Founded in 2016

Founded in 2016

Ara Institute of Canterbury (Christchurch Polytechnic)

Founded in 2016

Founded in 2016

Ara Institute of Canterbury (Christchurch Polytechnic)

Quick facts

  • 11,935

  • 1,713

    International students
  • 5452

    World ranking
  • 13

    Country ranking

Ara Institute of Canterbury (Christchurch Polytechnic)

Ara is the largest vocational training institute in the South Island of New Zealand. 

It is an approved host institution for Fullbright US Graduate studies for the following programmes:

-Master of Sustainable Practice

-Postgraduate Diploma in Sustainable Practice

-Post Graduate Diploma in Health Science

Ara Institute of Canterbury has six campuses throughout the South Island (three in Christchurch and one each in Ashburton, Timaru and Oamaru). It offers nationally recognised and exceptionally certificates, diplomas, degrees and graduate qualifications.

Ara specialises in applied tertiary training. Subject choices include business, engineering, architecture, nursing, creative arts, hospitality, computing, science, languages, outdoor education, and broadcasting. Programmes range from Level 1 to Level 9. The institute works closely with industry to ensure students have relevant skills for employment, and have a wide range of work placement opportunities.

Each year around 14,000 students enrol at Ara, including many international students. Ara is internationally-recognised and has one of the best English language training centres in New Zealand. Over 50 countries are represented among staff and students at Ara.

Off-campus accommodation

annual rent in Christchurch
based on univly research


Shared house

$6,948 NZD


Shared house

$4,632 NZD


Entire house

$13,896 NZD


One of the most important choices a student needs to make when coming to study is where to live.

Ara has campuses in Christchurch, Ashburton, Timaru and Oamaru and each of these regions offers a range of accommodation options. Students may decide to go flatting, private board or live in homestay accommodation with a family.

For students wanting to study in Christchurch, our Ōtautahi House offers apartment style accommodation with other students in a flat share right across the road from our Christchurch - Madras Street campus.

 It is better to stay with a homestay family when you first arrive in New Zealand to study. A homestay provides a warm, family environment where you'll have your own room, share meals with the family and have the opportunity to practice your English every day. 

 The homestay services include:

-full inspection of all homes and interviews with host families

-airport pick-up

-police vetting of all host families

-a 'welcome pack' upon arrival

-banking assistance on your first day at Ara

-translators to assist communication

Many Ara students live in shared rental accommodation while studying. Sharing a flat with other students is one of the cheapest ways to live.

Most flats are unfurnished. They will contain an oven and in some cases a refrigerator and washing machine. Furnished flats are available but rental costs are higher.

International students sharing a flat with New Zealanders will develop English skills as well as being independent (international students under 18 must live in homestay accommodation).



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Ara Institute of Canterbury (Christchurch Polytechnic)

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