Requesting programme endorsement

If you are developing a programme that leads to a qualification listed on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF), the Education and Training Act requires you to get the programme approved by NZQA. If you are interested in delivering a programme, you also need to be accredited as a provider of that programme.

For vocational qualifications, you must also gain endorsement from a Workforce Development Council (WDC) prior to submitting your programme to NZQA for approval.

Industry qualifications include:

If you are interested in delivering a programme, you also need to be accredited as a provider of that programme.

Find more information on programme approval and accreditation at NZQA.

Our role in programme approval

Our considerations for programme endorsement differ from NZQA approval criteria and look to meet both industry needs and learner vocational education and training needs.

Please kōrero with us while you are developing your programme so we can tohu (advise) you of any new rules, regulations, specifications or conditions since the qualification was listed. Get more programme guidance information for some of our qualifications.

Once you have finalised your programme, before you seek approval from NZQA, you will need our endorsement.

WDC endorsement considerations

We focus on six considerations:

  • programme content
  • equity for learners
  • programme engagement and consultation
  • te ao Māori
  • Pacific languages and learners
  • disabled people.

Read our Programme Endorsement Considerations for full details of these six considerations.

The Waihanga Ara Rau tīma is committed to providing guidance for providers to develop and gain approval for high-quality programmes and contributing to an education system that honours Te Tiriti o Waitangi and supports Māori-Crown relations.

How to request programme endorsement

We encourage providers to contact us as early as possible when creating or reviewing a programme to ensure it meets the approval requirements of NZQA. As part of the NZQA programme approval process, you will need to provide a letter of endorsement from us. 

Sometimes we may ask you for additional evidence to satisfy certain considerations. When we’re satisfied that the proposed programme meets all the requirements, we’ll email you a letter of endorsement that you can submit to NZQA with your approval application. Our letter of endorsement will be valid for six months. 

We don’t charge any fees to provide endorsement for your proposed programmes or changes to approved programmes. 

You should allow 20 working days for us to process your request. 

Getting new programmes endorsed

Please complete an Application for new programme endorsement. This application requires details about the purpose of the programme and how all considerations have been addressed. 

To submit your request for our endorsement of your new programme just email us at [email protected] and include these attachments: 

  • Your completed Application for new programme endorsement 
  • A copy of your proposed programme 
  • An overview of industry and/or community input into your programme development (e.g., advisory group composition and process) 
  • A Programme overview (delivery of practical and theoretical aspects, assessment and moderation approach) 
  • Outline of the resources needed to deliver the programme 
  • Evidence that the qualification document guidance has been considered during programme development. 

Getting changes to approved programmes endorsed

Please complete a Type Two programme change endorsement application.   

Then contact us at [email protected] with the following attachments: