Certificate of proficiency in introduction to pharmacology

Course highlights

This course is an introduction to pharmacological concepts and related nursing practice.

Key facts

Start month(s) July
Duration Less than six months
Level 5
Study location(s) MIT Ōtara
MIT Manukau
Domestic fees

Individual course fees

International fees (NZD) Certificates of Proficiency are not recommended for international students
Course code 722.526

Entry requirements

All enrolments in the Bachelor of Nursing programme are subject to the approval of an entry and selection team. All applicants must complete a health declaration and the New Zealand Nursing Council requires criminal convictions to be declared.

Applicants must meet the following entry requirements:
University Entrance
  • NCEA Level 3
    • Three subjects - at Level 3 or above, made up of:
      • 14 credits each, in three approved subjects
    • Literacy - 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of:
      • 5 credits in reading
      • 5 credits in writing
    • Numeracy - 10 credits at Level 1 or above, made up of:
      • achievement standards - specified achievement standards available through a range of subjects, or
      • unit standards - package of three numeracy unit standards (26623, 26626, 26627- all three required)and
  • A minimum of 12 credits at NQF Level 2 or higher from the subjects listed below:
    • Biology
    • Chemistry
    • Physics
    • Science


  • NCEA Level 2
    • Applicants must hold at least 80 credits at NCEA Level 2, of which 40 credits must be at merit or excellence. Of the 80 NCEA Level 2 credits, students must have gained a minimum of 5 credits in reading and 5 credits in writing in English or Te Reo Maori; and
    • A minimum of 12 credits from the subjects listed below:
      • Biology
      • Chemistry
      • Physics
      • Science; and
    • A minimum of 10 credits at Level 1 or higher in mathematics.

An interview may be required to determine the applicant's preparedness for tertiary studies. Applicants must be able to demonstrate the following attributes:

  • Effective interpersonal communication skills
  • Good personal presentation
  • Maturity and a positive attitude
  • Commitment and motivation to succeed
Cambridge International Examinations
  • 120 points on the UCAS Tariff with a minimum grade of D in at least three subjects equivalent to those in the list approved for NZUEBS and NCEA at AS, A2 (or A) level; and
  • A minimum D pass in IGCSe Mathematics; and
  • A minimum E pass in AS English. Applicants must meet the equivalent science requirements as specified for NCEA Level 2.
International Baccalaureate (IB) Equivalence
  • A minimum total of 24 points in the International Baccalaureate Diploma (IBDP); and
  • Meet the literacy requirements by having at least four points in an English-rich subject in the IBDP; and
  • Meet the numeracy requirements by having at least four points in mathematics in the IBDP or by meeting the necessary numeracy requirements by some other means.
  • Must meet the equivalent science requirements as specified for NCEA Level 2.

Applicants who do not meet all entry requirements should contact the School of Nursing to explore their options.


Applicants 20 years of age and over will ideally meet the minimum entry requirement. Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements, but feel you have the skills or experience to be successful in this programme, should contact the School to discuss their options


Students who have studied on a nursing programme at another institution wishing to enrol in the Bachelor of Nursing will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Refer to programme regulations. A B-grade average (ie above a B minus average) in the nursing programme from another institution is required


Applicants who have completed the New Zealand Certificate and Study Preparation (Nursing Studies) who achieve a B grade or higher in all subjects will be offered a place on the BN programme subject to referee reports and available places. Students who did not achieve B grades or higher will be considered on an individual basis by the HOS. 


Applicants must be able to demonstrate a mature approach to study; ability to pass a science diagnostic test; ability to manage their time; ability to seek support; a strong motivation to work in the health sector; the ability to read and write at the level required for degree-level study. The above attributes will be assessed through an information session.  


Have English language competence to undertake this programme which is taught and assessed in English. Any applicants whose first language is not English may be required to provide evidence of an overall IELTS (Academic) band score of 6.5 (with no score of below 6.5) or equivalence. 

Equivalence will be considered by a case-by-case basis demonstrated by: 

Evidence of either of the following kinds of previous primary or secondary study in English by the student:

(a) completion of primary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand primary school years 1 to 8) and at least three years of secondary education (being the equivalent of three years from New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools where the student was taught using English language of instruction; or

(b) completion of at least five years of secondary education (being the equivalent of New Zealand secondary school years 9 to 13) at schools where the student was taught using English as the language of instruction. 

Students may submit evidence of equivalence for these areas of study for assessment. Students who did not achieve B grades or higher will be considered on an individual basis. Applicants who have completed a Foundation Education programme, or an equivalent, can submit an application and may be offered a place on the Bachelor of Nursing programme subject to their results.


Subject to the MIT Council's statutory powers to decline enrolment, a person may enrol for the first year of the Bachelor of Nursing programme if the Director of Nursing/entry panel is of the opinion that the applicant can undertake the programme with reasonable prospects of success. 

Additional requirements for admission

Each applicant is required to submit the names of at least two referees who are able to affirm that the applicant is of good character and reputation and is likely to be a 'fit and proper' person to register as a registered nurse. Relatives may not be used as referees. Referees must have known the applicant for at least two years. 

The applicant's level of health shall be such that it is possible to achieve the competencies required for registration as a nurse. A health declaration is required and further reports may be requested with the consent of the applicant. Immune status must be provided for specified diseases/conditions as determined by the School from time to time. 

Applicants are required to declare all criminal or pending criminal convictions with enrolment. Police screening is required for all applicants. In cases where a previous criminal conviction has been reported, applicants will be interviewed by the Director of Nursing and their prospects of gaining registration upon successful completion of the programme will be outlined.

To maintain confidentiality of information related to patients/clients, all students are required to sign a confidentiality agreement.

The applicant must be able to attend practicum at specified times and places.

Provisional admission for foundation education students

Students may on the recommendation of the School of Foundation Studies, be offered the opportunity to undertake one or two selected courses of the Bachelor of Nursing programme while they are formally Foundation Education students. The choice of selected course(s) is at the discretion of the School of Nursing. Students admitted under this regulation must successfully complete both the selected Bachelor of Nursing programme courses and the Foundation Education courses in order to continue on the Bachelor of Nursing programme. Students who fail to meet this requirement will only be admitted to the Bachelor of Nursing programme once they have successfully completed the Foundation Education programme. Prior to admission under this regulation, students must comply with the English language requirements as outlined in Foundation Education programmes.

Provisional entry

Students who have attained the age of 20 years and do not hold the minimum entry requirements for a programme will be eligible to be enrolled as a student where their previous educational, work or life experience indicates they have a reasonable likelihood of success. Students who have not attained the age of 20 years and do not hold the required minimum entry requirements for a programme may also be eligible to enrol in exceptional circumstances. Such decisions will be made by the Director/Head of School.


Some courses may have a pre-requisite, you may need to seek course advice before applying. Call 0800 62 62 52 or email enquiries@manukau.ac.nz.

This course is part of the Bachelor of Nursing (Level 7).

If your intention is to complete a full programme, please enrol into the programme. Studying an individual Certificate of Proficiency (COP) is not a pathway towards a formal qualification.

Certificate of Proficiency (COP) may be cross credited to a programme however grades achieved through studying a COP are not transferable to a programme.

Course structure

  1. Introduction to pharmacology concepts, history and sources, forms and classification of drugs
  2. Drug development and marketing
  3. Medication management and administration through the lifespan, including management of errors
  4. Drug calculations
  5. Socio-cultural and economic issues
  6. Legal and ethical aspects of pharmacology
  7. Licit and illicit drugs
  8. Polypharmacy
  9. Pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics
  10. Complementary therapies.

For more information, phone 0800 62 62 52 or enquire below.

Need help?

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If you need help with applying or advice on choosing a course, our Ask Me! Student Services Centre is here to give you guidance.

Send us a message, call us on 0800 62 62 52 or come in and see us.

Information is correct as at 13 January 2023. Programme fees are based on a full-time student and may vary depending on your final selection of courses that make up your programme. To provide you with an indication of costs, the approximate fees quoted in this publication are based on the indicative 2023 fee structure. The indicative programme fees for 2023 do not include the Compulsory Student Services Fee (CSSF). The CSSF is an additional levy to your 2023 programme or course fees. Further information about the CSSF can be found here www.manukau.ac.nz/cssf. Programmes stated as eligible for free study in 2023 are based on the 2022 fee structure and subject to funding confirmation for 2023. All fees are in New Zealand Dollars. You will be advised of the current fees at the time of enrolment. All courses and programmes will proceed subject to numbers and academic approval. Manukau Institute of Technology is part of Te Pūkenga – New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology. Te Pukenga is accredited under the provisions of the Education and Training Act 2020. International students must study in class and will not be able to enrol for online study options.