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Institute of Technology or Polytechnic

Otago Polytechnic
Otago Polytechnic logo

Graduate Diploma in Social Services (Career Practice) or (Health and Wellbeing Practice)

This course is available


Level of Study

Graduate Certificate or Diploma

Next start date

Expected Feb 2024


Otago Polytechnic


The demand for qualified individuals in the community services will remain strong as the world faces a growing and ageing population, and a general increase in social problems.

Our industry-relevant programme will give you the knowledge and training you need to specialise in Career Practice or Health and Wellbeing Practice – broadening your opportunities to work across the social services fields.

Through industry placements, you’ll gain valuable real-world experience by working with people in a supervised setting - preparing you for entering the workforce. Plus, you’ll build a network of contacts in your specialist area, great for future employment options!

You’ll graduate with a high-level of self-awareness and the communication skills to engage a diverse range of people. You’ll be able to provide professional practice within the community, demonstrate social responsibility and will meet the standards needed to be eligible for Applicant/Provisional Status with the Professional Association for your chosen specialty.

Career options are diverse and you’ll be able to access opportunities within relevant fields both within New Zealand and overseas.

Your workload:

This is a taught, in person programme and distance or online study options aren't available. If you’re learning with us full-time, you'll need to spend an average of 37.5 hours studying per week.
Further study options:

You could increase your career prospects with postgraduate study at Waikato, Massey or Auckland universities.

Entry criteria

Applicants must have:

  • the Bachelor of Social Services or the Bachelor of Social Services (endorsed in Counselling or Career Practice), OR
  • an equivalent qualification, OR
  • be able to demonstrate equivalent practical, professional or educational experience of an appropriate kind.

Overall Academic IELTS 6.5 with no individual band score lower than 6.5 (achieved in one test completed in the last two years)

TOEFL Paper-based test (pBT): Score of 550 (with an essay score of 5 TWE)

TOEFL Internet-based test (iBT): Score of 60 (with a writing score of 18)

Cambridge English Assessments: B2 First, or B2 First for schools, or C1 Advanced, or C2 Proficiency with a score of 169. No less than 162 in each skill;

Pearson Test of English (Academic): PTE (Academic) score of 50 with no band score lower than 42

Language Certificate: C1 Expert IESOL (LRWS) with PASS and no less than Pass in each skill

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