New Zealand Certificate in Foundation Skills (Level 1)


Closed to new enrolments

Entry requirements

To enrol in this programme you should not already have NCEA Level 1, or qualifications at Level 2 or above. 

If you are studying this programme you are only able to enrol in one course at a time.



Under 16 years old

Learners must be at least 16 years of age or older to study at Open Polytechnic. The Chief Executive may make an exception for students enrolling under an approved agreement.

20 years old or over

Applicants who have attained the age of 20 years and do not hold the minimum entry requirements will be eligible to be enrolled where their previous educational, work or life experience indicates they have a reasonable likelihood of success.

If you have any questions or don't meet the above criteria contact us to discuss your study options.


English language requirements

Domestic students for whom English or Māori is not their first language must have an IELTS (Academic or General) score of 5.0 with no band score lower than 5.0, or equivalent.


Literacy assessment

When you enrol in this qualification, you will need to complete the Adult Literacy and Numeracy Assessment.

This assessment is a requirement from the Tertiary Education Commission for all Level 1 to 2 qualifications. You will need to do it when you start your studies, and again during your study time.

There is no pass or fail for the assessment. When you finish you can see a visual report with your results. Your tutor will use your results from the first assessment to find out what support you may need.

How you will do the assessment

After you fill in your online enrolment application we will email you a link to this assessment.

If you do not have access to a computer:

  • you can take this test in a public library, or
  • a paper based test may be administered under special conditions.
  • We will email you your second assessment before the end of your study time.

If you would like more information, please get in touch.


International students and domestic students living overseas

This programme is not available to international students living in New Zealand or overseas, or domestic students living overseas.


Computer and internet requirements

This programme is paper-based.