Māori and Indigenous Studies


Te Poutahi: Certificate in Arts (Māori and Indigenous Studies)
Te Pourua Diploma in Māori and Indigenous Studies
Bachelor of Arts
Graduate Diploma in Arts
Bachelor of Arts with Honours
Postgraduate Diploma in Māori and Indigenous Studies
Master of Arts
Master of Māori and Indigenous Studies
Doctor of Philosophy


Kia ora koutou, tātou katoa.

Nau mai, haere mai, kia rongo koutou i ngā kōrero a ō tātou mātua tīpuna kua huri ki tua o te ārai, ā, mā koutou ō rātou tūmanako rangatira e whakatutuki mō te ao e huri nei.

Māori and Indigenous Studies is a broad subject that seeks to understand the culture, knowledge and philosophies of Māori and indigenous peoples and their economic, political and social realities. These studies are increasingly seen as central to education, public policy and cultural competency in New Zealand’s bicultural and multicultural landscape.

Why study Māori and Indigenous Studies at UC?

Many students come to Aotahi: School of Māori and Indigenous Studies to find and explore their identity as New Zealanders. Students from international backgrounds can also gain a greater understanding of local culture and practice.

The Māori and Indigenous Studies degree is very flexible, allowing students the chance to pursue particular interests. Students majoring in other subject areas often take Māori courses to support their chosen field of study.

Our staff in Aotahi: School of Māori and Indigenous Studies operate as a whānau and we pride ourselves on being accessible in and out of classes in order to provide support and guidance for students. Staff teaching in Māori and Indigenous Studies engage with a number of research kaupapa that focus on the advancement of Māori development and knowledge.

We offer courses on the Treaty of Waitangi, contemporary political issues, Māori and indigenous knowledge systems and the relationship with science, Māori and iwi development, Māori and indigenous health, Kaupapa Māori and critical theories, human rights, New Zealand and Māori histories, colonisation, Māori film, kapahaka, material culture and more.

Recommended preparation

Entry to first-year Māori and Indigenous Studies courses is open to all students with entry to the University. No special academic background is required and lecturers make every effort to ensure that you understand the material.


See all Māori and Indigenous Studies courses

100-level courses

Students majoring in Māori and Indigenous Studies are required to take two of the following courses:

Students wishing to major in this subject are also encouraged to take courses in Te Reo Māori (up to 45 points from this subject can be included in the Māori and Indigenous Studies major). 

Students completing a double major in Te Reo Māori and Māori and Indigenous Studies must complete a total of 270 unique points in different courses. 

200-level and beyond

Aotahi: School of Māori and Indigenous Studies offers a number of pathways at 200 and 300-level that allow students to explore their particular areas of interest while enhancing their career prospects.

These pathways can include the study of the Treaty and Māori within contemporary politics, language revitalisation, Māori and indigenous film, Māori history, philosophies and thinking, colonisation and decolonisation, and the politics of race and ethnicity.

Career opportunities

Career paths are opening up as a result of the increasing role of Māori culture as a defining element of national culture. Changing demographics, government policies and social attitudes will continue to see employment opportunities in the future for those with indigenous knowledge and competencies.

Careers are increasing in iwi and other Māori organisations, public health, research, teaching, government organisations and the wider community.

Recent UC graduates have found work as community development workers, city council liaison officers, policy analysts, journalists, archivists, museum education officers, conservation workers, secondary school teachers, librarians, lawyers, development advisers and police officers.

The broad skills gained from a BA include research, writing, critical thinking and communication; and are highly valued by employers and can enable employment opportunities in diverse careers.

Find out more about what you can do with a degree in Māori and Indigenous Studies.

More information

Aotahi School of Māori and Indigenous Studies
College of Arts
University of Canterbury
Private Bag 4800
New Zealand

Phone +64 3 364 2597

Himiona ropiha

Himiona Ropiha

"I like learning more about my culture and expanding on my own knowledge of Te Reo Maori and tikanga Maori."

Duane culshaw

Duane Culshaw

"Education is a journey, but don’t get so caught up in the destination that you forget to appreciate and enjoy that journey, especially the goodness of the people you meet along the way."