Otago Polytechnic

Graduate Diploma in Sustainable Practice

If you are committed to transformation, to making and leading real change, complete this qualification and apply your learning to any discipline, business or situation.

This programme is designed to deliver real change through practical action. You will develop a deep understanding of the trajectory from degeneration towards regeneration and will learn a systems approach to applying sustainability principles. You will examine the social, economic, political and environmental implications that underpin sustainability through theory and project-based learning. This programme offers the grounding to implement sustainable practice leadership in any situation.

Learning is maximised through collaboration and the use of online tools. Weekly webinars attended by full-time and part-time students and occasional block courses make for a dynamic study environment. As a participant of this programme, you’ll join a community of students and alumni that is working to shift societal systems to ones that support people and the planet.

Skills required
  • Experience using computers
  • Good communication skills
  • Commitment to sustainable practices
Entry requirements
  • You must hold a bachelor's degree OR equivalent skills/experience.
  • You may not enrol in this programme if you have already completed a Sustainable Practice degree major.
  • You must have access to the internet.
  • International students will be individually asessed to ensure they meet the entry requirements.
  • If English is not your first language, you must also demonstrate English language skills equivalent to an IELTS overall band score (academic) of 6.0, with no less than 5.5 in any other band.
Additional documentation

You must supply certified copies of proof of identify, academic records and proof of residency (where appropriate).

Selection procedure

The selection procedure will be by personal interview, either face-to-face or by phone. If the number of applications exceeds the number of places available, applicants will be placed on a waiting list.

Additional costs

Due to the requirement to attend block courses, you will need to cover the cost of travel and any associated costs that this may incur.

You will study

This programme offers a good balance of project-based implementation of sustainable practice and theory.

Case studies are completed in your workplace or community, and support is provided through online material and by attending block courses.

The programme is hands-on to allow the delivery of practical projects as a part of your study. The programme is also customised for each student allowing you to:

  • focus your chosen learning through real projects
  • balance theory with applied learning in your workplace or host organisation
  • tailor your studies accordingly to your interest with emphasis on the economic, social, environmental or political success. 
Your workload

The programme is delivered through a combination of block courses supported by weekly webinars and recorded presentation material. Block courses occur throughout the year and learners must attend at least 3 over the course of their study. These are held in locations throughout New Zealand.

Qualification structure

 

COMPULSORY COURSES

Description

Credit

A systems approach to sustainable practice

Understanding the interrelationship of nature and human systems

15

Implementing sustainable practice

The “how to” using best practice methodology and success stories

15

Evaluating sustainable practice

Evaluate how effective a project’s intervention has been

15

Social media and engagement

Learn and then carry out engagement and dialogue techniques for a chosen project

15

Major project

Research and collaborate to implement a chosen project

45

ELECTIVE COURSE (choose 1)

 

 

Sustainable business

Implement sustainable practice in an organisation

15

Sustainable community development

Implement sustainable initiatives in a chosen community

15

Creating living buildings

Learn and then apply an international living building standard to a chosen project

15

Special topic

Choose your project and get support to implement it

15

The first two compulsory courses are completed first to provide you with the background for all future courses. 

Student loans/allowances

Student loans and allowances are for domestic students only. For information about student loans and allowances please visit the Studylink website. It is important to apply for your student loan/allowance at the same time as you apply for this programme, due to the length of time Studylink take to process. Loan/allowance applications can be cancelled at any time if you decide to withdraw your programme application or if it is unsuccessful. 

Recognition of prior learning

If you have extensive knowledge and skills due to practical experience in this area, enquire about our recognition of prior learning process at Capable NZ. You may have already gained credits towards this qualification.

Links to useful websites
Disclaimer

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.

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