Skip Navigation LinksHomeProgrammesHealth & ScienceBachelor of Nursing

Bachelor of Nursing

Level 7

Let UCOL help give your nursing career the best start. It’s the personal approach from our industry experienced lecturers that sets us apart and gives UCOL’s Bachelor of Nursing graduates an excellent professional reputation both here and overseas.

Nursing students learning at the Wairarapa campus
Quick info

Level: 7

Locations: Palmerston North, Whanganui, Wairarapa

Duration: 3 years, full-time

Palmerston North
13 Feb 2017 - 15 Dec 2017
24 Jul 2017 - 8 Jun 2018

27 Feb 2017 - 12 Dec 2017

7 Feb 2017 - 15 Dec 2017
17 Jul 2017 - 1 Jun 2018

Domestic Fees:*
$7,231.52Scholarship info

International Fees:*

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). Fees for multi-year programmes are for one year of study.

When you enrol in UCOL’s Bachelor of Nursing programme we’ll assign you your own Personal Tutor to guide you right through your nursing journey. They’ll support you through our curriculum, which includes up to 160 hours of clinical placements in your first year. Later in the programme these clinical experiences will include primary health care, medical and surgical, and mental health settings. For over 30 years, UCOL’s Nurse Education Team has ensured industry relevant education to prepare graduates for a professional career as a registered nurse.

Career & Study Outcomes

  • Hospitals
  • Community agencies
  • Māori health education
  • Iwi-based health centres
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Government departments
  • Employment overseas

To find out more about possible job prospects and salaries, see Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Occupation Outlook for Registered Nurses.

Student & Staff Profiles

Industry Connections

The Nurse Education Team have strong links with industry and students have a wide range of Clinical experience in Mental Health, Medical/Surgical, Aged Care and Primary Health environments across the three years of study.

Learning Facilities

Simulation, Nursing skills and Science labs

Domestic Entry Requirements

General Admission Criteria
All applicants must meet the general admission criteria as approved by the Academic Board.  In addition, all applicants are required to:
  • Declare any previous criminal convictions (including international convictions) prior to admission being confirmed. Convictions of any offence may not necessarily exclude applicants from enrolment; the decision is at the discretion of the Head of School; and
  • Authorise UCOL to obtain a background check from the New Zealand Police Licensing and Vetting Agency. If a conviction and/or a matter of concern is identified, the decision for accepting the applicants enrolment onto the programme is at the discretion of the Head of School; and
  • Complete a health declaration form; and
  • Provide certified copies of all relevant documentation.
The Head of School Nurse Education Team (Palmerston North or Regional) may require students to provide additional information before admission is confirmed.

Academic Entry Requirements
Applicants under 20 years of age:
  • NCEA Level 3
  • Three subjects at level 3 or above made up of 14 credits each in three approved subjects.
  • Literacy 10 credits at level 2 or above made up of 5 credits in reading and 5 credits in writing.
  • Numeracy 10 credits at level 1 or above made up of Achievement standards (specified Achievement standards through a range of subjects), or Unit standards (a package of three numeracy Unit standards: 26623, 26626, 26627, all three required).
Or equivalent academic achievement.

Or on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the Executive Dean.

Or a provisional enrolment.

Applicants over 20 years of age:
A person having reached the age of 20 years before the first day of the programme in the year for which admission is sought, is not required to meet any of the academic qualifications above. Applicants will however be required to meet the criteria for admission to UCOL to study at degree level, that is, NCEA level 3 or equivalent qualification, and  to attend a conversation, as set out in the advice and guidance section, prior to their enrolment being accepted. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss their career goals, reasons for study, choice of study, possible challenges, and the support that is available for them at UCOL. In some instances, applicants may be advised to complete the Short Course in Introduction to Human Science Level 2 or Certificate in Science and Health Level 3 available through UCOL.

International Entry Requirements

International students will be assessed on a case-by-case basis to ensure they meet New Zealand University Entrance requirements. In addition, in accordance with NCNZ (2012b) and the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Act [HPCA] (2003) requirements, international students whose first language is not English, or who come from a country where the general medium of instruction is not English, will be required to provide documentary evidence of proficiency in English (reading, writing, listening, and speaking).

English Proficiency Entry Requirements:
International student applicants whose first language is not English must have an IELTS with a score of 6.5 in reading, listening, writing and speaking, respectively (or equivalent, including TOEFL). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre. The English Proficiency test is accepted for English language entry into all UCOL programmes.
Applicants under 20 years of age: Under 20 years of age
For international applicants under 20 years of age who do not hold NCEA, International Academic Qualifications Entry Criteria apply.

Advice & Guidance

Applicants for the Bachelor of Nursing will attend a conversation with UCOL staff. The purpose of the conversation is to provide information to the applicant, to gauge motivation and support, and preparedness for study, and to inform teaching staff of the needs of the student. (Refer to UCOL’s admission policy and variations).

Bachelor of Nursing students must be prepared to undertake shift-work during the second and third year of the programme.  This includes night shift and weekends.  In addition, students must be prepared to travel, as not all clinical placements are local.

Permanent Residents whose first language is not English are required to undertake a Literacy and Numeracy Assessment for diagnostic purposes so that the appropriate advice and support can be provided before they commence the programme.

UCOL will undertake a safety check of all students after enrolment to ensure UCOL meets the legislative requirements of the Vulnerable Children Act, 2014.  UCOL will do this on behalf of Hospitals, District Health Boards, Primary Health Organisations and GP practices which host UCOL student placements.  The safety check involves confirming the student’s work history, verifying their suitability to work with children with a trusted referee, and completing New Zealand Police vetting. 

UCOL's three-year Bachelor of Nursing programme comprises 360 credits.

Additional Costs

Please note that there are additional costs associated with the Bachelor of Nursing:

Clinical placements
Many of the available clinical placements are located in rural and urban areas in the MidCentral region of the North Island in New Zealand. This means that you may be required to undertake your clinical placement outside your enrolment location therefore you will have additional costs relating to your travel and accommodation.

Transport costs will vary according to the mode of transport and may include public transport, private car usage, and carpooling. An example of an approximate cost of petrol in a 1600cc car over 180 kilometres over five days could cost up to $80.00 or more. 

Accommodation fees
These vary according to the types of accommodation used. Backpackers, Homestays, Student Hostels can be in the range of $50.00 - $120 per night. 

Required Items
For each year of the three-year degree there are specific items that you may wish to purchase. Please note that these are approximate costs.

First Year
  • Textbooks $800.00
  • Serology testing & MRSA $275.00 
  • Shoes and skirt/trousers $200.00 
  • Stethoscope/scissors/penlight $125.00 (wait until the start of your programme to purchase, as staff will give you the best advice).
  • Watch with second hand $40.00 

Second Year
  • Textbooks $800.00 (Textbooks are required or recommended and not sold through UCOL). 
  • MRSA testing $120.00 (up to) (if previously positive or DHB changes policy) 
  • Stethoscope/scissors/penlight $125.00 (if not purchased in year one)

Third Year
  • MRSA testing $120.00 (up to) (if previously positive or DHB changes policy) 
  • Textbooks $100.00 (Textbooks are required or recommended and not sold through UCOL). 

Course Information

Year 1 (Level 5) papers include:
  • The Nursing Context I: Society And Health
  • Professional Nursing I: An Introduction
  • Bioscience for Health Professionals I
  • Bioscience for Health Professionals II
  • Skills for Nursing I: The Fundamentals
  • Person Centred Care I: Communication Skills
  • Learning and Teaching
  • Clinical Practice (Introduction)

Year 2 (Level 6) papers include:

  • The Nursing Context II: Health Care Systems
  • Professional Nursing II: Practice Requirements
  • Nursing Science and Practice I
  • Nursing Science and Practice II
  • Skills for Nursing II: Advancing Practice
  • Person Centred Care II: The Mental Health Context
  • Clinical Practice (Medical/Surgical)
  • Clinical Practice (Mental Health)

Year 3 (Level 7) papers include:

  • The Nursing Context III: Primary Health Care
  • Professional Nursing III: Preparing for Registration and Beyond
  • People with Acute and/or Complex Care Needs: A Partnership Approach
  • People with Life-long Conditions: A Partnership Approach
  • Skills for Nursing III: Evidence for Practice
  • Person Centred Care III: The Health/Illness Experience
  • Clinical Practice (Primary Health Care)
  • Clinical Practice (Transition)


The programme is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and Universal College of Learning (UCOL) Trading as Universal College of Learning (UCOL) is accredited to teach it.