Postgraduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and Learning

The Postgraduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and Learning — PGCert(TertiaryT&L) — is a recognised qualification for staff working in tertiary education contexts who wish to extend their understanding of tertiary learning and teaching, improve their own practice and facilitate positive change in student learning across their courses and programmes or in their specific areas of work.

It is a flexible programme that can benefit people engaged in tertiary education teaching at any point during their career. The programme can be completed over one to four years, depending on individual preferences and needs.

Through the PGCert programme, participants will have opportunities to improve their own teaching, research teaching and learning, critically engage with theories and principles of tertiary teaching and learning, contextualise their own practice locally, nationally and globally, and be prepared to take responsibility for leading teaching and learning initiatives at an appropriate level.

The PGCert in Tertiary Teaching and Learning requires successful completion of four elective papers.

Apply to enrol

Papers offered in 2018:

All papers will be offered in blended mode in Hamilton and Tauranga subject to sufficient student numbers. From 2019, we are also aiming to offer a fully online version of the programme.

Semester A

TERTL500 Learning, Teaching and Assessment in Tertiary Education (highly recommended for new teachers)

This paper challenges and broadens conceptions of learning and approaches to teaching.  Using a literature-informed but activity and discussion-based approach, this paper focuses on key theories of teaching and learning as well as principles and methods of assessment to support both conceptual and skill development.

TERTL502 Work-Integrated Learning

This paper provides an outline of some of the main components of WIL in relation to teaching and learning by focusing on work-based learning and work-based assessment using several case studies. The paper enables participants to design and implement learning activities relevant to WIL, as well as to evaluate and assess learning, skills and competencies associated with work-integrated learning in a teaching context.

Semester B

TERTL501 Integrating Kaupapa Māori across Programmes

This paper provides an introduction to kaupapa Māori as an indigenous knowledge framework, and encourages examination and evaluation of existing learning programmes in terms of bi-cultural integration.

TERTL504 Supervising Postgraduate Students

This paper aims to introduce participants to current research and practical perspectives of the epistemology of postgraduate student supervision. Discussion topics may include models of supervision, different models of the thesis, specific issues in the supervision of international students, transferable skills beyond the postgraduate degree, and postgraduate qualifications within an international context.

TERTL505 Inclusive Learning Environments and Approaches

This paper examines how inclusion can be improved and assured in higher education settings. Inclusion here covers responses to diversity in race, economic status, social class, ethnicity, language, religion, gender, sexual orientation and ability. Participants will examine their own perspectives and experiences in the context of relevant theory, and will engage in initiatives to improve inclusive education.

Papers to be offered in future years:


This paper enables participants to contextualise principles, forms and methods of assessment in relation to relevant trends and theories, relating this to their own practice. The paper provides opportunities for participants to design, implement and evaluate improvements to assessment in their teaching situations.

Blended/Online Learning

This paper outlines theoretical models and ways of implementing blended and fully online learning in a tertiary context. The paper is based on experiential learning pedagogy and gives learners experiences and competencies to facilitate and design effective blended and online learning activities for students.

Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) in the Tertiary Classroom

This paper examines principles and practices of content and language integrated learning (CLIL), focusing particularly on settings where students (and lecturers) are using English as a second or foreign language.

Current Trends in Global Higher Education and their Impact

This paper provides an outline of the main trends in global higher education, considering how they impact tertiary institutions in general and our own professional positions and practices in particular.

Curriculum and Course Design

This paper enables participants to think deeply about curriculum design at both programme and course levels, informed by contemporary educational theories and models of instructional design.  The paper provides opportunities for participants to confidently design, develop, and implement a course relevant to their field.

Digital Literacy for Teaching and Learning

This paper explores concepts and elements of digital literacy, within an overall concept of literacy, identifying those which are important and relevant in participants’ own disciplines and teaching contexts.

Facilitating Learning in Small Group Contexts

This paper enables participants to apply theories and strategies related to effective facilitation of small group learning to their own practice.

Internationalising Learning and Teaching

This paper encourages participants to engage with literature on internationalisation of teaching and learning and contextualise their own ideas, experiences and practices from this perspective. Through integrated examination of theory and practice, the paper aims to explore the question of what kind of education we need to provide to enable students to live and work well in a globalised world.

Researching Learning and Teaching Practice

In this paper, participants identify an aspect of teaching and learning practice to research, and design and implement a small-scale project. Participants are also expected to evaluate their project and disseminate the findings of their research as part of this paper.

Directed Study

This paper provides participants with the opportunity to examine a specific teaching-related issue of their own interest in greater depth. Learning outcomes, assessment and content are decided through agreement between the participant and paper convenor.

Recognition of Prior Learning

This paper provides credit for recognized achievements in teaching-related areas, for example, attaining a Teaching Excellence Award or actively participating in a teaching research project and disseminating outcomes.

For further details on the PGCert Tertiary Teaching and Learning, please contact the Programme Administrator