NZ2992 - NZ Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Level 4) - FAQs

This page should answer any questions you have about the New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Level 4) Social and Community Services.

If you cannot find what you are looking for here, please don't hesitate to contact us

NZ2992 Workplace Learning

  • Is the workplace learning compulsory?


    The workplace activities provide the context for your assessment.  

  • What do I need to know about distance learning and learning in the workplace?

    The workplace context is an essential part of this qualification.

    As part of the assessments, learning activities will be provided so you can apply what you have been learning in the course material to your own working environment.

    The tasks you undertake in the workplace will be documented and verified by your workplace verifier. 

  • What happens if I am not employed in the sector?

    You must be working, either as a volunteer or paid employee, for a minimum of 200 hours of relevant work in a health and wellbeing context to study this qualification. 

    Open Polytechnic does not provide placements. You need to organise these or find a volunteer position yourself.

    These 200 hours distribute evenly across the course in your programme, which equates to 40-45 hours per course in Level 4, as a guide. 

    The workplace activities provide the context for your assessment.    

  • How long does each course take?

    We have a study plan based on each course taking 16 weeks, which equates to 12.5 hours per week.

    This includes study time and preparing and submitting assignments.

    You can adjust your study plan to suit your own personal and flexible timeline.

    You may wish to progress through the course more quickly than the 16-week study plan suggests. 

    Your 200 hours workplace requirement is distributed evenly across the courses in your programme.

    This equates to 40-45 hrs per course in Level 4, as a guide.  

NZ2992 About this qualification

  • Upon completion of this qualification, will I be eligible to enrol and study the Bachelor of Social Health and Wellbeing (Level 7)?

    Once you have completed the New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Social and Community Services) (Level 4), you will be able to enrol and study the Bachelor of Social Health and Wellbeing (Level 7).

  • Is this a recognised qualification by employers within the industry?


    This is a New Zealand Certificate, which is a recognised qualification on the New Zealand Qualification Framework.

    Many employers in the health and wellbeing sector require staff to be qualified at Level 4 for specific roles in the workplace.  

  • What type of jobs will this qualification lead to?

    Graduates from this qualification may be employed in a range of roles supporting people in the community.

    Potential employment roles include support worker, caregiver, employment consultants, whānau workers, housing coordinators, aged care workers and navigators. 

  • Who is this qualification for?

    This qualification is for people who are currently working in or are interested in beginning a career in the mental health, addictions or disability sector.

    This certificate will give you the skills, knowledge and behaviours required to work alongside people, family and/or whānau accessing social and community services, under broad guidance.

    This qualification does not focus on working with children, working in education, counselling, or front-line service roles that are not official mental health, disability or aged care contracts.

    For qualifications involving youth work, RTLB, teacher aide, or counselling, please search the Te Pūkenga website for a qualification that suits you:

    Te Pūkenga Website

  • What could my career progression be after achieving this qualification?
    • Bachelor of Social Health and Wellbeing   
    • Bachelor of Social Work  
    • youth work  
    • counselling  
    • nursing  
    • teaching  
  • Is this level 4 the right qualification to meet pay parity?

    You will need to ask your employer as there is currently no official designated qualifications list to cater for the recent pay parity changes.

    The social services sector ITO has been contracted to create this list and until this is approved, you must discuss it with your employer.

    You must find what strand they want you to do and at what level. If you already have a level 3 or 4 qualification in this area, you should also be asking if it is acknowledged as an equivalent qualification for pay parity.  

    You can check the information for pay parity here:  

  • Should I study at level 3 or at level 4?

    Workers studying towards Level 3:  

    • Follow instructions of a personal care or support plan.
    • Work under direct supervision of someone.
    • Work in mental health, addiction, disability (support worker strand) or aged care (Health Assistance Strand). Suitable roles include: Health Care Assistance (For example: DHB healthcare or aged care), support worker, community support worker, disability or aged care caregiver.  
    • Have a continuity of care and support with tāngata whaiora (which means working with the same person over a period of weeks or months).


    Workers studying towards Level 4:  

    • Can create or deliver a personal care or support plan.  
    • Set goals with tāngata whaiora, being actively involved in their personal plan.  
    • Work in mental health or addiction, (mental health and addiction strand) or disability or aged care (Community Facilitation Strand). Suitable roles include: support worker, community support worker, caregiver.  
    • Have a continuity of care and support with tāngata whaiora (which means working with the same person over a period of weeks or months).

NZ2992 Admissions

  • Can my verifier be a family member?

    It is preferred not.

    You need to have someone who is level 3 qualified (can be in health and wellbeing or another relevant qualification like a registered nurse, counsellor, social worker or your service manager if they are qualified).  

  • Who can be my workplace verifier?

    This person is likely to be provided to you by your organisation.

    It could be a manager, team leader, residential house leader, team coach, registered nurse or other delegated health professional.

    The verifier must see you doing your work in the workplace or know what work you do. This person must be qualified at the level you are applying to study at or above. 

    For example, if you are applying for the level 3, the verifier must hold a level 3 qualification or higher in either Health and Wellbeing, disability, mental health, addiction or equivalency like nursing, social worker or counselling or other health care qualification.   

  • Can I enrol in two courses at once?

    No, but as soon as you have finished one course you can apply to enrol in the next.

    As soon as you pass the prior course, we will approve your next course application. 

  • When can I enrol?

    This qualification has five courses. You can enrol in and start the first course (HWB401) throughout the year.

    When we confirm your enrolment we’ll give you the start and end dates that you need to complete your study within.

  • What are the entry requirements for this qualification?

    You must be at least 17 years of age at the start of the qualification and have NCEA Level 1 or equivalent.

  • Do I have to be working in the sector to study this qualification?

    To study the courses in this qualification you need to be able to access a minimum of 200 hours of paid or unpaid employment in a relevant health and wellbeing context.

    A relevant context includes, but is not limited to – aged care, acute care, community support, home-based support, respite care, and mobile services.

    Your 200 hours workplace requirement is distributed evenly across the courses in your programme.

    This equates to 40 – 45 hrs per course in Level 4, as a guide. Each assessment requires a minimum number of hours of workplace practice to demonstrate competency.

    You will need to have a suitably qualified workplace verifier who has agreed to oversee your work.

    Both you and your employer will need to sign a workplace agreement and provide information about your workplace verifier.

    You will be able to download this memorandum during the online application process.

    Your acceptance into the qualification is subject to final approval by the Level 4 Programme Delivery Manager. 

  • What do I need to provide for the online application process?

    You will need to download a workplace agreement form for you and your employer to sign.

    This agreement confirms that you are working in an appropriate health and wellbeing setting and have a qualified workplace supervisor who can verify your work.

    If you do not have an active National Student Number, or haven’t studied with us before, you may need to provide us with verified proof of your identification to confirm your legal name and residency status.

    You will find more information on our website about the types of verified documents that you can send us.

  • How long will the application process take?

    Once we have received the completed online application and the supporting workplace agreement, and we have assessed that you meet the entry criteria, we will approve your application.

  • Do I need to have a computer?


    All the courses in this qualification are studied online so you will need to have regular access to a computer or device, a reliable internet connection and a data plan to be able to support your learning.

    You will need to stream videos, download content and submit assessments online.