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ValueAccommodation fees in a Residential College (at least $16,000) plus tuition fees (if not eligible for Fees Free) in First Year. $7,000 towards tuition fees in Second and Third Year (subject to conditions) = >$30,000
Number OfferedVaries
Opening Date1 July
Closing Date15 August


Established by the University of Otago Council in 2011 to assist new undergraduate students who have demonstrated outstanding academic potential and leadership capabilities to attend the University of Otago.

General eligibility criteria

Application for all Entrance Scholarships are normally open to students who meet the requirements of 1.1 OR 1.2, AND 2. Those who fit within 3 are ineligible.

1.1 Are New Zealand citizens, New Zealand Residence Class Visa Holders, Australian citizens or Australian permanent residents with domestic fee status;


1.2 International students who have completed Year 12 and/or have completed or are in the process of completing Year 13 at a New Zealand school, or an equivalent foundation level course at a New Zealand tertiary institution.


2 Are intending to enrol or have enrolled for the first time for first-year (100-level papers), full-time degree-level, undergraduate study at the University of Otago.


3 Those who have studied more than 0.4 EFTs at any University or tertiary institution at degree-level or higher are not normally* eligible.

Specific eligibility criteria for this Scholarship

In addition to the above eligibility criteria, applicants must have:

  • Involvement in activities at school, in the community, and/or in sport and cultural pursuits in which leadership has been shown.
  • Achieved NCEA Level 2 endorsed with excellence, or equivalent.

Application process

All applications for Entrance Scholarships are done through eVision, the University's student management system. In order to apply for a scholarship, you will be required to go through the first stages of enrolment at the University of Otago to access the Entrance Scholarship online application.

In the Entrance Scholarship application, it is recommended that to be considered for this scholarship, you should have completed the Leadership section of the application, and it is recommended that the Extra-curricular and Academic Achievements sections are also completed. For more information on the application process, as well as step-by-step instructions, please visit the 'Apply for a scholarship' webpage:

Apply for a scholarship

Before going through the application process, it is important to ensure that you are adequately prepared to begin the online application. The things you will need to prepare for your application are listed on the scholarship application preparation webpage:

Scholarship application preparation

Selection of recipients

The Selection Panel, consisting of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor External Engagement in the chair, the Director of Planning and Funding, the Director of Campus and Collegiate Life Services, the Head of Schools' Liaison, the Manager, Undergraduate Entrance Scholarships, or their nominees, and up to four further nominees of the Scholarships Committee, shall consider the following factors in awarding the scholarships:

  • Academic ability; disciplines or subjects relevant to their proposed programme of study at University may be assessed (a minimum of NCEA Level 2 awarded with excellence, or equivalent, is normally required for consideration).
  • Demonstrated leadership potential.
  • Sporting and/or cultural involvement.
  • Contribution to the community.

Scholarship detail

The Scholarship Terms and Conditions can be found here:

Scholarship terms and conditions

In addition, following information applies to this Scholarship, subject to the specific provisions of the offer letter for the recipient:

  • Standard tenure is three years.
  • Year 1 – For the first year of study at the University of Otago, the scholarship will normally consist of a tuition fee waiver (if the recipient is ineligible for Fees Free or other tuition fee support) at the domestic fee status rate, and a fee waiver for the cost of accommodation in a University or University-affiliated residential college.
  • Year 1 - In instances where a recipient is not taking up the offer of accommodation in a University or University-affiliated residential college, the scholarship will normally consist of a tuition fee waiver at the domestic fee status rate (if the recipient is not eligible for Fees Free), and a $5,000 contribution to general living costs paid in installments after course confirmation.
  • Years 2 and 3 – A maximum payment of $7,000 for each of the second and third years comprising a tuition fee waiver at domestic fee status rate and a contribution to general living costs if tuition fees are less than $7,000 per annum, subject to satisfactory academic performance.
  • For recipients who accept the offer of the scholarship for study in 2022 onwards, tenure in years two and three normally** requires a GPA of 7.0 or better (A-) for the previous year, or admission to and successful progression within one of the University of Otago's professional programmes such as Dentistry, Law, Medical Laboratory Science, Medicine, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, or Surveying.
  • **Recipients may request continuation of their scholarship if their GPA is not at the required level by writing to the Manager, Undergraduate Entrance Scholarships ( asking that the Deputy Vice-Chancellor External Engagement approve continuation of the scholarship into year two or three. The Deputy Vice-Chancellor External Engagement will consider the following factors when making their decision (and may consider other things):    
    1. A written request received from the student, outlining why they would like some leniency in the GPA requirement. It is recommended that this request is received by 31 January.
    2. Evidence of sport or cultural activity performance and associated commitments, if relevant.
    3. Evidence of medical impairment, if relevant.
  • Please note that, unless an exception is specified, other University of Otago Entrance Scholarships cannot normally be held concurrently with other Entrance Scholarships. The exception to this is the Dux entrance scholarship, in which remuneration of the scholarship will not be paid to recipients of the Academic Excellence Entrance Scholarship.    

*Exceptions to 0.4 EFTS or less are considered when all previous University or tertiary level study has been undertaken whilst concurrently enrolled at secondary school.

Further information

You are likely to find the Frequently Asked Questions helpful and we recommend that you read them.

To find out more about Entrance Scholarships, please contact us:

Tel 0800 80 80 98 (callers within New Zealand only); or
Tel +64 3 479 7000 (callers outside New Zealand)
Find us on Facebook

If you have a University of Otago student identification number, please include this in your email.

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