University of Canterbury
Christchurch, NEW ZEALAND
University Info | College of Engineering Info | Exchange Student Info
- QS World university rankings rate UC in the top 1 per cent of universities worldwide for engineering and technology. Our Civil and Natural Resources Engineering Department is ranked in the top 100 worldwide. Chemical and Electrical and Electronic Engineering are both ranked in the top 250.
- All of our degrees are accredited by Engineering New Zealand, formerly known as the Institution of Professional Engineers New Zealand and therefore recognised as meeting the academic requirements for professional engineers. Engineering New Zealand is a signatory to the Washington Accord, making an Engineering degree from UC an internationally recognised qualification.
- UC is the only university in New Zealand to offer Natural Resources Engineering, Forest Engineering and Forestry Science.
- UC offers a comprehensive range of courses, including several that you’re unlikely to come across in your home country, such as Maori language and culture, Antarctic Studies and Forestry. UC is the only university in New Zealand that has a School of Forestry.
- Study outside the classroom - UC has the highest number of field stations off campus and many Science courses include field trips and often feature New Zealand’s unique flora and fauna, geology, biodiversity and marine life.
- Community service learning: CHCH 101: Strengthening Communities through Social Innovation* is a for-credit course incorporating service learning. Building on the community spirit of the famous Student Volunteer Army, you will conduct up to 20 hours of community service related to social innovation and volunteerism in Christchurch.
- Canterbury Engineering The Future - $142 million dollar project for establishing state of art laboratories and teaching facilities comparable to top Engineering schools around the world. UC is on the doorstep of a living laboratory with the $60 billion dollar rebuild project in downtown of Christchurch which provides the opportunity of hands on learning.
- You can ski and surf in the same day - Christchurch is on the doorstep of a huge outdoor ‘playground’ — with nine ski fields within a two-hour drive and beautiful beaches close by.
- The University of Canterbury Students’ Association (UCSA) runs more than 150 clubs and societies covering almost every interest such as Snow Sports Club, Tramping (Hiking) Club and ENSOC (Engineering). Canterbury University Snow Sports Club (CUSSC) has their own lodge at Temple Basin Ski Area.
Established in 1873 by scholars of Oxford and Cambridge Universities and ranked in the world’s top 1% of universities (QS World University Rankings 2018) and was the first New Zealand university to receive the prestigious QS 5-star ranking for overall excellence. UC offers world recognised programmes and facilities, including the most extensive network of field stations of any New Zealand university. UC has the highest proportion of academics conducting both teaching and research of any New Zealand university (The TEC Performance Based Research Fund Assessment, 2012). There is a range of facilities to support your study at UC: from modern lecture theatres to innovative learning hubs, from well-resourced libraries to computer suites and an Academic Skills Centre
Over 100 different programmes are offered across 5 Colleges (Arts, Business and Law, Education, Engineering and Science). Whatever your academic interests, UC has a broad selection of courses to choose from. UC offers a comprehensive range of courses, including several that you’re unlikely to come across in your home country, such as Maori language and culture, Antarctic Studies and courses in Aotearoa New Zealand and Pacific literature, history and politics. Whichever courses you choose, you’ll study alongside Kiwi students. Community service learning opportunity provides the opportunity to get involved in our community. CHCH 101: Strengthening Communities through Social Innovation* is a for-credit course incorporating service learning. Building on the community spirit of the famous Student Volunteer Army, you will conduct up to 20 hours of community service related to social innovation and volunteerism in Christchurch.
Vibrant student community
Students on campus have a choice of modern accommodation and access to all the amenities of a fully equipped student village. UC features a thriving student association plus over 150 student led clubs catering to a huge range of interests. UC students are part of one of the most active students’ associations in the country.
See how our Study Abroad and Exchange students have experienced New Zealand with their own photos and videos in our Youtube gallery.
Information for incoming exchange students such as selection of courses, costs, insurance, accommodation, etc. is available on the Incoming Exchange Programme website.
Terms of Exchange
- Undergraduate students: Accepted
- Graduate students: Accepted
- Computer Science majors: Accepted
Note: Undergraduate students are preferred. Postgraduate students must provide a list of courses they wish to take with their application. Admission to UC may depend on entry to courses.
- Students must have completed at least one year of university study at a recognised university or college.
- Students should have a grade point average (GPA) of 2.8 or higher (on a scale of 4.0), or a B average or higher
English Proficiency Requirements
- Minimum TOEFL iBT score – 80, with a minimum score of 19 reading, writing and listening
- Minimum IELTS Academic score – 6.0, with no band lower than 5.5
- Minimum TOEFL iBT score – 90, with a minimum score of 20 in writing
- Minimum IELTS Academic score – 6.5, with no band lower than 6.0
More information on English language requirements can be found on this website.
Fall, Spring, or Academic Year
Academic Calendar | Semester Dates (including exam period)
- Fall: mid-July to mid-November
- Spring: mid to late February to late June
UC Semester 1 2019 (February intake)
International Welcome (Orientation): Monday 11 February 2019, students should arrive no later than 10 February 2019*.
Enrollment for all international students: in the same week as the International Welcome.
Lectures commence on: 198February 2019
Exams end on: 22 June 2019
UC Semester 2 2019 (July intake)
International Welcome (Orientation): 8 July 2019, students should arrive no later than 7 July 2019*
Enrollment for all international students: in the same week as the International Welcome
Lectures commence on: 15 July 2019
Exams end on: 9 November 2019
* See information on housing and move-in date below.
Restricted Disciplines and Courses
There are some courses which may not be available to Exchange students. These include Fine Arts (studio art) courses, teacher education courses (Education courses with EDUC course code under the Bachelor of Arts schedule are open to Exchange students), Journalism courses, 200 level LAWS courses, distance courses, courses in MBA and other Executive Development Programmes, and clinical practice courses. Some Physical Education and Sport Coaching courses may require police checks. Communication Disorders are open to students who meet pre-requisites except for the clinical practice courses. Field work courses in Social Work are not open to Exchange students. Entry to other theory courses will be considered case-by‐case basis and approval from Social Work will be required.If you need to know in advance whether you are able to take a particular course, please include a course list in your exchange application.
- Civil Engineering and Natural Resources Engineering ‐ Students wishing to study Civil and Natural Resource Engineering shouldprovide a list of intended courses with their application.
- Engineering ‐ It is also recommended that students applying to other engineering disciplines provide a list of courses with their application.
- Some other courses are limited entry and may have additional entry requirements. Please contact the International Mobility Coordinator or Officer if students have enquiries about course restrictions.
- If you are a postgraduate student, you must provide a complete list of courses you would like to study.
- If you meet the general admission requirements you will be granted admission to the University first as per usual and your courses will then be sent to the relevant Engineering department for a decision as to whether you are able to take your selected courses. The International Relationships Office will then advise you as to which courses have been approved.
Timetable Planner: This is a searchable course timetable (click on the web link under "Timetable Planner.") It allows anyone to enter combinations of courses and preview how they would fit into a timetable before the enroll at UC.
In Arts, Science and Commerce, the undergraduate (Bachelor) degree is a 3 year degree at Canterbury. This means that 300 level courses are the most advanced undergraduate courses in these areas. 400 level courses in these disciplines are graduate courses and undergraduate exchange students are not eligible to take 400 level courses, unless students have been granted admission to a Postgraduate Certificate of Proficiency.
Note, however, that some professional degrees such as Forestry, Speech and Language Therapy, Social Work and Engineering are 4 year degrees and 400 level courses in these areas are therefore classed as undergraduate courses. Exchange students may be permitted to take 400 level courses in these disciplines if they have the necessary pre-requisites and the approval of the relevant department.
Exchange students are allowed to take courses across various departments, provided the courses are open to exchange students, they meet the pre-requisite requirements of the courses and places are available.
Workload per Semester
A normal workload for one semester is 60 points (or 120 points for one year). Minimum course load is 45 points per semester (90 points per year) and the maximum load is 75 points per semester (150 points per year).
Additional Application Materials
Students nominated by IIE to UC must submit an official transcript, nomination letter from home university, a list of courses they wish to take at UC (including back-up courses) and evidence on English language ability if English is not the student’s first language. Information on the English language requirements is available online.
Recommendation letter from a professor or academic staff:
UC usually notifies students the decision of their applications 4 weeks after the applications are received.
The usual accommodation for Exchange students is at UC Accommodation Student Village and students can find information on the Study Abroad and Exchange accommodation package website. Students must complete a separate accommodation application online before the application deadline. Detailed information on the package including fees, how to apply, arrival dates, etc. is available at the website above.
Accommodation on campus is guaranteed provided that you apply by the deadline (you must apply for accommodation online by the deadline and also return all subsequent accommodation contracts by the required deadlines in order to secure the room). When making travel plans, please also refer to the above accommodation website for the earliest move-in dates and latest move out dates for on campus accommodation, since if you arrive earlier than the move in dates you would need to find temporary accommodation until the move-in time.
Estimated Cost of Living
Cost of Living
Costs vary but you should budget for approximately $7,500 NZD per semester.
The accommodation facilities are usually self-catered apartments. Students can purchase meal plans and information about this can be found on the Accommodation website.
We offer accommodation packages to exchange students and information on the cost of the package can be found on the Accommodation package's website.
Other administrative fees
Late application fee if students are not able to complete International Enrollment by the required date.
Please note that exchange students are required to pay non-tuition fees such as course related costs for field trips.
Office Responsible for International Exchange Students
International Relationships Office | email@example.com
The gateway to the South Island and located in the province of Canterbury, Christchurch is a recreational hot spot within easy reach of all the fun and adventure the region has to offer. With a population of around 480,000, greater Christchurch is the largest city and economic centre of the South Island.
Vibrant entertainment options
Christchurch has a busy calendar of events — from art exhibitions and cultural celebrations to sporting events and music festivals. There are over 900 restaurants, cafés and bars to sample, many of them close to UC. Christchurch is also home to theatres, shopping malls, and over 740 city parks.
Unbeatable outdoor lifestyle
Christchurch’s location on the coast makes it perfect for water sports, with six swimming beaches within 30 minutes’ drive from UC. There are a number of rivers and lakes for other water sports, including the picturesque Avon River which runs right through the city. The city’s Port Hills are popular for mountain biking, walking and rock climbing. There are over 22 mountain bike tracks and Hagley Park in the centre of the city has 165 hectares of park-like grounds.
The Canterbury region
Canterbury has more ski areas than anywhere in the Southern Hemisphere, making it a winter playground. The province is home to the historic French town of Akaroa, the thermal resort of Hanmer Springs, and the seaside town of Kaikoura — all a few hours’ drive from campus.