New Zealand Certificate in Beauty Therapy (Level 4)

This programme will give you a solid foundation to start your career in beauty therapy. You will study a wide range of beauty treatments and cosmetic services and get an introduction into important topics such as anatomy and physiology, first aid, and professional practice.

About the programme

Beauty therapy roles are varied, creative and in high demand. Employers are seeking trained therapists with the ability to walk into a new job and to work with clients straight away.

Our top-quality facilities and products are recognised as some of the best in the industry. Study with leading tutors and learn through a combination of practical and theoretical activities. You will have the opportunity to learn the latest emerging trends and techniques, work with real clients, use an online booking system and gain hands-on/practical in-clinic experience. A wide variety of guest speakers such as spa managers, appearance medicine specialists and cosmetic representatives give you an insight into products, technologies and the specific qualities that employers are looking for in employees.

International Therapy Examination Council (ITEC) qualifications are optional in this Certificate. If you choose to complete the exam, your qualifications will be recognised by employers and clients internationally. ITEC is an international examination board, operating in over 38 countries worldwide and their qualifications are supported by industry and easily transportable both nationally and internationally.

At the end of this programme, you will meet the requirements to become a Registered New Zealand Beauty Therapist. Other career options include a Cosmetic Representative or a Mobile Beauty Therapist.


  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Facial treatments
  • Make-up services
  • Cosmetic enhancements
  • Massage treatments
  • Professional practice
  • Nail services
  • Waxing services
  • Clinic

Further study options

These qualifications can lead to self-employment as a therapist or to a career as a beauty clinic manager/owner. 

A change for 2023 enrolments

When you apply to study with Otago Polytechnic in 2023, you will be enrolled with Te Pūkenga, the new national network of vocational and applied education in Aotearoa New Zealand. You will learn in the same way, in the same place, and with the same people. The great news is that this enables us to share skills and knowledge across a network of passionate education providers, to better help you succeed. Enrolling in programmes that start in 2023, means that you will graduate with a Te Pūkenga qualification.


While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.