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Distance programmes and papers

The University offers a variety of programmes and papers through Distance Learning. Instruction is given through printed material, web-conference sessions, the Internet, and residential schools and workshops.

Further information can be found in the Distance Learning Prospectus.

In addition to Otago’s formal distance papers listed below, the University has approved a selection of additional papers to be temporarily delivered online to support students impacted by COVID‑19. For a list of these papers, and eligibility requirements, see the online learning pages.

Subject areas available via Distance Learning

Follow the links to departmental and paper/programme information.

* There is a block course, workshop or other component requiring you to be physically on-campus/on-site at some point during the course. Before applying for enrolment in these distance papers, please contact Student Experience for more information about the on-site activities should COVID-19 Alert Levels change.

Undergraduate and graduate subject areas

Aquaculture and Fisheries

  • AQFI 301 Field Methods in Applied Marine Science



Computer Science

English and Linguistics

  • ENGL 251 Special Topic: Creative Writing for Games and Interactive Media
  • ENGL 354 Monsters and Monstrosity in Medieval Literature*
  • ENGL 469 Writing Revolutions: How Modernism Changed the World
  • ENGL 590 Research Dissertation
  • LING 140 Language, Brain, and Being Human

Human Nutrition

  • HUNT 141 Understanding Human Nutrition

Materials Science and Technology 

  • MATS 204 Treasure or Trash: Sustainability of Materials

Media, Film and Communication

  • MFCO 224 Studying Selfies: Celebrity, Surveillance and Cyberspace


Religious Studies

Social Work (third and fourth years only)

Not available to students studying outside New Zealand.




Postgraduate subject areas


  • ANTH 423 Bodies, Technologies and Medicines


Addiction and Co-existing Disorders

Aviation Medicine, including Aeromedical Retrieval and Transport


  • BIOE 404 Medical Devices and Technology
  • BIOE 405 Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cells


Business Administration

Business Studies

Chemical Hazards

  • HAZA 401 Management of Chemical Hazards

Child Health

Computer Science

Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy

Continence Management


Digital Health

Education (not initial teacher education)


Forensic Psychiatry

General Practice

See also Primary Health Care, and Travel Medicine)

Health Management

Please note that not all PUBH papers are available via Distance Learning, and the qualifications cannot be completed entirely online.

Higher Education

Human Nutrition

Human Sexuality and Health

Interpersonal Psychotherapy



  • MART 330 Special Topic: Current Issues in International Branding
  • MART 448 Advanced Business Analytics
  • MART 449 Creative Marketing for Behaviour Change, Sustainability and Social Good

Medical Technology*

Mental Health

Musculoskeletal Management

Musculoskeletal Medicine


Obesity Prevention and Management

Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology

Occupational Health and Safety

Occupational Medicine (refer to 'Aviation Medicine')

Oral Health


Pain and Pain Management

Peace and Conflict Studies

Perinatal Mental Health



Primary Health Care

Public Health

Please note that not all PUBH papers are available via Distance Learning, and the qualifications cannot be completed entirely online.

Radiation Therapy


Religious Studies* (depending on paper selection)

Rural and Provincial Hospital Practice

Science Communication

Social Work

Sport and Exercise Medicine

Surgical Anatomy

Sustainable Business


Travel Medicine


This information on this page reflects Subject Areas and Programmes Available via Distance Learning for 2023. It is manually updated following the publication of the Distance Learning Prospectus each year. As such, there may be a brief period during which the information on this page is out of date while it is updated.