University of Canterbury - Semester or Year Abroad


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General information applicable to all GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Semester and Year Abroad Programs:

GlobaLinks Learning Abroad offers programs at the University of Canterbury through our partner International Studies Abroad.


GlobaLinks Learning Abroad has designed this University of Canterbury program with your individual student goals in mind. It is built around a unique Discovery Model which is delivered by some of the best staff in study abroad, both in the U.S. and overseas, in order to provide you with an individualized experience through discovery in 5 key areas: personal, academic, cultural, social, and career. Learn more about the Discovery Model.

GlobaLinks Learning Abroad, formerly known as AustraLearn, offers semester and year abroad programs at the University of Canterbury. Since its establishment in 1873, the University of Canterbury, in Christchurch, New Zealand, has enjoyed an international reputation for academic excellence in both teaching and research. Its undergraduate and postgraduate degrees are highly recognized across the world and aim to foster intellectual independence, critical thinking, and professional excellence in every field. 

The University's teaching program is research-based and all staff are expected to be involved in research and publishing in their specialized area. As a result, even undergraduate students can expect lecturers who are at the forefront of knowledge in their field.

Canterbury also has a special endowment, the Erskine Fellowship, which makes it possible for staff from prestigious universities around the world to visit and teach at Canterbury. The University has around 70 such visitors each year, giving a further significant enrichment to its teaching programs.

The University's modern and well-equipped facilities are spread across a spacious suburban campus only 15 minutes from the city center, with plentiful cultural and recreational facilities.

For those interested in field sciences, the unique geology and flora and fauna of the South Island serve as a natural natural laboratory.Thelaboratory. The University has five field stations scattered around the South Island (including an astronomical observatory in the high country) and offers unique opportunities for field work in areas including geology, biology, geography ,geography, engineering andengineering and forestry.

The University of Canterbury has been home to thousands of international students over a period of more than 40 years. Currently international students from more than 70 countries are enrolled at UC in a wide variety of programs. The student population of 14,000 is diverse and provides a lively, interesting, and cosmopolitan university community.



About Christchurch

Christchurch is the largest city in New Zealand’s South Island and is also known as the "Garden City". It lies on the coastal edge of the Canterbury Plains close to both the sea and the mountains. The city offers plentiful cultural and recreational opportunities, and also superb access to the national parks and wilderness areas of New Zealand’s Southern Alps, the foothills of which are just an hour away. 

Beautiful beaches are close to the city and skiing and snowboarding can be found at five ski-fields within 90 minutes of Christchurch - just imagine, you can surf and ski in the same day! Rafting, kayaking, and bungee jumping are just a few hours away. Spectacular scenery abounds in this part of the country, and after a week of study you can travel just a short distance to find yourself surrounded by it.

The climate in Christchurch is mild and temperate with warm, dry summers and temperatures ranging between 65º and 80ºF. In the winter months of June, July, and August, daytime temperatures are cooler and are between 40º and 60ºF.

Around the University

The University campus is conveniently located in the suburb of Ilam, 15 minutes from the city center with regular bus services linking the University to the surrounding areas. The campus is within walking distance of the South Island’s largest shopping mall and a 10 minute drive or bus ride from Christchurch’s iconic Hagley Park and Botanic Gardens The Port Hills are a short 20 minute drive from campus and offer plentiful opportunities for mountain biking, walking and sightseeing.

Academic Highlights

Study abroad students can select a wide range of courses from the faculties of Arts, Business and Economics, Engineering, Science, and Law. Highlights include courses in Antarctic Studies,AstronomyStudies, Astronomy, Maori Language and Culture, and a wide range of courses in New Zealand history, literature, and politics, as well as courses in Biological and Geological Sciences. 

Canterbury is also the only university to have major field stations throughout the South Island, serving as field-trip bases and research centers for staff and students. A number of field work opportunities are available which allow students the opportunity toopportunity to study in the “living laboratory” that is New Zealand’s South Island.

UC also offers a unique service learning course, CHCH 101 Rebuilding Christchurch. This for-credit course combines the opportunity to study community engagement with participation in in a service learning project related to your own area of interest.

University Services

Central to student life is the Student's Association, which houses an array of facilities and services to cater for the university community and also organizes a variety of cultural, recreational, and sporting programs throughout the year.

The University Recreation Center is a modern and user-friendly facility run by a fully trained team of professional fitness instructors. They have an extensive range of equipment and a variety of programs on offer designed to help students learn new recreation skills.

The University’s Central Library is the largest library in the South Island. It is supplemented by five specialist libraries in other parts of the campus. Additionally, there are five computer suites; each equipped with the latest technology. The Central Library computer suite is open 24 hours for student use.

The Student Support Center is a great place to drop in for a chat or to talk over problems with the staff. Student Advisors arrange outings and events throughout the year and offer advice and support to all overseas students.


As a GlobaLinks Learning Abroad student you are guaranteed pre-arranged accommodation to fit your lifestyle. There are a variety of housing options available which you will apply for after acceptance. Read below for more specific options offered at this university:
Campus housing is located within easy walking distance of the campus, shopping centers, restaurants, and bus transportation. Most Study Abroad students elect to stay in Ilam Apartments, which provides self-catering apartments. Students living in Ilam Apartments have their own bedroom in a fully furnished modern flat and share kitchen, living area and bathroom facilities with up to 5 other students. There is also a common room with television area, pool table, table tennis, kitchen facilities, and study area. Barbeques, dinners, and a variety of other social events are organized regularly throughout the academic year.


The GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Bridging Cultures Program is our signature orientation program for all semester and year abroad students. The cost for this multi-day program is included in your program fees and covers several nights accommodation, most meals, local transportation, and excursions.

Typically 4-6 days in length, each orientation program includes:

  • Exciting excursions and activities
  • A chance to meet other students
  • Orientation sessions to help you adapt to your new country

Orientation sites vary based on the location of your program. Each site is selected based on the proximity to your host university as well as for the unique activities available within the area.

Read more about the Bridging Cultures Program>

In addition to the GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Bridging Cultures Program which is included in your GlobaLinks Learning Abroad program fees, the Student SupportStudent Support Advisors run a comprehensive orientation for all new international students at the beginning of each semester. During this two day event, you will learn all the important things you need to know to survive in Christchurch, like opening a bank account, how to enroll for courses, and which kind of New Zealand candy is best!

Scholarships Available

In 2012 the University of Canterbury supported GlobaLinks Learning Abroad study abroad students with a substantial scholarship programme. Please consult the website for information on the availability of 2013 awards.

Special Programs/Excursions

Discovery Activities

Planned Excursions & Events
Our in-country resident staff arranges scheduled activities with students throughout the year. Activities are optional and designed to explore the five key areas of discovery: academic, social, personal, cultural, and professional. These are not just visits to tourist attractions. For example, these are activities such as networking opportunities, local festivals, gallery openings, and other similar events that you can’t find in a travel book. These activities will truly enhance your experience.
On-Going Activities
Your exploration of the culture, the academics, the people, and yourself is what will truly enhance your experience. Through the Discovery Model, our in-country staff will provide you with advice and recommendations for other types of activities you can undertake in order achieve your individual goals.

Specific Excursions Included in Your Program Fees

Multi Day Excursions included in your program fee
In addition to the Bridging Cultures Program, a free multi-day excursion is included in all semester/year abroad programs in Australia, New Zealand, or Fiji. Students studying in these destinations can choose from one of the four excursions listed to the right. The cost of the excursion is included; however, you will need to pay for transportation to the destination. Learn more>

Other Tours and Travel Available

Beyond our included orientation and excursions, you will be able to pre-book a wide variety of day, weekend, and week-long tours at a discounted price through our travel partner, STA Travel. These trips provide the ultimate flexibility for you to travel where you want to go, when you want to go, and with whom you want to go. Most trips have open dates, so you can pre-book the trip(s) that interest you, yet choose your dates later on in your semester. This flexibility also means friends that you make from other countries/programs or even your friends and family who are visiting you abroad can also participate. Learn more>

University of Canterbury Specific Programs

The University’s Recreation Center offers a variety of programs and excursions at a reasonable cost. Some examples of the excursions on offer include rafting, sea-kayaking trips, and climbing (programs will vary from year to year). Ilam Apartments also runs a variety of events throughoutevents throughout the semester. UC’s service learning course offers a one of a kind opportunity to be involved in a service learning project within the Christchurch community, whilst earning academic credit. UC also offers a mentoring program which provides you with the opportunity to connect with a New Zealand mentor either before or after you arrive

Extracurricular Activities
The University of Canterbury Student's Association sponsors such a variety of clubs that there is something for everyone. The Tramping (Hiking) Club is one of the most popular clubs on campus, with backpacking gear available for rent. The Student Support Center plans a variety of events throughout the year...

Christchurch has a thriving arts scene, with many festivals including the Christchurch Arts Festival. The city is also home to the Canterbury Crusaders rugby team and hosts many local and international sports events. There is always something happening on campus and around the city.


Get Involved Abroad

Extracurricular Activities

The University of Canterbury Student's Association sponsors such a variety of clubs that there is something for everyone. The Tramping (Hiking) Club is one of the most popular clubs on campus, with backpacking gear available for rent. The International Student Support Center plans a variety of events throughout the year, including a ski trip.

Christchurch has a thriving arts scene, with many festivals including the Christchurch Arts Festival. The city is also home to the Canterbury Crusaders rugby team and hosts many local and international sports events. There is always something happening on campus and around the city.

Community Involvement

While abroad, we recommend getting involved in your local community. It's an awesome way to meet locals, experience the true New Zealand culture, and create long lasting memories. From volunteering to festival-going, we challenge you to make the most of your international experience... See a sample of community involvement opportunities available in Christchurch or discover your own upon arrival!

You'll get a taste of how enriching community involvement can be during your first few days in New Zealand on the GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Bridging Cultures Program. The program includes pre-arranged volunteering with the local community. You'll interact directly with locals while giving back to and sharing your own culture with the community that first welcomes you to New Zealand. Plus, you can continue your volunteer efforts later in the semester by signing up for the GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Conservation Volunteer Weekend.

Course Catalog

To determine if the classes you need are available at this university, select Courses/Subjects to view the specific course options.

Tips: For advice on navigating the university’s course catalog, use the Selecting Courses link. You may also view the suggested grade and credit transfer information through the Grade Conversion.

If you have any questions about course availability, please contact

Photo Slideshow

Watch a slideshow of photos highlighting the University of Canterbury.


University of Canterbury
All fees listed are for first term onlyYear Abroad Advice
Program FeesTBD
Housing with MealsN/A
Housing without MealsApproximately $4,400 - $4,900
What's includedSee below

Fee Includes

Your Personalized Semester/Year Program Includes

  • Tuition and instruction
  • Host university activity and insurance fees
  • 24/7 support for students and parents at home and abroad
  • Pre-departure materials and travel gear
  • Comprehensive assistance
  • Personal program manager
  • Scholarship and financial aid assistance
  • Facilitation of course selection / credit transfer

Activity and Excursion Package

Additional Housing Fee

Housing amenities are generally:

  • Single room
  • Technology package available
  • Linen package available

An additional refundable housing deposit may be required for your housing selection. This housing is self-catered, therefore you will have access to a kitchen where you can prepare your own meals.

*All fees are subject to change.




Should you receive an offer, your offer letter will provide you with the most up to date university start dates. GlobaLinks Learning Abroad will attempt to provide you with the most up-to-date information as we receive it. Be sure to confirm dates before finalizing any travel plans. 

Entry Requirements

Applicants must have the required GPA and have completed at least the equivalent of one year of full-time study at the university/college level.

Required GPA: 2.80

GlobaLinks Learning Abroad Program Team

Program Manager
Jessica Mew

Program Assistant
Katherine Harrell

Advice From The Program Team:
Many students report that they enjoy spending their days at beautiful Sumner Bay, located close to the city of Christchurch.