Who we are

Open Polytechnic is New Zealand's leading distance and online learning provider. Our focus is on student success for around 30,000 students each year.

Since we opened in 1946, Open Polytechnic has specialised in open distance flexible learning (ODFL). Our organisation was created to ensure adult learners could gain the skills they needed for their current or future career, without having to attend full-time study at a physical campus.

Students from throughout New Zealand and overseas take advantage of the flexibility of distance and online learning to gain the skills they need to progress in their jobs and careers.

We’re one of the largest educators of the current workforce, our graduates can be found in every major workplace throughout the country.

A New Zealand that’s continually learning to succeed.

Open Polytechnic's Vision/Ngā Wawata


Our qualifications

We offer over 100 qualifications and around 1,000 courses. Our range of qualifications allows students to staircase from certificate to diploma and degree level (Levels 1–7 on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework). They include technical and vocational training, through to higher professional and continuing education.

We work with industry to develop most of our programmes and courses. We also maintain close relationships with appropriate professional and industry bodies.

All our qualifications meet rigorous and transparent quality standards. They have been approved the New Zealand Qualifications Authority, which has accredited us to deliver them.

We are government funded and owned.

Growing talent to create value for individuals, employers and the economy.

Open Polytechnic's purpose


The objective of governance and leadership at Open Polytechnic is to ensure the organisation develops and maintains:

• A clear strategic direction
• Sound academic policies and regulations
• Robust reporting, monitoring and control mechanisms
• Engages its key stakeholders 

Open Polytechnic is governed by a council, and managed by the Chief Executive supported by our executive team.

History of Open Polytechnic

Open Polytechnic began life as the Technical Correspondence School in 1946. Our role was to provide resettlement training for returned servicemen and women following World War II. In 1963, we became the Technical Correspondence Institute (TCI) and began offering national training in trades subjects.

In 1990 we were renamed The Open Polytechnic of New Zealand. With this we became the specialist national provider of open and distance learning at tertiary level.

The following years were a period of profound transformation. We introduced many new programmes and courses in response to market demand.

Open Polytechnic also adopted internationally proven models for distance learning course design, student support and quality control

In a new phase, Open Polytechnic is now developing an expanding range of online courses and services.


Related content

Our distance learning difference

How study with us works

Who are our learners