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Laidlaw College provides a dynamic learning environment for over 1,100 students throughout New Zealand and around the world. Our mission is to equip students and scholars to renew their communities with a faith as intelligent as it is courageous. This takes place in our face-to-face classrooms in Auckland and Christchurch. But it also happens in living rooms, small groups, and towns – big and small – through our distance learning courses.

Our vision is a world shaped by love compelled and informed by the gospel. We've been pursuing this vision for over 89 years through our quality programmes. We offer NZQA accredited diploma and degree qualifications in:

Our graduates are involved in many national and international organisations, state and private schools, corporations and non-governmental organisations. Click here to view our graduate profile.

We invite you to explore the pages of our website to find out more about us.

About Robert Laidlaw

In 1922, one of our founders Robert Laidlaw, imagined a college that brought theology to the marketplace in order to form leaders passionate about the biblical story, and capable of being successful across all of society. Robert himself was a man highly respected for his faith, integrity, and successful work in both the church and business world. In August 2008, to honour and reinvigorate this dream, we adopted Laidlaw as the name of our college. This comes at a time of other significant transitions, including the simplification and strengthening of our programmes, the addition of new senior faculty, and the formation of the School of Education which formerly operated as MASTERS Institute.


Laidlaw College was founded in 1922 by Reverend Joseph Kemp and businessman Robert Laidlaw. Originally known as the Bible Training Institute (BTI), the College trained men and women in the Scriptures and theology. In 1972 the Institute was renamed the Bible College of New Zealand (BCNZ). For the past thirty-five years, the College has continued training men and women for work in the fields of pastoral ministry and mission but has also equipped men and women for leadership and service in a broad range of roles across New Zealand society.

In 2005 the College appointed Dr Mark Strom with a mandate to clarify the College's vision and purpose and deepen its capacity to inspire and educate men and women for leadership and influence within the churches and society of New Zealand and beyond.

In September 2010, Dr Rod Thompson was appointed National Principal and now leads the College into its next phase of strengthening and growth.

Why Laidlaw

Every great story begins with a problem to be solved - an ambiguity that needs clarification - a conflict demanding resolution. The Laidlaw College story is driven by the most profound problem facing humanity: how to live out the gospel in a world that is broken, fragmented, and resistant to the grace of God. As a university-level educational institution Laidlaw College is committed to the preparation of graduates who will boldly re-imagine their worlds. As a college with a profoundly Christian story, Laidlaw's imperative is to ground that imagination in the gospel, and to graduate men and women of character, wisdom, grace and love; men and women whose stories have been transformed by the gospel and who burn to see society transformed in the same way.

The grand narrative that gives Laidlaw College its vision and its purpose has been played out since 1922. The characters, settings, and events of this story may have changed, but the urgency to speak the gospel to the world has never faltered. Whether as the NZ Bible Training Institute, or the Bible College of New Zealand, or now, united with MASTERS Institute under a new identity, Laidlaw College has been committed to discovering where this narrative may lead - whether into business, the church, the inner city, government, media, or the mission field. Wherever the threads of this story take our students, they go with boldness, authenticity, imagination and faith.

All good stories are shaped by the diverse characters that drive the plot. The Laidlaw College story brings together men and women from many cultures, with experiences that are distinct, and passions and gifts that are unique. Laidlaw's integrated approach to learning facilitates a dialogue that is rich and imaginative, and which honours the distinctiveness of each student's voice. Laidlaw College provides the space in which students not only discover what role they will play in the grand narrative of the gospel, but also what it is to be the community of God's people.

The Laidlaw College story is driven by the desire for resolution that is at the heart of the story of scripture - and at the core of our human condition. It invites you to discover what part in the story you are being called to play.


Laidlaw College is registered by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority pursuant to the 1990 Education Act and its amendments, and is accredited to teach its programmes as approved by the Authority. Laidlaw College is accredited  by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority to teach at postgraduate and undergraduate degree level. Doctoral programmes are offered under the auspices of partnership arrangements with New Zealand universities or as an affiliated College of the Australian College of Theology.

Laidlaw College was previously known as the New Zealand Bible Training Institute (NZBTI) from 1922–1971 and as Bible College of New Zealand (BCNZ) from 1971–2008. Academic awards bearing the stamp of the former names of Laidlaw College are recognised by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority pursuant to the 1990 Education Act. The New Zealand Ministry of Education Provider Code for Laidlaw College is 08563.

Details of accreditation of awards of Laidlaw College programmes can be found at the following New Zealand government website:

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