NZQA/Nursing Council Statement – Solutions for nursing students

24 Jul 2012

International students who have been studying on the one year Bachelor of Nursing programmes at Waiariki Institute of Technology and UCOL now have options available to them that will provide a clear pathway to meeting the Nursing Council’s educational requirements, NZQA and the Nursing Council announced today.

NZQA Deputy Chief Executive, Tim Fowler, and Nursing Council Chief Executive Carolyn Reed said that while NZQA has conducted a review of the process of admitting international students onto the Bachelor of Nursing at both institutions, finding solutions for students had been prioritised.

“NZQA and Nursing Council have spent a considerable time meeting with students, Waiariki, UCOL, and Immigration NZ to ensure suitable solutions”.

“NZQA’s priority has always been the affected students and ensuring they are not disadvantaged. I believe we have solutions in place to help students move forward.”

Nursing Council’s priority is to ensure public safety and that all nurses registered in New Zealand have the required qualifications to practise safely.

“A range of options have been developed for international students in the Bachelor of Nursing programme, depending on which institution they have been attending and when they started studying.  Solutions include staying on the programme with additional training required for some; taking up the opportunity to have international qualifications considered by the Registration Committee of Nursing Council; the transfer to the three year Bachelor of Nursing programme or applying for registration as an enrolled nurse.”

The options would not involve any additional tuition costs for the students involved.

Solutions are still being finalised for other affected international nursing students, including those who have studied the Graduate Diploma or Certificate in Infection Control and Prevention at Waiariki. An interim solution has been proposed where students can apply to NZQA to have a benchmarked assessment of their qualification against the New Zealand Qualifications Framework”. These students also have the option of applying for registration as an enrolled nurse.

“By offering a range of solutions we can allow students to select the most suitable option for them and also cover the variety of scenarios they face. This will place the students in the best position for their qualification and skills to be assessed by the Nursing Council.”

Every affected student will be provided with clear advice about what they need to do next, and what needs to be completed to meet the education standards required by the Nursing Council. NZQA also held meetings with affected students at Waiariki on 20 July. Nursing Council and NZQA met affected students at UCOL on 23 July and will meet Waiariki students to explain the options available to them on 27 July.

NZQA has prioritised finding solutions for affected students over finalising the review findings. The final review document is expected to be released soon. 

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