Fees Free Training

Fees Free Training2018-08-28T15:22:58+00:00

Cornerstone Education will be offering domestic students fees free study from 2018, in accordance with government policy.

Eligibility criteria and terms and conditions will apply.

For more information on the fees free offer and how you can step up in to 2018 with Cornerstone Education, call us today on 0800 496 865.


If you would like more information please call us on 0800 496 865 or email us on info@CornerstoneEducation.co.nz. To check eligibility, please head here https://www.feesfree.govt.nz/




Eligibility criteria and terms and conditions will apply. This offer is subject to funding confirmation from the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) and any other additional Government terms or conditions.

Frequently Asked Questions

Fees free.  What is it?   

From 1 January 2018, the first year of tertiary education will be fees free for eligible learners.

How do I find out if I am eligible?

We can help you find out if you are eligible for fees free study in 2018.  Just call us on 0800 496 865 or email us here: info@CornerstoneEducation.co.nz

You will need to meet these requirements for fees-free study with any tertiary education organisation including Cornerstone Education. You must:

  1. be allowed to work and live in New Zealand permanently, or be an Australian or New Zealand resident who has lived here for at least three years; and
  2. not be enrolled in school when your qualification starts, and either:
  • have been enrolled at school in 2017 or 2018, or
  • not have undertaken previous study or training of more than 60 credits, except while you were at school, and
  • enrol in an eligible qualification.

How can I get my National Student Number (NSN)?

If you are currently at school, you can ask your school for your NSN.

Otherwise talk to the Student Service Team at Cornerstone Education and we can help you.

You can also contact the NZQA on 0800 697 296 (between 8am and 5pm Monday to Friday) or by email through the NZQA website

Is my programmes of study at Cornerstone Education eligible?

Yes, so long as your qualification or programme of study meets the following eligibility criteria:

  • it starts in 2018
  • is funded by the Tertiary Education Commission
  • is recognised by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority
  • is at Level 3 or above on the New Zealand Qualifications Framework

When can I study fees-free?

Fees-free study for 2018 covers all eligible programmes beginning in 2018. You can begin your study at any time in 2018.

Will I be eligible for fees-free if I study part time?

Yes. You can study full-time or part-time and be eligible for fees-free, providing you meet all of the other eligibility criteria. However not all Cornerstone Education programmes have part time study options.

Are there any age requirements?

No, there are no age requirements or restrictions.

Can I carry fees-free over to another year?

You can spread your one year’s fees-free study over multiple years. However, you cannot “bank” your 2018 fees-free entitlement. This means if you start study in 2018 and are eligible for fees-free study, you cannot opt to pay for some of your studies yourself and “bank” your fees-free study to use later (eg on a higher fee programme).

Check Cornerstone Education refund policy before you start your programme. This is important in case you decide to withdraw at a later date as it may affect your future fees-free allowance.

Will I be eligible if I am studying from overseas?

If you meet the learner eligibility requirement which enables you to study fees fee (see above), then you can study from overseas if you are enrolled in an on-line learning programme.

Will I be eligible for fees-free if I’m enrolled in a secondary school while completing a tertiary education course?

No. A range of other support is available for school students who wish to begin tertiary study before they finish school. Tertiary study undertaken while enrolled in a secondary school will not count against students’ future eligibility for fees-free tertiary education.

I have been at school in 2017 and did a tertiary level course as part of my study. Will I be eligible for fees-free?

Yes. The fees-free policy will not penalise people who take tertiary courses while at secondary school. These courses are not counted as previous tertiary study for the purpose of assessing someone’s “first time study” status.

What do I do if I am eligible for fees-free, but I have already enrolled in study or training for 2018?

You don’t have to do anything to access fees-free. The Tertiary Education Commission will pay your fees to Cornerstone Education to cover eligible courses.

What do I do if I find I am eligible for fees-free, but I have already taken out a student loan for my fees for 2018?

StudyLink advises that you should do the following:

  • Log in to your MyStudyLink account and change the ‘Pay fees’ field in your loan application to ‘No’ (NB don’t cancel your loan application completely if you will still need other support from the loan like the living costs and course-related costs)
  • If you were only taking out a loan to pay your fees, and your fees are less than or equal to $12,000, you may choose to cancel your loan application. Call StudyLink on 0800 88 99 00 to talk about cancelling your application.

Do I still need to apply to StudyLink to access fees-free study?

No, the fees will be paid directly to Cornerstone Education by the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC). But if you wish to apply for a student allowance or the two non-fees parts of a student loan (living costs and course-related costs) for 2018, then you will still need to apply to StudyLink.

It is your choice whether to apply for a student allowance or loan living costs and course-related costs, but if you plan to do so StudyLink encourages prospective students to apply by 16 December 2017, and to provide supporting documents promptly (you can apply online). This will ensure that applications can be assessed in time for the start of the 2018 academic year.

What do I do if I have already paid fees to an education provider when I was eligible for fees-free?

If you have already paid fees for a programme that will not start until 2018 and find out that you are eligible for fees-free study, you should approach Cornerstone Education and arrange a refund with the Student Services team.

You are entitled to a refund of the amount you have paid to do a course starting on or after 1 January 2018, up to the value of the fees-free cap.

What do I do if I’m not sure how much previous study I’ve done?

If you need help confirming your previous study, just call or email Student Service Team at Cornerstone Education and we can help you. Call us on 0800 496 865 or email us here: info@CornerstoneEducation.co.nz

What should I do if I’m not sure of my residency status?

If you need help with determining your residency status, just call or email Student Service Team at Cornerstone Education and we can help you. Call us on 0800 496 865 or email us here: info@CornerstoneEducation.co.nz

Note that Australian citizens and Australian permanent residents are automatically considered to have a residence class visa.

Contact Info

21-23 Devon Street East, New Plymouth, New Zealand

Phone: 0800 496 865