and room facilities.
Response from Victoria University of Wellington

Hi Lauren,
Thank you for submitting a constructive review about your time at Victoria. We are glad to hear you had a great academic experience with us, however, we are very sorry to hear that your accommodation fell short and that this affected your overall experience. Student support is of the utmost importance to us, and we will pass on your feedback to the Hall for future improvements.
Thank you and all the best.
Victoria International

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Esther
8/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing time in NZ

My exchange was amazing. I saw much of beautiful New-Zealand, the nature is stunning! The atmosphere in Wellington is very social. There are people chilling at the waterfront and there is always some street artist at Cuba street. The university, VUW, is also very supporting and has a nice library with a pretty view. The teachers are easy-going and my courses were interesting.
You can arrange accommodation via the university. This was expensive and basic, but it was easy to make friends in the flat. Housing is gonna be expensive anyway.
I joined the tramping club to experience the true kiwi life. It was super to walk through the nature and camp in the wild. Later, during the winter, we stayed in huts. If I would have had more time, I would do more great walks.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
I did the Abel Tasman track in the last week before I left and I would have loved to do more great walks.