Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences


Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB)

720 points

Duration: Six years university study (twelve semesters)

Application closing date: 1st October of the preceding year

Late or incomplete applications will NOT be accepted.

Society today has many expectations of medical practitioners, whether they are working in community settings, rural/ regional environments or in large city hospitals. The educational experience of our medical students has the core value of improving the health of patients and communities and striving for equity of outcomes and access for all patients. This requires the integration of three platforms of learning. One is the generic knowledge, skills and attitudes that are common to all health professionals, with particular emphasis on communication and cultural skills, team work, empathy and medico-legal ethics. Our programme also has a strong emphasis on the clinician as a scientist, which requires understanding, generating and using evidence to inform practice from basic science, clinical science, population health needs and Hauora Māori. Lastly, there is the need to develop a range of specific personal and professional skills. Together, these three platforms are designed to ensure patients receive the relevant treatments in a supportive environment from a sound clinical reasoning approach. The University of Auckland provides a learning environment that produces graduates with the knowledge, attitudes, awareness and skills to ensure their competence to practice and an enthusiasm for future vocational education in any field of medicine.

The programme


The MBChB is a six-year programme including Year 1 of the Bachelor of Health Sciences or the Bachelor of Science (Biomedical Science).

The second year commences at the beginning of the week before the start of the standard university first semester. This first week is important and compulsory. For this year there is also a compulsory Māori Health Week during the week immediately prior to the commencement of Semester 2. The third year follows the standard university semesters.

During the early years of the MBChB, students study the basic medical and health sciences while being introduced to professional and clinical aspects of medical practice. Study in the second and third years is entirely based in Auckland.

From fourth year, students learn predominantly in hospital and community environments, with rotating study in a number of disciplines for 35 to 42 weeks of the year. The Faculty works closely with health-care providers in the upper North Island to provide these learning opportunities. To ensure these opportunities continue to be available, the Faculty requires exemplary behaviour from all medical students whilst in the clinical and community environment. Details of the policies, professional standards and clinical requirements are set out in the Medical Programme Policy Guide.

Students are required to complete at least one year of study outside the area of the Auckland District Health Boards during Years 4, 5 and 6. In fourth year students complete attachments at teaching hospitals and general practices in the upper North Island. In fifth year, students may apply to study on the year-long regional-rural programme (Pūkawakawa) based in Whangarei and small surrounding rural environments in Northland.

Students are assigned to a cohort and undertake study in a particular region for most of the year, although a student may be required to spend time in another region for a specific attachment. The cohorts are based at Tauranga, Rotorua, Hamilton, South Auckland or Waitemata/ Auckland.  While attempts are made to minimise the impact of travel and finding accommodation, students will incur some extra costs. If inadequate numbers choose to study in a particular cohort, a binding ballot will occur.

There are opportunities to undertake study overseas in fifth and sixth year, and they need to be planned well in advance. In fifth year,  students complete a 5-week Selective. Students are encouraged to have experiences outside of the main teaching hospitals and practices in New Zealand or to acquire learning from overseas, except for the Pacific Islands. In sixth year, students complete an 8-week Elective and there is strong encouragement to complete this overseas. In this year there is also the opportunity to undertake an 11-week Research Project.

All six years must be passed in their entirety before students are permitted to graduate with the degree of Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBChB).

A newly graduated doctor is elligible to be granted provisional general scope registration by the Medical Council of New Zealand (MCNZ), and is employed to work in approved positions under supervision (mostly in New Zealand hospitals) for a minimum period of 12 months. After satisfactory completion of this period, the doctor applies to the MCNZ for general scope registration. The MBChB programme is accredited by the Australian Medical Council (AMC). This has the advantage of reciprocation of work in Australian health care environments, as well as in New Zealand.