University of Otago

Here, at Otago, you will have unprecedented opportunities. You will be taught by international experts in their fields; you will gain a world-class qualification, and you will be able to contribute to ground-breaking research.

Top reasons to study here

  • The University of Otago provides a research-led learning environment that is second to none with a richly deserved reputation for excellence.
  • You will be taught by international experts in their fields
  • You will gain a world-class qualification.

Bachelor's programmes

Environmental Studies & Earth Sciences (4)
Journalism & Media (1)
Law (1)



The University was established by the University of Otago Ordinance of the Provincial Council in 1869, the University of Otago Amendment Act 1961 and the Education Act of 1989.It is governed by a Council, which appoints the Vice-Chancellor.


At the University of Otago, you will have the option to study Science, Health Sciences, Humanities and Commerce. 


Research and Enterprise supports and assists researchers in the identification of funding opportunities, partnering with business, grant applications, and the establishment of research contracts. 


Both the Going Global Country Career Guides and the USA and Canadian City Career Guides provide professional advice on such topics as: the current employment outlook, hiring trends, job search resources, executive recruiters, staffing agencies, work permit regulations, salary ranges, resume/CV writing guidelines, professional and social networking groups, trade associations, interview and cultural advice.

Global Student Satisfaction Awards 2019

GSSA 2019

The Global Student Satisfaction Awards empower students across the globe to determine the best universities of 2019. By rating institutions on a scale from 1 to 5, on multiple studies-related questions, we found the top educators in the world.

Learn more about the Global Student Satisfaction Awards

University Ranking

QS World University Rankings by TopUniversities
176 -1
175 -24
QS World University Rankings is one of the top international rankings measuring the popularity and performance of universities all over the world.
World University Rankings by Times Higher Education
World University Rankings is a vital resource that provides the definitive list of the world's best universities.
Academic Ranking of World Universities by Shanghai Jiao Tong University
ARWU World University rankings is the first world university ranking. It ranks the world's top 1000 colleges and universities based on objective indicator.
Best Global Universities Rankings by U.S. News & World Report
Best Global Universities Rankings by U.S. News & World Report presents all the top universities from the U.S. and 60 other countries around the world.


Student services

Students and staff at the University of Otago are well supported by a range of academic, electronic, recreational and welfare services:

  • Blackboard
  • Campus Cop
  • Chaplains
  • Childcare
  • Corporate Records
  • Disability Information & Support
  • English as a Second Language
  • Information Technology Services (ITS)
  • International Student Support
  • Justices of the Peace
  • Maori Student Support Services
  • Mediation
  • NewSkills
  • Pacific Island Student Support Services
  • Physiotherapy Clinics
  • Proctor and Campus Watch
  • Property Services
  • Recreation Services
  • Scholarships
  • Schools' Liaison Office
  • Staff Families Association
  • Student Learning Centre
  • Unipol Recreation Centre
  • Uniprint
  • The Uniprint Shop
  • University Course Advice Service
  • University Union
  • Web Services

Housing services

The International Office provides a guarantee of accommodation placement services to all international students who receive an academic offer.There are several accommodation options for international students and it is important to consider whether you prefer an independent lifestyle or enjoy living in a community. 

Library services

The University of Otago Library offers an outstanding range of information services, quality resources and warm comfortable facilities suitable for individual or group learning. Library offers more than 1,217,737 volumes along with serials, electronic books and many more.

ICT services

Student IT can help you with any computing questions you may have while studying at the University of Otago. We provide a friendly, helpful service tailored to students.

Here are just a few areas where we can provide IT help and advice:

  • Wireless
  • Printing
  • Anti-virus
  • Student Desktop
  • Training
  • …or even a quick check-up if your laptop is running slow!

Medical services

We are a team of professionals providing high quality health care to students of the University of Otago. Student Health is centrally located on campus in a purpose built facility. We have approximately 50 staff, comprising nurses, general practitioners, counsellors, psychiatrists and administrative staff.

Student Life

Campus life

The University of Otago has campuses in 5 main centres throughout New Zealand.

  • Campus maps
  • Dunedin
  • Southland
  • Christchurch
  • Wellington
  • Auckland
  • Sustainability at Otago

Student clubs

The Otago University Students' Association - OUSA is run by students for students. OUSA was founded on 20 May 1890 in order to run student rooms, organise activities over Capping, approach the University with student concerns, and arrange socials. OUSA exists to ensure Otago students have the ultimate student experience. OUSA provides students with representation, welfare, advocacy, recreation, fun events and media and supports OUSA supports student voices when and where it counts.

The OUSA Clubs and Societies Centre is the ultimate student hub! It provides a variety of campus clubs and societies, a renowned recreation programme, and a variety of services and has a wicked line up of rooms and spaces for students to book free of charge. OUSA also provides courses for Personal Development, Exercise Health & Sport, Dance, Language, Technical, Music & Singing, Arts & Crafts, Food & Beverage, etc.

OUSA Student Support is here to help students navigate life while they are at university. If they have any hassles, any concerns, or any questions they can drop in and see the team at Student Support. If it's something to do with academics, tenancy and flatting, finances, students’ wellbeing, safety, or something else, even if they just need to chat, Student Support are here to help and they will be with students every step of the way. These services are free, friendly, and confidential, and students don't have to make an appointment.

Find out more:


The University of Otago is one of New Zealand's eight accredited public universities. Otagos School of Business has both AACSB and EQUIS accreditation for all subject areas.

Student Reviews

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Anonymous rated 4 out of 5 stars

My overall study experience has been great up to this point. I study via distance study which is ideal for my working lifestyle. I can study when it suits me and allow time for my other life commitments. Although it can be difficult to find motivation to study via distance without going to physical classes, other students on my course are also studying in this form, so...

Anonymous rated 5 out of 5 stars

Great student environment, with a lot of people who like to socialise.

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