Preferred candidates are first in line for a New Zealand Scholarship. To get a scholarship, preferred candidates must successfully apply for admission to a university or education institution.

What are preferred candidates and reserve candidates?

If we tell you that you are a preferred candidate, you are our first choice for a New Zealand Scholarship. But we only give New Zealand Scholarships to preferred candidates who get a place at an education institution and get a student visa.

Reserve candidates are on our waiting list for up to two months. If we cannot offer a New Zealand Scholarship to a preferred candidate, reserve candidates are next in the queue. Reserved candidates must check their email regularly for updates.

Admission and scholarship acceptance process

Here is a summary of the process and indicative timeframes.

  1. We make first contact: First, we contact the international admissions team at your preferred education institution. This takes place typically in August.
  2. You apply for admission: You must go to the website of your preferred education institution to apply for admission as an international student. You must start the admission process as soon as possible, because this process can take two months for undergraduate students and three months for post-graduate students. The admission process takes place typically in August-October.

    Your preferred education institution may ask for verified copies of all official documents, for example, a valid passport, birth certificate, government ID, academic records, English language test results. 

    Important note: You must respond promptly to all communication from your education institution. If you do not communicate with them promptly, we may remove you from the list of preferred candidates.

  3. You get an Offer of Place: If your education institution accepts your application for admission, they send you an Offer of Place.
  4. We send scholarship letter: We check the Offer of Place from your education institution. Then we send you a Scholarship Letter of Offer, offering you a New Zealand Scholarship.
  5. You accept scholarship within 30 days: You can log in to the New Zealand Scholarships online application system to read and accept your Letter of Offer. You have 30 days to accept the Scholarship Letter of Offer online. A signed Scholarship Letter of Offer is a legal contract between us and you.

    When you sign a Scholarship Letter of Offer, you must accept the scholarship conditions. (Please revisit this page in November 2018 for a copy of these conditions.)

    Exception for Kiribati paper forms: If you were eligible to apply using a paper application form, we will email your Scholarship Letter of Offer. Paper applicants must print, sign and scan the Scholarship Letter of Offer. Then they must email the signed electronic copy of the Scholarship Letter of Offer back to us.

  6. You fulfil the obligations of your scholarship: To keep your scholarship, at all times scholars must respect the rules laid out in their letter of offer and the Scholarships Code of Conduct.

NEXT:  8. Scholars: get ready to start your scholarship