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New Zealand: Subject Guides - Must read

3 Fields to study in New Zealand

Our guide to three fields you should consider studying in New Zealand

Ecology student

Progressive, distinctly rugged and notoriously friendly, New Zealand offers students a unique study experience at one of eight globally regarded universities. Whilst New Zealand’s higher education model is flexible and broad-reaching, there are a few standout study fields in which the nation particularly shines. Considering studying abroad in New Zealand? Let our guide to three key fields to study whilst there help you reach your decision.


Geography and Environmental Studies

Home to the breathtaking hills made famous by Lord of the Rings, New Zealanders are hugely conscientious towards the environment and enjoy a strong outdoor culture. Hiking, mountaineering and kayaking are all popular ways to pass time, with the nation ranking first globally in fields of environmental progress.


A strong regard for the environment is reflected in New Zealand’s highly-ranked Environmental Studies programmes: three New Zealand universities are ranked within the world’s top 100 in Geography and Area Studies, whilst within the top 200 four are ranked for Marine Sciences, and three for Environmental Sciences. Massey University ranks 19th in Agriculture and Forestry.


Scoring highly in water and sanitation, agriculture is a key national industry and of fundamental importance to the economy. Agriculture, food and forestry sectors generate a whopping 70% of New Zealand’s exports, and are currently set to grow at a rate of 3.3% per year.  Demand for skills and knowledge in these fields is likewise set to increase over the next 20 years.  Students will gain practical, on-the-ground experience they will use to create strategy and plans for sustainable development, as well as have ample opportunity to experience the nations’ strong environmental management structures and conservation strategies first-hand.


Browse all Geography courses in New Zealand

Browse all Environmental Studies courses in New Zealand



Recently named the world’s most socially advanced country, New Zealand ranked highly in access to basic knowledge (2nd), tolerance and inclusion (4th), and personal freedom and choice (1st). Students are taught to be open-minded, tolerant, level-headed and mature in their approach to Law, addressing real-world social issues and taking initiative in drawing their own conclusions. Amongst the most tolerant nations in the world, New Zealand is home to the Maori population, and offers students unique exposure to indigenous culture and progressive social attitudes towards indigenous relations. 


Law programmes in New Zealand are also quite flexible. In most cases, admission into undergraduate studies does not require an LSAT score or recommendation letters, but rather is based on your grade on an assignment done in your introductory year. Students then have to try their hand at Law and decide if it is the right field for them before committing to an entire programme, whilst having the chance to complete electives in different fields of study. You will also have the chance to complete a number of work experience placements and internships to gain as much insight into the world of law as possible before officially embarking upon your career.


With four universities within the top 100 in Law, students may complete renowned Undergraduate and Postgraduate Law programmes at the University of Auckland (28th), University of Otago (37th) or Victoria University of Wellington (49th). The University of Auckland’s law school is within the world’s top 20, toting award-winning research and an active law student society.


Browse Law courses in New Zealand

Browse all Law courses abroad



New Zealand’s forward-thinking and broad-reaching social attitudes make Psychology a key field of interest for students. As well as carry out a number of research projects, students are taught to approach psychology from a wide-reaching perspective that draws on lateral thought and welcomes a broad range of attitudes. With a key teaching focus on inventiveness, students are constantly pushed to critique their own work as well as the work of their peers, developing a critical confidence that will help them to form their own conclusions from course content.


New Zealand institutions rate highly in Psychology, with the University of Otago’s psychology department named the best in the country. The university also ranked 19th globally in the field, with the University of Auckland (34th) not far behind. Five out of eight New Zealand institutions are within the world’s top 150 for Psychology.


Browse Psychology courses in New Zealand

Browse all Psychology courses abroad


Feeling inspired to discover the great outdoors? Browse courses in New Zealand now and kick-start your study abroad planning process!


Useful Links

Applying to study in New Zealand

Applying for a student visa in New Zealand