Trimester Exchange

Explore the world, experience new cultures and meet pals from around the globe! Tick off your OE experience with Waikato.

Our students can chose from a wide variety of universities around the world. Talk to our team today to find out what options are available and how we can help bring your plans to life.


Where in the world do you want to go?

We have over 50 exchange partners in 20+ countries!!

Search through our programme pages in our Global Experiences portal - filter by subject/area of study, duration, language and many more to find programmes that suit your academic needs.

Each programme page has key information on available papers, housing, costs and budgeting, and some also have student testimonials you can read!

Once you have had a look at your options, get in touch with us so we can answer any questions you have. We will also help guide you through the next steps.

Explore Exchange Programmes

Who's eligible for an exchange?

Students who have studied at the University of Waikato for at least one-year and achieved at least a B grade average are eligible to apply for a trimester exchange.

While most programmes are for undergraduate students, some exchange partner universities will accept postgraduate students taking taught papers.

Both domestic and international students can apply for a trimester exchange.

Our exchange programme lets you earn the same points and pay the same fees as you normally would while studying at one of our partner universities around the world.

Transfer your points

Points you earn during your exchange will be transferred over to your Waikato qualification. The maximum number of points you can transfer per trimester is 60, which is equivalent to the standard trimester workload at the University of Waikato.


When you go on exchange, you will be enrolled as a University of Waikato student. This means you will pay tuition fees to Waikato, not the host university. Instead of being billed for four individual papers (60 points), you are billed a fixed exchange fee which is the average of four Waikato papers at your level of study. That means tuition is the same as you would pay staying in NZ! However, you’ll be responsible for other costs including airfares, overseas living costs, accommodation, and course materials.

There are funding options available though. If you are currently eligible for a student loan and/or student allowance support you will be eligible for these while on your exchange. There are also some scholarships and awards available.

Check out our Scholarships, Funding, and StudyLink page to learn more.

When to go on exchange

The best time to go on an exchange will vary depending on your degree and your remaining time until graduation.

You can go on an exchange for one or two trimesters, depending on your programme.

Check out our Academic Planning page to get the information you need to know to plan your exchange.

If you have any questions about courses and timing, please book an appointment to talk to one of our advisors.

Applying for a trimester exchange

Applications are made up of a number of sections. There are some sections that will take more time to complete. We have provided an overview below of some of these sections.

For a better overview of the process and instructions on how to get started, check out our step-by-step guide on how to apply.

  • Passport Information
    You will be required to upload a scan of your current passport. If you are an NZ permanent resident visa holder, you will also need to include a scan of your visa.
  • Host Institution Choice
    This is where you list the three host institutions where you would like to study.
  • Course Interests 
    You must list a minimum of five potential courses for each university that you have listed within the 'Host Institution Choice' section. To do this, you will need to research the academic catalogue or class schedule at your host institution and work out which courses would be best suited to your University of Waikato degree.

    Please note: this isn't an official paper selection process and these listed papers are only used internally by the Global Experiences team. It is just to help you plan your Waikato Global Experiences and ensure the best academic fit for you!
  • Personal Statement
    You are required to write and upload an approximately 500-word statement that describes who you are, what you hope to achieve from your trimester exchange, your reasons for choosing a particular institution/internship and/or country, your representative capabilities for the University of Waikato and New Zealand, and any other information you wish to include.
  • Scholarship Application/s
    If you are eligible for any exchange scholarships, the deadline is the same as the trimester exchange application round. Make sure you apply for the relevant scholarship through MyWaikato, alongside completing and submitting your trimester exchange application.
  • References
    You are required to have both an academic and general reference listed in your application. It is important to first ask your contacts if they would be willing to act as a reference and complete a recommendation form for you. Once this is confirmed, you enter their contact details within the application.