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What support is available to students at university?

No one can look after your teen better than you. That’s why it can be scary sending them off to university – especially in a new city. How will they get by without you around? University is a time for your child to discover who they are, learn valuable life lessons and gain the knowledge and skills needed to start a life on their own. However, they might need a little help along the way.

AUT offers one of the most comprehensive student support services of any university in New Zealand. We take a proactive role in helping students to succeed and are always there to help when things don't quite go to plan, such as:

Help settling in to university life

Support services are available for AUT students to help them settle into university life.

Starting university is a big change from high school, so make sure your child will have the support they need.

Starting university can be a big adjustment for your child. Universities like AUT are large places that take some time to navigate, and there are new people to meet and different routines to get used to. On top of all that, your child may also be living away from home for the first time, so it’s understandable that things can get a bit stressful sometimes.

While students primarily choose to study at AUT to take advantage of the outstanding academic experiences on offer, we also offer the specialist advice and support that is fundamental to a truly excellent university experience.

​AUT’s student advisors will help with study or personal needs and can put students in touch with other campus services. Trained and professional staff will f​ollow up to ensure students get the support they need. Services include:

  • Academic advice
  • ​Personal support
  • ID cards and Auckland Transport student discount enquiries
  • Fees and financial support
  • Wellbeing checks
  • Services for our diverse student communities - international, disability, rainbow and more

AUT also has a peer mentoring programme and student ambassadors who volunteer to help first-year students with any problems they may be facing. This way, your child gets support from those who’ve been where they are (often students who have studied the same programme) and this can make them feel more at ease. They can ask any burning questions they have about exams, assessments, timetables, clubs and societies, and other aspects of university life.

Study support

AUT offers assistance such as academic writing, referencing, research, note-taking, and exam preparation.

AUT offers academic assistance to help students navigate their assignments and exams.

Settling into university can take a while, as exams and assignments have a different structure and process to high school. Academic writing is a skill that is learned over time and can prove a bit tricky. If your child is facing some difficulties in terms of how to structure their assignments, how to reference properly or prepare for exams, it’s worth them getting some academic assistance.

AUT offers the following resources to students to help them with their study:

  • Studiosity – a personal online help service that’s available after-hours free of charge, to provide guidance and feedback on a range of academic skills, such as writing.
  • LinkedIn Learning – a website that offers over 267,000 online video tutorials covering a range of subject areas. This is free for AUT students.
  • AUTSA – AUT’s student association which runs regular events and activities for students.

AUT’s university library is a great place to start. It offers workshops and one-on-one sessions on a range of academic skills, including writing, research, note-taking, and exam preparation.

Counselling and mental health student services

Counselling and mental health services can help students manage their  personal and study-related issues.

Your child can talk to a counsellor on campus about any issues they may be facing.

As a parent or whānau member, you want to know your child will have access to the support they need should they find themselves feeling anxious, stressed or needing to discuss personal matters. We encourage you to talk to your child regularly during their studies and ask how they’re doing – the emotional support from parents is just as important as any other form of support you can provide. However, sometimes they’ll need some professional support, and if this is needed there are plenty of options available to them in Auckland.

At AUT, we appreciate that students come from diverse backgrounds with individual skills and life experiences. However, all students can sometimes experience significant distress. AUT offers free counselling services and mental health support to all students, to support them through their studies and personal difficulty. We have experienced, professional counsellors at all our campuses who are available to talk to students about any issues they may be facing, including relationships, depression, grief, stress, anxiety, identity, personal safety concerns or other issues.

Support for students with disabilities

AUT’s disability support services provide assistive technology, Sign Language interpreting and much more to students with disabilities and impairments.

Sign Language interpreting is just one of the support services AUT offers students with disabilities or impairments.

Students who have a disability or impairment should contact our Disability Support team who can support them to participate as fully as they can in learning.

AUT offers a range of disability support services, including:

  • Sign language interpreting
  • Loop systems, digital recorders and SmartPens
  • Training on different software systems or technology
  • Assistive technology like screen readers, magnifiers and specialised software
  • Making arrangements for exams (like extra time, readers and writers, separate rooms)
  • Information around campus accessibility (including maps, parking information)
  • Talking with lecturers or programme leaders

Support for rainbow students

AUT offers a range of student services to support the Rainbow (LGBTTI+) community.

You might spot AUT’s close-knit Rainbow community out and about at events around Auckland.

New Zealand is a world leader when it comes to recognising the rights of Rainbow (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, Intersex, etc.) communities, and AUT prides itself on taking leadership in a commitment to inclusivity and Rainbow support. For students who identify with diverse sexual orientations, sex and gender identities, navigating certain environments can be tough, so it’s important that the right support is in place to make everyone feel comfortable and respected.

The AUT community is like one big whānau and our Rainbow communities are tight-knit and active in Rainbow events in Auckland. We have Rainbow student social groups, Out@AUT and TGNC@AUT (transgender, gender diverse) which organises events and weekly drop-ins for Rainbow students. There is a Rainbow student room at the city campus, where students can study or chill out with friends.

AUT also has a dedicated rainbow community coordinator whose role is to offer support to Rainbow students. The Rainbow team maintain connections with organisations such as Rainbow Youth and Village Collective (aimed at our Pacific Rainbow community), who provide counselling services, peer support groups and drop-in centres.

You may also spot us at events like Big Gay Out during the year, celebrating our diversity and inclusiveness along with the wider Auckland Rainbow community.

Spiritual and religious support

AUT’s multifaith rooms, Muslim prayer rooms and chaplains provide religious and spiritual support for students.

Did you know that AUT offers spiritual support and facilities for students of different faiths?

Does your child want to explore your spirituality or learn about other faiths? AUTSA offers a spirituality service, supporting the diversity of belief and faith of our student members, and exploring ideas of spirituality and philosophy.

Each AUT campus has a multifaith room where students can go for worship, meditation and reflection, regardless of their spiritual views. Our North and City Campuses also have Muslim prayer rooms. Chaplains are available to assist students with personal and spiritual growth, give information about their faith and conduct ceremonies.

Support services for international students

From help with visas and immigration to accommodation assistance, AUT has plenty of support available for international students.

University support services help international students settle into their studies.

Almost 40% of people living in Auckland were born overseas. This makes the city a vibrant place to live and international university students contribute to this diversity. However, it can be difficult to relocate to a new country and navigate university study along with adjusting to using another language, a new culture, and way of life.

AUT has well over 5,600 international students from more than 107 countries. This contributes to our diverse and rich cultural community. To help our international students settle into university life, we offer a range of support services for international students, from help with visas and dealing with immigration to accommodation assistance and setting up bank accounts.

Elite athlete support

Elite athlete student services help those at the top of their chosen sport succeed.

With the right support in place, it’s possible to balance competitive sport and university studies.

As an elite athlete, it can be difficult to balance tertiary study with training regimes and competition. That’s why it’s important to ensure the university your child attends is aware of their situation. AUT offers support services for elite athletes that enable them to succeed both academically and in their chosen sport.

Contact our elite athlete advisor if you or your child have specific questions around how sporting commitments can fit with an intended course of study.

There are also additional support services that may be available. It’s important to be aware of the student services AUT offers. The Student Hub can be contact via phone, email or in person. Visit the AUT website for more information.


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