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health and wellbeing

New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Social and Community Services) (Level 4)

New Zealand Certificate in Health and Wellbeing (Social and Community Services) (Level 4) with strands in Mental Health and Addiction Support, Social Services, Community Facilitation, Community Health Work


Course details

  • Jul 2024
    Feb 2025
  • One year
  • Full-time
  • $2,569*
  • You may qualify for fee-free study under Fees Free Policy or MPTT
  • Level 4
  • Hamilton City Campus, Online delivery, Ōtorohanga or Thames Campus


This one-year health and wellbeing course will provide students with the foundation knowledge, skills, and practical experience required to work alongside individuals, families, and whānau accessing social and community services.

Students gain a wide range of transferable skills essential to the role of a support worker and select from one of the following strands to further strengthen their learning:

  • Mental health and addiction support. Apply mental health and/or addiction tools and strategies when working alongside tangata, family, and whānau to support autonomy, foster hope, and develop resilience.
  • Social services. Apply community and social services tools and strategies when working alongside tangata, family, and whānau to support autonomy, identify goals, reduce vulnerability, and build resilience or achieve aspirations.

A key benefit of this programme is the flexibility in how it is delivered. Students study face-to-face with tutors and their peers two days a week and have three days for independent study or placement. For those already employed in a health care support role, this programme can be undertaken online.

Students will undertake 200 practicum hours in a work setting relevant to their selected strand to apply their knowledge and skills, enhance their learning, and develop professional practice.

We welcome all new students with an induction at our Hamilton City Campus at the start of the programme. 

​View programme modules

Group A: Core compulsory modules


Module codeModule titleLevelCreditsPre-requisitesCo-requisites
COMC409​Introduction to the Health and Wellbeing Sector410  
COMC410​Preparing for Practice415  
COMC411​Te Ao Hauora Māori415  
COMC412​Contemporary Issues in Health and Wellbeing415  
COMC413Working with People415  
​​ ​

Group B: Mental Health and Addiction Support strand compulsory modules

Module codeModule titleLevelCreditsPre-requisitesCo-requisites
COMC414Mental Health and Addiction Support Practicum 1420  
COMC415Mental Health and Addiction Support Practicum 2430  
​​ ​

Group C: Social Services strand compulsory modules

Module codeModule titleLevelCreditsPre-requisitesCo-requisites
COMC416Social Services Practicum 1420  
COMC417Social Services Practicum 2430  
​​ ​

Group D: Community Facilitation strand compulsory modules

Module codeModule titleLevelCreditsPre-requisitesCo-requisites
COMC418Community Facilitation Practicum 1420  
COMC419Community Facilitation Practicum 2430  

​​Please note, this strand is currently not available.

Group E: Community Health Work strand compulsory modules

Module codeModule titleLevelCreditsPre-requisitesCo-requisites
COMC420Community Health Work Practicum 1420  
COMC421Community Health Work Practicum 2430  

​​Please note, this strand is currently not available.

Career/further opportunities

This qualification meets the requirements for the Care and Support Workers Pay Equity Settlement. Completion will allow employees and those seeking to enter the industry to follow a career path with qualification attainment linked to wage increases. 

Depending on the strand you choose, graduate opportunities may include:

  • Residential care
  • Youth work
  • Family violence support 
  • Social justice advocacy 
  • Community development
  • Aged care
  • Refugee support 
  • Accessibility/disability support  
  • Employment, housing, and budget support
  • Tamariki ora support 
  • Wellbeing field officer 
  • Health and wellbeing mentor
  • Mental health and addictions support  

Further study opportunities

Graduates of this programme may go on to degree-level study including:

Frequently asked questions

How much time outside of class will I need to spend on study?

In addition to class time and online tutor directed learning, students are also need to complete independent learning – in total the mix of study time will add up to about 40 hours per week

Who is this certificate best suited to?

It is suitable for people who currently work in, or who wish to work in support worker positions in the areas of disability, aged-care, mental health, and community work.

What is the benefit of having this certificate?

Those who hold this certificate can attain higher wages through the Care and Support Workers Pay Equity Settlement.  You can find out more about that here.

What is the difference between this certificate and the Te Are Pūtake pathway?

The difference between the Certificate in Health and Wellbeing and Te Ara Pūtake, is that the certificate has two distinct purposes. Those who successfully complete it can either transition to further study in Social Practice (using it as a pathway qualification), or improve their employment and pay outcomes in the role of a Support Workers. The core role of Te Ara Pūtake is as a bridging qualification that students generally complete with the intent to continue studying further. 

Can I work and study at the same time?

As a full-time course of about 40 hours, we recommend that those in full-time employment study part-time. Students then can take up to two years to complete the programme. 

What are the criteria for being an online student?

The programme can be undertaken online for those already employed in a healthcare support role with appropriate placement.

What is a practicum?

Practicum is a period spent in the field working alongside individuals, families, and whānau accessing social and community services. The idea of practicum is that you have a context in which to take on the role of support worker while still being guided and supervised.

Practicum placements provide students with the opportunity to gain practical skills and experience in the field such as understanding agencies, systems, and accountability processes, developing awareness of professional roles and responsibilities, collaborative collegial relationships, working with tangata whaiora, and application of professional and ethical practice.

What support will I have before and during practicum?

We will assist students in finding a placement by helping create a profile, CV and cover letters, preparing for interviews and locating appropriate organisations for students to contact. In addition, throughout the placement, the Wintec Practicum Kaitiaki will liaise with the student and the Agency Liaison to ensure students are achieving their learning goals.

How are practicums organised?

Students must be proactive about finding a suitable placement and can begin this process as soon as their application is accepted. All placements must be approved by the Practicum Kaitiaki and a contract agreement signed by each party (Wintec, student, and agency), prior to starting placement.

Who pays for costs associated with practicum?

The student must meet costs related to transport and any accommodation that the agency does not generally cover for its employees. The agency is expected to provide the student with routine resources required to complete tasks agreed to be undertaken during placement.

What happens if I am already working in the field?

The primary objective of placement is to provide work experience that assists the integration of the knowledge gained during the course and to create future career opportunities. If this can occur in the current workplace with recognition by the agency of the student’s needs and role, then it may be an appropriate placement. This would need to be discussed and determined with the Practicum Kaitiaki and Agency Liaison.


As part of your programme of study, you will spend 200 hours in a practicum placement; this is where you link the theory you are learning with practical application.

Face to face
You will be expected to be proactive in finding work placements. Think about the agencies you already know about or are connected with and agencies whose work you are most interested in experiencing. Once your study has started, you will be supported by the practicum coordinator to approach and confirm your placement. Note that some placement options are limited, and you may be required to undertake a placement experience in an agency that is not your first option.

As an online student, you will be expected to complete your placement hours in your current workplace.

Covid-19 vaccination information
To complete this programme of study, it is necessary to complete a placement/placements. It is highly recommended that you are vaccinated against Covid-19 if you want to apply for this programme. 


Entry criteria

You can apply for this programme if you meet one or more of the below options.

Based on your school achievement (secondary study)​

  • 40 credits at NCEA Level 1; including 10 literacy credits and 10 numeracy credits; ​
  • Or a recognised equivalent. ​

Based on study completed after school (tertiary study)

  • A relevant course at NZQF Level 2; ​
  • Or a recognised equivalent. ​

Based on your work experience (on the job)​

If you can demonstrate relevant knowledge, skills and experience that you have gained through work experience, that will help you to be successful in the programme.​

Based on discretionary entrance

If you don’t meet any of the above options, and you think you have what it takes to complete this programme, you can apply for discretionary entrance. Your application may be accepted if you can demonstrate a good chance of success. Approval of discretionary entrance applications is decided by the relevant manager. If your application is approved, your acceptance into further programmes relies on you demonstrating success in this programme.

English language requirements

Candidates who have English as a second language are required to have an academic International English Language Test System (IELTS) score of 5.5, with no individual band score lower than 5.0; or equivalent.

Want to see full details of the entry criteria?
Don't meet the entry criteria?


Health and social practice pathway diagram

To check what you need to gain direct entry to a course, review the entry criteria available on each programme page. These assist you in understanding what qualifications or experience are typically required to gain entry. You can contact our team at or 0800 2 Wintec at any time for further guidance.

Your first day

Are you ready for your first day of class? Check out your start date and where you need to be. You can also find useful information about studying at Wintec on our welcome page.

Semester 2 2024

Whānau session
Date: Monday 15 July 2024
Time: 3.30pm-4.30pm
Venue: DG.06, D Block, City Campus 

We welcome and encourage you to bring your whānau and friends to this drop-in session to support you as you start this exciting journey. This relaxed session is designed to provide all the details you need to feel ready for your first day and ensure any questions you may have are answered.

Induction day
Date: Monday 22 July 2024
Time: 9am-3pm
Venue: DG.06, D Block, City Campus

If you are an online student, we welcome and encourage you to attend this induction. If you are unable to attend your induction day, please let us know by email.

What you will need

Please bring a pen, notebook, and a personal laptop or portable device that you can connect to the internet. You will need a laptop or device to complete individual module learning, assessments, and other programme requirements. All students also have access to computer labs and computers in the hub. Please note you can only access some programme information on a smartphone.

Vulnerable Children Act (VCA) Safety Check
Wintec is required by law, under the Vulnerable Children Act 2014, to safety check students enrolled in programmes that include placements where they could be working with children or young people under 18 years old.
The safety check will be completed at your induction and will require you to complete an NZ police vetting form, a questionnaire and provide the contact details of a referee we can email, as well as additional forms of ID (one of which must be a photo ID). If you would like more information about the Vulnerable Children Act or the safety checking process, click here.

Timetable information

All Wintec timetables are available online here.

How to find your way around

Campus maps can be found here.

Parking and bus information

Both the Rotokauri and City campuses have parking available - payment and permits may be required. Learn more about parking and find out about bus services here.

He reo pōwhiri, your official welcome to Wintec

Tēnei te mihi mahana ki a koe e piki nei, e kake nei ki te Kuratini o Waikato.

You are warmly invited to attend the official welcome to Wintec for all new students, staff and whānau (family) at either our marae, Te Kōpū Mānia o Kirikiriroa or Rotokauri campus. The pōwhiri is a welcoming ceremony involving mihimihi (speeches), waiata (singing), and will conclude with kai timotimo (light refreshments). Please gather at the campus hubs, and a staff member will guide you through our pōwhiri.

Click here to find out when the next pōwhiri will be.

Paying for your study

Course-related costs

Additional information


Students on this programme are not required to purchase any textbooks.

All required texts for this programme will be provided to the students by teaching staff.

Purchasing textbooks

If your programme requires you to have access to textbooks, these can be purchased through a range of suppliers listed below:

    New Zealand-based suppliers

    General book suppliers

    First aid certificate

    Health status



    Clinical placement

    Prospectus (course guide)

    The Wintec Prospectus (otherwise known as a course guide) outlines everything you need to know about Wintec. It contains information about the Wintec campuses, student life, and the programmes that are on offer.

    Access your copy of the Wintec Prospectus

    The Wintec Prospectus (course guide) is available by downloading the file - click on the document below to access the file. Alternatively, to request a copy via email or the post, please complete the form below.

    Request an emailable or printed copy of the Prospectus


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