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MEd - Human Development as a main subject

This programme is for educational practitioners who are graduates and want to improve their skills, knowledge and career prospects in Education. Developing skills in curriculum, pedagogy or policy development, the benefits include career advancement and the development of expertise in a specific area of educational practice.

Interested in the study of the human lifespan from conception and birth onwards? Human Development investigates how people develop throughout their lives and how cultural and social settings help to shape what is possible.

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Key information

Years: 1.5
Start Dates: Trimester A (March) and Trimester B (July)
Fees (Domestic): $7,185-$7,740 per year
Fees (International): $30,695 (120 pts) or $46,045 (180 pts)
Entry Requirements: Postgraduate International
Area of Study:
*Tuition fees shown 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.

Career opportunities

  • Community or Iwi Development Coordinator
  • Community Educator
  • Policy Analyst/ Advisor
  • Community Advocate
  • Social Services Advocate
  • International Aid Worker
  • Learning Application Developer
  • Trainer

Degree Planner

Prescriptions for the MEd

To complete the Master of Education in Human Development, students must complete 180 points at 500 level, including at least 60 points from 500 level papers in the Human Development subject; an approved research methods paper; and one of a Directed Study equivalent to 30 points, a Dissertation equivalent to 60 points, or a Thesis equivalent to 90 or 120 points.

Students will normally be expected to focus their independent research on a topic related to Human Development.

Optional papers will be selected from the papers listed in the MEd subjects, the MEdLeadership, or 30 points may be selected from outside the field of the degree.

500 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
COUNS540Working with Groups30.021B (Block)
This paper explores dialogic group processes with selected kinds of groups. Students will be given the opportunity to develop group membership and leadership roles through observation, participation and evaluation during an experiential workshop format and through on-line discussion and assignments.
COUNS544Discourse and Counselling Psychologies30.021X (Block)
This paper offers a constructionist perspective on counselling and includes consideration of psychological theories which have influenced counselling practice. Students will be introduced to concepts which enable analysis of therapeutic conversations.
COUNS549Counselling and Contexts30.021H (Block)
This paper provides an overview of counselling practice and its contexts, including an optional module on school counselling. It teaches the skills and ethical perspectives of collaborative approaches to counselling, offering a particular introduction to narrative therapy.
DINST521Contemporary Issues in Disability and Inclusion Studies30.021A (Hamilton) & 21A (Online)
This paper examines the historical and contemporary context that drives the bio-medical and social justice models of inclusive social and educational practice. It will also consider how a disability advocacy focus affects the practice of academic research.
EDUCA500Culturally Responsive Methodologies incorporating kaupapa Maori and critical theories30.021B (Block - Tauranga)
Culturally Responsive Methodologies utilise kaupapa Maori and critical theoretical frameworks to develop contexts within which the researched community can define the terms for engaging, relating and co-creating new knowledge.
EDUCA557Research Methods30.021A (Hamilton), 21A (Tauranga), 21B (Online) & 21H (Block)
This paper introduces students to the major educational research paradigms, methodologies appropriate to collecting data in schools (including interviews, observations, surveys, case studies), action research, literature reviews, critiquing research, and report writing. It includes consideration of ethical issues in research.
EDUCA590Directed Study30.021I (Hamilton) & 21I (Online)
Students have the opportunity to pursue a topic of their own interest under the guidance of academic staff.
EDUCA592Dissertation60.021X (Hamilton), 21X (Online) & 21X (Tauranga)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
EDUCA593Education Thesis90.021X (Hamilton), 21X (Online) & 21X (Tauranga)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
EDUCA594Education Thesis120.021X (Hamilton), 21X (Online) & 21X (Tauranga)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
HMDEV501Development of Children and Young People: International Perspectives30.021A (Online)
This paper provides a multi-disciplinary approach to the study of children and young people's development from birth to 18 years. It discusses research perspectives on optimal development for children and young people within familial, educational and broader social contexts in contemporary societies. Students will be invited to con...
HMDEV502Diversity in Adulthood30.021A (Hamilton)
This paper focuses on adult development with an emphasis on ageing, diversity, culture and social justice. Examining social and political discourses, the paper explores how the resulting messages influence the everyday experiences of people at different stages of adulthood; and the implications of these for working with diversity i...
HMDEV503Educational and Life Transitions: Changing Roles and Changing Contexts30.021B (Block)
The life of an individual involves many transitions to new roles and new contexts. These include numerous educational transitions, from infants and young children entering early childhood services, through school transitions, to adults starting tertiary or work contexts. Each transition may offer both opportunities and challenges. ...
HMDEV524Intelligence, Creativity and the Development of Talent30.021B (Online)
This paper involves an in-depth examination of historical and contemporary models of intelligence, creativity, giftedness, and talent, and how these different interpretations impact on policy and practice in education.
MAOED500Rangahau Kaupapa Maori - Kaupapa Maori Research30.021X (Hamilton)
This paper seeks to explore Kaupapa Maori research theory and methodologies, developing more informed and culturally located and responsive research practice, with a particular focus on researching in Maori educational contexts.
POPST501Population Health and Equity30.021A (Hamilton)
This paper explores population health in Aotearoa/New Zealand and internationally, emphasising the broader determinants of wellbeing and equity. It introduces aspects of epidemiology, considers historical, indigenous and contemporary perspectives of health, and explores relationships between health, community and society.
POPST507Critical Demography30.021A (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to critical demography as an approach that draws on social science theories to understand key demographic phenomena. Interactive seminars will comprise a blend of structured lectures and in-class discussion focussed on weekly readings drawn from Aotearoa NZ and internationally. The first part of the p...

Scholarships and prizes

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Human Development is available as a major and graduate level subject in the Faculty of Arts & Social Sciences. Papers in this subject are offered by the School of Education.

Students majoring in other Social Sciences disciplines for their BSocSc(Hons) and MSocSc may also consider taking one or two Human Development papers with particular relevance to their major subject: for instance, Psychology majors may be interested in Conflict Resolution, Working with Groups, or Counselling, and Psychology or Social Policy majors with a critical bent might consider taking Young People in Contemporary New Zealand Society and Difference and Diversity in Human Development.

Bachelor of Social Sciences with Honours

To be eligible to be considered for enrolment in the BSocSc(Hons) in Human Development, a student should normally have majored in Human Development in their undergraduate degree and have at least a B average in the best three of their 300 level Human Development papers or all of their undergraduate Human Development papers. Students who have taken an undergraduate major in Psychology will normally be considered to meet the criteria for entry to graduate study in Human Development. Admission requirements vary, so students should consult the Graduate Adviser directly.

To complete a BSocSc(Hons) in Human Development, students must complete 120 points at 500 level, including at least 30 points of research, normally HDCO591 or an equivalent approved by the Programme Convenor and at least 30 further points from papers listed for Human Development. Students who are intending to go on to a MSocSc in Human Development must include an approved research methods paper in their BSocSc(Hons) programme.

Visit Bachelor of Social Sciences to find out more about the entry and requirements for this qualification.

Master of Social Sciences

Entry to the MSocSc in Human Development is open to students who have completed a BSocSc(Hons) in Human Development (or equivalent) and have gained a B+ average across all 500 level papers.

To complete a MSocSc in Human Development, students must take a 120 point thesis, a 90 point thesis and 30 points from approved 500 level papers, or a 60 point dissertation and 60 points from approved 500 level papers. MSocSc students who have not completed an approved research methods paper in their honours degree must include an approved research methods paper in their masters programme.

Visit Master of Social Sciences (MSocSc) to find out more about the entry and requirements for this qualification.

Postgraduate Certificate

Entry to the PGCert(HumDev) is open to suitably qualified candidates who have completed study at an advanced level and satisfied any prerequisites for graduate study in Human Development.

Students must gain 60 points at 500 level or above in Human Development.

Visit Postgraduate Certificate to find out more about the entry and requirements for this qualification.

Postgraduate Diploma

Entry to the PGDip(HumDev) is open to suitably qualified candidates who have completed study at an advanced level and satisfied any prerequisites for graduate study in Human Development.

Students must gain 120 points at 500 level or above, including 90 points in Human Development.

Visit Postgraduate Diploma to find out more about the entry and requirements for this qualification.


Te Kura Toi Tangata School of Education

Phone: 0800 832 242 or +64 7 838 4500
Email: [email protected]

Phone: 07 838 4466 ext 7721
Email: [email protected]