Our Subjects


Anthropology is the study of humanity in all its fantastic diversity. Waikato's Anthropology students learn from anthropologists who have a strong Pacific focus and engage in research across a wide range of crucial global issues.

Applied Linguistics

Are you interested in human language and the way it has been formed and adapted throughout civilisation? Study Applied Linguistics at Waikato and you'll explore the complex world of language theories and methods, and the solution of practical problems associated with language.

Behaviour Analysis

Behaviour Analysis is a scientific approach to understanding why people and animals do what they do. Studying behaviour analysis will teach you how both animal and human behaviour is affected by events in the social and physical environment and what you can do to produce behaviour change to help improve lives. Knowledge of this science of behaviour and its behaviour-change technology will assist you in a variety of careers.


Chinese at Waikato involves the study of Modern Standard Chinese (Mandarin) and the history, culture and society of ancient and present day China.

Climate Change

There is no Planet B. Learn how climate change is affecting our lives and how by studying at the University of Waikato, you can make a difference.

Community Psychology

Community psychology as an applied social science encourages inter-disciplinary approaches to learning, including sociology, community development, education and the policy sciences. Community psychologists contribute their expertise in a number of health and social services to encourage healthy people and communities. They develop, support and evaluate interventions that enhance health outcomes for individuals, whānau and communities.

Creative Media

Exploit the power of media-rich creative arts for the purpose of clear, engaging, persuasive and powerful storytellng. Learn how to strategically blend text, images, music, sound, film and performance to achieve your communication goals in a media-rich world.

Creative Practices

Are you looking to expand your mind and stimulate your creativity with a practical and versatile field of study? Creative Practices at Waikato focuses on the active arts and will provide you with the exciting opportunity to explore the creative and the performing arts including music, Māori creative practices, dance and theatre.

Creative Writing

Being a great writer will set you up for success in any career path. Study Creative Writing at Waikato and hone your communication skills to develop professionally, or start on a whole new journey as an expert writer.

Crime Science

Crime Science is a multi-disciplinary, evidence-based problem-solving field that focuses on understanding the drivers of crime, to provide tools and information that will reduce victimisation and increase the safety and quality of life for all New Zealanders.


The Criminology major involves the study of crime, the investigation of the causes of criminal behavior, and of society's responses to it.


Dance is integral to understanding the history and social life of many cultures, and offers a context for embodied learning about ourselves, how we relate to and communicate with others, and the world. Dance is experienced in many forms throughout Aotearoa in social, ritual, traditional and contemporary artistic contexts.

Design Media

You'll learn how to make eye-catching graphic/media design experiences which drive products and bring satisfaction to viewers when you study Design Media at Waikato. Design Media is all about learning-by-doing and integrating media in new ways.

Digital Cinema

Positioned at the junctures between traditional filmmaking and new forms of computer-based digital art, digital cinema increasingly blurs boundaries between music video, animation, graphic design, as well as avant-garde, independent, and mainstream cinemas. At Waikato you'll gain an appreciation of the productive exchange between these various forms of digital cinema.


English at Waikato prepares you for what employers want – a trained mind and the ability to understand and creatively solve problems with words. You'll grow your appreciation for major literary works and a love for the English language.

Environment and Society

The Environment and Society masters programme is designed for graduates of undergraduate qualifications in social sciences, environmental sciences, law, economics or management.

Environmental Planning

Environmental Planning at Waikato develops your knowledge of how human behaviour affects the environment. We'll inspire you to understand how social, economic and cultural aspects, and the physical environment contribute to problems and provide solutions.


Esports is the rapidly growing competitive video gaming industry with big brands and companies flocking to invest.  Learn what makes this industry tick and integrate those learnings within your career path. For enthusiasts and forward thinkers who want to get ahead of the game.


The study of Ethics provides an excellent grounding in evaluative theory and reasoning for a professional future in the public service, the health sector, social work, with environmental agencies, and in business.

Forensic Psychology

Forensic Psychology links psychology to both criminal behaviour and its reduction and prevention, and to the functions of the legal and correctional systems. This subject will also give students an opportunity to align the strong empirical and theoretical traditions from western psychology to Māori-led approaches to understanding and reducing recidivism, and the overrepresentation of Māori in the criminal justice system.


Would you like to be able to chat with a winemaker in the Loire Valley? Discuss the menu with a waiter in a Parisian café? Frequent the Latin Quarter and talk about existentialism in the Café de la Sorbonne? Then learning French as part of a major in International Languages and Cultures is the ideal way to start.

Gender and Sexuality Studies

Gender and sexuality shape virtually every aspect of our social relations, and contribute fundamentally to our sense of self.

Geographic Information Systems

GIS is described as the Geospatial Revolution as it is transforming the information infrastructure of many Government and private organisation, as well as changing the way we operate both in our private lives and in work.GIS at the University of Waikato has an applied focus and students have the opportunity to link GIS to many different disciplines. These range from Human Geography applications, such as exploring population migration patterns, to Science and Engineering applications such as modelling ice melt in Antarctica or horticultural assessment using drones.


Geography matters because it is about basic human relationships - between people and the environment, and between people and other people. Ranked among the top geography programmes in the world, the Geography programme at Waikato is the only solely human geography programme in New Zealand.

Global Arts

The Global Arts major dives into the world of creative expression across different cultures. Develop analytical skills in various media, including text, image, and sound. You can also explore dance and Māori fibre arts in this major.


Historians study the past to understand the present. History at Waikato will inspire you to understand current events in light of historical context and give you a first-rate history education from a top 200 QS-rated programme.

Human Rights

If you're passionate about justice and equality, this major is for you. Gain a deep understanding of human rights issues, discrimination, inclusion, and justice, all while preparing for a career dedicated to making a difference.

Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management

Industrial Relations and Human Resource Management at Waikato prepares you to play the important role of managing people's work and their environment. You'll be ready for a career in employment relations, human resources, workplace change and education and training.

International Languages and Cultures

International Languages and Cultures at Waikato offers five specialisations - Chinese, French, Japanese, Korean and Spanish. With advanced language skills, you'll meet the world's need for multilingual and culturally sensitive speakers, enhancing your business and social skills and preparing you for success in a multicultural work environment.

International Relations

Step into the world of international politics and diplomacy. Understand how countries and organisations interact on the global stage, preparing you for a career in foreign affairs and beyond.

International Relations and Security Studies

Studying International Relations and Security Studies at Waikato includes aspects of international law and trade, and focuses on particular regions of concern (notably, the Middle-East and South-East Asia). A wide range of different length dissertations and theses can be undertaken allowing you to focus on an area of special interest.


The study of Japanese at Waikato involves the acquisition of Japanese language and the study of the history and culture of Japan.

Kaupapa Māori Psychology

Kaupapa Māori Psychology provides students with a firm grounding in Kaupapa Māori and Indigenous Psychologies, where Māori worldviews are considered alongside psychological theories, methods and models in real world contexts where Māori livelihoods are impacted.


Studying law is empowering as it affects every aspect of our life. Study Law at the University of Waikato - one of New Zealand / Aotearoa’s leading law schools - and you'll be looking into why laws are made, who makes them, how they work and how to change them.


Linguistics is the scientific study of language and, given that language impinges on virtually everything we do, it is a broad and interesting subject. Linguistics at the University of Waikato is a top 250 QS-rated programme and will deepen your appreciation for language, as well as provide essential understandings relevant to any career where language is a key component.

Media Production

Get the hands-on technical skills you need to work in professional media production studios. Whether your passion is for film and television, podcasting, game design or web media, this subject has it all.


Study Music with leading performers, composers and musicologists; and perform in the acclaimed Dr John Gallagher Concert Chamber, part of the University of Waikato's purpose-built performing arts academy.

In 2023, most 100 and 200-level BMus papers are also offered in Tauranga.

Opera Te Pae Kōkako

Te Pae Kōkako - The Aotearoa New Zealand Opera Studio (TANZOS) is a new, immersive MMus programme which will provide exceptionally promising young opera singers with international-level training and experience, from both national and visiting international tutors, as well as industry residencies in New Zealand and abroad. For more detailed information about the opportunities, programme and tutors at TANZOS, please visit our website at


Philosophy is for thinkers and doers. It's about solving real-life problems, and applying intellectual rigour to how we understand and interact with others, society and the world. Studying Philosophy at Waikato will teach you how to learn, think and write clearly, argue vigorously, and question deeply held assumptions and beliefs.

Political Science

Political Science at Waikato offers a broad spectrum of political knowledge on both national and international issues. You'll seek answers to some of the most difficult political issues of today and gain skills for many potential career paths.

Population Studies

Learn about Population Studies through the Te Ngira Institute for Population Research at Waikato and gain a solid, research-led understanding of the population issues facing developed and developing countries, with a particular emphasis on the South Pacific.

Population Studies and Demography

Population issues are among the most serious challenges that humanity faces in the 21st century. Population Studies and Demography at Waikato addresses contrasting issues among developed and developing countries, how governments are handling slowing population growth, and how others are dealing with legal and illegal migration and skill shortages. You'll explore how such issues impact on a country's environmental, economic and social patterns.

Professional Writing

Studying Professional Writing at Waikato teaches you high-level skills as a reader, writer and editor with excellent verbal, grammatical and analytical skills to develop your writing career.


Psychology is about understanding the behaviour and cognitive processes of people and animals in their physical, social and organisational environment. As a behavioural science, it examines the way behaviour is learned and can be changed. As a social science, it focuses on individuals within the context of families, organisations and other groups, communities, cultures and societies. As a biological science, it studies the senses (hearing, vision, touch) and how the brain and physiological systems relate to behaviour. As a cognitive science it studies perception, attention, memory, thinking and language understanding. The study of development, personality, learning and motivation are also part of Psychology.

A new 180-point Master of Arts in Psychology is offered from 2024.  Click here for full details

Public Policy

Explore how national, regional and local state institutions formulate and implement policies when you study Public Policy at Waikato. You'll also examine how non-profit organisations, individuals and businesses address issues of public concern.

Screen and Media Studies

Screen and Media Studies at Waikato makes sure you keep pace with new tools and platforms for the rapidly evolving media industry. You'll get high-quality learning experiences with up-to-date resources in our top 250 QS-rated programme.

Security and Crime Science

Crime Science uses evidence-based information together with scientific approaches and methods to reduce crime and threats to security.

Social Policy

Be a force for change. Study Social Policy at Waikato and develop a critical understanding of how policy-making impacts on every person, regardless of their age, ethnicity or gender – then learn how to influence it.

Social Science Research

Social Science Research is the activity of gathering, analysing and interpreting information for a variety of social, economic, educational and political purposes.


Sociology at Waikato moves you beyond assumptions and explores who we are and our place in the world. You'll study human relationships and how societies form. Sociology at Waikato is highly respected and is a top 300 QS-rated subject.


Spanish is one of the major languages of Western Europe, and the most widely spoken language of the Americas, with a substantial number of native and second language speakers, ranging from Metropolitan areas of Canada and the US through Mesoamerican countries, most of South America and even in the Philippines.

Theatre Studies

A major in Theatre Studies at Waikato can be a rich and challenging pathway within an Arts degree. It has a wide range of vocational applications within the Performing Arts.  This suite of papers leads the student through processes of performance-making.

Writing Studies

Do you love expressing yourself in words? Enjoy a learning environment in which you can explore your creativity as a writer of poetry, fiction or creative non-fiction. Acquire the skills in written communication that you can apply in business environments, or learn to write for digital media or for the screen.