Audits, reviews and investigations

Te Tātari, te arotake, te whakatewhatewha

Last updated 7 November 2016
Last updated 11/07/2016

One of our key roles is to monitor tertiary education organisations (TEOs) to ensure that their programmes are in line with the funding agreements they have with us. As part of our monitoring process, we sometimes carry out audits, reviews and investigations.

Our monitoring and risk management decisions are informed by our ongoing data analysis, information from other agencies such as New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) andStudyLinkand complaints.

Our monitoring process can include some or all of:


Audits are designed to ensure that a TEO is meeting its funding conditions. Audits look at procedures, processes, accuracy of records and how a TEO manages its statutory obligations and conditions of funding. We carry out up to 70 audits each year.


We generally carry out a review if we receive information about, or become aware of, an issue relating to a TEO’s activities. Reviews typically cover a two-year period.


An investigation examines a TEO’s activities in more depth than an audit or a review, and typically covers six years. An investigation is more likely to be in response to a specific action, activity or question of conduct identified through an audit or review, or a complaint. We commission external consultancies to carry out reviews and investigations and, once these are complete, we publish the results. 

Our monitoring process

In 2015, the Tertiary Education Commission, together with NZQA, commissioned Deloitte to review both of our monitoring approaches.

Deloitte Review of Tertiary Education Organisation Monitoring Framework (PDF, 735 Kb)

Do you have a concern about a TEO? Find out the process for making a complaint.

How to make a complaint