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Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic) Whitireia New Zealand

New Zealand


Course info


The Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic) is run in conjunction with Wellington Free Ambulance and approved by the Council of Ambulance Authorities and Paramedics Australasia for entry to paramedic practice in New Zealand and Australia. It is designed to prepare students for practice as contemporary ambulance paramedics.

Paramedics provide acute health care and emergency and urgent medical services to the community through a specialised body of professional knowledge, delivering care in variable environments. Through the use of clinical assessment, advanced medical procedures and treatment, they stabilise patients in clinically challenging environments, refer to primary and secondary care and provide on-going emergency medical care during transport.

The programme is full-time and involves considerable study. Serious thought should be given before a student undertakes paid employment that will make it difficult to maintain sufficient study time, or to attend clinical experience. It is suggested that no more than ten hours per week is worked. Attendance at all classes, both theory and clinical, is a requirement for successful completion of the programme.

Due to the hours of work and location of placements, students require private transport to attend clinical experiences. Access to a personal computer after hours is essential.

A distance version of this programme is offered for working or volunteering paramedics. The Flexible Learning Stream (FLS) of the Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic) is designed for students with an existing National Certificate or National Diploma in Ambulance Practice (Level 5) or with a practising level of EMT or paramedic. A letter of support from the student's employing authority is essential. If you are not currently working or volunteering for an ambulance service, please refer to the main stream of the degree.

Programme Outline

Year One - Year one introduces new students to human anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, and paramedic practice. Utilising context based learning, students explore the structure and function of the ambulance industry, the roles and responsibilities of the paramedic, legal and ethical issues, including the implications of te Tiriti o Waitangi on paramedic practice, and the assessment and treatment of medical and trauma patients to a beginning practitioner level.

Time spent on campus is divided between classroom theory and practical sessions in our clinical labs, where hands-on skills are practiced and developed before implementation on clinical placements.

Students attend a variety of clinical placements, including emergency ambulance, non-emergency ambulance, ambulance communications centre and rest homes. During these placements, students are able to apply and develop the knowledge and skills from the classroom whilst under direct supervision.

Year Two - This year consolidates and builds on Year One with more in-depth exploration of anatomy and physiology, pharmacology, and more invasive paramedic practice. The student transitions from task focused technical skills to critical thinking in relation to patient care, and continue to develop skills in academic scholarship and research, and mentoring and supervision.

Year Three - The structure of Year Three is significantly different to the previous years. All papers in this year are delivered online, with some block weeks spent on campus. Whilst the papers are a mix of clinical and non-clinical papers, there is a greater focus on clinical reasoning, teamwork and leadership, along with in depth exploration of legal, ethical and sociological issues, and further development of research in relation to paramedic practice.

Course options

Here are the different ways in which you can study Bachelor of Health Science (Paramedic).

Full Time (3 years)

Tuition fees

NZ$22,950.00 (12,08,806) per year

NZ $22,950 (first year fee)


09 Feb


Whitireia New Zealand

Porirua Campus,

3 Wi Neera Drive,



5022, New Zealand

Entry requirement for international students

University entrance or equivalent academic/work experience and evidence of suitability based on an interview, health screening, safety check and referee reports. Applicants must be 18 years of age by the start date of the programme.

Proven equivalence of entry requirements plus IELTS 6.5 in each band

TOEFL Internet-Based Test (iBT) score of 60 (with a writing score of 20)

Cambridge English: FCE with a pass at Grade B or CAE with a score of 52

Pearson Test of English (Academic) – PToE (Academic) score of 50

* Please check with your chosen school for the exact entry requirements for your programme.

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