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Photo by Ashley Lysaght

Make the most out of IT.

Leaving School —

Making big decisions like whether you’ll study, get a job or learn a trade is always tough.

While this year may have you feeling a bit scrambled, if you’re planning to carry on studying after you finish school, now’s the time to start getting organised. The best way to stay connected while you’re figuring everything out is to visit and follow StudyLink’s ‘Get Ready for Study’ page on Facebook. This way you can keep up-to-date with all the latest information.

Follow StudyLink at www.facebook.com/getreadystudylink

For now, let’s get you up to speed on the ways StudyLink can help with Student Allowances and Student Loans.

1⃣ Find out about the cost of study

If you’re going to study, you’ll need to work out how much it’s going to cost and how you’ll pay for it. The StudyLink website has tools and calculators to help you out.

Visit studylink.govt.nz

2⃣ Check if you can get fees-free study

Whether you’re thinking about doing a degree or an apprenticeship, if you’re studying or training for the first time you may be able to get fees-free study.

To check, go to feesfree.govt.nz

3⃣ Help with costs

If you can get fees-free you may not need a Student Loan for your course fees, but you may still need to apply for a loan if you need help with course-related costs or living costs. You may also be able to get a Student Allowance to help with your living expenses.

Student Allowance

This is a weekly payment to help with living expenses – you don’t have to pay it back.

How much you get depends on:

• your income

• your living situation

• your parents’ income (if you’re under 24).

Student Loan

The Student Loan can help with study costs. You’ll have to pay this back once you’re earning  over a certain amount. If you’re a fulltime student, you may be able to get a loan for:

• compulsory course fees (check if you can get fees-free first)

• course-related costs

• living costs.

Use StudyLink’s eligibility test to work out what

kind of help you could get while you’re studying,

visit studylink.govt.nz

4⃣ Apply by 16 December at


You don’t need to wait ‘til you get your NCEA results in January to apply! It’s best to apply by 16 December to make sure you’re sorted when your study starts.

Don’t worry if things change.

You can update your application details, like your education provider or course, or even withdraw your application at any time.

It’s more important to get your application in on time, even if you haven’t decided all the details yet.

👉 Studylink KeyFacts

  • Follow Studylink for all the latest information.  
  • Take Studylink's eligibility test to see what help you can get.
  • Check if you can get fees-fee
  • Apply to Studylink by 16 December - dont need to wait until you get your NCEA results. 


If you’re not sure whether further study is right for you, here are some other places to go for ideas:

Credit: www.leavingschool.co.nz