Best New Zealand Universities Without IELTS

Best New Zealand Universities Without IELTS

Best New Zealand Universities Without IELTS
Rojina Raut

New Zealand is a popular study destination since several of its universities are among the best in the world, according to the World University Rankings. Many English-taught courses are available in New Zealand for foreign students because it is an English-speaking state. Students take examinations like the IELTS and TOEFL to demonstrate their language competency and progress in English-language learning programs.

Some options are available to you if you want to pursue higher education in New Zealand but have yet to take an English proficiency exam like the IELTS, which is sometimes necessary. This blog compiles the top options from the universities where you can enrol to take additional examinations you must be familiar with to study in New Zealand without IELTS.

Without IELTS, you can likely enrol in a New Zealand university. Without IELTS, students can study in New Zealand by meeting one of the several requirements, such as:

  • Make a different evaluation
  • Learn English at a university or school

How to study without IELTS in New Zealand?

  • Regardless of the board or country of study, applicants must show documentation that they attended an English-medium school for at least classes 8 through 12 and that the teaching language was English.
  • Additionally, you can provide documentation that you have completed 3 years of upper-division schooling in English or 5 years of primary education in English.
  • The New Zealand Immigration authorities conduct a special interview for students without IELTS to apply for a study visa in New Zealand.
  • Few colleges also interview prospective students to determine their level of English ability.
  • You may also be enrolled on any university if you submit the results of any other recognized English proficiency test, such as the TOEFL or PTE.

Alternative English proficiency tests to study in New Zealand

Duolingo English Test

The Duolingo English Test is a brand-new English language competency test accessible to students from other countries. Dozens of universities in the UK, USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and other countries accept this home-administered test.


English as a Foreign Language Test is known as TOEFL. It ranks among the most well-known English exams ever created. Multiple nations and universities utilise it for admissions. Foreign students can also take the TOEFL iBT from home using the TOEFL iBT Home Edition.


The Pearson Test of English is known as PTE. The PTE exam is an electronic AI-based assessment that evaluates a candidate's reading, listening, speaking, and writing skills. There are two different PTE test types: PTE Academics and PTE Business.

Eligibility Criteria to Study in New Zealand Without IELTS

  • Evidence shows you attended an English-only school from at least eighth through twelfth grade with English as the primary language of instruction.
  • Evidence proving you completed 3 years of upper secondary education or 5 years of primary education in English during your academic years.
  • Desire to attend an interview for universities that require you to do so to assess your language skills without IELTS.
  • Submission of test results, if valid, for PTE and TOEFL.

Documents Required to study in New Zealand without IELTS

In addition to the standard prerequisites for studying in New Zealand, various additional documents must be shown by students if IELTS is optional. If you don't have IELTS, you'll need the following supplementary documents to study in New Zealand.

  • Student grade reports from the schools demonstrate that English was the primary language of instruction.
  • If not, grade records from Grades 8 through 12 demonstrate that English was the language of instruction in the higher secondary.
  • A genuine certificate attests to the student taking all the tests listed on the mark sheets above.
  • If required, results of other language competence exams such as the TOEFL, PTE, CPE, ESOL, CAE, etc.

Top Universities to Study in New Zealand without IELTS

For international students, many of New Zealand's leading universities provide alternatives to the IELTS and other language competence exams. The following are some of the top universities that accept overseas students without IELTS for study in New Zealand:

  • University of Canterbury
  • University of Auckland
  • Lincoln University
  • University of Otago
  • Unitech Institute of Technology
  • Southern Institute of Technology
  • Victoria University of Wellington
  • Eastern Institute of Technology
  • International College of Linguistics
  • Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology

University of Auckland

International students who meet the requirements can enrol at the University of Auckland. Although IELTS is the test of choice for determining English proficiency, other tests such as TOEFL, PTE, the University of Auckland Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP), the University of Auckland English Pathway for Undergraduate Studies (EPUS), etc. are also accepted by the university. 

IELTS results are mandatory for several programmes, including the Master of Social Work (Professional), even though most programs accept students based on the aforementioned criteria.

Lincoln University

Lincoln University requires students to show confirmation of their command of the English language to enrol in any degree. For this purpose, the university recognises the results of English proficiency exams other than the IELTS. Tests like the TOEFL, PTE, NZCEL, and others are approved. Lincoln University also offers a separate English Language Program. Students who complete this program satisfactorily are excused from all English language prerequisites.

University of Canterbury

If a student still needs an IELTS score but wants to study in New Zealand, the University of Canterbury offers alternatives. Foreign students can provide documentation that they have completed an educational qualification primarily taught in English in a nation where English is the dominant language to demonstrate their language ability. The University of Canterbury also accepts results from English proficiency exams such as the TOEFL, PTE, CPE, and CAE, in addition to the IELTS.

Unitec Institute of Technology

For students who want to study in New Zealand without taking the IELTS exam, the Unitec Institute of Technology recognises the most globally renowned English proficiency exams, including the TOEFL, PTE, CPE, and CAE. It offers a specialised English language curriculum for students who need help to meet the aforementioned requirements.

University of Otago

The University of Otago provides overseas students with several alternatives to IELTS for demonstrating their English language competency. Most other English proficiency test results are accepted, including those from the TOEFL, PTE, University of Auckland Foundation Certificate in English for Academic Purposes (FCertEAP), CPE, and CAE.

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