COVID-19 update: This course will start online and continue on campus later. Read more

What will I learn?

Advance your existing skills in computing and broaden your employment opportunities in this fast-evolving field.

Our IT industry partners have significant input into the structure and content of this programme to ensure that what is being taught continually meets industry needs.

The first year covers a broad range of ICT topics that will provide you with a solid base of knowledge in software engineering (programming), hardware and networking, website development, IT tools and concepts and mathematics skills relevant to IT.

In years two and three you'll choose one of three specialist pathways: Information Systems, Networking and Infrastructure or Software Development. During this time you'll develop in-depth knowledge of your chosen area through a range of compulsory and elective courses.

You'll also develop skills in problem solving, critical thinking, analysis, team work, project management, time management, self-reliance and communication skills. There is a strong emphasis on practical skills and work-readiness, so wherever possible, theory is integrated and applied to practical tasks.

Many courses include group activities or group projects, as the ability to work as part of a team is strongly valued by employers.

In the final semester you'll put all of your acquired skills and knowledge into practice in a 45-credit capstone project (in most cases for a local business). The project is an excellent opportunity to equip yourself with real-world IT experience and to learn from industry people. It also results in a substantial piece of work with which to demonstrate your potential to prospective employers.

This leads to the Bachelor of Information and Communication Technologies.

Career opportunities

Employment prospects are very strong for IT graduates. Many companies are struggling to fill vacancies and are having to recruit overseas. Job opportunities in the IT sector are forecast to increase significantly in the next few years and the sector is regularly recognised as one of the highest paid in the country and globally. Job opportunities are not limited to IT companies as almost every business these days has IT needs and many non-IT businesses employ significant numbers of IT professionals. Depending on the specialist pathway followed, you might gain employment in roles such as business analyst, network manager, webmaster, IT support specialist, database administrator, test analyst, systems administrator, web developer, interactive media developer or software developer/programmer. As a new graduate you’re likely to start at a junior level but you can quickly advance to higher-level positions within a few years, especially in larger companies.

Study pathways

The Bachelor of Information and Communication Technologies provides entry to postgraduate ICT programmes at many tertiary institutes, and with strong grades in the BICT, you may also qualify for entry to a Masters’ degree at most universities in New Zealand. Ara is a participant in the SIGNAL ICT Graduate School, which offers a Master of Professional Practice to degree-qualified graduates.

Study options

Full Time (3 years)

Tuition fees
NZ$21,880.00 (US$ 15,510) per year
Start date

21 February 2022, 25 July 2022

Venue

Ara Institute of Canterbury

City Campus,

130 Madras Street,

CHRISTCHURCH,

Christchurch Central,

8011, New Zealand

Entry requirements

For students from United States

High School Diploma - SATV and SATM (mini composite score 1250); Academic equivalence: Degree level programmes equivalent to New Zealand NCEA Level 3 (Year 13); IELTS test: Academic score of 6 with no band score lower than 5.5; TOEFL Paper-based Test (pBT): Score of 550 (with an essay score of 5 TWE); TOEFL Internet-based test (iBT): Score of 60 (with a writing score of 18); Cambridge English Qualifications: B2 First, or B2 First for schools, or C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill; OET: Minimum of Grade C or 200 in all sub-tests; Pearson Test of English (Academic): PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42; LanguageCert: C1 Expert IESOL (LRWS) with PASS and no less than Pass in each skill; Trinity ISE: ISE II with no less than distinction in any band.

For international students

University Entrance: NCEA Level 3 (60 credits at level 3 and 20 credits at level 2 or higher) which must include 14 credits at Level 3 in each of three approved* subjects and:

14 credits at Level 3 in each of: Mathematics or physics or statistics or accounting English or history or art history or classics or geography or economics one other subject from the list of approved subjects

and Literacy* - 10 credits at level 2 or above, made up of 5 credits in reading, 5 credits in writing and Numeracy* - 10 credits at level 1 or above (specified achievement standards, or unit standards 26623, 26626, 26627)

OR one of the following:

New Zealand Diploma in Information Technology Technical Support Level 5

New Zealand Diploma in Web Development and Design Level 5

New Zealand Diploma in Networking Level 6

New Zealand Diploma in Systems Administration Level 6

OR New Zealand Certificate in Study and Career Preparation (Level 4) Ara Business and ICT Pathway or equivalent

Due to Covid-19 disruption, if you studied and achieved NCEA Level 3 during 2020, you only need 12 credits per Level 3 subject (i.e. total of 36 credits). Literacy and Numeracy requirements remain the same

If you have undertaken examinations other than NCEA (e.g. International Baccalaureate, Cambridge Examination), Ara will assess your qualification for academic entry equivalency.

* NZQA approved subjects

Overall IELTS 6.0 Academic

SPEAKING - 5.5; READING - 5.5; WRITING - 5.5; LISTENING – 5.5

TOEFL (pBT) - Score of 550 (with an essay score of 5 TWE)

TOEFL (iBT) - Score of 60 or higher (with a writing score of 18)

Cambridge English Qualifications - B2 First, or B2 First for schools, or C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill

PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.

Pathways options

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