A deeper understanding of science
Gain the knowledge and skills for a more in-depth understanding of an area of scientific study.
- Postgraduate, NZQF Level 9
- 1.5 year(s) full-time. Available part-time.
Studying towards your master's is a challenging and satisfying postgraduate experience.
Massey University’s Master of Science will give you the knowledge and skills you need to gain a more in-depth understanding of an area of scientific study and advance your career.
When you graduate with a Master of Science you will have learned how to work at a high level of academic achievement, work to deadlines under pressure and communicate effectively.
Complete in a shorter time-frame
Massey University’s Master of Science is a 180-credit master qualification (a 240-credit MSc is also available). The 180-credit masters offers a rigorous programme of learning, yet can be achieved in one and a half years.
Massey teaching is research-led and our academics are ranked among the best in the world. Our teaching staff are widely published and are in demand as keynote speakers on topical global issues. International visitors regularly seek out visits to our science facilities to learn more about what we do.
We work to help you succeed. Massey University offers smaller classes and more personalised learning, giving you greater access to lecturers and the help you need to succeed and thrive during your master’s study.
Your lecturers and supervisors at Massey have strong connections with the industry. We work to ensure that our teaching fits with the changing environment, which means you will emerge with a relevant qualification valued by potential employers.
Majors, subjects or endorsements
Careers and further study
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.
All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.
Master of Science 180 or 240 credits
To enter the Master of Science (180 or 240 credits) programme you will:
- have been awarded or qualified for a Bachelor of Science degree with a major in the intended postgraduate subject, or close equivalent, with a minimum B average in the majoring 300-level courses, or
- have been awarded or qualified for either the Bachelor of Science with Honours or the Postgraduate Diploma in Science and Technology in the intended MSc subject, having achieved a B grade average over the contributing courses.
Master of Science 120 credits (thesis only)
To enter the 120-credit Master of Science programme you will have been awarded or qualified with a minimum B average for either of the following:
- a Bachelor of Science (Honours) with an endorsement in the same subject as that in which the thesis will be done, or
- a Postgraduate Diploma in Science with an endorsement in the same subject as that in which the thesis will be done.
Documents you will need to supply to support your application
- verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University
a short summary of your research interests (200 words or less). Required if you intend on a pathway which includes at least 90 credits of research.
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:
- review the Recognition of Prior Learning regulations
- contact us through the Enquire button on this page.
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
180 or 240 credits
From the Schedule to the Degree including:
- Completion of Part One and Two
- Compulsory courses
- Completion of a subject
A specialisation (subject) is compulsory. Most subjects require 180 credits.
These subjects require 240 credits:
- Nutrition and Dietetics
- Psychology – Health Psychology
Other subjects may require 240 credits if you choose a 120 credit thesis
Advanced entry: Those who have already completed specified qualifications in advance of the minimum entry requirements may be able to complete this degree by undertaking a 120 credit thesis.
See ‘Courses for this programme’ below for schedules of courses.
Courses for this programme
SubjectsPlease refer to individual specialisation page for a list of courses for your specialisation.
Majors and minors
Planning your programme
If you study full-time, you’ll take 120 credits per year or 60 credits per semester.
The Master of Science is a parts-based qualification. That means you must complete the first part, before moving to the second.
A master’s qualification is normally made up of two parts. The first part gives you good knowledge and skills that will help you with the research part of your qualification. You must pass Part One before you can progress to Part Two.
For progression to Part Two of the Master of Science, a B grade average is needed across the Part One courses.
Master of Science 120 credits
For a Master of Science 120 credits you will normally complete 120 credits of research (thesis only), unless specified in the Courses Schedule (in the regulations) for the endorsement you choose.
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.
- Look for information under ‘Student Progression’ in the General Regulations for Postgraduate Degrees, Postgraduate Diplomas and Postgraduate Certificates.
- Contact us through the Enquire button on this page if you have any questions.
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:
- are passionate about science
- are interested in a postgraduate qualification that combines both structured learning and research
- want to progress your career to the next level of seniority and stand out in the job market.
Key information for students
Compare qualifications and academic information across different New Zealand institutions.
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.
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.
|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.
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 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
- C V Fife Memorial Scholarship
- Charles Elgar Scholarship
- DG Bowler Scholarship in Soil Science
- Heseltine Ecology Bursary
- Lovell and Berys Clark Scholarships
There are a number of scholarships available for new and current students. They could relate to your situation, achievement or interest.