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New Zealand Certificate in Security (Foundation) Level 3

New Zealand Certificate in Security (Foundation) Level 3

Level 3

Learn essential skills to gain employment in the security industry with UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Security (Foundation) Level 3.

A security guard stands watching at an airport
Quick info

Level: 3

Locations: UCOL Manawatū in Palmerston North, UCOL Whanganui

Duration: 6 months, full-time

11 May 2020 - 18 Sep 2020

Domestic Fees: *
$2,343.00Scholarship info

International Fees:*

Additional Fees
Compulsory course costs may apply.

* Fees are indicative only, and are inclusive of the student services levy and GST (goods and services tax). The fee shown is for one year of study.

UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Security (Foundation) Level 3 will equip you with the skills, knowledge and attributes required to work in the security industry, including maintaining security and safety at sites.

 Career & Study Outcomes

  • Major security firms
  • Individual businesses
  • Government departments
  • Specialist security work, such as mobile patrols, event and site security, noise control, personal protection, retail security, secure transport, biosecurity and electronic security
  • Or staircase to further study
To find out more about possible job prospects and salaries, see Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Occupation Outlook for Security Workers.

 Course Information

Level 3

  • Professional conduct and NZ law - includes certificate of approval requirement
  • Confidentiality, privacy and technology
  • Personal safety, situational awareness and risk
  • Incidents, events and emergency situations

 Student & Staff Profiles

 Industry Connections

  • Red Badge
  • First Security
  • Allied Security
  • CDS Security
  • Armourguard

 Learning Facilities

Subject-expert lecturers provide intense assistance to students in a classroom environment with practical, field-based and work-based components integrated into the programme. Students learn utilising the latest equipment and methods.

 Domestic Entry Requirements

NCEA Level 1


Equivalent academic achievement


On case by case basis at the discretion of the Executive Dean


To be eligible for a Certificate of Approval, under the Private Security Personnel and
Private Investigators Act 2010 (section 33), all applicants are required to:

  • Be 18 years of age by the end of the programme
  • Undertake a Criminal History Check (not all offences will prohibit entry)


For more information about NCEA Credits see UCOL's NCEA explained page.

 International Entry Requirements

In addition to the Domestic Entry Requirements, the following applies to international applicants:

English Proficiency Entry Requirements
International student applicants whose first language is not English must have an IELTS General or Academic score of 5 with no band score lower than 5 (or equivalent including TOEFL). UCOL is a TOEFL iBT testing centre.

IELTS scores used must be taken from a single IELTS Test Report Form (ie combining scores from more than one test is not permissible).

In addition to this international applications under the age of 20 must have NCEA equivalency (refer to Business Development International).

 Advice & Guidance

UCOL's New Zealand Certificate in Security (Foundation) Level 3 comprises 60 credits.

Students will learn essential skills to gain employment in the security industry, including maintaining security and safety at sites.

Students must undergo a Ministry of Justice Criminal Check to ensure suitability and compliance with the Ministry of Justice regarding security licencing. Not all convictions will prohibit entry.

Security licence 
Persons working or intending to work as a security officer or in related security employment may require a Security Guards Licence or, if an employee of a Security Guard Licence holder, a Certificate of Approval to be the Responsible Employee of a Security Guard. Both are issued by the Registrar of Private Investigators and Security Guards.

Students need to be aware of the physical requirements  for operating in the workforce for security and protection services. As they are expected to keep a reasonable level of fitness to physically carry out the practical components of the programme, it is expected that students will actively belong to a gym to manage their personal fitness. It is also noted that students may spend long periods on their feet while completing their work experience requirements.

Special needs
Students will be advised to put any special needs or requirements in writing and advise the programme leader before the programme begins.

Work experience
Students are required to undertake a minimum of 196 hours work experience. Every reasonable step is taken to ensure student safety while they are in the workplace. 

A Work Experience Agreement that details expectations is signed by UCOL for its delegates, the work experience employer and students. 

Work experience hours may be required to be undertaken during evenings and over weekends.

You can expect to attend up to 30 hours per week of timetabled theory classes and practical/work experience, although, changes may be made from time to time.

Independent learning
As well as your timetabled classes, you are expected to spend up to 6 hours per week doing your own learning. This time is dedicated to self-directed research, study and completion of your assignments, plus online work (as applicable).

Application checklist
It will make the process easier if you prepare the following before you apply:

  • National Student Number (NSN) (If you don't have a NSN, you may request one from NZQA, or you can supply a verified copy of your birth certificate, passport or Whakapapa statement.)
  • Evidence of your highest level of academic achievement (and evidence of prior learning, if applicable)
  • Evidence that you meet the entry requirements of the programme
  • Completed Criminal History Check Declaration Form
  • Check if you're eligible for additional support or a scholarship. If you're 19 years or younger, you may be eligible to enrol in one of our free Youth Transition programmes.

Note that you will need to provide any verified documents in person, via post or email.

 Additional Costs

  • Travel to/from work experience
  • Purchase of a uniform comprising of Denstock boots $150, 1 pair Kapinua trousers $44, a Kapinua white shirt $34, and a Kapinua tie $7.40
  • Certificate of Approval from Ministry of Justice (Approximately $187)


The programmes are approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and Universal College of Learning (UCOL) is accredited to teach them.