Introduction to Infection Prevention

Introduction to Infection Prevention

This free online course has been developed to help give New Zealanders confidence and knowledge about preventing viral and bacterial infections, particulary relevant in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This course's content has been developed and supplied by the Open-Polytechnic of New Zealand and is used under permission.

This free online self-directed course, 'Introduction to Infection Prevention', will provide basic knowledge about infectious viruses, their risks and means of control so that indviduals can recognise infection and prevention control strategies within different contexts.

Most people either live or work where they have direct contact with others - for example, travelling to work, interacting with colleagues, customers and/or suppliers. Therefore, we all need the skills and knowledge of how to respond best to the risks of infectious diseases. Everyone must be prepared to act appropriately and if we do, we will save lives.

About this course

Open Polytechnic has developed the course content with a General Practitioner (GP), subject specialists, learning designers and online learning experts to ensure teaching delivers skills and knowledge with real-world applications. 

You'll learn about different types of infectious microorganisms and their known disease-causing potential, and how to recognise authoritative infection and preventation control stategies. The course is designed for the general public and those with professional contexts where an awareness of infectious agents is useful, so you don't need an academic background or knowledge of biological sciences. 

  • Its an online free course delivered through iQualify - an online learning platform developed by Open Polytechnic.
  • Learn at your own pace. This is a self-directed course that is designed to allow you to work through the three modules at your own pace.
  • It should take up to 30 learning hours, and there is no start or finish dates. 

There are three modules

  • An introduction to disease and infection
  • Infectious viruses in your environment
  • Infection prevention and control


There are two short quizzes (at the end of Modules 2 and 3), and on successful completion of the course you will be awarded a digital badge which you can upload to your LinkedIn profile. 


Please note: signing up does not enrol you as a WITT student. The course is self-directed and doesn't have start and finish dates and you can work through it at a pace that suits you.

Enrol now at Open Polytechnic

Changes for 2023 learners

On 1 November 2022, WITT and the programme you have enrolled in became part of Te Pūkenga – New Zealand Institute of Skills and Technology .
When you apply to study with WITT in 2023, you will be enrolled with Te Pūkenga, the new national network of vocational and applied education in Aotearoa New Zealand. You will learn in the same way, in the same place, and with the same people. The great news is that this enables us to share skills and knowledge across a network of passionate education providers, to better help you succeed.
Please note that all programmes offered by WITT and other subsidiaries of Te Pūkenga are under review. This is to make sure they are portable, consistent, and aligned with the needs of the industry to provide you with excellent and quality educational opportunities.

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