Study Abroad at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand!
90% Rating
(71 Reviews)

Study Abroad at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand!

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!

A direct enrollment option is available for students attending a non-affiliated university.

  • Study in NZ's political, cultural and creative capital!
  • Choose from over 120 different subject areas
  • Take part in the Victoria International Leadership Programme (Service & Leadership Programme)
  • Join the hiking/tramping and club and see more of NZ!
New Zealand
Program Type
Direct Enrollment
Subject Areas
Art History
Asian Studies
Conflict Studies
Conservation and Preservation
Creative Writing
Criminal Justice
Cultural Studies
Earth Sciences
East Asian Studies
English Literature
Global Studies
Graphic Design
Hispanic Studies
International Business
Landscape Architecture
Liberal Arts
Māori Studies
Marine Biology
Media Relations
Natural Sciences
Pacific Studies
Peace Studies
Public Policy
Public Relations
Service Learning
Social Sciences
Sustainable Development
Theater, Drama and Dance
Women's Studies
Degree Level
Academic Year
Host Family
Official Transcripts
Language Requirement
GPA Requirement
Starting Price
Price Details
These costs are quoted and apply to studying in 2018.
Study Abroad tuition for one trimester: 12,000 NZD (around 8,687 USD)
Study Abroad levies for one trimester: 377 NZD (around 272 USD)

You’ll also need medical and travel insurance for the duration of your time in New Zealand.

Full degree study also available. International PhD students pay domestic tuition fee rates at Victoria.
Other Locations

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
The only really fun/ interesting lighter load class that I took was MAOR 123. It was super great to learn about the history of the Maori people and New Zealand in general. There are tons of international students in it and I would highly recommend it.
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.

Program Reviews

based on 71 reviews
  • Academics 7.5
  • Support 8.1
  • Fun 8.4
  • Housing 8.5
  • Safety 9.2
Showing 1 - 15 of 71
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Unique and Peaceful Experience!

I am from Italy and I had to opportunity to study one semester of my degree abroad. Among my possible choices, I picked Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand, and after 4 months spent here I can say that I definitely made the right decision! In general the university's environment has been super friendly and very "international": the staff did everything to make us feel at ease. It's very easy to make new international friendships, especially if you decide to live in University Hall accommodations, who provides for you many occasions (parties and events) for meeting students coming from all over the world! The only problem I had consisted in adapting myself to the academic system and to the different examinations and classes methods, since the Italian-European system is much more different. However, VUW provides for a lot of workshops, where international students can learn how to write essays, make references etc. Wellington is very quiet and peaceful, like all the cities in NZ, that is why it is highly recommended to make new friends, otherwise it could become boring. In general, I can say that I will never forget my experience here and I highly recommend it to all students looking for challenging exchange semesters abroad!

How can this program be improved?

I don't think it needs improvement.

Yes, I recommend

Semester Abroad in Wellington

My time in New Zealand was probably the best experience of my life, and I'm already dying to go back! Victoria was a great university, and I enjoyed the courses I took there, especially Plant Biology! I was lucky to live in Uni Hall, which was only a 5 minute walk from campus, and it was really nice to live independently in a flat (well, with flatmates of course) for the first time. I didn't quite participate in as many school activities as I would have liked, but I tried to explore as much of the campus as I could, such as trying the different little restaurants and exploring the art gallery. It was also really nice to have an entire two weeks of break, as I took that time to go on an amazing road trip in the South Island. I was also quite prone to injury, and student health and the physiotherapy center on campus were very helpful, as was the general healthcare policies of the country.

Yes, I recommend

My Review

It was a really interesting and a new experience to study at a university that uses completely different teaching formats and contents. Everybody was very supportive and helped each other out whenever someone needed help. That was probably what I liked the most. I felt welcome here right from the start.
I wished that the Tutors would have had more experience. Most of the times they are just normal Bachelor or Master students that hardly know more about architecture than I do. So, when I had a question other students couldn't answer, the Tutor couldn't either. The projects of the students and their learning process would be improved a lot if working architects would Tutor them. Universities, which do that, are normally higher in ranking as well.

How can this program be improved?

Construction and technical knowledge should be taught right from the start. The students here have no idea of how to build a proper functioning house. The have a great knowledge in all the rendering programs, which of course sells good, but they should rather concentrate on how to build a proper house. This would improve future housing condition in my opinion.

Yes, I recommend

Semester at Victoria

Studying abroad has been the best decision have made for both my academic and personal success. The reason that this experience has been so successful is because of the opportunities and experiences that I have had here in Wellington and at Victoria University. This city's atmosphere has allowed me to experience many new things and has helped me to become a more independent person. Also, at Victoria, I have been able to manage course while being able to travel and see New Zealand. I have had the fortune of meeting many wonderful people from all over the world and making life long friends!

Yes, I recommend
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Great Experience!

I had a lot of fun during this trimester at Victoria University. The people are very kind and ready to offer help. I've never had any big problem, and in every case, the staff from the University has always been very nice. I loved my courses, and the teachers made everything interesting, I enjoyed them a lot. We did a lot of projects, but it was nice. Also, the University organizes a lot of activities throughout the trimester, which is very nice especially for exchange students. It is a great way to meet new friends and have fun. I've lived at the University Hall, and it was a great place. I was only 5 minutes away from Kelburn campus, and the University provided for everything, even for extra expenses when the dishwashing machine broke. I've enjoyed a lot my time here I'm going to miss it a lot, I suggest everyone come here for an exchange!

Yes, I recommend
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Lancaster to Wellington

I am currently an exchange student from Lancaster University (England) studying at Victoria University of Wellington (NZ) for 1 year.

Firstly - New Zealand is an amazing and beautiful county and I really love living in Wellington, the city is small so it is easy to find your way around as well as plenty of things going on each week!

Course/University experience: sadly the University is the one part I am really not enjoying about my year abroad. It may be due to my course choices (I am taking mostly 300-level biology and chemistry courses) but I find it very difficult and stressful. The chemistry courses here are very broad and cover a whole range of topics, for example one module is devoted to physical chemistry whereas at my home uni the content would be split into different modules eg. thermodynamics and computational chemistry. This has meant that the course content does not overlap very well and I have been left with gaps in my knowledge when trying to complete assignments here. Furthermore I find the University very assuming - you are not told about things and are expected to magically know. For example - all lectures after 1pm start at 10 past the hour despite appearing as on the hour in the timetable. The timetable is also incomplete and only contains lecture times - it does not update for tutorials or labs. There was also no introductory talk on how to check items out of the library.

Societies: There aren't all that many societies at Victoria and the one I did try to join (canoeing) -the other members weren't actually students at all!

Accommodation: I am currently living in Uni Hall, accommodation provided by the University. I chose this option as I thought it would be easier than having to sort out private accommodation from overseas. Considering this accommodation is aimed at International student's I'm not sure the location is very good. It is a short 10 minute walk to the university (which is great!) but very far from the supermarket/food shops - a 40 minute trek up and down 90m
with heavy shopping (the only supermarket you don't have to drive too is very small!). The public transport does not bring you close enough to the accommodation. Furthermore the accommodation is very expensive for what it is and the rooms are very disproportionate, I am paying $240 a week for a small, dingy room whilst my flatmate pays the same for a room half the size with loads of sun - not very fair! Maintenance response is also poor - I reported my heater 2 weeks ago and it still hasn't been fixed, and the fire-alarms which ran out of the battery the second week of being here have only just been fixed 10 weeks later. The houses here are also very cold/bad at retaining heat as they are not insulated and only have single glazed windows. The provided kitchen equipment is also pretty poor - most of it was bought by previous residents! The events hosted by Uni Hall are excellent however and are technically free (if you forget about the $150 non-optional activity fee paid at the start of the year). It is also very difficult to meet actual New Zealanders! Uni Hall creates a community of International students with little chance to meet or socialise with actual Kiwis. The wifi - you only get 2GB per person per day! So my house of 5 gets 10GB in total each day. The fact that the WiFi is limited is a bit ridiculous - especially in a house designed for internationals where most want to call home each day! We run out of WiFi most days meaning trying to work in the evenings is both pointless and frustrating.

Food: Food is very expensive here, especially fruit, veg and dairy products. Markets are available on Sundays to purchase cheaper fruit and veg but it is very season dependent!

Public Transport: Poor depending on where you live - no bus links from town to my accommodation.

City: There is so much going on in Wellington! Loads of great places to eat (if you can afford it!) and many cute and unique shops to explore. There is a craft market on Saturday on the water-front that I love and night-markets selling food Fridays and Saturdays.

Despite the negatives I have enjoyed my time here so far overall and I am definitely glad I came. It really depends on how focused you are on grades and doing well. My home university will reduce all the grades I receive here by 10% so I need to work extra hard to ensure my average doesn't slip - this has ruined my experience somewhat.

Hope this has helped and hasn't put you off!

How can this program be improved?

More support for international students. More events to meet New Zealand students.

Yes, I recommend
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My Time In Wellington

My time in Wellington was truly amazing. I really enjoyed studying at the Uni. It was a big change from my school back home that only has about 3,ooo students to Vic which has about 21,000. The academics were very interesting. I studied Philosophy and Maori culture. I very much enjoyed the social life. The Uni only being up the hill from the downtown area is very nice and there is so much to do. From night markets, to all of the good eateries, to even the salsa dancing scene I got into there-it was all just a great experience. The salsa dancing may have even been one of my favorite hobbies I picked up and learned there! I also travelled a lot while there. This may have been one of my favorite parts of it all. I met so many great people and shared such amazing memories that helped create great bonds. I think one part of my trip that made it unique was the moko I got and the bond I built with Hohua Mohi, my ta moko artist. It really was an awesome experience.

Yes, I recommend
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Victoria University Of Wellington

I loved Victoria University as well as the city of Wellington. With a great location within the city, everywhere was basically walkable.. In respect to classes, they were easy enough to balance travel with studying.
I was able to take advantage of the two week Easter break, this was a very big part of my study abroad experience. Being able to travel to four different countries during this time was something that gave me more knowledge than I could ever have learned in a classroom.
I have only heard positive reviews of Victoria University and the housing that was offered. The best part of studying there was the people that I was able to live with. Being placed with people from all over the world I was able to broaden my knowledge without even realizing it.
Overall location of Wellington within New Zealand was perfect. I was able to travel the whole North and the whole South Island. The ferry took a few hours and flights were cheap so you could plan last minute trips without spending too much money.

How can this program be improved?

This program was very very good, there was nothing that I would really change about it. Moving in was easy, and the current students were excited to meet us and to introduce us to everything New Zealand had to offer.

Yes, I recommend

New Zealand Review

This was the most incredible experience of my life. Being in a country this far away from my own really put the whole world into perspective. I had always dreamed of traveling New Zealand after seeing beautiful pictures, and I felt that Victoria University of Wellington offered the perfect balance of academics and free time for an exchange student granting me the opportunity to explore this beautiful country.

Yes, I recommend
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Semester in Wellington

I chose to study in Wellington because of the country's fascinating culture, and for me Wellington is the perfect combination of opportunities while not being overwhelming in size. I also was attracted to the University of Wellington's strong science department. The opportunity to do a lab for my Earth Science class in the field was especially exciting. Where else do you have a fault line nearby that you can visit?
The InterCity Bus also makes traveling around the north island easy. I spent a weekend in Tauranga, and also got to see Napier. It's also not hard to get cheap flights within New Zealand. But even if you don't want to leave Wellington, there is so much to do. A couple of my recommendations are: take a ferry to Somes Island, spend an afternoon at Te Papa, visit the Underground Market on Saturdays, and go to the Wellington Zoo and/or Zealandia. I have loved this semester, and do not want to leave. I highly recommend traveling abroad to everyone!

How can this program be improved?

I honestly have no suggestions, the program was wonderful

Yes, I recommend
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Amazing Experience

Vic Uni of Wellington does an amazing job accommodating international students. From the first day I was greeted by my kiwi host, and any issues I had during my semester I felt I could go to them for help. Uni Hall (the "dorm" I stayed in) had fun events all year long and I made my best friends from this group. The academics were not as challenging as my home university, but I'm sure more difficult classes were offered.

Yes, I recommend
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Exchange student - review

While being an exchange student at Victoria University of Wellington and living in New Zealand, I learned a lot, both related to my studies, and about myself.
It was a fantastic experience living abroad. I got the experience of living abroad and traveling without giving up on my professional goals related to my studies.
The social aspect of being an exchange student has been an incredible experience as well, where I have met many new friends and been a part of several clubs, where I could meet both local and other international student who have turned out to become new friends for life.

Yes, I recommend
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My Dream cam true

When I applied for this program, I already knew that New Zealand is a great country. But since i'm here, it goes way beyond my expectations!
This country is amazing, there so many things to see that I'm afraid no to have enough time to visit all the things I'd like to visit.
People are really friendly, there always a new thing to discover around every corner.
Moreover, the education in New Zealand is great. I come from France, where the education is all about theory. When I started the university, I was very surprised that all the courses works in the way. All about discussions, reflexion.
I'm in New Zealand for one year, and I'm already afraid to come back to France because I love this country.
So, if I had to give you an advice, it would be this one "be curious, ton be afraid to ask and have fun !"

How can this program be improved?

Don't change anything, you're great !

Yes, I recommend
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Someplace to call Home

Victoria University of Wellington itself is it's own little community within it's small campus. I always found some of the buildings homey, and there's a great amount of places to be social. Sometimes it is hard because a lot of the classes will refer to things people who have lived in New Zealand all their life would know, or assume you have knowledge of that is specifically related to New Zealand - especially in classes higher than 100 level.
The library at VUW is excellent, and has so many resources that you'd need. The view can be a bit distracting, but watching the sunset while you're stuck studying makes it all a little easier.
Go outside of the University, and you realize you couldn't have chosen a better place to be. The city of Wellington is a major city, but it's not too large. If you need to escape the city life, you can find bits of nature in every direction. The public transportation makes it easy to get around, and if you don't want want to spend money everything you need is walkable. It's a very livable city, and the fact that the university is there makes it perfect. But it's also a city that doesn't revolve around the university, so you can easily escape the university life if you need.
Wellington is a place to call home, if you make the most of it.

Yes, I recommend


VUW is a very good university to go abroad with. Im an exchange student, and I have got good support and good housing through the university. They are always there to help with anything!
The school is very different from my home country, as there are internal assessments and several tests and assignments through out the year, and not just one final exam. But the lecturers have been very helpful in any confusion or if you have any questions.
Furthermore VUW is located very close to downtown Wellington, which is very nice, so you can literally walk everywhere. Also the housing through the university is located very nearby the school, so it only takes 10 minutes to walk there.

Yes, I recommend

About Victoria University of Wellington

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.

Victoria offers a...