What can I do with a degree in Education?
Education is a multidisciplinary field of study with a focus on the three core areas: learning, child and adolescent development and health, and social and cultural studies. We introduce students to in-depth, discipline-based knowledge of the social world as it applies to education in three broad streams:
- Learning: This stream uses the findings of behavioural science, cognitive science and new research into how the brain works to address questions such as how we learn, and what the necessary conditions for learning are.
- Child and Adolescent Development and Health: This stream explores the theory, concepts and processes of infant, child and adolescent development within multiple contexts. It also considers the impact of health on children and adolescents.
- Social and Cultural Studies in Education: This stream examines the broader social context in which educational systems operate. It explores factors such as history, politics, social class, ethnicity, gender, disability and inequality, and their impact on education.
Through their Education degree, graduates develop a set of skills that are transferable to a range of careers. These skills include:
- An understanding of human development across the lifespan
- Knowledge of teaching and learning processes
- Interpretive and analytical thinking
- Open-mindedness, tolerance and appreciating different perspectives
- Developing a commitment to community engagement, responsible citizenship and social justice
- Problem solving skills
- Thinking critically and creatively, and challenging ideas
- Planning and organisation
- Oral and written communication.
Opportunities to apply your learning are available in this major, through community engagement courses, internships, and international study tours. These experiences deepen your skillset, awareness of others,working knowledge and employability.
Graduates with a major in Education have many and varied career opportunities available to them including work in:
- Special education
- Social service agencies
- Health and rehabilitation
- Community development
- Not-for-profit agencies
- Tertiary sector
- Career consultancies
Graduates of this degree are employed in a range of jobs — see some examples below.
Note: Some of the jobs listed may require postgraduate study. See the ‘Further study’ section.
Education advisor / consultant
- Works with teachers to develop teaching programmes to increase student achievement
- Designs and creates teaching resources
- Assists with school implementation of new education priorities and policies
Special education / early intervention teacher
- Teaches children with diverse learning needs
- Evaluates special needs, working with whānau and teachers to develop learning plans
- Recommends and coordinates support services, treatment and therapy
Child advocate, community support officer
- Promotes well-being and conditions for children
- Works with children and their families to address education, care or social issues
- Tackles policies that negatively impact children
Guide / leader / mentor | kaiārahi
- Supports people to reflect biculturalism
- Identifies opportunities and reviews processes to achieve organisational Māori aspirations
- Connects with contributors, leaders and knowledge guardians
Policy analyst / advisor
- Identifies and investigates issues and opportunities eg, in society, law or governance
- Interprets existing policies and briefs leaders
- Prepares reports and recommends changes
- Assists clients in developing career decision making and job search skills
- Provides information about education and training options
- Delivers career education seminars
Learning advisor, education platform director
- Develops learning resources or courses
- Uses technology to deliver training
- Advises how to develop skills
Teacher of English for speakers of other languages
- Assesses a student’s reading, writing, speaking and listening skills and needs
- Designs and prepares learning materials
- Presents lessons or tutorials
- Helps a client to share feelings and experiences
- Listens to and reflects upon the client’s issues
- Raises self-awareness and understanding
Project manager / coordinator
- Manages a project plan, budget and schedule
- Supervises project progress and manages risks
- Liaises with project staff and clients
- Categorises and catalogues library materials
- Selects materials for library use
- Helps customers find and use materials
- Assesses a person’s strengths and weaknesses
- Advises how to optimise performance
- Inspires confidence, discipline, teamwork
Teacher (primary or secondary)
- Plans and delivers instructional lessons
- Evaluates performance and provides feedback
- Sets and marks assignments and tests
- Prepares and gives lectures and tutorials
- Sets and marks assignments and exams
- Conducts research, writes and publishes articles
Entrepreneur and CEO
- Develops an idea to form their own business
- Gets involved in a start-up
- Offers freelance or consultancy services
Get started with Entrepreneurship here
As they progress, students and graduates often join professional bodies relevant to their area of interest. These organisations can provide regular communications and offer the chance to network with others in the same community.
- New Zealand Educational Institute
- Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand
- New Zealand Educational Administration and Leadership Society
- New Zealand Association for Training and Development
Social media networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter can provide avenues to keep up-to-date with industry knowledge, networking opportunities, events and job vacancies.
Learn from our students' experiences
'The stunning support provided by DRS has allowed me to continue pursuing dreams in an institution where I can achieve them…'
'This degree will enhance your understanding of learning and education in a wider social context...'
'I want to support our Pasifika students in not only their languages but also their cultures...'
'I’ve enjoyed meeting new people as well as easy access to social activities and UC facilities...'
'Graduate House provides an opportunity to stay focused on your work and make friends...'
'I have a passion for learning as much as I can to benefit the tamariki of Aotearoa...'
'I was always interested in new technologies and their implementation in education through e-learning...'
For more information
see the Education subject page