• Students on the UC Campus. Photo credit: The University of CanterburyStudents on the UC Campus. Photo credit: The University of Canterbury
  • Inside one of the university buildings. Photo credit: The University of CanterburyInside one of the university buildings. Photo credit: The University of Canterbury
  • Relaxing in the student accommodation. Photo credit: The University of CanterburyRelaxing in the student accommodation. Photo credit: The University of Canterbury
  • Orientation Week fair. Photo credit: The University of CanterburyOrientation Week fair. Photo credit: The University of Canterbury
  • Engineering at the University of Canterbury. Photo credit: The University of CanterburyEngineering at the University of Canterbury. Photo credit: The University of Canterbury

The University of Canterbury (UC) was founded in 1873 by scholars from Oxford and Cambridge. It is in Christchurch, the largest city in the South Island of New Zealand.

Christchurch is between the South Pacific Ocean and the Southern Alps, giving students at UC access to all the amenities of a cosmopolitan, international city while allowing them to still be just a few minutes from beaches and the ocean, and within an hour’s drive of alpine mountains, national parks, ski fields, rivers, and wineries.

The University has five Colleges: Engineering, Education, Health and Human Development, Arts, Science, and Business and Law. In 2020, Times Higher Education recognised Canterbury as a top international university, praising its international outlook in teaching, research, and graduates’ job prospects.

UC’s programmes, teaching and research are all recognised internationally as being of the highest quality. In 2019, QS ranked UC in the top 1% of all universities globally, while the University’s programmes in linguistics and civil and structural engineering ranked in the world’s top 100. Canterbury’s programmes in finance, geography, geology, law, taxation and accounting all rank in the top 150 worldwide; programmes in political science, education, environmental science, philosophy, international relations, sociology and teacher education rank in the top 200.

The University has the most extensive network of field stations for research of any New Zealand university, with sites spread from Antarctica to Nigeria, and the country’s leading astronomical research facility at Mt John, Tekapo. In May 2020, UC astronomers in Tekapo announced a one-in-million discovery of a new ‘Super-Earth’ planet near the centre of the galaxy.

A world class education

Studying at the University of Canterbury gives students from all over the world the opportunity to gain a world class education and a pathway to a global career. Several UC programmes have professional accreditation in the UK, including all those taught by the Faculty of Engineering. Education graduates are able to receive registration in the UK, provided they first attain full qualified teacher status in New Zealand. The Bachelor of Speech and Language Therapy is also fully accredited in the UK.

Studying at UC also opens up opportunities to stay in New Zealand and work after graduating. Graduating with an undergraduate or postgraduate degree from UC makes students eligible to apply for up to three years of post study work rights in New Zealand and many international students spend time after graduating developing and building on their education by working in New Zealand.

Students come to the University from all over the world and quickly find campus life engaging, with world quality research, teaching facilities and a welcoming, inclusive community that involves over 160 clubs and societies. The University of Canterbury Students’ Association (UCSA) provides student support, events and entertainment.

Living in Christchurch

Christchurch is the largest city in the South Island and the most affordable in the country. It is a major city like no other and is becoming one of the most sustainable and navigable cities in New Zealand. Pedestrians, bicycles, e-scooters, outdoor malls, art installations, green spaces, and public transport now take primacy over the typical car-centric cities of the world. Christchurch has surf beaches on its eastern side and is close to the thermal pools at Hamner Springs, wineries, and the ski fields of the Southern Alps.

Christchurch is the second largest business centre in New Zealand and is the national centre of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). As Christchurch moves forward it needs talented, entrepreneurial and creative international students and graduates. Joining the UC family provides opportunities to become a member of a vibrant student body and an exciting community full of prospects.

Taught postgraduate options

In 2017, UC launched an exciting range of postgraduate programmes, to which the response has been fantastic. Taught masters, postgraduate and graduate diplomas are offered in academic areas from across the University’s five colleges. The new courses, which include the Master of Financial Engineering, the Master of Applied Data Science, and the Master of International Relations and Diplomacy, are professionally focused master’s degrees, most of which can be completed in around 12 months full-time study. Many of the new programmes have an internship or project embedded as an integral part of the course and in some cases enable a change of career direction as they may not require applicants to have an academic background in the same field of study. These courses are a select sample of the many study options on offer at UC and are designed to address some of New Zealand’s and Christchurch’s short and long term skills shortages.

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