STAR programme

The STAR programme provides the opportunity for Year 12 and 13 students to take 100-level courses while still at school.

Taking a STAR course while still at school can help you get a head start on your university journey. You can explore your academic interests, earn points towards your future degree at Te Herenga Waka—Victoria University of Wellington, and better prepare yourself for university study.

How it works

If you’re interested in taking a STAR course, you should talk to your school first. Your fees will often be partially funded by your school, though not all schools receive STAR funding. The courses are open to all students willing to meet the course costs, including students from independent schools.

The University offers a group of courses specially designed to be taken while still at high school. You will be able to complete these courses by distance and the University will support you with an online preparation course. There will also be opportunities to visit our campuses to meet other students during your studies.

Taking a STAR course gives you the opportunity to earn university points to get a head start on your degree study. The points that you gain from your STAR course can count towards almost any degree at university.

Courses available to STAR students

A number of our courses have been specially revised to better suit STAR students. These courses can be completed through distance learning, as well as having have some engaging on-campus experiences planned for students who want a preview of campus culture.

Trimester 1, 2024

GLBL 101

Introduction to Global Studies: Collaboration in Global Contexts

Big, complex global challenges require creative and ethical interdisciplinary solutions.

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CYBR 171

Cybersecurity Fundamentals

Hacker—hero or villain? Explore the world of cyber criminals, state-sponsored hackers, and commercial and government defenders.

Learn more

Trimester 2, 2024

INFO 101

Introduction to Information Systems

An examination of the role of information systems in the business operations, managerial decision making and strategy of modern organisations.

Learn more

Other 100-level courses

You can take any other 100-level course as part of the STAR programme however many courses have in-person attendance requirements. Search or browse our online courses to find courses that can be completed remotely.

The following courses are particularly well suited for STAR students—these courses are willing to waive or lessen their in-person attendance requirements at the request of STAR students.

If you’re interested in taking a STAR course or have specific questions around a program of study, book a course advice appointment with one of our Future Student Advisers.

Workload and attendance

You can take one or two STAR courses in the academic year. Each course is worth 15 or 20 points. You can expect the workload for each course to be around 10-12 hours per week for the duration of the trimester.


You will need to be 16 years or older by the time your course begins. You will need to have met the literacy and numeracy requirements for NCEA University Entrance and have a high level of achievement at NCEA Level 2.

You'll also need to complete a STAR contract to submit with your application—you, your parents, and a teacher from your school will need to sign this.

To discuss your STAR study plans and get help choosing a suitable course, we recommend that you book a course advice appointment with one of our Future Student Advisers.

How to apply

  1. Create an account in Pūaha, our student portal.
  2. Start your admission application
    • When selecting your programme, choose the pre-degree option and select STAR programme from the dropdown menu.
    • Upload your completed STAR contract.
  3. Once you receive and accept your Offer of Place, you’ll be able to enrol in your course(s).