Master of Arts
The Master of Arts (MA) degree consists of coursework followed by a thesis. It provides the opportunity to make a contribution to knowledge while also demonstrating understanding of the principles of research.
MA students within the College of Arts benefit from:
- a lively and supportive postgraduate culture
- numerous master's scholarships
- 11 relevant research centres.
Normally the minimum requirement is a three-year bachelor’s degree from a New Zealand university, or a qualification or combination of qualifications considered to be equivalent. If you gained your qualifications overseas, these will need to be assessed to make sure they are of an equivalent standard. You are also required to meet UC’s English language requirements.
Qualification specific requirements
Candidates must have qualified for a bachelor's degree and satisfied the prerequisites for the subject concerned. Prerequisites vary between departments, but normally good grades in 300-level courses in the subject concerned are required.
Students who have qualified for a Bachelor of Arts with Honours or equivalent with good grades may be admitted to the Master of Arts by thesis (Part II only) in that subject.
For information on the prerequisites for each subject see Schedule A to the Regulations for the Master of Arts or use the admission requirements checker.
Qualification structure and duration
The Master of Arts degree consists of two parts:
- Part I: Coursework
- Part II: A thesis.
Honours may be awarded if the student completes within the timeframe indicated by the schedule. Distinction or Merit may be awarded if the student completes an MA by thesis-only in the timeframe indicated by the schedule and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts with Honours.
Students can begin their studies in February or July. Part II (thesis-only) can be started at the beginning of any month.
The minimum period of enrolment is:
- Part I and Part II: 12 months full-time (or 24 months part-time)
- Part II only: 24 months full-time (or 48 months part-time)
For the maximum period of enrolment and other requirements, see the Regulations for the Master of Arts.
Note: Part-time enrolment is considered with the approval of the Academic Board.
Subjects and courses
Subject areas for the Master of Arts are many and varied and include:
- Art History
- Art Theory
- Child and Family Psychology
- Cultural Studies
- European Studies
- Human Services
- Māori and Indigenous Studies
- Media and Communication
- Pacific Studies
- Political Science and International Relations
- Te Reo Māori
How to apply
Find out how to apply for graduate and postgraduate qualifications.
Postgraduate study can bring many career benefits eg, specialist skills and enhanced knowledge, entry into specific occupations, higher starting salary/progression rates, research capability/achievement and evidence of high academic attainment/self-discipline.
- Read what other UC postgraduate students have gone on to achieve in their studies and careers in our student and graduate profiles.
- Our Careers, Internships & Employment team can help you to achieve the career you want, connect with employers or find a job.
- For research into career destinations by qualification, visit the 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 full requirements see the Regulations for the Master of Arts.
For study planning help contact the College of Arts:
College of Arts | Te Rāngai Toi Tangata
University of Canterbury | Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha
Private Bag 4800