Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing

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Take the next step in your nursing career

The Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing (PGDipNurs) will advance your practice and prepare you for further development towards senior nursing roles. The Registered Nurse prescribing pathway is approved by the Nursing Council and meets the education requirements for authorisation with the Council as a designated prescriber.

What is it like?

Most students like you undertaking postgraduate study in Nursing are in full-time practice and study part-time.

Postgraduate courses in Nursing are delivered in 'distance or block mode' with face-to-face teaching in on-campus blocks, web-based teaching, relevant readings and other study material. This makes the courses available for those in employment and located at a distance from the university.

Develop your practice

Students like you initially enrol in the postgraduate certificate to develop clinical knowledge and skills. You then study towards a Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing or progress to a Master of Nursing as preparation for advanced practice roles and/or Nurse Practitioner registration.

You can complete a postgraduate diploma that meets the Nursing Council education requirements for authorisation with the Council as a designated prescriber.

Learn from the best in your field

You’ll learn from academics and professional clinicians who are highly experienced registered nurses. Their expertise in practice and research drives the development of relevant, up-to-date course content, teaching, and assessment of your work.

You’ll be supported all the way

There is always plenty of help at hand. Along with contact with your lecturers, Learning Consultants in the Centre for Teaching and Learning are available to support your study and academic writing skills. Each library has a subject librarian who supports you on campus or at a distance.

Number one school for research

Massey’s School of Nursing has been ranked number one in New Zealand in the most recent 2012 Performance-Based Research Funding (PBRF) rankings. PBRF ranks all university programmes for their research excellence. 

A good fit if you:

  • Successfully completed a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent
  • Wish to develop and advance your professional practice
  • Seek to enhance your contribution to people’s health and wellbeing
Andrew Cameron
Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing
New Zealand Red Cross Aid Worker

“It was good for me to catch up with all the theories and the social side of nursing rather than the technical side…”

Andrew became a nurse because it seemed like a nice, comfortable job. As a 19-year-old welder in Hawke’s Bay, he visited a workmate in hospital with burns. “It was a foul, rainy, cold day in winter, and the ward was nice and warm; the nurses were coming in with the evening tea trolley. There was a male orderly and I asked him what he did; he said ‘I’m a nurse trainee’,” Cameron says. “I thought about it for a few days and made enquiries. When I left work my mates at work said, ‘That’s not a job for a man.’”

They wouldn’t say that to him now. He is working on eradicating polio from southern Afghanistan. A typical day might see him travel to an international military base to assess the health of POWs, or train Afghani taxi drivers in first aid, vital in a region where ambulances are scarce, or check prisons for any signs of health-in-detention abuses. “We make sure detainees are properly cared for according to the Geneva Conventions - that prisoners are cared for properly.”

Andrew had wanted to work for New Zealand Red Cross since the 1980s, and completed his postgraduate diploma to increase his chances of being selected for aid work. “I thought I’d better get some academic qualifications,” he says. “It was good for me to catch up with all the theories and the social side of nursing rather than the technical side. The way I trained it was purely medical.”

He was named Australian Nurse of the Year in 2004. He is also one of a few New Zealanders to be awarded the Red Cross’s Florence Nightingale Medal. It is given to about 40 nurses worldwide every two years “for courage and devotion to the sick and disabled or to civilian victims of conflicts.”


The Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing (PGDipNurs) prepares nurses like you for advanced practice and to develop towards senior nursing roles.

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