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Bachelor of Science

If you're intrigued by the natural world around you, or enjoy understanding how things work, Waikato's Bachelor of Science (BSc) is what you're looking for. Putting into practice what you learn in your lectures is a major part of this degree. You will gain hands-on experience with some of the most up-to-date and high-tech computing facilities and laboratory equipment.

We also take you right to the source, with field trips that might include an overnight stay to gather geothermal samples or a week-long bush camp to examine a region's flora.

The range of career options available to Bachelor of Science (BSc) graduates isn't surprising when you consider the nature of the degree. It is extremely flexible so you can combine papers to suit your strengths and interests. We keep it general in the first year so that your choice, when you do come to specialise, is an informed one. Transferring from this degree to the BCMS(Hons) is also possible at any stage in your degree.

The Bachelor of Science can be taken either through the Faculty of Science & Engineering or the Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences, depending on your desired major/s.

This qualification may also be studied at the University of Waikato Tauranga, with a major in Biological Sciences or Applied Computing, by first enrolling with Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology.

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The University of Waikato’s School of Science is home to a suite of well-equipped laboratories. Most science papers include weekly laboratory sessions, giving you the chance to put what you’ve learnt in lectures and tutorials into practice. Our undergraduate students also have the opportunity to use complex research equipment and techniques, such as NMR spectroscopy and DNA sequencing.

The computing facilities at the University of Waikato are among the best in New Zealand, ranging from phones and tablets for mobile application development to cluster computers for massively parallel processing. Computer Science, Mathematics and Data Analytics students will also have 24 hour access to computer labs equipped with all the latest computer software.

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Key information

Years: 3.0
Points: 360
BSc Study Locations: Hamilton; Tauranga
Papers offered differ by location. The Catalogue of Papers has full location info.
Start Dates: Semester A (February) and Semester B (July)
Fees (Domestic): $6,922 per year
See if you're eligible for fees-free study in your first year
Fees (International): $28,290 per year
Entry Requirements: Undergraduate International
*Tuition fees shown are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.

Career opportunities

  • Animal Welfare Officer
  • Chemical Analyst
  • Environmental Scientist
  • Laboratory Manager
  • Software Developer
  • Statistician
  • Web Architect

Aaron Huesser Growing up in rural Taranaki, Aaron developed an appreciation and passion for the environment. Surrounded by natural energy producers he also gained an enthusiasm for the energy industry, which sparked his interest in the earth sciences.

Read stories from other students

If you have achieved University Entrance through NCEA you will be accepted into this degree.

Discretionary Entrance

Applicants will normally be granted Discretionary Entrance if they have gained a total of at least 80 credits in NCEA at Level 2 in four subjects equivalent to the approved subjects for University Entrance in NCEA at Level 3, with a minimum grade of Merit in at least half of the achievement standards for each subject. Applicants must also have satisfied the numeracy and literacy requirements of University Entrance.

Applications must be supported by the applicant’s school principal or a University Student Recruitment Adviser.

Special Admission

Applicants will be considered on a case by case basis. Applicants 20 years old and over by the beginning of their programme of study will be accepted, except those that are clearly insufficiently prepared for academic study. Preference may be given to applicants who have successfully completed appropriate Waikato Pathways College bridging programmes.

Admission at entrance level or with credit from previous study

Applicants will be considered on a case by case basis bearing in mind patterns of admission which have applied in previous years and the standing of the qualification in New Zealand.


Individual papers may require previous experience in this subject. However, there may be other pathways that you can take to study in this field. Please seek advice from the Faculty of Science & Engineering or the Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences.

New to Waikato? The International Excellence Scholarship is worth up to $10,000.

Anne Shannon Scholarship  Closed

For students who are studying towards a degree with a major in Biological Sciences or are enrolled in a specified programme including a major in Biological Sciences at the University of Waikato. The scholarship will have a value of $2,500 per year for two years.

Beef + Lamb Undergraduate Scholarship  Closed

For students who are studying towards a bachelors degree and/or an honours year in agriculture, science (including food technology), business and social science disciplines. These disciplines may lead to careers in the livestock, meat and related agribusiness sectors. The Scholarship is for up to four years and will pay full annual tuition fees, up to $5,000 per year.

Brian Perry Charitable Trust Undergraduate Scholarship in Science & Engineering  Closed

For students who are enrolled in the second year of full-time study towards an undergraduate degree, in the Faculty of Science and Engineering at the University of Waikato. The scholarship will have a value of up to $5,000.

Computer Science Undergraduate Scholarship  Open

For students who are currently in Year 12 or Year 13 at a New Zealand secondary school. Candidates must be intending to enrol full-time in a BCMS(Hons), BSc, BSc(Tech), BE(Hons) or BDes degree, in one of the computing streams, at the University of Waikato. Candidates will sit a Scholarship exam, which will be held on 19 and 20 October 2018.
Closing Date: The Scholarship exam will be held on 19 and 20 October 2018

Statistics/Data Analytics Fees Scholarship  Closed

For students intending to enrol full-time in their second or third year of study towards an undergraduate degree, majoring in Statistics and/or Data Analytics, in the Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences. The Scholarship will have a value of up to $2,500.

University of Waikato HEBUST Scholarship  Closed

For students transitioning from HEBEI University of Technology (China) to the University of Waikato to undertake full-time study towards a Bachelor of Science majoring in Materials Science. Applicants must have achieved at least a B+ Grade Point Average over the last 1.5 years of study at HEBEI University of Technology. The value of the award will be up to $15,000.

Waikato Graduate Women Educational Trust Dame Jocelyn Fish Award  Closed

For female students who have been New Zealand Citizens or permanent residents for at least 2 years, and are enrolled full-time in the second year or above of a first degree, majoring in a non-traditional field for women (e.g. computer science, engineering, mathematics, The value of the award is $1,000 and is tenable for the course of the degree up to a maximum of three years.

Looking for more scholarships?

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Conjoint degree options

This degree can also be taken as a conjoint.

In the Faculty of Science & Engineering, entry into an honours year in Biological Sciences, Chemistry, Earth Sciences or Materials and Processing is by invitation only to exceptional students.

The Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences also offers a one-year BSc Honours programme in Computer Science, Mathematics or Data Analytics. You may also transfer into the four-year Bachelor of Computing and Mathematical Sciences (Honours).

The Bachelor of Science is a practical degree with laboratory and/or field work associated with most subjects.

In some papers you will be able to take part in field trips to local beaches, forests and lakes to conduct sampling and learn first-hand about the environments you are studying.

For some science subjects, you also have the opportunity to undertake an independent or small team research project (special topics paper) which may be laboratory or literature-survey based.



Faculty of Science & Engineering
Phone: +64 7 838 4625 / 0800 438 254

Faculty of Computing & Mathematical Sciences
Phone: +64 7 838 4322 / 0800 924 528