Otago Polytechnic

Postgraduate Certificate in Midwifery Practice



Certificate: Six months full-time; part-time options

Each course involves working through online resources and taking part in online discussions

February, May, July and September
  • Location
    Study breaks
  • Distance
    12 February 2018

Already a registered midwife and looking for a way to extend your professional expertise?

This postgraduate programme is ideal as it is flexible, practice-focused and relevant. Undertake four courses of seven weeks each that focus on aspects of midwifery practice and critically analyse your own midwifery experiences as a means of adding depth to your knowledge base. Tailored to meet your individual needs, our online learning options enable you to study from home. Benefit from the support from experienced lecturers and the opportunity for networking while gaining new skills.

A perfect springboard into further study, the Postgraduate Certificate allows you to start slowly and increase your qualifications as you go. Each programme contributes to the next so that four papers successfully completed in the Certificate mean you only need four more to achieve the Postgraduate Diploma in Midwifery. Online learning resources may include PowerPoint presentations, worksheets, word documents, interactive web pages and links to relevant electronic documents or websites.

Each 15 credit postgraduate course will give you 20 elective continuing education points in the Midwifery Council's Recertification Programme.

Skills required
  • A passion for women's health.
  • The ability to work independently and with others.
  • The ability to respond to changing circumstances.
  • Excellent communication and negotiation skills.
  • The ability to work well under pressure.
  • The ability to be accountable.
Entry requirements
  • You must be a registered midwife and hold a bachelor's degree OR have relevant equivalent skills and knowledge acquired through appropriate work or professional experience.
  • You must have access to the internet.
  • International students will be individually assessed to ensure they meet the entry requirements.
  • New Zealand registered midwives for whom English is a second language are required by the Midwifery Council of New Zealand to have an IELTS score of 7.5.
  • International midwifery students who are not registered in New Zealand will require an IELTS (or equivalent) overall band score of 6.5 in writing and reading, and no less than 7.0 in speaking and listening, with no individual score less than 6.0. 
Additional documentation

You must supply certified copies of academic records and proof of identity.

Selection procedure

You are encouraged to enrol early to enable us to plan our courses and allocate staff resources.

2017 Course dates


10 July - 25 August, 2017

  • Nutrition for the Childbearing Woman
  • Maternal Mental Health

10 July - 3 November, 2017

  • Research Methods in Midwifery Practice
  • Midwifery Practicum* for Complexity (Complex Care Pathway) 

18 September - 3 November, 2017

  • Hypertension in Pregnancy
  • What Research tells us about SUDI

* The Practicum includes a personal choice elective paper. If you wish to complete the Complex Care Pathway including the practicum, please register your interest with Suzanne Miller (suzanne.miller@op.ac.nz) as places are limited.

2018 Complex care pathway

Next year we will also be offering a Postgraduate Certificate Complex Care Pathway. If you are interested in enrolling in this programme please contact Suzanne Miller (suzanne.miller@op.ac.nz) early as places are limited: 

The Complex Care Pathway is made up of three courses:

  • MC503610 Decision Making for Complexity (30 credits)
  • MC503620 Midwifery Practicum for Complexity (15 credits)  
  • An elective course from the above list of certificate courses (15 credits)

Further information about the Complex Care courses and forms are available from NZCOM: www.midwife.org.nz/education/postgraduate/complex-care-education

Ongoing study for Postgraduate Diploma or Master of Midwifery

If you have completed your Postgraduate Certificate, or Complex Care, please contact Suzanne Miller suzanne.miller@op.ac.nz to plan your ongoing study.

If you have completed the pre-thesis Diploma courses (Knowledge and Theory in Midwifery, and Research Methods in Midwifery Practice), please contact Jean Patterson jean.patterson@op.ac.nz for advice on enrolling in the Master of Midwifery

Happy studying! 

Postgraduate Certificate in Midwifery

You will study

Learning packages will be displayed on the online Moodle learning management system supported by Adobe Connect online tutorials and activities will include quizzes, completion of worksheets, and the use of the Moodle forum for discussion and presentations.

Your workload

Each course requires working through online resources and participating in online discussions. There will be additional reading and preparation of assessments. Individual pathways and hours will vary but across each semester it is reasonable to plan approximately ten hours per week, per course.

Programme specific risks

When studying courses offered online or using other electronic media, you may be at risk of Occupational Overuse Syndrome or other injuries brought about by long periods of computer use.

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. 

Links to useful websites

The New Zealand College of Midwives (NZCOM) is the professional organisation, and recognised 'voice', for midwives and student midwives in New Zealand, and represents over 2800 members: NZ College of Midwives

Nga Maia o Aotearoa me to Wai Pounamu  (Nga Maia) is the national organisation representing Maori birthing. The kaupapa of Nga Maia focuses on Mama, Pepi and Whanau and promoting Matauranga Maori in pregnancy and childbirth: Nga Maia

International Confederation of Midwives (ICM) supports, represents and works to strengthen professional associations of midwives on a global basis. At present ICM have over 90 member associations in more than 70 countries. The ICM works with midwives and midwifery associations globally to secure women's right and access to midwifery care before, during and after childbirth: International Confederation of Midwives

The Midwifery Council of New Zealand (MCNZ) is the regulatory body for New Zealand midwives. It is responsible for the protection of the health and safety of women and babies during the childbirth process by providing mechanisms to ensure that midwives are competent and fit to practise midwifery: Midwifery Council NZ


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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