Otago Polytechnic

New Zealand


Otago Polytechnic dates back to the foundation of the Dunedin School of Art in 1870 and the Dunedin Technical School in 1889. The two merged in 1921 and in 1966 became Otago Polytechnic, which itself became part of the New Zealand Institute of Skills & Technology in 2020. It has campuses in Central Otago, Dunedin and Auckland.

More than 8,000 students study at Otago Polytechnic each year, including around 1,200 international students from around the world. Its international students study at the Auckland campus. It focuses on career-focused education and training with a range of accredited postgraduate qualifications, degrees and diplomas.

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At Otago Polytechnic there is an emphasis on embedding mātauranga Maori and kaupapa Māori principles into the learning that takes place there. This means exploring New Zealand’s bicultural heritage but also its unique perspective when it comes to studies.

After the Covid-19 lockdowns, Otago Polytechnic has maintained the premise that not all learners can come to its campus. So it continues to offer flexible ways to study by distance, online and on-the-job.

As well as having a large number of international students, Otago Polytechnic is also committed to being a diverse and welcoming environment. It won the Medium-Large Organisation section of the Ngā Āhuatanga o Te Tiriti category at the 2022 Diversity Awards NZ.


Otago University is a careers-focused institution, so many of its courses are accredited and designed to prepare students for the world of work. It also has a Careers Services team offering guidance to help students make informed career decisions. This includes individual career planning, drop-in support and employability workshops and is available to students and graduates.