Map NZ Map World

Certificate of University Preparation

In 2022, we will be offering a $2,500 CUP bursary for new applicants. This bursary is available to domestic students who successfully complete CUP and go on to enrol full-time in an undergraduate degree programme at the University of Waikato, in the next available intake. Find out more here.

The Certificate of University Preparation (CUP) is a one-trimester full-time programme taught at the University of Waikato College on the Hamilton campus.

Adult Learners

CUP is for students who don't initially meet the entry requirements for study at a New Zealand university, need additional academic or who left school sometime ago.

This programme will give you the equivalent of University Entrance and will help you transition into degree-level study.

You will take two compulsory and choose two electives from a range of options.

Apply to enrol

Key information

Study Locations:Hamilton
Start Dates: Trimester A (March), Trimester B (July), and Summer School (November)
Estimated Fees* (Domestic): $3552 full time per year
See if you're eligible for fees-free study in your first year
Estimated Fees* (International): $11,515 (four papers)
Area of Study:
*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.

Degree Planner

Roman Akroyd CUP made the transition from working to university life easier and I met similar students in the same position as me, which helped to ease my perception of university.

Read stories from other Certificate of University Preparation students

All applications will be assessed on a case by case basis if you don't meet one of the following entry criteria.

  • NCEA Level 3 30 credits in university-approved subjects with numeracy and literacy OR
  • NCEA Level 2 certificate and 12 credits each in three university-approved subjects with numeracy and literacy.  Students must not have been enrolled in a high school within the last 12 months  OR
  • Successful completion of a Level 3 or 4 tertiary certificate

When applying, please include a statement telling us a bit about yourself and what you would like to do after CUP.

Scholarships and prizes

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships

Find your scholarship

For a full-time student, there are up to 17 hours of class, and around 20 hours of self-directed study a week. Students are required to take four papers (two compulsory and two electives).

Classes are scheduled between 9 am and 6 pm Monday to Friday.

Students have the option to study part-time with approval.

Students are required to take a total of four papers: two compulsory and two electives. Options are listed below.

Compulsory papers

All papers are available in Trimester A, B, or C.

Elective papers

Any two elective papers are required. 


University of Waikato College - Te Kura Huanui

You can find out more about the University of Waikato College, as well as make an online enquiry if you have any questions about the pathway programmes.

Have a chat with one of our friendly advisers to help you plan your degree.

Phone: +64 7 838 4610
Email: [email protected]

Enquire Now