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A Guide to International Rankings of New Zealand Universities

New Zealand universities rank particularly highly in some subjects. According to the QS World University Rankings, we offer the world’s 12th best dentistry training and the 25th best veterinary training, and both our medical schools are in the world’s top 150.

Our universities lead the way through academic excellence and personalised learning, as well as offering you the chance to enjoy a great quality of life, vibrant cities, stunning natural scenery and an unbeatable range of outdoor activities.

QS World University Rankings

The annual QS World University Rankings rank the world’s top 800 universities. The QS rankings are the most widely read comparison of their kind.

The QS report for 2018 ranks all eight New Zealand universities in the world’s top 500. Four of them rank in the top 300. New Zealand is the only country in the world with all of its universities ranked in the QS top 500.

The University of Auckland was top-ranked in the latest QS report at #82, followed by the University of Otago at #151.

QS rankings by subject

As well as providing overall rankings, QS also compares the rankings of universities in particular subject areas.

The latest QS rankings by subject show that all eight New Zealand universities have at least one subject ranked in the world’s top 100, and seven of them have subjects ranked in the world’s top 50.

Subjects that ranked particularly highly include:

  • Dentistry at the University of Otago, which is ranked 29th best in the world

  • Sports-Related Subjects at the University of Otago, which is ranked 7th best in the world

  • Veterinary Science at Massey University, which is ranked 23rd in the world

  • Civil and Structural Engineering at the University of Auckland is ranked 38th best in the world

  • Law and legal studies at Victoria University, which is ranked in the world’s top 50

  • Art and Design at the Auckland University of Technology and the University of Auckland, both of which are ranked in the world’s top 100.

Times Higher Education World University Rankings

New Zealand universities also rank well in the 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings.

The University of Auckland, the University of Otago, Victoria University, Massey University, University of Waikato, Auckland University of Technology and the University of Canterbury are ranked in the top 500 universities for 2018.

Our universities rank particularly well for their international outlook. They are among the world’s best at attracting staff and students from around the world, and they have some of the world’s widest range of collaborations with universities in other countries.


By Linley Boniface

Updated 3 years ago

Linley Boniface is a contract writer for Education New Zealand. She is based in Wellington, her favourite city in New Zealand. A former journalist, Linley spent a year in Montreal, Canada, as a secondary school student. 

*Views expressed are the blogger's own
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