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Master of Science (Mathematics)

Key facts

  • Available at Auckland
  • Available at Manawatū
  • Not all listed subject course options are on offer every year
  • Available for international students studying in NZ

Learn the language of the universe

Become a leading contributor to this pivotal discipline.

Find out more about the Master of Science parent structure.

What is it like?

Massey University’s Master of Science with a major in mathematics is a prestigious qualification for those that are interested in progressing to further, in-depth research. This postgraduate qualification will also give you a career advantage.

Join some of New Zealand’s leading mathematicians to develop your mathematics expertise to a higher level.

Gain a deeper understanding

The Master of Science (Mathematics) will extend your studies of mathematics from your undergraduate degree. You'll gain a deeper understanding of the mathematics you encountered there, as well as learn about new and exciting areas of mathematics. You'll work closely with your lecturers and fellow students in small classes. Once you have successfully completed the prerequisites you will work full time on a one- to two-semester research project. The project will be your chance to delve even deeper into a topic of your choosing, and perhaps even make your own original contribution to this body of knowledge. It'll be a challenge - but it'll be worth it.

Globally renowned expertise

Let our experts help you develop your own expertise.

Massey’s mathematics lecturers have an extensive range of experience and expertise across the field of mathematics.

Our groups have a particular strength in the theory and application of differential equations, with many staff at both the Auckland and Manawatu campuses working in the areas of dynamical systems, numerical solution of ordinary and partial differential equations, and modelling of physical systems. Our mathematical modellers are actively contributing to the study of epidemiology, celestial mechanics, hydrothermal eruptions, and biological and industrial processes.

Other areas of strength include modern analysis, geometry and number theory at Auckland and topology and combinatorics at Manawatu.

Mathematics. It's what makes everything work.

From securing sensitive communications using cryptography, to calculating the orbit of a satellite, mathematics is the most fundamental of the tools we use to comprehend and shape the world around us. Some have even called it the "language of the universe". Be that as it may, at heart it's still a product of human creativity and ingenuity. And there's still plenty left to be discovered and invented.

Friendly environment - passionate scientists

There is a well-established community of scientists and postgraduate science students at Massey. We work together to share discoveries and research and provide peer support.

Why postgraduate study?

Postgraduate study is hard work but hugely rewarding and empowering. The Master of Science (Mathematics) will push you to produce your best creative, strategic and theoretical ideas. The workload replicates the high-pressure environment of senior workplace roles. Our experts are there to guide but if you have come from undergraduate study, you will find that postgraduate study demands more in-depth and independent study.

Not just more of the same

Postgraduate study is not just ‘more of the same’ undergraduate study. It takes you to a new level in knowledge and expertise especially in planning and undertaking research.

A good fit if you:

  • Have an appreciation for the beauty of mathematics
  • Excelled in your undergraduate mathematics degree
  • Enjoy thinking logically and analytically, and exercising your creativity
  • Enjoy problem solving, and the satisfaction of that "Aha!" moment when you see the solution
  • Are interested in going on to more in-depth research, such as a PhD
Gemma Phillips
Master of Science (Mathematics)
Graduated in 2013
Load Scheduling Specialist, Coca Cola Amatil

“The most satisfying part of this programme was the chance to create original knowledge or progress beyond what is currently known in that field…”

Undergraduate study is great because it teaches you the tools and knowledge within your chosen subject but postgraduate study gives you the chance to make something using these tools to advance your field with the guidance of your supervisors.

I've always found mathematics and biology to be interesting and even though I did not study biology at university this degree allowed me to combine my two interests.

I decided to do the masters at Massey as there was an advertisement for a postgraduate project that exactly matched my interest in applying modelling to biological systems.

My study experience at Massey was very rewarding – hard work but very enjoyable. I have been fortunate enough to meet a lot of interesting and intelligent people during my degree from around the country.

One of the highlights was spending a lot of time with the bioinformatics group at the Liggins Institute. I also published two papers "Cyclic glycine-proline regulates IGF-1homeostasis by altering the binding of IGFBP-3 to IGF-1" and "Modeling the effect of Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 on Human Cell Growth”. These were based on my masters thesis ‘Dynamical Modelling of the effect of Insulin-like Growth Factor 1 on Human Cell Growth’. My two supervisors were Prof. Graeme Wake from Massey Uni and Dr. Paul Shorten from AgResearch.

I am now working for Coca Cola Amatil as a Load Scheduling Specialist. I am in a team of three, which provides the link between sales, the warehouse and delivery. The role involves organising different types of orders from all over New Zealand onto different trucks using computer programs to optimise the weights and pallet sizes. I am enjoying working for Coca Cola and they provide a lot of opportunities. I am always learning new things in my role and meeting different teams from around New Zealand.


Earn more

A 2017 Ministry of Education publication The post-study earnings and destinations of young domestic graduates, found that in New Zealand:

  • Young master’s graduates earn more than one and a half times more than the national median (five years after study)
  • Earnings and employment rates increase with the level of qualification completed
  • Five years after completion, the median earnings of young master’s graduates are 15% higher than for those with a bachelor’s degree.

World-leading lecturers and supervisors

Massey mathematics staff are internationally renowned for their research and teaching and learning methods. You will be working with recognised specialists, for example:

Distinguished Professor Gaven Martin

Dr Gaven Martin is a director of the New Zealand Institute for Advanced Study and a sought-after lecturer and researcher at top international universities including Yale, Berkeley, Princeton and the Swedish Royal Academy. His work is widely recognised by the scientific community: he was awarded the Royal Society of New Zealand’s Hector Medal, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society New Zealand. He has many professional affiliations including the Australian and American mathematical societies and he is a past president of the New Zealand Mathematics Society. He is also managing editor of the New Zealand Journal of Mathematics.

His research interests focus on non-linear analysis, elliptic partial differential equations, Beltrami systems and geometric function theory, particularly as it interacts with conformal geometry, quasiconformal mappings and their generalisations. He is also interested in applications in non-linear elasticity and materials science and low dimensional topology and geometry, particularly hyperbolic geometry, discrete groups and their associated universal constants, such as minimal co-volume, and relations between arithmetic and geometry.

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