National Certificates and National Diplomas

National Certificates and National Diplomas recognise skills and knowledge that meet nationally endorsed unit and achievement standards.

The skills and knowledge that are required for National Certificates and National Diplomas are exactly what employers say they need. These qualifications are nationally recognised because national industry representatives design them.

National Certificates may be gained in a wide range of areas. They include the National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA) levels 1–3 and National Certificates recognising achievement in a variety of industries and subjects.

Gain a National Certificate or National Diploma

Courses leading to National Certificates and Diplomas are available at polytechnics, private training establishments, schools or wānanga. Workplace based training programmes and apprenticeships also lead to national certificates and diplomas. You can get part of a qualification in one place and complete it in another. The cross credits are automatic.

The flexibility of studying for a National Certificate or Diploma allows you to study full-time or part-time, study in different places, or complete training in the workplace if the qualification relates to your work.

An advantage of National Certificates and National Diplomas is that you can get credit for skills you already have, without going to any courses or training sessions. This is called Recognition of prior learning.

Get started

There are more than 1000 National Certificates and National Diplomas. To find one, see Search qualifications.

Contact your local polytechnic, wānanga, school or private training establishment to enrol in a course that leads to a national qualification. 

If you are in a job and wish to enrol in job-related training, your employer or the Industry Training Organisation that covers your workplace will know all about National Certificates and National Diplomas. They may have workplace assessors available.

Be sure that the qualification is called National Certificate or National Diploma. Only organisations that have been quality assured by NZQA can advertise and run National qualifications.


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