The Massey University academic year is divided into distinct enrolment periods, which are Semester One, Semester Two and Summer School. Semesters One and Two consist of twelve teaching weeks and conclude with their own examination periods. In addition, a longer enrolment period, the Double Semester, runs concurrently with Semesters One and Two with an examination period at the end of Semester Two. Summer School comprises a condensed study period – November to February, including an examination period – and includes a limited number of offerings. Planning for enrolment in summer school courses should take into account workload considerations where students intend to enrol in more than one course.

A winter break of three weeks is normally scheduled between the Semester One examination period and the start of Semester Two. Within Semester One, a two-week mid-semester study period is linked to the Easter holiday break. Within Semester Two, there is a two-week mid-semester study period.

Some programmes and courses do not conform to these standard semester periods and therefore have different start and end dates. Professional programmes in particular may have a longer instructional year to accommodate practical requirements. Some courses are available with compressed offerings – offering periods which are shorter than normal semester dates.