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New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Support Work)

New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Support Work)

Level 3

Are you a people person dedicated to the care of others? Gain sought after skills in UCOL’s New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Support Work).

A photograph of a simulated hospital environment with student nurses at UCOL
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: HLC Levin, UCOL Wairarapa

Duration: 22 weeks, full-time

HLC Levin
24 Jan 2022 - 24 Jun 2022

08 Feb 2022 - 15 Jul 2022
18 Jul 2022 - 16 Dec 2022

Domestic Fees: *
Eligible for fees-free until 31 Dec 2022Scholarship info

International Fees:*
Please enquire for details

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

Employers in aged residential, acute, primary and rehabilitative care need health assistants with a professional skill set.

You'll gain the skills to become a support worker in a health and wellbeing setting with the knowledge and skills to interact effectively with clients to ensure their optimum quality of life.


Don’t miss your chance to study fees-free under TTAF – this free funding closes at the end of 2022!

This programme is eligible for fees-free study under the Targeted Training and Apprenticeships Fund (TTAF).

You don’t need to apply to access the Fund - just enrol in an eligible 2022 programme, and the Fund will take care of a full year of your programme’s fees, covering up to 31 December 2022.

Get enrolled now! Please contact the info centre for more details. 

Students in Horowhenua can study this programme at HLC Levin.

COVID-19 Vaccinations:

At present, in light of the current Covid-19 pandemic, it's highly recommended that you are vaccinated against Covid-19 if you want to apply for this programme. All health sector organisations engaging health care workers have obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 to take all reasonable steps to eliminate, or otherwise control, the risk of Covid-19 transmission in the workplace. The New Zealand Government has mandated the vaccine for frontline health care workers (first vaccination by 15 Nov 2021, and fully vaccinated by 1 Jan 2022). Many of the health care providers we work with are requiring their staff, including any students on placement, to be vaccinated and to provide proof of vaccination. As more providers follow suit, if you are unvaccinated or if you choose not to disclose whether or not you are vaccinated, or to provide evidence if asked, this will have an impact on healthcare placements that are allocated to you as part of your undergraduate health programme and will have an impact on you being able to successfully complete the programme.

You can see more information on this on UCOL's Covid-19 page, and on the Ministry of Health's website.

 Career & Study Outcomes

Graduates of UCOL’s New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Support Work) will be able to:
  • recognise and respond to signs of vulnerability and abuse
  • demonstrate ethical and professional behaviour
  • provide person-centred support to maximise independence
  • recognise and respond to change.
You may be employed in a range of roles supporting people in the community, such as disability or aged support. 

This qualification can lead to further studies in related health and wellbeing contexts, or in leadership and management, including New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Advanced Support).

To find out more about possible job prospects and salaries, see Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Occupation Outlook for Social Workers.

 Course Information

This programme comprises 70 credits.

Promoting Interpersonal Communication (14 Credits)
Learn essential communication skills to interact effectively with clients, the importance of advocacy and self-advocacy, and how to recognise and respond to vulnerability.

Cultural-Legal Context of Health (20 Credits)
Learn professional and ethical behaviour; health, safety and security practices; providing support to people from different cultures, and ascertaining a person's holistic needs with regards to their health and wellbeing.

Promoting Independence (18 Credits)
Learn how to support people to use assistive equipment and move, meet their personal care needs, and provide person-centred care when supporting a person with early-stage dementia.

Maintaining a Person Centred Approach (18 Credits)
Observe and respond to changes in a person, understand the support needs of a person with physical disabilities, and learn about the implications of aging on a person's lifestyle and wellbeing, and how to provide person-centred support.

Previous Related Programmes

The New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Support Work) supersedes and takes the best from the following programme of study, which is no longer offered:
  • National Certificate in Health, Disability and Aged support (Core Competencies)

 Student & Staff Profiles

 Domestic Entry Requirements

NCEA Level 1 (including 10 Literacy and 10 Numeracy Credits at Level 1) or equivalent.

For applicants 20 years of age and over there are no minimum academic requirements.  

Acceptance into the programme is conditional on a student authorising UCOL to obtain a background check from the New Zealand Police Licensing and Vetting Agency. Convictions of any offence may not necessarily exclude applicants from enrolment; the decision is at the discretion of the Programme Leader.

Students are also required to complete the Health Declaration Form.

If English is not your first language, you must also demonstrate English language skills equivalent to an IELTS overall band score (academic) of 5.0 with no band score less than 5 (or equivalent including TOEFL). UCOL is a TOEFL testing centre.


For more information about NCEA Credits see UCOL's NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

In addition to the Domestic Entry Requirements, the following applies to international student applicants.

English language proficiency
International student applicants whose first language is not English must have an IELTS (or equivalent including TOEFL) score of 5 with no band score lower than 5. IELTS scores must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (i.e. combining scores from more than one test is not permissible). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre. The English Proficiency test is accepted for English language entry into all UCOL programmes.

Under 20 years of age
For international applicants under 20 years of age who do not hold NCEA, International Academic Qualifications Entry Criteria apply.

 Advice & Guidance

Work experience
There are 150 work experience hours for this programme.

Students at Horowhenua Learning Centre in Levin
Programme requirements may vary. Please contact your tutor for details.

Recognition of prior learning
Applications for Recognition of Prior Learning, including Cross Credit, Credit Transfer and Assessment of Prior Learning may be made on the Recognition of Prior Learning Form where a student believes all learning outcomes for a course have already been met. Applications will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis in accordance with the UCOL Academic Statute and other relavant policies and procedures.

Application checklist
It will make the process easier if you prepare the following before you apply:

  • National Student Number (NSN) (If you don't have a NSN, you may request one from NZQA, or you can supply a verified copy of your birth certificate, passport or Whakapapa statement.)
  • Evidence of your highest level of academic achievement (and evidence of prior learning, if applicable)
  • Evidence that you meet the entry requirements of the programme
  • Check if you're eligible for additional support or a scholarship. If you're 19 years or younger, you may be eligible to enrol in one of our free Youth Transition programmes.

Note that you will need to provide any verified documents in person, via post or email (not via the online application form).