Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning
The Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning (PGDipTchgLn) combines research-informed knowledge and critical inquiry with practice-based experiences in schools to prepare you for a career in teaching. Teaching is a positive and varied career for people who are energetic, creative, enjoy working with people, and who are committed to making a positive difference for children and youth.
You will have the opportunity to gain knowledge of teaching, learners and curriculum, engage in professional practice in schools, and become part of the teaching profession in Aotearoa New Zealand. Also, you will hone skills such as communication, critical thinking, planning and design for learning, and develop bicultural competence and culturally responsive practice so that you go on to become an attentive and adaptable educator who meets the needs and aspirations of all learners.
The Postgraduate Diploma is endorsed in either Primary or Secondary Education. Both endorsements are internationally recognised professional qualifications, leading to teaching opportunities globally. Students will meet Matatū Aotearoa | Teaching Council of New Zealand teaching standards and will be eligible to apply for registration and certification with the Teaching Council as a school teacher.
The PGDipTchgLn is a pathway to the Master of Teaching and Learning (MTchgLn). By completing the PGDipTchgLn plus an additional 30-point course, students can achieve the MTchgLn.
UC is ranked in the top 200 universities in the world for Education and Training (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2020).
Applicants for the PGDipTchgLn programme will need an Aotearoa New Zealand bachelor's degree with a B Grade Point Average in their 300-level courses (or other qualifications of an equivalent standard). Those entering the Secondary Education endorsement will need previous studies in a subject relevant to the Aotearoa New Zealand secondary school curriculum eg, te reo Māori, English, biological sciences, mathematics, history, physical education, etc.
Students will be approved for entry on the recommendation of a Selection Committee. Selection for entry is based on:
- academic ability, involvement and interest in working with children and young people, community involvement, communication skills, and other personal qualities as outlined in the Guide to Applying
- a police check, referees' reports, and an interview
- a short literacy and numeracy test.
If English is your additional language, you are also required to meet the requirements set out by Matatū Aotearoa | Teaching Council of New Zealand.
For the full entry requirements, use the admission requirements checker.
How to apply
Applications are open throughout the year and we strongly recommend that you apply as early as possible. Applications normally close four weeks prior to the commencement of the programme in January, or when places are filled (whichever comes first).
For more details on entry requirements and the teacher education application process, see the Guide to Applying.
Typical diploma structure for the Postgraduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning
Courses towards Primary or Secondary Teaching
The PGDipTchgLn consists of 150 points of coursework and includes 80 days of professional practice in schools.
The programme can be studied full-time in one year or can be completed part-time (the programme will not be offered part-time in 2021), usually over two years, either on-campus or by distance study (only students in the Primary endorsement are able to complete the entire programme by distance). Distance students complete the same courses, coursework, and assessments as on-campus students.
Distance students are required to attend an On-site Intensive (OSI) in Ōtautahi Christchurch at the beginning of the programme. OSIs are a compulsory part of the distance programme and provide an opportunity to meet and work with course lecturers and other students. Students will require continual access to a computer with suitable broadband internet to complete this qualification.
Students applying for the Secondary Education endorsement are required to list at least one teaching subject in their online application. Confirmation of teaching subjects for students will be determined as part of the selection process and confirmed at the point of offer.
All students for the PGDipTchgLn complete the following:
Primary Education endorsement
Students in the Primary endorsement also complete the following:
- TECP 423 Literacy and Mathematics for Primary School Teaching
- TECP 424 Curriculum 2: Teaching and Learning in, through and about Health and Physical Education and the Arts
- TECP 425 Curriculum 3: Exploring Science and Technology through Collaborative Design
- TECP 426 Curriculum 4: Learning Languages and Social Sciences in Diverse School and Community Settings
Secondary Education endorsement
Students in the Secondary endorsement also complete the following:
- TECS 433 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 1: Teaching subject for junior secondary
- TECS 434 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 2: Teaching subject for senior secondary
- TECS 435 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 3: Contemporary Developments in Secondary Education
Secondary teaching subject
Secondary students tailor their course studies towards a teaching subject they wish to specialise in their career, based on their previous degree studies. Their main and specialist teaching subject is supported in the TECS 433 and TECS 434 courses.
If you have the required subject knowledge from previous degree studies and wish to specialise in an additional teaching subject, you will need to take one of:
- TECS 436 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 4: Additional teaching subject for junior secondary
- TECS 437 Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment 5: Additional teaching subject for senior secondary
If you do not have the background for one of these additional teaching subjects, you can take a course from the Primary Education endorsement schedule above, or an approved course elsewhere at UC.
Main teaching subjects at UC include:
- Biology with Science
- Chemistry with Science
- Classical Studies with Social Studies
- Economics with Social Studies
- Geography with Social Studies
- History with Social Studies
- International Languages
- Outdoor and Environmental Education
- Performing Arts
- Physical Education
- Physics with Science
- Te Reo Māori
You may choose to go onto postgraduate studies which further examine the role of teaching in children's lives and the ways and methods in which they learn, or critically analyse educational policies and systems of practice.
Successful graduates meet the requirements for provisional teacher registration with Matatū Aotearoa | Teaching Council of New Zealand to become primary or secondary school teachers. Internationally recognised, the PGDipTchgLn can also open up teaching opportunities abroad.
Postgraduate study will build your knowledge of contemporary education and professional practice. You can better support the diverse needs of students, and work with family, whānau, iwi, communities, and other education and health professionals.
Teaching is also an excellent background for a wide range of jobs including careers in the public sector, human services, business, industry training, educational publishing, policy, advocacy, consultancy, youth and social work.
- Read what other UC postgraduate students have gone on to achieve in their studies and careers in our student and graduate profiles.
- Te Rōpū Rapuara | UC Careers can help you to achieve the career you want, connect with employers, or find a job.
- For research into career destinations by qualification, visit Te Pōkai Tara | Universities New Zealand website.
- Find out more about what you can do with a degree from UC.
- Come along to an upcoming information event for prospective postgraduate students.
For course advice contact the College of Education, Health and Human Development:
College of Education, Health and Human Development | Te Rāngai Ako me te Hauora
University of Canterbury | Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha
Private Bag 4800