Master of Māori and Indigenous Leadership
Are you a professional working in an Iwi, Māori organisation, or another body that works with Māori communities, looking to progress into leadership? Would you like to take on a position of influence within the growing Māori economy, currently valued at $40 billion in Aotearoa New Zealand? Do you have a passion for furthering the aspirations of Māori and indigenous communities?
This applied professional programme aims to equip the next generation of leaders across a wide variety of sectors with the skills, knowledge, and attributes necessary to advance the aspirations of Iwi Māori and other indigenous peoples, whether it be in a social, cultural, environmental, political, or commercial context.
- Developed in response to growing market demand for managers, governors and other leaders within all spheres of the 'Māori sector'.
- Students go on an international research tour to Commonwealth and North American jurisdictions, providing exposure to a broad range of indigenous communities and organisations.
- Advance your theoretical and applied skills, by conducting both a research project and an internship in a relevant community or organisation.
- Highly customisable, with the ability to specialise in an area of interest.
- Delivered through a culturally appropriate blended learning model, including marae-based block courses run in wānanga format, guest lectures, and student workshops.
- Our staff in Aotahi: School of Māori and Indigenous Studies operate as a whānau, and we pride ourselves on being accessible, supportive, and engaged with a number of research kaupapa that focus on the advancement of Māori development and knowledge.
- Some scholarships are available for this programme – contact the College of Arts | Te Rāngai Toi Tangata for details.
Normally the minimum requirement is a three-year bachelor’s degree from an Aotearoa 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.
Specific entry requirements
The Master of Māori and Indigenous Leadership (MMIL) is open to:
- Graduates of any bachelor's degree with at least a B grade average in 60 points at 300-level and who have at least three years professional experience in the Māori sector; or
- Applicants without an undergraduate degree (or equivalent qualification) but have qualified for the Postgraduate Certificate in Māori and Indigenous Leadership.
For the full entry requirements see the Regulations for the Master of Māori and Indigenous Leadership or use the admission requirements checker.
How to apply
You can apply online at MyUC. Find out more about how to apply for graduate and postgraduate qualifications.
You will also be required to submit:
- a personal statement: a 1,500 word statement that describes your personal experiences with and commitment to Iwi Māori self-determination, your study goals, and expectations of the programme.
- a current curriculum vitae: this should include academic history, work history, and relevant experience. This is to establish you are/have been working in a role that contributes to Māori interests and aspirations.
Please email these to the MMIL Coordinator at Aotahi.
This Master's starts in February (Semester 1) and can be completed within 12–18 months by full-time students. Part-time students are welcome and can take up to 2–3 years to complete the degree.
The MMIL programme comprises 180 points and has five components:
- 60 points of core courses
- 30 points of elective courses
- 30-point practical community project (PACE 495 Professional and Community Engagement Internship)
- 30-point cross-cultural research tour
- 30-point research dissertation.
Each cohort will comprise up to 20 people, creating a connected group of next generation leaders.
Ten monthly weekend wānanga are to be held at a marae, and will involve presentations from established leaders in the Māori sector. The wānanga format will enable students from outside Waitaha Canterbury to participate.
A four-week hīkoi to North America will connect students with First Nations peoples and develop a comparative understanding of indigenous approaches to development and self-determination.
The Master of Māori and Indigenous Leadership programme involves 180 points as follows:
150 points of coursework
The four compulsory courses (120 points) are:
- MAOR 430 Māori Leadership
- MAOR 431 Comparative Indigenous Models and Theories of Development
- MAOR 679 Cross-Cultural Research (which involves an international tour)
- PACE 495 Professional and Community Engagement Internship
Students choose up to 30 points from any 400-level courses offered by UC, with approval by the Head of School.
30 points of research
See the Regulations for the Master of Māori and Indigenous Leadership for the up-to-date course Schedule.
Graduates of this qualification will be in an ideal position to enhance the leadership capability in organisations working with Māori, including Iwi, Māori, government, community, and private sector organisations.
The graduating cohort will be expected to critically engage with and advance Māori aspirations in their strategic leadership careers. They will show the skills and attributes needed to lead and implement change in Māori and indigenous contexts.
Knowledge of indigenous development in a global context opens up job opportunities and scope as well.
- 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 Māori and Indigenous Leadership.
For study planning help contact the Aotahi: School of Māori and Indigenous Studies or the College of Arts:
College of Arts | Te Rāngai Toi Tangata
University of Canterbury | Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha
Private Bag 4800