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Graduate Diploma in Information Sciences (Computer Science)


Top careers in software design and development

Massey’s Graduate Diploma in Information Sciences will give you the skills needed to make you a sought-after employee, both in New Zealand, and internationally.

  • Level

  • Graduate, NZQF Level 7
  • Campus

  • Auckland, Manawatū
  • Distance learning

  • Available
  • Duration

  • 1 year(s) full-time. Available part-time.
  • International

  • Available for international students studying in NZ or via distance learning

The Graduate Diploma in Information Sciences (GradDipInfSc) is intended mainly for graduates in an unrelated area who are seeking to retrain or upskill in the information sciences.  Many of the students are studying via distance (online study) because they are working full time.

Massey is one of the few universities in New Zealand where your information sciences qualification covers all five disciplines of computer science, data science, information technology, information systems and software engineering.  

Many graduates have found it really useful to complete the Graduate Diploma “with no endorsement”.  This means that you can select the courses you are most interested in from across the range of subjects.  You are strongly encouraged to select “no endorsement”.

If you do decide to enrol in the computer science endorsement, you will learn about algorithms, software development and programming.  It is essential that you have already completed one or more level-100 courses in computer programming or have equivalent programming experience.  The level-100 courses must be completed before starting the Graduate Diploma and can either be Massey courses or Level 5 courses from any recognised institution.

What will I learn?

You will gain skills in:

  • the analysis, design and deployment of complex information technologies
  • software design and development
  • the use of professional software tools, and the administrative and organisational aspects of IT
  • how to work in a team in the IT environment
  • topics such as computer security, internet features, user interface design and more.

Careers and further study


There is huge demand for people with information sciences skills.

Information Sciences graduates continue to find employment even during global recessions when graduates in other fields struggled.

Today there are more employment opportunities in information communication technology (ICT) than any other sector in New Zealand. The same often applies internationally. 

Don’t take it from us - take a look at the SEEK website – large numbers of ICT jobs in New Zealand are advertised at any time on this website.

Careers for information sciences graduates

  • software developer
  • analyst-programmer
  • systems analyst
  • business analyst
  • software tester
  • user requirements engineer
  • database developer or administrator
  • networks and systems administrator
  • project manager
  • web developer.

Further study

Successful completion of the Graduate Diploma (and a suitable GPA) enables you to move on to advanced study in the Postgraduate Diploma in Information Sciences (one year of 120 credits in taught courses) or the Master of Information Sciences (180 credits including 120 credits of taught courses and a major professional project.)

International students

New Zealand is a great place to study. Massey University’s reputation is supported by our international rankings, accreditations and associations. We are rated five star plus by the QS World University Rankings.

Massey University has small class sizes, and our lecturers and staff are friendly and approachable.

As an international student, there are entry requirements that will apply to you. We recommend that you apply at least three months before your anticipated start date so your application can be processed in time. There are additional steps you will need to take. These include obtaining a visa and travel bookings if your study is to be in New Zealand.

Entry requirements

University admission

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Programme admission


To enter the Graduate Diploma in Information Sciences you will have been awarded or qualified for a university degree or equivalent qualification.

You will need to provide verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

English language requirements

To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

Prior learning, credit and exemptions

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

If you do not have the entry requirements

English language and foundation courses

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, we have courses and programmes that may help.

Summer School

If you need to do a course before you start your programme, there may be options for you in Summer School.

Courses and planning

Credit summary

120 credits

Either: Endorsement

  • Endorsement courses from the Schedule – 90 credits
  • Electives from the Schedule – 30 credits

Or: Without endorsement

  • Courses from the Schedule – 120 credits

Ensure that overall, you have:

  • No more than 45 credits at 200 level
  • At least 75 credits at 300 level

Courses for this specialisation

At least 30 credits from

159201 Algorithms and Data Structures 15
159202 Declarative Programming 15
159234 Object-Oriented Programming 15
159235 Programming for Computer Graphics 15
159236 Embedded Programming 15
159251 Software Engineering Design and Construction 15
159261 Games Programming 15
159270 Hardware-Oriented Computing 15
159271 Computational Thinking for Problem Solving 15
159272 Programming Language Paradigms 15

At least 60 credits from

159302 Artificial Intelligence 15
159336 Mobile Application Development 15
159339 Internet Programming 15
159341 Programming Languages, Algorithms and Concurrency 15
159342 Operating Systems and Networks 15
159352 Advanced Web Development 15
159355 Concurrent Systems 15
159360 Programming for Computer Graphics 15
159361 Advanced Games Programming 15
159372 Intelligent Machines 15

Planning your programme

Planning overview

This is a guide.  You are advised to check the regulations for the latest course information.

The GradDipInfSc requires 120 credits.  This usually consists of eight courses where five of the courses are at 300-level and three of the courses are at 200-level. 

The GradDipInfSc can be completed in one year as a full-time student or over several years as a part-time student.  Part-time study is recommended as it gives you time to acquire the pre-requisites and is a good idea if you are working.  Most courses are available via distance (online study).


The GradDipInfSc requires you to enrol in 200-level and 300-level courses. You need to make sure you have the correct pre-requisites for the courses you are interested in.  Due to the fact that you already have a degree, some of the pre-requisites can be waived.  Some general guidelines are:

  • any course in the Information Systems schedule – pre-requisites can be waived
  • any 200-level course in the Information Technology schedule – pre-requisites can be waived
  • some 300-level courses in the Information Technology schedule – pre-requisites can be waived
  • any 200-level or 300-level course in Computer Science or Data Science – the pre-requisites are NOT waived due to the need for programming knowledge.

If you are aiming for a career in software development  you will need to take some computer science courses.  In order to enrol in 200-level Computer Science courses you need to complete 159.101 or 159.171.  These courses are NOT part of your Graduate Diploma (because they are 100-level).

You are strongly advised to discuss your study plans prior to course selection. Contact us through the Enquire button on this page.

Maximum time limits for completion

There are maximum time limits to complete some undergraduate and all postgraduate qualifications. If you do not complete within the maximum time, you may be required to re-apply for the programme if you wish to continue your studies.

Time limits for Honours, Distinction and Merit

If you complete this programme within the stated time limit and to a high standard, you may be able to graduate with Distinction.

Look for further information under ‘Student Progression’ in the regulations for this programme.

More information

  • Read the regulations for this programme thoroughly
  • Contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.

Fees and scholarships

Fees and finance

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

A good fit if you:

  • already have an undergraduate degree
  • have some mathematical and logic ability
  • are interested in a career in the ITC industry.

Key information for students

Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.


Review this important information before you apply for this programme. This gives you full details of the rules and regulations about what you need to study and what you must achieve in order to graduate with this qualification. That includes structure, courses and requirements. These regulations should be read in conjunction with all other Statutes and Regulations of the University including the below.

Undergraduate programmes

General Regulations for Undergraduate Degrees, Undergraduate Diplomas, Undergraduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas and Graduate Certificates.

Regulations for this programme

Applying and enrolling

Applying for the programme

Check you are ready

If you are ready to apply, have a look at our application checklist. It will help you get prepared with what you need. Please also check the entry requirements carefully before you apply.

Choose your programme and click on Apply now

You will apply for the programme using the Apply now button on this page. You’ll also choose your specialisation (major, subject or endorsement) if applicable.

Some programmes have additional requirements such as the submission of a portfolio or CV. Click on Apply now and you will be able to submit those documents as part of the application process.

Receive and accept an Admission Offer of Place

You will receive an Admission Offer of Place when you have been accepted into the programme. You need to accept this before you can enrol in your courses. International students also need to pay their fees at this point.

Enrolling in courses

You’ll then get access to your own student homepage (also known as the student portal). This is where you can enrol in courses. Any updates on your application or enrolments will also be on your student homepage. Make sure you check this regularly.

When you choose courses, ensure you check for any requirements that apply including:

  • prerequisites (courses you have to do before the one you are enrolling in)
  • corequisites (courses you have to do at the same time as the one you are enrolling in)
  • restrictions (courses that you cannot enrol in if you are completing or have completed another identified similar course)
  • location – for instance some distance-based courses still have an on-campus element, so double check that the way the course is taught is suitable for your situation.

Each of our courses has its own webpage where you can find this information. You can use our course search to find course pages.

More information on courses is in the ‘Courses for this programme’ section on this page.

You can find information on application due dates and semester dates on the key dates page.

We look forward to welcoming you to Massey!

If you have any questions, contact us through the Enquire button on this page.

What are courses and credits?

What are courses and credits?

Each Massey programme is made up of courses (in some tertiary institutions they are called ‘papers’).

You will have some compulsory courses and some you can choose from.

Each course is worth a certain amount of credits (often 15 credits, but this does vary). You must gain a set number of credits to be able to graduate from this programme.

There may also be some rules about which courses you need to pass to progress to the next year, or stage, of your study (known as progression). There are also courses you must pass to graduate with a specialisation.

  • See the ‘Courses for this programme’ section for the list of courses.
  • Courses search

Understanding course numbers

The first three digits of our course numbers show you which subject the course is about.

The second three digits show you the level and course ID number. For instance:

  • sub-degree courses are '0' (i.e. xxx.0xx)
  • undergraduate study begins at 100-level, (i.e. xxx.1xx)
  • as you progress through 200- and 300-level courses this number changes to 2 and 3 respectively. The higher the number that starts the second three digits, the higher the level of study
1 6 2 . 3   0 1
Subject area   Level   Course ID number

Workload and time management

Use this tool to help determine how much time you will need each week to complete your studies.

Estimate workload

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the programme or specialisation you enrolled in may be no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these programmes go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.

Scholarships and awards

There are a number of scholarships available for new and current students. They could relate to your situation, achievement or interest.

Find and apply for scholarships