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Tertiary Education Providers in Palmerston North

Our city's wide range of education choices attracts students from all over New Zealand as well as further afield.

IPU New Zealand

IPU New Zealand study subjects have a strong international focus. IPU is particularly strong in teaching international and language subjects, offering programmes in international business, international relations, Japanese and English language, environment, ecotourism and international sports.

Many IPU students are from overseas, and learn English while studying their degree. The college also attracts New Zealand students who choose to study Japanese in IPU's culturally rich environment, either as a diploma or alongside their chosen degree. IPU also offers TESOL (Teaching English as a Second Oral Language) certificate and diploma courses.

IPU offers excellent support for international students in a linguistically and culturally appropriate setting. International students live in one of 10 halls of residence at IPU's campus, where they are provided with a safe and supportive "home away from home".  Local students are also encouraged to live on campus as it ensures they are making the most of the unique environment the college provides - for study, language, learning and fun.

Accommodation includes all meals and access to facilities on campus such as the gym, recreation centre, library, wireless internet and computer suite. Students are active not only in class but after class as they take part in a variety of activities provided on campus and in the Palmerston North community.

Massey University

Massey University's work defines New Zealand, enables New Zealand to compete globally and leads the way in research and technology development. With campuses in Palmerston North, Auckland and Wellington and a vibrant extramural programme, Massey is truly New Zealand's national university.

Palmerston North is home to Massey's original campus with a long history of research and teaching underpinning New Zealand's economy and society. It continues to be the leader in land-based sciences, the development, production and packaging of food, education, sports exercise and management, business, social work and social policy, Māori development, IT and engineering. And it is home to New Zealand's only veterinary science programme and university-based aviation school.

The Palmerston North campus is also a leader in sport and wellbeing, with world-class facilities, teaching and research expertise and the Massey University Sports Academy.

To find out more about Massey's research and teaching programmes check out the university's website.

New Zealand School of Export

The New Zealand School of Export is New Zealand's only provider of the Diploma of International Trade, which is internationally accredited by the International Association of Trade Training Organisations.

Delivered through distance learning, the diploma comprises eight highly practical modules focused on the fundamentals of international trade and is supported by a team of practitioners who are professionally qualified, as well as a network of highly experienced exporters. Exporters also have access to ELIS - our unique Export Library and Information Service staffed by a professional business librarian.

Exporters completing the diploma are eligible to apply for the designation of Certified International Trade Professional (CITP) which is recognised by the World Trade Center Association as the standard of excellence for global business professionals.

Te Wananga o Aotearoa

Te Wananga o Aotearoa offers a supportive Māori environment for study. Although anyone is welcome to study at Te Wananga o Aotearoa, the bicultural setting will have special value for those with Māori heritage and an interest in better understanding Māori culture.

Te Wananga offers study opportunities in a range of subjects, including te reo Māori, social work, business management and Māori traditional arts.

The Design School

The Design School is located in the central city and has been a tertiary educator in Palmerston North for over 20 years. Founded in 1993, The Design School is recognised as New Zealand’s leading foundation design school and is a pathway to a career in the creative industries. It offers a range of course options in graphic and fashion design and, as a small specialist school, can also tailor programmes to meet the needs of individual students.

Courses include a zero fees programme for Level 2 students to achieve NCEA, and dual enrolment options for students who wish to remain at secondary school and achieve NCEA in design. Its Level 3 and 4 programmes in advanced design provide students with the core skills to be successful in any of the creative design disciplines and progress on to the degree course of their choice.
Whether students are just starting out on a design pathway or looking to upskill or change their career path, the school has a course to suit anyone.

The Design School has three sites: in Palmerston North, Gisborne and Whangarei.


Universal College of Learning, commonly known as UCOL, offers a variety of subjects. Study options include nursing, hospitality, computing and photography. In addition to a traditional classroom learning experience, UCOL offers a range of online learning and blended delivery (some online and some live) courses. There is something for everyone, from comprehensive programmes of several years duration to short courses designed to help you upskill and improve your career prospects.

One of UCOL's strengths is recruiting instructors with industry experience. This makes the learning experience "real world" and practical for the students. UCOL is also proud to maintain relatively small class sizes, so students get the individual attention they need to succeed.

Other study options available in Palmerston North

Check out all of your options, including apprenticeships and private training programmes.

Careers NZ is a government agency that provides career and training advice. It lists dozens of private training providers in our area.