Skip to Content
Take your social policy study to the next level
Discover how and why power, resources and opportunities are distributed within society.
If you are fascinated by how and why power, resources and opportunities are distributed within society, then Massey’s MA Social Policy is for you.
You will gain an understanding of the political, economic, social and cultural factors that influence the development, implementation and evaluation of social policy in Aotearoa New Zealand.
You will study law, politics, and the roles of central and local government in a democratic society. This will lead to insights into the relationship between the state, political parties, the judiciary, the legal system, and the public in shaping legislation and developing policy.
Your MA (Social Policy) will give you the knowledge and competencies you need in a career as a policy analyst and researcher. You will learn a range of intellectual and practical skills that will stand you in good stead in the job market.
This qualification opens up a world of opportunity to be involved in influencing a broad number of social issue outcomes from a government-down, or from an individual-, community- and society-up perspective. That may include issues like healthy housing, youth development, Māori wellbeing, health promotion and gender analysis of policy,
You will learn to apply your critical social policy analysis skills to a number of decision-making scenarios to result in better social outcomes. This decision-making can take many forms including a policy, a project plan, submission, or even the strategic direction of an organisation.
You could work in areas such as:
Postgraduate education will give you the skills you need for a satisfying and rewarding career.
A 2017 Ministry of Education report, The post-study earnings and destinations of young domestic graduates, found that in New Zealand:
All students must meet university entrance requirements to be admitted to the University.
To enter the Master of Arts 180 credits you will:
To enter the Master of Arts 120 credits you will have been awarded or qualified for:
Research pathway: for entry to the research pathway you need a B+ grade average across the 700-level courses
Coursework pathway: for entry to the coursework pathway you need a B grade average across the 700-level courses.
You will need to provide verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.
To study this programme you must meet Massey University's English language standards.
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:
Advanced entry: Those who have already completed specified qualifications in advance of the minimum entry requirements may be able to complete this degree in 120 credits.
This is a parts-based qualification. This means there are regulations around your completion of Part One before progressing to Part Two, etc.
See ‘Courses for this programme’ below for schedules of courses.
|179702||Advanced Research Methods||30|
|279701||Social Policy and Political Economy||30|
|279703||Social Policy Studies||30|
|132741||Long-Term Community Planning||30|
|179783||Māori Development and the Social Services||30|
|279873||Research Report Social Policy (60)||60|
|279881||Thesis 90 Credit Part 1||45|
|279882||Thesis 90 Credit Part 2||45|
The Master of Arts is a parts-based qualification. That means you must complete the first part, before moving to the second.
If you study full-time, you’ll take 120 credits per year or 60 credits per semester.
Not all courses are available in each semester.
The Master of Arts (Social Policy) research pathway is not available for full-time study. It will take two years of part-time study due to the sequencing of compulsory courses and research.
Grades achieved in the first 60 credits will determine eligibility for progression to Part Two.
If you enrol in a thesis, you commence with Part One, followed by Part Two in the next enrolment period. Both parts combine to meet the thesis requirements with a single grade assigned to each part.
If the thesis cannot be submitted at the end of the initial Part Two enrolment, you must re-enrol in Part Two (and pay fees) each semester until submission is made.
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.
I chose Massey due to their extramural programme which allowed me to continue to work full time and progress my career while studying. The support from the staff was incredible, especially my supervisors who encouraged me to apply my experiences to my research and give it my all.” Megan Coffey
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.