February 2017
- 17 Feb 2017

Update on online pilot of literacy and numeracy unit standards

The pilot of an online assessment for two unit standards (see below) will take place from 23 March to 13 April 2017.

  • Literacy - Level 1 US26624: Read texts with understanding
  • Numeracy - Level 1 US26623: Use number to solve problems.

This pilot follows the online assessment trial of these standards, which took place in October 2016.

By mid-February 2017, NZQA will have contacted the organisations that registered for the pilot last year.  These organisations will be asked to nominate a contact person who will be responsible for administering the pilot within the organisation. 

Instructions on preparing learners for the assessment will be sent in early March 2017.  

Any queries about the online assessment should be emailed to future.state@nzqa.govt.nz.

More information on the pilot is available at Literacy and Numeracy unit standards – online assessment.

Updated Immigration New Zealand approval rates for student visas

The 2016 approval rates for student visas are now available on the Immigration New Zealand website.

What is this list for?

Education providers must use this list when enrolling international students, to confirm whether the students come from a country with a high visa decline rate for the purposes of Rule 18.5 of the NZQF Programme Approval and Accreditation Rules 2013.

This Rule specifies the English language proficiency testing requirements for international students from countries with a student visa decline rate of over 20 per cent.

Immigration New Zealand updates this list every year. The student visa approval rates affect all student visa applications from one month after the list is released.

This now gives education organisations that are enrolling international students until 24 February 2017 to adjust their enrolment policies.

Review of University Entrance

NZQA is undertaking its regular review of University Entrance to ensure that it remains relevant and useful to students and tertiary institutions. A number of key changes were made following the previous 2010/2011 review. The current review provides an opportunity to ensure that these changes have been embedded properly and are achieving their intent: that a learner with University Entrance has a reasonable chance of success at degree-level study.

NZQA has concluded the evidence-gathering phase of the review and is releasing a discussion document for feedback. The document summarises the views heard from the sector and analysis of the available data. It presents some initial conclusions and makes some suggestions for operational improvement of the requirements.

One of the key initial conclusions is that there should not be any changes to the University Entrance requirements at this stage. The document seeks feedback on these initial conclusions and suggestions for improvement of the requirements.

The discussion document will be available for your feedback from March 2017. The consultation page and discussion document can be accessed at that time through Review of university entrance requirements 2016.

2017 workshops on assuring consistency

Assuring national consistency of graduate outcomes is a new quality assurance process developed to maintain the integrity of the new New Zealand qualifications developed following the Targeted Review of Qualifications.

The responsibility for demonstrating how graduates meet the qualification requirements and outcomes rests with each education organisation, through its self-assessment processes. 

Education organisations will participate in a review meeting to assure the consistency of graduate outcomes. The focus is on comparing graduates to qualification outcomes, using evidence provided by the education organisation. 

The workshops will introduce education organisations to the assuring consistency process and show how it fits into NZQA’s overall quality assurance framework. The workshop is directed primarily at education organisations delivering programmes that award the new New Zealand qualifications, or are working on developing programmes to do so. 

To register for one of these workshops, go to: 2017 Assuring Consistency workshops nationwide.

Adding Tertiary Education Qualification Statement to NZQF qualifications

Tertiary education organisations can add a Tertiary Education Qualification Statement (TEQS) to New Zealand Qualifications Framework qualifications they award. This document acts as an expanded graduate transcript with information tailored to international audiences to facilitate the qualification’s recognition overseas.

The addition of a TEQS is not compulsory – it is at the discretion of each organisation whether to offer it to their graduates. To assist tertiary education organisations in preparing and implementing the TEQS, NZQA has published Guidelines for implementing a Tertiary Education Qualification Statement in New Zealand (PDF, 457KB).

For more information on TEQS, see Tertiary Education Qualification Statement.

Information to students before enrolment


Before students complete enrolment at an institution they must have information on fees and items required to be bought or provided.

Full written detail must be provided to students under section 228A Education Act 1989 (the Act).  This could include, but is not limited to: uniforms, safety equipment, books and lecture materials.

In addition, under section 234B of the Act, before a private training establishment (PTE) enrols students, they must be given a written statement of the total costs and all other financial commitments associated with the programme or training scheme. These costs would include re-sit or late assignment fees.

NZQA suggests that tertiary education organisations consider having students sign an acknowledgement demonstrating that they are aware of these charges and information. 

Other information – for PTEs

PTEs will best determine how they can advise enrolling students of their external evaluation and review category and statements of confidence (Private Training Establishment Registration Rules 2013 5.1.4 (b)). For example, this could be on the website, or it could be on noticeboards around the premises.

Newly enrolling students, along with current students, must be informed of any conditions NZQA has placed on the PTE’s registration, of any compliance notice that has been issued by NZQA to the PTE that has not been complied with, and any notice of intention to cancel registration of the PTE that has been issued by NZQA (Private Training Establishment Registration Rules 2013 5.1.4 (c)).

QAD on the web

Code of Practice resources

NZQA has a new range of resources for the Education (Pastoral Care of International Students) Code of Practice 2016.

The resources are designed for code signatories, students, families and agents, and have been translated into a range of languages.

See Code of Practice resources available in different languages and Code of Practice toolbox.

Application acknowledgements

Tertiary education organisations that have submitted an application online via the TEO login, and have not received the email acknowledgment within a week of the application being made, please contact the Client Services Team at qaadmin@nzqa.govt.nz.

Forms and attestations due

Annual Return and Student Fee Protection audit opinions (due 28 February 2017)

PTEs with a financial year-end of 30 September 2016 need to submit the following documents to NZQA by 28 February 2017:


  1. Annual Return Statutory Declaration – There is a new version of this form (SD01). The form needs to be signed by the chief executive or chair of the governing body.
  2. Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review Report or Auditor’s Report – NZQA’s customised Chartered Accountant Professional Attestation (CAPA) form was discontinued in late 2015. A news release in November 2015 announced this change. If you receive Tertiary Education Commission funding, you do not need to submit an Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review Report or Auditor’s Report to NZQA.

For further information on the requirements, see: Independent Assurance Practitioner's Review Report or Auditor's Report.

Quarterly student fee protection attestation (due 11 March 2017)

The quarterly attestation form for Student Fee Protection for the quarter ending 28 February 2017 is due to your trustee by 4 March 2017. The trustee attestation needs to be lodged with NZQA by 11 March 2017.

Download the form at: Quarterly student fee protection attestation.

Forwarding information and queries

Forward the above documents to: qaadmin@nzqa.govt.nz. For any queries about these requirements, contact Yvonne Collins, 04 463 3256, email: qaadmin@nzqa.govt.nz.

Subscribe to eQuate 

You can subscribe to eQuate through the ‘sign up’ link on the eQuate section of the website.

Compliance summary for February–March 2017

Student Fee Protection audit

To NZQA within five months of PTE’s financial year-end

For PTEs with a financial year-end of 30 September 2016, due 28 February 2017

Annual Return – Statutory Declaration

To NZQA within five months of PTE’s financial year-end

For PTEs with a financial year-end of 30 September 2016, due 28 February 2017

Annual Return – Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review

To NZQA within five months of PTE’s financial year-end

For PTEs with a financial year-end of 30 September 2016, due 28 February 2017

Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review (IAPR) Report has replaced NZQA’s customised Chartered Accountant Professional Attestation (CAPA)

SFP quarterly attestation – quarter ending 28 February 2017

11 March 2017 to NZQA

No longer required for standard trusts – only for static trusts or bank bond trusts

Compliance declaration

Submission of self-assessment material

Not an annual requirement; only required before external evaluation and review

Fit and Proper Person and Conflict of Interest declarations

With new applications for registration; also, for proposed new governing members* of registered PTEs

*See Section 232 of the Education Act 1989 for the definition of governing member

Must be completed by all new governing members before commencing in the role, and at any time when an existing governing member has a new conflict of interest or change in fit and proper status.

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