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Certificate of University Preparation

The Certificate of University Preparation (CUP) is a one semester course which will give you University Entrance as well as the tools and skills you need to confidently transition into degree-level study.

Adult Learners

The Certificate of University Preparation has been designed to help students who don't initially meet the entry requirements for study at a New Zealand university, need additional academic preparation, or left school some time ago and are looking for a career change.

This programme will introduce you to an adult learning situation including lectures, tutorials and workshops. CUP is an academically approved qualification that covers skills such as note taking, research, essay writing, time management and critical thinking.

Taught on the Hamilton campus, students have full access to University facilities and services, enabling you to adapt to this new environment prior to starting your degree. Following your successful completion of CUP, you'll be eligible for entry at all New Zealand Universities and most undergraduate degrees.


One semester full-time (four papers)

Available Dates:

  • A Semester - 26 February to 23 June 2018
  • B Semester - 9 July to 2 November 2018
  • Summer School - 5 November 2018 to 15 February 2019

Course requirements:

Students are required to take four papers, two compulsory and two electives. For a full-time student, there are up to 17 hours of class, and around 20 hours of self-directed study a week. Classes are scheduled between 8am and 6pm Monday to Friday.

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

Compulsory papers:

Paper Title Paper Code Semesters papers are available
Introduction to Study Skills FOUND001 A, B & C semesters
Introduction to Critical Thought and Expression FOUND002 A, B & C semesters
Paper Title Paper code Semesters papers are available
Bridging Arts FOUND003 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Social Sciences FOUND004 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Business Studies FOUND005 A & B Semesters
Bridging Accounting FOUND006 A & B semesters
Bridging Calculus FOUND007 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Mathematics and Statistics FOUND008 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Biology FOUND009 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Chemistry FOUND010 A, B & C semesters
Bridging Physics FOUND011 A, B & C semesters
Bridging General Science FOUND012 A, B & C semesters
Te Huarahi Bridging Māori FOUND013 Not offered in 2018

Apply to enrol

Key information

Years: 0.5
Study Locations: Hamilton
Start Dates: Semester A (February), Semester B (July), and Summer School (November)
Fees (Domestic): $3,247 (four papers) per year
See if you're eligible for fees-free study in your first year
Fees (International): $10,120 (four papers) per year
*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.

Greg Pearce I did calculus and basic maths papers, critical thought, and physics. It was all about learning to learn again, including those all-important soft skills, such as listening, note-taking and writing.

Read stories from other Certificate of University Preparation students

Entry requirements

Any school-leaver who has at least 30 NCEA Level 3 credits in university-approved subjects with numeracy and literacy will gain an automatic offer of entry to CUP for 2018.

Any other applicants will be decided on a case-by-case basis.  Please include a student statement with your application.

Scholarships and prizes

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

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships

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Waikato Pathways College- Te Huanui

Phone: 0800 WAIKATO or + 64 7 858 5600