When you apply to work, study, or live in New Zealand, it is necessary to ensure that you get your experience abroad recognised in order to get a job in keeping with your previous experience. In order to gauge an individual’s experience equivalent in New Zealand, the IQA – International Qualifications Assessment – has been devised. This involves assessing your existing qualifications and experience and comparing these to the New Zealand Qualifications Framework (NZQF).

An application for any of the following can be analysed by the NZQF:


If you are applying to migrate to New Zealand under the Skilled Migrant Resident, Long Term Skill Shortage, Essential Skills, or Silver Fern visas. In such a case, check Immigration New Zealand’s List of Qualifications Exempt from Assessment (LQEA); if your qualification is listed, you might not need an IQA. If you’re applying under a skill shortage list, you need to undergo the IQA.


Select this purpose if you have been awarded a job in New Zealand and your future employer needs to know how your qualification compares to the NZQF. Some industries need the IQA in addition to a professional CV that meets the standards in New Zealand, but it is better to check with the industry regulations before proceeding with an IQA application.

Further study

For further study, an IQA is required if your university or school requires a record of your qualifications and how they compare in the New Zealand context. Again, contact and check with your education provider to see if they need your application to be run through the IQA.

Teacher registration / Teacher salary

This is only necessary when you have completed your Initial Teacher Education (ITE) overseas and intend to work as an early childhood school teacher in New Zealand. This is not required for teaching at tertiary levels. Additionally, some teaching qualifications from overseas might not need to be assessed.

The IQA is used by prospective employers, immigration officers, and education providers to gauge where you stand within the New Zealand context. Before you apply for an IQA to get your experience abroad recognised, make sure you know the purpose for which you are applying, the documents required for assessment, and be aware of the time it will take (up to 35 days). Also check with your source in New Zealand to check if they require you to get your experience abroad recognised and consult Immigration New Zealand in case of queries.