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Best of all worlds
Biological sciences gives you expertise in a broad range of biological and fundamental sciences.
When you study Massey’s Master of Science with a major in biological sciences you don’t have to focus on one particular type of science. You will gain expertise across a range of your interests.
Are you interested in subjects like microbiology, genetics and biochemistry, but don’t have all the prerequisites you need to specialise? Do you want to open the door to a broader range of careers? A major in biological sciences gives you a broad-based degree that keeps your options open.
Within the degree you can focus on one particular area of science, or keep your study broad - the choice is yours.
At Massey you have the flexibility to choose from different locations for your study - either Manawatū or the Auckland campuses - as well as other research institutes such as AgResearch, Scion and Plant & Food Research.
Whether you study on the Auckland or Palmerston North campuses, you will have access to world-class facilities. These include the Manawatū Microscopy and Imaging Centre and the Massey Genome Service (part of New Zealand Genomics Limited). We also have our controlled environment plant growth facilities, the unique and extensive university orchards and state-of-the-art plant physiology and biology equipment. As well, we have large animal units and there are extensive Massey farms that operate as commercial beef, dairy and sheep farms.
As a Master of Science graduate in biological sciences you will have a wide range of career opportunities and can expect these to lead to leadership and managerial roles. These could be in areas including pure and applied research, quality control, product development, and positions of responsibility in medical, forensic, or analytical laboratories.
You could also work in government departments in policy development and analysis. Jobs in these areas can lead to high-level careers in management and administration in science and health-related fields:
A master’s degree in biological sciences provides graduates with internationally-marketable skills. It will provide opportunities for employment and careers across the globe.
International trends are for employers to reward postgraduate study well, especially in larger enterprises. The skills you learn are increasingly recognised as setting you apart from other potential employees.
A 2017 Ministry of Education publication, The post-study earnings and destinations of young domestic graduates, found that in New Zealand:
New Zealand is a great place to study. Massey University’s reputation is supported by our international rankings, accreditations and associations. We are rated five star plus by the QS World University Rankings.
Massey University has small class sizes, and our lecturers and staff are friendly and approachable.
As an international student, there are entry requirements that will apply to you. We recommend that you apply at least three months before your anticipated start date so your application can be processed in time. There are additional steps you will need to take. These include obtaining a visa and travel bookings if your study is to be in New Zealand.
All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.
To enter the Master of Science (180 or 240 credits) programme you will:
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:
To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.
You will need to provide the following documents:
For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:
If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, we have courses and programmes that may help.
From the Schedule to the Degree including:
A specialisation (subject) is compulsory. Most subjects require 180 credits.
These subjects require 240 credits:
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.
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.
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 for the Part One courses.
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.
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.
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.
If you already know which courses you are going to take, you can use our fees calculator to get an estimate of your fees.
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.
Dr Evelyn Sattlegger’s interest is in deciphering in detail the mechanisms underlying normal biological functions, how/why malfunction may lead to diseases or disorders, and how they could be prevented or treated. Dr Sattlegger’s research has been funded by various funding agencies as well as industry based in New Zealand and around the world, and she is amongst the top publishers in her research field.Professor Evelyn Sattlegger
Massey University is ranked by QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) as one of the top 300 universities in the world for biological sciences.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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:
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.
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.
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:
|Subject area||Level||Course ID number|
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.