StudyQA — University of Otago — Dunedin — New Zealand: Fees, Rankings, Courses, Admissions

University of Otago

Dunedin, New Zealand
Website: Founded: 1869 year 201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 3434 pts. No. Students: 20601 Frgn. Students: 2592 No. Staff: 3803 Languages: English Phone: +6434797000 Fax: +6434798692
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About the University of Otago

The University of Otago (Māori: Te Whare Wānanga o Otāgo) is a collegiate university located in Dunedin, Otago, New Zealand. It scores highly for average research quality, and in 2006 was second only to the University of Auckland in the number of A-rated academic researchers it employs. The university ranks highly in national league table; in the past it has topped the New ZealandPerformance Based Research Fund evaluation.

The university was created by a committee, including Thomas Burns, and officially established by an ordinance of the Otago Provincial Council in 1869. The university accepted its first students in July 1871, making it the oldest university in New Zealand and third-oldest in Oceania. Between 1874 and 1961 the University of Otago was a part of the federal University of New Zealand, and issued degrees in its name.

Otago is known for its lively student life, particularly its flatting, which is often in old houses. Otago students (Scarfies) have a long standing tradition of naming their flats. The nickname "Scarfie" comes from the habit of wearing a scarf during cold southern winters. The university's graduation song, Gaudeamus igitur, iuvenes dum sumus ("Let us rejoice, while we are young"), acknowledges students will continue to live up to the challenge if not always in the way intended.

The architectural grandeur and accompanying gardens of Otago University led to it being ranked as one of the world's most beautiful universities by the British publications The Daily Telegraph and The Huffington Post.

  • Otago Business School

    Бизнес-школа университета Отаго предлагает квалификацию, отвечающую вашим интересам и амбициями. Вне зависимости от вашего опыта и образования.

    Достижение совершенства. Корпоративный мир нуждается в легко приспосабливающихся, умелых выпускниках, которые настроены на успех. Бизнес-школа университета Отаго отвечает на эти нужды, предлагая обучение на бакалавриате, в магистратуре, а также образование для уже состоявшихся менеджеров.

    Учитесь в бакалавриате в Отаго и получите больше, чем просто диплом. В нашей бизнес-школе у вас будет возможность учиться, принимать участие в студенческих программах обмена, оплачиваемых стажировках и невероятных соревнованиях — при этом на полную наслаждаясь студенческими годами в университете Отаго.

  • Division of Health Sciences

    The Division of Health Sciences has campuses in Christchurch, Dunedin, and Wellington. It delivers undergraduate programmes in Dentistry, Medical Laboratory Science, Medicine, Pharmacy, and Physiotherapy. It also offers bachelors' degrees in Oral Health, Dental Technology, Radiation Therapy, and Biomedical Sciences. Recognised internationally for the high standard of its graduates and research, the Division aims to provide New Zealand society and other communities with a highly-qualified workforce in the health professions.

  • Division of Humanities

    The Division of Humanities at Otago is one of the most innovative and progressive in New Zealand. Humanities cover the major fields of the Arts and Social Sciences. The Division consists of 15 departments and includes professional programmes in Law, Education, and Social Work. 

    The Division of Humanities is proud of our excellence in teaching and research. All teaching is research-informed, and annual student surveys have confirmed that student satisfaction with the quality of Otago Humanities courses and teaching is very high.

    Recently released results from the New Zealand Government’s Performance Based Research Fund (PBRF) Quality Evaluation confirmed the Division as one of the country’s top research institutions in the arts, social sciences, and humanities.

  • Division of Sciences

    The Division of Sciences is responsible for a full range of sciences including degree programmes in Consumer and Applied Sciences, Physical Education, and Surveying. The Division is a leader in many areas of genetic research and computer and information technology.

    The Division serves approximately 3500 undergraduate students and over 800 postgraduate students. It has a total of 631 staff including general and academic staff.

History of the University of Otago

The University of Otago, founded in 1869 by an ordinance of the Otago Provincial Council, is New Zealand’s oldest university. The new University was given 100,000 acres of pastoral land as an endowment and authorised to grant degrees in Arts, Medicine, Law and Music.

The University opened in July 1871 with a staff of just three Professors, one to teach Classics and English Language and Literature, another having responsibility for Mathematics and Natural Philosophy, and the third to cover Mental and Moral Philosophy and Political Economy. The following year a Professor of Natural Science joined the staff. With a further endowment provided in 1872, the syllabus was widened and new lectureships established: lectures in Law started in 1873, and in 1875 courses began in Medicine. Lectures in Mining were given from 1872, and in 1878 a School of Mines was established.

The University was originally housed in a building (later the Stock Exchange) on the site of John Wickliffe House in Princes Street but it moved to its present site with the completion of the northern parts of the Clocktower and Geology buildings in 1878 and 1879.

The School of Dentistry was founded in 1907 and the School of Home Science (later Consumer and Applied Sciences) in 1911. Teaching in Accountancy and Commerce subjects began in 1912. Various new chairs and lectureships were established in the years between the two world wars, and in 1946 teaching began in the Faculty of Theology. The School of Physical Education was opened in 1947.

A federal University of New Zealand was established by statute in 1870 and became the examining and degree-granting body for all New Zealand university institutions until 1961. The University of Otago had conferred just one Bachelor of Arts degree, on Mr Alexander Watt Williamson, when in 1874 it became an affiliated college of the University of New Zealand.

In 1961 the University of New Zealand was disestablished, and the power to confer degrees was restored to the University of Otago by the University of Otago Amendment Act 1961.

Since 1961, when its roll was about 3,000, the University has expanded considerably (in 2010 there were about 21,000 students enrolled) and has broadened its range of qualifications to include undergraduate programmes in Surveying, Pharmacy, Medical Laboratory Science, Education, Physiotherapy, Applied Science, Dental Technology, Medical Radiation Therapy, Dental Hygiene and Dental Therapy (now combined in an Oral Health programme), and Biomedical Sciences, as well as specialised postgraduate programmes in a variety of disciplines.

Although the University’s main campus is in Dunedin, it also has Health Sciences campuses in Christchurch (University of Otago, Christchurch) and Wellington (University of Otago, Wellington) (established in 1972 and 1977 respectively), and an information and teaching centre in central Auckland (1996).

The Dunedin College of Education merged with the University on 1 January 2007, and this added a further campus in Invercargill.


  • Institutional Accreditation or Recognition - Ministry for Tertiary Education, Skills and Employment, New Zealand
  • Other Specialized or Programmatic Accreditations - Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International); European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD-EQUIS)


World university rankings
  Quacquarelli Symonds (QS)[26][27] Academic Ranking of World Universities Times Higher Education
2015 173 201–300 201–250
2014 159 201–300 251–275
2013 155 201–300 226–250
2012 133 201–300 226–250
2011 130 201–300 201–225
2010 135 201–300 200+
2009 125 201–302 NA
2008 124= 201–302 NA
2007 114= 305–402 NA

Student life at the University of Otago


'O-Week' or Orientation Week is the Otago equivalent of Fresher's Week. New students are most commonly known by their seniors as 'freshers' or simply as 'first-years'. O-week is organised by the Otago University Students' Association and involves competitions such as 'Fresher of the Year' whereby several students volunteer to carry out a series of tasks throughout the week before being voted to win. Other competitions include that of different faculties facing off with each other. The OUSA also organises events each night including various concerts, a comedy night, hypnotist plus bigger events at Forsyth Barr Stadium. Typically there is a Highlanders rugby game scheduled during the week. Local bars organise events also with a range of live music and promotional deals. Historically events have included the Cookathon and a Miss O-Week competition hosted by The Outback. The Cookathon was held by a local pub (the Cook) with the premise that your first drink costs you about $20 which gives you a t-shirt, three meal vouchers and reduced price on drinks then you spend the rest of the day binge drinking and 'telephoning' the occasional jug with mates.


Each year the first years are encouraged to attend the toga parade and party dressed in white sheets wrapped as togas. Retailers called for an end of the parade after property damage and disorder during the 2009 event. However, the OUSA took it upon themselves to reintroduce this tradition, with a festival like event taking place at the stadium. 2012 Toga Party saw an unofficial world record, with rumours suggesting 2013 will see an official attempt. A clocktower race also occurs, in the style of Chariots of Fire. Students must race round the tower and attached building, beginning on the first chime of the clock at noon and completing before the chimes cease. Unlike Chariots of Fire, the task is possible with a couple of students completing each year.

Food & retail outlets

  • Plaza Café
  • Hunter Café
  • St David Café
  • Café Albany
  • Frankly Sandwiches
  • Union Grill
  • Food Court
  • Campus Shop
  • Archway Shop

Refuel - Student Events

If you are looking for great student entertainment - look no further - you just found us.  Famous for our Tuesday open mic nights, Wednesday student social nights and rocking out the bands, DJ's and parties.  Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights Refuel can provide you with a place to make new friends, have great memories and fun times.

With experienced friendly student bar and security staff and inhouse DJ and Sound Technicians we deliver some of the best student focused entertainment in NZ.  Live music, DJ and other activities in a warm friendly environment.

Fully licensed to 3.00am our venue offers a focus on student friendly entertainment in a safe alcohol responsible enviornment.

Marsh Study Centre

The Marsh Study Centre is located at the north end of Castle Street, adjacent to the Botanical Gardens.

We offer students a warm, comfortable and quiet study spaces with University WiFi, study rooms, outside seating and social space with a cafe - which is located on the ground floor providing Fair Trade Bruno Rossi espresso coffee, a selection of cabinet food, snacks and cold beverages as well as a range of stationery products.

Services for students

  • The Career Development Centre assists intending students, current students and graduates with career planning, job search, applications and interviews advice. We also facilitate employer events on campus.
  • The Chaplains can provide a listening ear to anyone dealing with spiritual or religious questions, homesickness or grief, no matter your faith.
  • Disability Information & Support provides learning support, advice, advocacy and information to students with disabilities, impairments, medical conditions or injuries.
  • The International Office are there to encourage and support international students studying at Otago.
  • The Māori Centre - Te Huka Māturaka are there to encourage Iwi Māori to be successful in their tertiary education by offering advocacy and support for academic, cultural and social needs throughout their study.
  • The Pacific Islands Centre provides academic, social and cultural support to all students who identify with the Pacific nations of Melanesia, Micronesia and Polynesia and are there to help you succeed in your study.
  • Using your student ID card you can access the Unipol Gym and other services offered byRecreation Services.
  • Student Health offers a range of healthcare services with a team of health professionals providing a friendly and affordable service.
  • Student IT Help are there to help you with all your computer needs on campus.
  • The University Volunteer Centre can connect you with local community and global organisations.
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Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 14 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 2055
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 29.8 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 3148
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 23.5 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 3711
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 26.7 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 4126
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 17.4 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 4232
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 26.7 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 1569
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 17.4 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 1557
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 16.5 k / Year(s)
Deadline: Dec 10, 2022 201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 2658
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Foreign:$ 26.7 k / Year(s)
Deadline: Dec 10, 2022 201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 3857
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Local:$ 3.19 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 15.8 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 4117
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Local:$ 3.19 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 15.8 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 5714
Study mode:On campus Languages: English
Local:$ 15.8 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 3.19 k / Year(s)
201–250 place StudyQA ranking: 2885