You can begin applying to university in New Zealand as soon as you've received your predicted A Level grades near the beginning of Year 13.
For some universities, because the academic year begins in February, it's still possible to apply for a course in August after you've got your A Level results.
If you get in touch with a UK representative of the university they can provide you with information and guidance about the course you're interested in, the university, admissions procedures, Visa applications and accommodation options. They can also provide you with any application forms you need and certify necessary documents.
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The process of applying begins by completing the application forms from the UK representative (or International Student Admissions Office if the university doesn't have a UK rep). You then have to provide verified copies of you GSCE and AS certificate (or equivalent). If you're applying before your final exams you must also provide an offocial letter from your school, sixth form or college which states your predicted grades. However, if you're applying after you've taken your exams you must provide your A Level certificates. Similarly, if you're applying for a postgraduate course, you need to provide up to date university transcripts or a degree completion certificate.
During the application process you may also need to provide certain documents such as a copy of your passport, for arts programmes you may have to submit a portfolio of work and for medicine or dentistry you may have to sit an admissions test.
While it's not compulsory, it's also recommended that you submit a personal statement with your application. This will give you the opportunity to tell the admissions team why you should be considered for the programme and highlight what makes you different and your achievements outside academia.
Undergraduate admissions usually take around 4 - 6 weeks to process the application and 6 - 8 weeks for a postgraduate course.
If your predicted grades meet the course's entry requirements and they like your application, you will be issued with a conditional offer which, assuming you get the grades, will change to an unconditional offer when you get your results.