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Overview

Be a leader in education

With Massey’s Master of Education (Early Years) you’ll develop the skills and knowledge to be a leader in early years education.

  • Level

  • Postgraduate, NZQF Level 9
  • Distance learning

  • Available
  • International

  • Available for international students via distance learning

The Master of Education (Early Years) is of particular value for early childhood educators and early years teachers. It will also be valuable for:

  • facilitators of early childhood professional development
  • tertiary teachers in early childhood education/early years programmes
  • other professionals involved in the education of young children from birth to eight.

This qualification builds upon prior knowledge and experience in early years educational settings. It also supports you to develop your understandings and teaching practices through engagement with research, theory and other professionals.

Why study with us?

Join us to take your learning to the next level and achieve your goals in education.

You will:

  • challenge and build your knowledge
  • enjoy extensive networking opportunities with other early years educators
  • focus on children from birth to eight, including the transition to school
  • have the opportunity to conduct, participate in and access current and relevant research in a supportive environment
  • choose from specialist and specific topics designed for your context
  • benefit from Massey University’s extensive experience in online, blended and distance qualifications
  • collaborate with our outstanding staff to advance your interests and engage in active research
  • contribute to the New Zealand knowledge base in early years education.

Your qualification options

The Master of Education does not qualify you to be a teacher in New Zealand. If you want to be a teacher, you will also need to take a postgraduate teaching qualification. Explore your options in our education pathways tool.

Careers and further study

Careers

The Master of Education (Early Years) can lead to numerous opportunities, professionally and in voluntary positions in the community. You may be enhancing your career or broadening your knowledge. Your skills and teaching knowledge will always be highly valued by yourself and others, as well as being applicable to your day-to-day work.

Where will Master of Education (Early Years) take you?

Use your skills to directly benefit your early years students. Master of Education (Early Years) graduates work in many educational areas such as:

  • early childhood settings – leadership and management
  • resource teacher – learning and behaviour
  • ministry roles
  • facilitation roles
  • professional development and in-service teacher education
  • social work
  • educational psychology
  • early intervention specialists
  • initial teacher education
  • deputy principals
  • curriculum or syndicate leaders in junior primary schools
  • initial teacher education provider.

Further study

If you want to be a teacher, you will also need to take a postgraduate teaching qualification. Please explore your options in our education pathways tool.

Entry requirements

University admission

All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.

Programme admission

Required

To enter the Master of Education (Early Years) you will have been awarded or qualified for:

  • the Bachelor of Education with a grade average in the highest level courses of at least a B, or equivalent, or
  • any other bachelor’s degree with a grade average in the highest level courses of at least a B, or equivalent, and hold a professional qualification in teaching, or
  • any other bachelor’s degree with a grade average in the highest level courses of at least a B, or equivalent, and have professional experience relevant to the intended postgraduate subject, or
  • a Postgraduate Diploma in Education, or equivalent, with a grade average across all courses of at least B (coursework pathway) or at least a B+ (research pathway).

If you do not have a Bachelor of Education or equivalent, you will need to supply a copy of your curriculum vitae. See below for more details. 

You will need to provide verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University. 

Research and professional pathway

When you apply, you will choose either a research pathway (90-credit thesis) or a professional inquiry pathway (45 credits of courses).

If you intend to do the research pathway you will need to provide a short summary of your research interests (200 words or less) with your application.

English language requirements

To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.

Prior learning, credit and exemptions

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

If you do not have the entry requirements

English language and foundation courses

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, we have courses and programmes that may help.

Courses and planning

Courses for this specialisation

Subject courses: Coursework Pathway (At least 90 credits) or Research Pathway (60 credits)

265736 Quality in Early Years Education 30
265737 Young Children and Their Families 30
265738 Children's Play and Learning in an Intentional Teaching Practice 30
265740 Advanced Studies on Learning in the Early Years 30

Planning your programme

Planning overview

The Master of Education is a parts-based qualification. That means you must complete the first part, before moving to the second.

The maximum completion timeframe for the 180 credit Master of Education is five years.

Course work (professional inquiry) pathway

It is strongly recommended that all subject courses are completed first. The research methods courses should then be completed.

To progress to Part Two you will need a minimum B grade average in the first 120 credits of courses.

Research (thesis) pathway

It is strongly recommended that all subject courses are completed first. The research methods courses must then be completed.

To progress to Part Two you will need a minimum B+ grade average in the first 90 credits of courses.

Master of Education (120 credits)

If you have completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Education (and are ineligible to surrender this qualification), you may be admitted directly to Part Two if the required minimum grade average is achieved in the PGDipEd.

If you have a specialisation in the same subject area you may be admitted directly to Part Two in that specialisation.

Maximum time limits for completion

There are maximum time limits to complete postgraduate qualifications.  If you do not complete within the maximum time, you may be required to re-apply for the programme if you wish to continue your studies.

Time limits for Honours, Distinction and Merit

Where your qualification is completed within the stated time limit and to a high standard, you may be able to graduate with a class of Honours, Distinction or Merit. 

Fees and scholarships

Fees and finance

Fees, student loans and free fees scheme

Your tuition fees may be different depending on the courses you choose. Your exact fees will show once you have chosen your courses.

There will also be some compulsory non-tuition fees and for some courses, there may also be charges for things such as study resources, software, trips and contact workshops.

Already know which courses you're going to choose?

If you already know which courses you are going to take, you can use our fees calculator to get an estimate of your fees.

Student loans (StudyLink) and Fees Free scheme

You may be eligible for a student loan to help towards paying your fees.

The New Zealand Government offers fees-free tertiary study for eligible domestic students. Find out more about the scheme and your eligibility on the Fees Free website. To use the site's eligibility checking tool, you will need your National Student Number.

Current and returning Massey students will find their National Student Number on their student homepage.


A good fit if you:

  • want to engage with other teachers and professionals
  • are passionate about early years teaching and children’s learning
  • want to access current and relevant research and thinking in early years.

Accreditations and rankings

QS ranking - Education

Massey is ranked in the world's top 150 universities for education in the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) World University Rankings.


Key information for students

Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.

Regulations

Review this important information before you apply for this programme. This gives you full details of the rules and regulations about what you need to study and what you must achieve in order to graduate with this qualification. That includes structure, courses and requirements. These regulations should be read in conjunction with all other Statutes and Regulations of the University including the below.

Postgraduate regulations

General Regulations for Postgraduate Degrees, Postgraduate Diplomas and Postgraduate Certificates.

Regulations for this programme

Applying and enrolling

Applying for the programme

Check you are ready

If you are ready to apply, have a look at our application checklist. It will help you get prepared with what you need. Please also check the entry requirements carefully before you apply.

Choose your programme and click on Apply now

You will apply for the programme using the Apply now button on this page. You’ll also choose your specialisation (major, subject or endorsement) if applicable.

Some programmes have additional requirements such as the submission of a portfolio or CV. Click on Apply now and you will be able to submit those documents as part of the application process.

Receive and accept an Admission Offer of Place

You will receive an Admission Offer of Place when you have been accepted into the programme. You need to accept this before you can enrol in your courses. International students also need to pay their fees at this point.

Enrolling in courses

You’ll then get access to your own student homepage (also known as the student portal). This is where you can enrol in courses. Any updates on your application or enrolments will also be on your student homepage. Make sure you check this regularly.

When you choose courses, ensure you check for any requirements that apply including:

  • prerequisites (courses you have to do before the one you are enrolling in)
  • corequisites (courses you have to do at the same time as the one you are enrolling in)
  • restrictions (courses that you cannot enrol in if you are completing or have completed another identified similar course)
  • location – for instance some distance-based courses still have an on-campus element, so double check that the way the course is taught is suitable for your situation.

Each of our courses has its own webpage where you can find this information. You can use our course search to find course pages.

More information on courses is in the ‘Courses for this programme’ section on this page.

You can find information on application due dates and semester dates on the key dates page.

We look forward to welcoming you to Massey!

If you have any questions, contact us through the Enquire button on this page.

What are courses and credits?

What are courses and credits?

Each Massey programme is made up of courses (in some tertiary institutions they are called ‘papers’).

You will have some compulsory courses and some you can choose from.

Each course is worth a certain amount of credits (often 15 credits, but this does vary). You must gain a set number of credits to be able to graduate from this programme.

There may also be some rules about which courses you need to pass to progress to the next year, or stage, of your study (known as progression). There are also courses you must pass to graduate with a specialisation.

  • See the ‘Courses for this programme’ section for the list of courses.
  • Courses search

Understanding course numbers

The first three digits of our course numbers show you which subject the course is about.

The second three digits show you the level and course ID number. For instance:

  • sub-degree courses are '0' (i.e. xxx.0xx)
  • undergraduate study begins at 100-level, (i.e. xxx.1xx)
  • as you progress through 200- and 300-level courses this number changes to 2 and 3 respectively. The higher the number that starts the second three digits, the higher the level of study.
1 6 2 . 3   0 1
Subject area   Level   Course ID number

Workload and time management

Use this tool to help determine how much time you will need each week to complete your studies.

Estimate workload

Returning students

For returning students, there may be changes to the majors and minors available and the courses you need to take. Go to the section called ‘Transitional Provisions’ in the Regulations to find out more.

In some cases the programme or specialisation you enrolled in may be no longer be taking new enrolments, so may not appear on these web pages. To find information on the regulations for these programmes go to the Massey University Calendar.

Please contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.

Scholarships and awards

Scholarships related to this programme

There are a number of scholarships available for new and current students. They could relate to your situation, achievement or interest.

Find and apply for scholarships