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Auckland Institute of Studies

Auckland Institute of Studies (AIS, formerly AIS St Helens) is New Zealand’s largest private degree-granting institution with a strong international focus. AIS was originally founded in 1990 as a language school and has since expanded across two large campuses in the suburban Auckland area to accommodate thousands of students each year who study a variety of industry driven courses.

Accreditations, Rankings and Awards

Auckland Institute of Studies is fully accredited by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) and is ranked as a Category 1 institution. AIS holds three Exporter of the Year Awards (1997, 1999 & 2011) in recognition of its success as an exporter of New Zealand education.


AIS operates across two campuses in Mt Albert, Auckland: the scenic St Helens Campus which acts as the institute’s administrative hub and the smaller industrial Asquith Campus (previously home to New Zealand’s TV2 channel headquarters) purpose-built for Hospitality and IT. The institute is located 10 minutes away from Auckland’s Central Business District in the quiet Auckland suburbia.


AIS welcomes over 900 students each year, 90% of whom are international students from over 25 countries, followed by 10% domestic students (57% NZ Residents and 43% Kiwis). The overwhelming majority of all AIS students are enrolled in Bachelor Degree, Postgraduate Diploma and Master Degree courses (67%) with the remainder studying lower-level certificates, diplomas and English language courses.

Key Study Areas

AIS offers a wide range of NZQA approved certificates, diplomas, bachelor degrees and postgraduate programmes in the following areas:

  • International Business
  • Hospitality Management
  • Tourism Management
  • Information Technology
  • Language Studies


Postgraduate courses (includes Master Degrees and Graduate Diplomas):

Undergraduate courses (includes Bachelor Degrees and Diplomas):

Teacher training courses:

English language courses:

*AIS does not directly offer these courses to international students due to visa limitations; allowed only as part of a Bachelor Degree, as an additional course for current international students or for New Zealand Visitor Visa holders.

Learning Environment

AIS have the advantage of being located away from Auckland’s busy Central Business District which allows students to concentrate on their studies and participate in a range of extra-curricular activities (AIS have their own Cricket and Soccer teams). Students who live outside of Mt Albert tend to only visit the institute to attend classes and study; students who live on-campus tend to make full use of the institute’s facilities: dormitory, library, cafeteria, sport and recreational facilities, free and unlimited Wi-Fi, free transport to nearby supermarkets and event venues and etc.

International Student Requirements

  • Students must be 18 at the start of the course.
  • International students must hold a secondary school completion certificate equivalent to 12 years of schooling in New Zealand and must meet the academic and any additional requirements for their chosen course.
  • The English language requirement for entry at the Diploma, Bachelor Degree and Graduate Diploma levels (NZQF Levels 5-7) is IELTS 6.0 with no individual band less than 5.5
  • The English language requirement for entry at the Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma and Master Degree levels (NZQF Levels 8-9) is IELTS 6.5 with no individual band less than 6.0

Accommodation Options

The AIS on-campus dormitory can accommodate up to 126 students and is located near the main building. Students have the choice of single, double and multi-share (up to 4 tenants) rooms with free unlimitedWi-Fi and free weekly linen service. Dormitory residents get access to the nearby library, resident carpark, cafeteria and shared facilities.

The institute also offers students a search service for homestay families.

Interesting Facts

AIS is closely linked with Manav Racnha International University (Faderabad, India) via delivery of Bachelor of Information Technology, and the Tonga Institute of Higher Education via delivery of Diploma in Hospitality Operations Management and Diploma in Tourism Management. Overall the institute has 13 institutional linkages in New Zealand and over 30 worldwide.


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