Bachelor of Arts

If you’re fascinated by the history and creative activities of humankind and how this shapes societies and our future, then a Bachelor of Arts from Waikato is for you. Our graduates are in demand for their flexible skills, practical outlook and depth of understanding they bring to their roles.

Jordan Browne

A double English/Screen and Media Studies major was a good springboard into a design career for Jordan. He's a creative type and once he'd done his Bachelor of Arts, decided to stick around and do his masters.

Taila Burton

Screen and Media Studies, Theatre Studies
Taila Burton is studying for a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Screen & Media Studies and Theatre Studies. The former Aquinas College student from Tauranga has always loved singing and has been part of school choirs since primary school.

Camille Buscomb

2016 is a big year for the St Peters school leaver of 2008. She is in her final year of undergraduate study, which she began at Purdue University in America in 2009. She will complete her BA this year with a major in Psychology and a minor in English.

Christy Chan

Christy Chan is currently based in Japan, putting her degree to good use as an English teacher in a rural Japanese school.

Joanna Clarke

International Relations and Security Studies
Joanna grew up in the Waikato and knew that the University had a great reputation, so her decision to study political science there was an easy one.

Caleb Coffey

Theatre Studies
Caleb Coffey will be undertaking his final year of Theatre Studies as part of a BA/BBA(Fin) conjoint. Caleb relishes in bringing a character to life and it’s this aspect of theatre that he enjoys most.

Caroline Downey

Being open-minded and willing to take on different challenges has seen Caroline Downey soar through her degree and into a job as Events Manager at the Maxim Institute in Auckland.

William Flavell

Japanese, Māori Language/Te Reo Māori
Fluent in Japanese and te reo Māori, the high school teacher and MEd graduate has a passion for shaping the hearts, minds and experiences of young people.

Tom Furniss

Screen and Media Studies
Tom Furniss came to Waikato to study economics, but it didn’t take him long to realise his talents lay elsewhere and since graduating with an arts degree he’s has been working in film and comedy, appearing on shows such as 7 days.

Fiona Haiko

Fiona Haiko's last year at school was spent in Japan on a Rotary exchange, and that shaped her career. She came to Waikato unsure whether to study sciences or languages, but after a year in the Bachelor of Science (Technology) programme, switched to a Bachelor of Arts and made Japanese her focus.

Jenna Hudson

English, Theatre Studies
Growing up in a house with no siblings, Jenna Hudson was a self-proclaimed drama queen and attention seeker. “I had to make my own entertainment so I would create my own radio stations with different voices by recording songs onto cassettes and recording voice overs to introduce them.”

Sam Hurley

Political Science
Every day it's a new story for Hawke's Bay Today reporter, Sam Hurley. From appearing in a court room to being at the scene of a crime, there is never a dull moment in the life of a journalist and "that's the beauty of it", says Sam, who credits his career success on his degree from Waikato.

Kiharoa Milroy

Māori Cultural Studies/Tikanga Māori, Māori Language/Te Reo Māori
Kiharoa has completed a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Teaching at the University of Waikato.

Chris Roberts

Fresh out of Whakatane High School, Chris came to the University of Waikato a couple of weeks after his 17th birthday to study political science and history – "quite simply, the subjects I enjoyed the most", he says.

Annuska Robinson

Annuska’s love of languages, in particular Japanese, remained with her from high school through to university, and now she is sharing that love with foreign language learners at schools in Japan.

Joeliee Seed-Pihama

I tipu ake au i raro i te maru o te maunga titohea o Taranaki, ā, i tīmata taku whai i te reo Māori i reira engari kia whakaoti pai ai taku tohu BA i hūnuku mai au ki te riu o Waikato nei. Nō Ngāti Haua taku hoa rangatira, ā, tokotoru ā māua tamariki.

Whetu Silver

Theatre Studies
Whetu reckons she has “the coolest job in town”. As the Youth Arts Coordinator for Auckland Theatre Company (ATC), she is in charge of running their education and youth programme.

Brendan Theodore

Theatre Studies
With a passion for theatre and film from a young age, the decision to enrol in a Bachelor of Arts came naturally to theatre enthusiast Brendan Theodore.

Jeremy Tomkins

Jeremy Tomkins was a prefect and house leader at Tauranga Boys’ College. While at school, he performed in plays and musical productions, competed in speech competitions and participated in the Tauranga Festival of Performing Arts on several occasions.

Emma-Marie Wharepouri

Māori Media and Communication

Youbin Zhao

At Jinan University in Guangdong Province, China, a Waikato-educated, Chinese-born professor is teaching his students all about New Zealand literature.

With a Bachelor of Arts (BA) from Waikato you gain an internationally recognised degree, leading to diverse career opportunities. Through your study you will develop sector-specific analytical abilities and research experience, well-honed written and verbal communication skills, and a broad perspective on the world and its various cultures.

Depending on the major subject you choose, the Bachelor of Arts may be taken within the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences or the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies.

BA under the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences

With a BA from the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences you have the opportunity to tailor your study to suit your passions and interests, across faculties within the University.

You'll learn about human nature and the human mind as they are revealed by the arts, the languages, the politics, and the cultures of the past and the present. The effective communication skills developed while studying the Arts are valued as essential in the modern workplace.

You'll have access to Waikato's modern, purpose-built teaching and performance venues, including the Gallagher Academy of Performing Arts and on-campus television studios. You will be encouraged to extend and perfect your own practice, and take your place within New Zealand and international creative communities.

BA under the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies

The BA under the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies will teach you the fundamental bodies of knowledge in te reo and tikanga Māori, its distinctiveness, and the ability to think critically of its place locally, nationally and globally.

Studying the BA will provide you with leadership qualities in local, national and international indigenous communities and the ability to contribute to the ongoing development of whānau/hapū/iwi/Māori communities. You'll develop the capacity for working cooperatively with diverse groups and individuals, and contributing effectively to collective projects.

The programme will develop your appreciation of indigenous and global issues and the place of Māori in that indigenous community.

You'll graduate with a high level of communication skills in English and/or Māori and the competency to engage with Te Ao Māori.

You will have acquired the critical analysis skills and understanding to make a positive, relevant and innovative contribution to the social and economic development, the labour market and community of New Zealand.

BA graduates from the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies might become active in the cultural and heritage sector, media, environmental management, Treaty of Waitangi issues and health, welfare and education agencies, and Government Departments including Te Puni Kokiri, to name just a few.

 Career opportunities

  • Analyst
  • Composer
  • Editor
  • Events Manager
  • Foreign Affairs Adviser
  • Historian
  • Journalist
  • Museum Curator
  • Orator
  • Politician
  • Screenwriter
  • Television Director or Producer
  • Writer
button for easy access to information about this qualification

Key information

Study Locations Hamilton; Tauranga
Faculty Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies
Years 3.0
Points 360
Start Dates Semester A (February) and Semester B (July)
Domestic Fees $5,879-$6,786 per year
See if you're eligible for fees-free study in your first year
International Fees $23,235 - $29,470 per year
Tuition fees shown above are indicative only and may change. There are additional fees and charges related to enrolment please see the Table of Fees and Charges for more information. You will be sent an enrolment agreement which will confirm your fees.


These are all the subjects available for the Bachelor of Arts

American Studies
Animal Behaviour
Applied Computing
Biological Sciences
Computer Science
Creative Technologies
Creative Writing
Design Media
Earth Sciences
Education and Society
English as a Second Language
Environmental Planning
Environmental Sciences
Health, Sport and Human Performance
Human Development
Human Resource Management
Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management
International Languages and Cultures
International Relations and Security Studies
Labour Studies
Leadership Communication
Materials and Processing
Māori and Pacific Development
Māori Cultural Studies/Tikanga Māori
Māori Language/Te Reo Māori
Māori Media and Communication
Pacific Studies
Political Science
Population Studies
Public Policy
Public Relations
Screen and Media Studies
Social Policy
Strategic Management
Studies in Religion
Supply Chain Management
Teaching (Mātauranga Māori/Māori Medium)
Theatre Studies
Tourism Management
Treaty of Waitangi Studies/Akoranga Te Tiriti o Waitangi
Women's and Gender Studies
Writing Studies

Conjoint degree options

  • Bachelor of Arts with a Bachelor of Teaching (BA/BTchg)
  • Bachelor of Arts with a Bachelor of Laws (BA/LLB)

Scholarships and prizes

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships


The Bachelor of Arts with Honours (BA(Hons)) involves two semesters of full-time study, or the equivalent in part-time study. The BA(Hons) comprises 120 points at 500 level, of which at least 30 points must be in research, normally a 30 point dissertation or an approved equivalent. The BA(Hons) is awarded with classes of honours.


In general, to be admitted to the BA(Hons) you must have a B grade average in the 300 level papers of your undergraduate major subject. You need to have majored in the same subject for your undergraduate degree as that in which you intend to enrol at graduate level. In some cases, a substantial undergraduate supporting subject may be sufficient prerequisite.

A number of the graduate subjects/programmes are interdisciplinary in nature, and may accept students with appropriate undergraduate majors in other relevant subjects. Admission criteria may vary so please consult the appropriate programme Graduate Adviser for their specific admission criteria.

BA(Hons) subjects

  • Anthropology
  • Chinese
  • Education and Society
  • English
  • French
  • Geography
  • History
  • Japanese
  • Māori Cultural Studies/Tikanga Māori
  • Māori Language/Te Reo Māori
  • Māori Media and Communication
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Screen and Media Studies
  • Theatre Studies


Māori Cultural Studies/Tikanga Māori, Māori Language/Te Reo Māori, and Māori Media and Communication can be taken for the BA(Hons), but students must enrol through the Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies.

International Relations and Security Studies although not available for Honours, may be taken as a subject for the Postgraduate Diploma.


You may take up to 60 points from other subjects, of which up to 30 points may be taken from outside the subjects listed for the degree. You should discuss your intended programme of study with the Graduate Adviser in each of the Faculties concerned. Some subjects have specific guidelines for numbers and types of papers outside the subject.

Practical experience

Many of the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences’ degrees offer work placement opportunities or projects with businesses and community groups. In most cases, these can count towards your programme of study.

Visit our work placement page to find out more.

You will be eligible to apply for this degree if you have University Entrance and meet any additional requirements for the qualification. All other applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Some first-year papers may have specific prerequisites, so please check the catalogue of papers carefully. If you do not meet the prerequisites, please contact (Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences) or (Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies) as there may be other pathways that you can take to study in this field.


Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences:
Phone: 0800 800 145 or +64 7 838 4080

Faculty of Māori and Indigenous Studies
Phone: 0800 924 528 ext: 4737 or + 64 7 838 4737

Degree Structure

You will study one Arts subject in depth (your major subject) over the three years while concurrently studying a second major, a specialisation, or a supporting subject. The remaining papers are your elective papers.

You can do more than the minimum requirement, for instance, by taking fewer 100 level papers and more advanced level papers.


You are able to take up to 80 points outside the Arts subjects if you are enrolled in a BA. Your second major or supporting subject could therefore be from another area of the University, such as Marketing, Computer Science, or Earth Sciences, provided you meet the entry requirements.

All majors available for the BA are also available as a second major or as a supporting subject for other undergraduate degrees, subject to academic approval of the Faculty or School in which you are enrolled.

Degree Planners