January in Dunedin, New Zealand


Spend six weeks on the South Island, in the beautiful and historic university city of Dunedin. Choose from a wide range of courses in the areas of Business, Health, Humanities and Sciences. Whether you prefer creative arts or pristine wilderness, you’ll feel right at home on this program.

Program Overview

During your January in New Zealand program you will be a student at the University of Otago – one of the country’s oldest universities in the cultural capital of New Zealand’s South Island, Dunedin.

Your New Home – Within walking distance to beautiful beaches, bush-clad hills and tidal inlets, we just know you’re going to love your new home in Dunedin.

World-renowned University – The University of Otago is highly regarded for the quality of research produced by its students and recognised internationally for advancements in higher education. Courses are available to you in business, economics, geography, art history, modern languages, Maori studies, science and more during this seven-week short course.

The Great Outdoors – Hiking, skiing, water sports and bungee jumping are just some of what Dunedin has for you. It is a perfect gateway to Central Otago and Fiordland allowing you to explore the coastal location while enjoying a climate ideal for a wide range of sports and recreational activities.

Events – You may have the opportunity to attend the Dunedin Summer Festival, the New Zealand Masters Games and numerous cricket games during your stay.

The Cosmopolitan City – Due to historical, cultural and geographical reasons Dunedin is one of New Zealand’s major urban centres. With numerous shopping districts, eateries and plenty of nightlife you’ll always find something to keep you occupied.


Here are just some of the highlights to expect during your January in New Zealand program:

  • Beaches, mountains and wilderness right on your doorstep
  • Located in the heart of Lord of the Rings country
  • Live in a UNESCO-designated ‘Creative City of Literature’
  • Study courses at New Zealand’s oldest university
  • Festivals, sporting events and concerts
  • Diverse student body
  • 6-week program with approximate equivalent credit for one or two standard courses (10-20 credit points) at your home university in Australia
  • Variety of sporting facilities on campus

Choose Your Course

Our January in New Zealand program takes place over seven weeks between early-January and mid-February at the University of Otago. The University of Otago is well recognised for its world-class quality of research and teaching. It is one of the few universities in the world where the main activity of its host city, Dunedin, is education.

During your seven-week stay, you will take one or two courses, (each equivalent to a full-time academic course at your Australian university), subject to your university’s approval.

Academic Requirement: To qualify students must be in good academic standing with a GPA of 4.5 (out of 7) or equivalent. If your current GPA falls below the requirement please contact us to discuss your situation. We will do what we can to find the right program for you.

NOTE: Please be advised that the University of Otago requires a student’s official transcript when considering applicants. Ordering an official transcript from a university can take up to a few weeks. Students applying near or on the program’s application deadline should plan to have their official transcript on hand.

How to choose your courses: Now the fun part! As part of the application process you will be required to complete a Course Selection Worksheet. The instructions will guide you through the steps of choosing your courses.

Course load: One or two papers (courses) each equivalent to a full-time academic course in Australia.

  • Depending on your Australian university, you may refer to “courses” as “subjects” or “units”.
  • Each course/subject/unit you undertake on a CISaustralia program overseas is designed to be a full-time, semester course that has been condensed to fit into an intensive, short-term program. As such, for any 1 course you study abroad, you should receive the credit points for 1 full-time course/subject/unit at your Australian university.
  • Many universities work off of a 1-for-1 equivalency (1 course abroad = 1 course in Australia), but ultimately credit approval is the decision of your faculty and Australian university.
  • CISaustralia strongly recommends that you have any overseas courses pre-approved for credit before you depart for your program. Some documentation that may be useful are the course outline/syllabus, program overview, and the contact hours.
  • It is best to get 4-5 papers (courses) approved before you go to NZ. This gives you some flexibility in setting up your class schedule for the one or two courses you eventually take – and allows for a possible timetable clash. Think about courses required for your major, but also courses that fulfil your elective requirements.
  • Your CISaustralia Program Advisor can assist with any questions or details your university needs to make a decision.

While it is possible to undertake two courses during this program, due to the intense, condensed nature of the courses, it is not recommended. Additionally, due to the frequency of classes to fit condensed material into a shorter timeframe, it can be difficult to find two courses that do not having clashing timetables. If you wish to undertake two courses, the University of Otago will assess your transcript to ensure grades you have received are reflective of your ability to handle the intense workload.

Courses: View January 2019 course descriptions

Note: January 2020 courses will updated in August or September 2019.


While there are no excursions included on this program, there are a number of cultural activities and places of interest you can choose to visit on your own (at own expense).

Some suggestions in Dunedin and New Zealand include:

  • First Church, Dunedin
  • Dunedin Railway Station
  • Dunedin Botanic Gardens
  • Otago Peninsula
  • Hobbiton
  • Lake Taupo
  • Abel Tasman National Park
  • Milford Sound
  • Queenstown


Dunedin will be your host city during this January in New Zealand program. Located at the southern tip of the South Island, Dunedin is a mid-sized city with enough going on to ensure you make the most of your time abroad.

Dunedin is one of the adventure capitals of the world! Dunedin and its surrounding hinterland offers world-class hiking, skiing, water sports, bungee jumping and adventure tourism, as well as incredible landscapes. And don’t forget to hang out with the locals and help them cheer on the local team in one the many games of rugby union (unless they are playing Australia that is)!

The University

Founded in 1869, the University of Otago is only a short walk away from the bustling city centre. Known for its stellar academics that cater to students in medical, biomedical, biological and natural science fields, it also has many opportunities for those studying arts, law and business.

Twenty percent of Dunedin’s population is made up of university students with 1,000 of the 20,000 being international students from over 100 different countries. The city literally revolves around the university.

There are also plenty of opportunities to join in many different events and activities at the University and within the city! Over 100 sports, arts, cultural and faith groups are supported by the University’s Student Association (OUSA).


Students will stay in fully catered, on-campus university dormitory-style accommodation.

Students have their own room with central heating, king single bed, book shelf, wardrobe, chair, desk, drawers, curtains and rubbish bin – all the basics. Sheets and a pillow case are provided along with a weekly linen service.

Internet is included within your accommodation – 90% of rooms have wireless internet and 10% require a LAN internet connection.

Three meals per day are included in the package. There is also a dining hall, gym, meeting / common rooms and, depending on the time of the year, various social activities.

Please note: the exam period for Otago’s Summer School is the week that first-year university students will be moving into their housing for the semester. Because of this, students will be required to vacate their housing and move into alternate housing for the last week of the program (typically a different dorm room). The on-site team at Otago will be able to assist and provide further information when the time comes for you to move.

Program Fee & Dates

January 2020
Note: Program fees listed below are for Australian citizens only. If you are an international student (i.e. non-Australian citizen), please contact us for program fees.
Application Deadline02 December 2019
Arrival Date04 January 2020
Departure Date20 February 2020
Program Fee A$ 5,599 - 6,599
OS-HELP A$ 6,791


Program fees include the following:
  • Pre-departure guide and session
  • Airport pick up
  • University of Otago orientation
  • Academic advising
  • Tuition fees
  • Meals – 3 meals per day
  • Accommodation
  • On-site support
  • Health and medical insurance (if requested)
  • CISaustralia support services before, during and after the program
  • Financial advice
  • Assistance with travel arrangements
  • University of Otago official transcript
  • CISaustralia Certificate of Completion

What is not included:

  • Flights
  • Travel insurance
  • Visa fees
  • Vaccinations (if required)
  • Meals (unless mentioned above)
  • Extra travel/excursions (other than those mentioned above)

CISaustralia reserves the right to alter fees and inclusions at any time due to currency fluctuations and / or changes made by our partner universities.

Dates are for reference only and are subject to change. Please do not book flights until you have received the confirmed dates in your acceptance paperwork.

Adventure Awaits

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