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Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples' Law

With a Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples' Law, you could explore Pacific legal thought and practice. You'll develop skills enabling you to participate actively in the development of Pacific jurisprudence and to enhance global understanding of Pacific legal systems.

Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples' Law (LLM Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples') provides an opportunity to study in-depth the historical and developing trends within the area of indigenous peoples' rights.

You'll examine how the United Nations and other international organisations influence the process of Indigenous rights development. You will learn what role the State plays in recognising environmental and economic rights of indigenous peoples.

What will post-settlement New Zealand legal landscape look like? You could be the driving force behind developing a truly inclusive New Zealand Jurisprudence that would incorporate the best of the traditional Māori practices and Common Law.

The knowledge and skills developed through our specialist programme are relevant in roles in:

  • Academic teaching and research;
  • Treaty settlement
  • Māori governance
  • Crown Law
  • Local and central government
  • Education
  • Māori economy

The Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples’ Law programme is offered with the same study options as those of Master of Laws (LLM). Please see the Master of Laws page for more information.

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Key information

Years: 1.0
Study Locations:Hamilton
Start Dates: Trimester A (March) and Trimester B (July)
Estimated Fees* (Domestic): $7,626 - $9,292 per year
See if you're eligible for fees-free study in your first year
Estimated Fees* (International): $38,590 per year
Entry Requirements: Postgraduate International
Area of Study:
All amounts are in New Zealand Dollars (NZD).*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.

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To be accepted to the Master of Laws programme, you need to have:

  • Completed an LLB or a combined Law degree at the University of Waikato with at least a 'B' grade point average or an equivalent qualification at another university; or
  • Completed an LLB (Hons) at the University of Waikato with at least a 'B' grade point average or a combined Law degree at the University of Waikato or an equivalent qualification at another university; or
  • Satisfied the prerequisites for graduate study in the subject at a level that is considered appropriate by the Academic Board.

In exceptional circumstances, candidates who do not meet these requirements, but who have a proven record of academic merit and relevant experience may be accepted into the programme.

Students whose first language is not English are required to provide satisfactory evidence of their English language proficiency. An overall score of 6.5 (with at least 6.0 achieved in the Writing band) in the IELTS or equivalent.

Scholarships and prizes

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships

Find your scholarship

The Honours Degree may be awarded with:

  • First Class Honours, or
  • Second Class Honours (first division), or
  • Second Class Honours (second division).

To be eligible for the award of honours, you would need to complete your Master of Laws qualification within 12 months (if studying full-time) or within 24 months (if studying part-time) and pass all your papers.

Postgraduate qualifications in law:

Master of Laws (LLM)
Doctor of Philosophy (Law)
Doctor of Juridical Science (SJD)
Doctor of Laws (LLD)

Other higher degree qualifications offered by the University of Waikato

Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Explore our other undergraduate qualifications in law:

Bachelor of Laws (LLB)
Bachelor of Laws conjoint degrees

If you have already gained a Bachelor degree in a subject other than law, you may be interested in our Graduate Diploma in Dispute Resolution (GradDipDR).

For more information on these and other options, please contact us at Law Reception.

The Faculty members come from a wide range of nations and cultural backgrounds, creating a truly multicultural environment. This helps foster in our students an increased awareness of global issues, exposes them to multiple historical and cultural perspectives as well as offer insight into legal systems outside the jurisdiction of the Common Law.

We have the most diverse and vibrant student body of all law schools in New Zealand. Up to 30 per cent of all our students identify themselves as Māori and nearly 16 per cent come from Pacific background. Nearly 40 per cent of our students are over the age of 25.

The Faculty's three dynamic law student associations: Pacific Law Student Association (PLSA), Te Whakahiapo (Māori Student Association) and Waikato University Law Student Association (WULSA) play an important role of fostering great collegial relationships between students and offer plenty of social and learning opportunities.

Our Mentoring Programme will provide extra support and guidance in your studies, help you to navigate through the transition period from school or previous employment to university study as well as advise you on other services and opportunities available to you on campus.


For full requirements see the Regulations for the Master of Laws in Māori/Pacific and Indigenous Peoples' Law.

Postgraduate Handbook


Faculty of Law

Ms Anna MacGillivray
Graduate Programme Administrator
Email: [email protected]
Opening hours: 8.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday
Location: N Block, Gate 7, Hillcrest Road, University of Waikato, Hamilton

Have a chat with one of our friendly advisers to help you plan your degree.

Phone: +64 7 807 9275
Email: [email protected]

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