Master of Māori Visual Arts – MMVA

Challenge your own toi Māori practice, and learn from and be inspired by leading artists.

Type of qualification

Master's degree

Level of study

Postgraduate study

Once you’ve graduated with a bachelor’s degree – or have equal experience – you can study at the postgraduate level. Doctoral qualifications require additional entry requirements.

NZQF level 9

Our courses follow the New Zealand Qualification Framework (NZQF) levels.

Find out more about NZQF levels

Time to complete

2 year(s) full-time (240 credits)
Up to 5 years part-time
Part-time available

Where you can study

Distance and online
Manawatū campus (Palmerston North)

International students

International students are not New Zealand citizens or residents.

Definition of New Zealand citizens and residents

Not open to international students
Note: Selected entry qualification.

Study a Master of Māori Visual Arts – MMVA

Many of New Zealand's most respected Māori artists are graduates of the Master of Māori Visual Arts. More recent graduates attract recognition as emerging talent.

The Master of Māori Visual Arts will push you to produce your best creative work grounded in a deep understanding of Māori or indigenous visual culture. Your supervisors will challenge, guide, disrupt and support you, but -most importantly – they will help you develop your own unique creative practice.

Toioho ki Āpiti welcomes all indigenous and Pākehā artists. We encourage engagement in research and applied practices relevant to individual cultural contexts.

Studio is the centre

You will spend most of your time conceiving and making art, in a kaupapa Māori environment, mentored by practising artists.

You’ll pursue an individually-designed programme of advanced studio practice in Māori or indigenous visual culture related to who you are (whakapapa) as well as your personal strengths and interests.

The degree structure and delivery embrace customary practices from carving to weaving to kowhaiwhai. But it fosters work that does not necessarily adhere to visual indicators of 'Māori' art. The work coming out of Toioho ki Āpiti often asks critical questions about identity and visual culture and exists at the interface of Western and indigenous art.

Flexible study

You can study on campus, with studio space provided, or by distance. There are full-time and part-time options.

Most students initially enrol in a Postgraduate Diploma in Māori Visual Arts, and transfer to the Masters programme for the second year.

Get the full picture 

A MMVA is a good fit if you:

  • want to expand your art practice
  • would like to develop work with a strong Māori kaupapa
  • seek mentorship and support from leading contemporary and traditional Māori artists.

Entry requirements

Admission to Massey

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

Specific requirements

This is a selected entry qualification. This means there are a number of extra requirements you must meet.   

Master of Māori Visual Arts 240-credit

To enter the the Master of Māori Visual Arts you will:

  • have been awarded or qualified for a Bachelor of Māori Visual Arts, or equivalent, or
  • have been awarded or qualified for a relevant bachelor's degree, or equivalent, and provide evidence of professional experience of an appropriate kind and duration in an area relevant to the qualification, or
  • have practical, professional, and scholarly experience at an appropriate level, and
  • have been awarded or qualified for the Postgraduate Diploma in Māori Visual Arts having achieved at least a B grade average.

Master of Māori Visual Arts 120-credit

To enter the 120-credit programme you will:

  • have been awarded or qualified for a Postgraduate Diploma in Māori Visual Arts with a B grade average
  • submit a proposal of your intended research project. We are looking for proposals that are academically viable, industry-linked and able to be supported by Massey resources.

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

In considering applications for admission to the Master of Māori Visual Arts, the university shall pay due regard to indigenous systems for the acquisition of knowledge. A fair, large and liberal interpretation to the concepts of ‘scholarly experience’ and ‘academic work’ will be applied.

Application closing date

If you are a new-to-Massey student, applications for this qualification close on 30 November 2021.

English language requirements

To study this qualification 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:

English language skills

If you need help with your English language skills before you start university, see our English for Academic Purposes (EAP) courses.

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 qualification 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. 

Official regulations

To understand what you need to study and must complete to graduate read the official rules and regulations for this qualification.

You should read these together with all other relevant Statutes and Regulations of the University including the General Regulations for Postgraduate Degrees, Postgraduate Diplomas, and Postgraduate Certificates.

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 qualification 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 qualifications go to the Massey University Calendar.

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

Structure of the Master of Māori Visual Arts

If you study full-time, you’ll take 120 credits per year or 60 credits per semester.

Courses and specialisations

Key terms

Courses
Each qualification has its own specific set of courses. Some universities call these papers. You enrol in courses after you get accepted into Massey.
Course code
Each course is numbered using 6 digits. The fourth number shows the level of the course. For example, in course 219206, the fourth number is a 2, so it is a 200-level course (usually studied in the second year of full-time study).
Credits
Each course is worth a number of credits. You combine courses (credits) to meet the total number of credits needed for your qualification.
Specialisations
Some qualifications let you choose what subject you'd like to specialise in. Your major or endorsement is what you will take the majority of your courses in.

Credit summary

240 credits

  • Part One courses selected from the Schedule – 0‑60 credits
  • Part One studio or pre-thesis course(s) – 90‑120 credits
  • Part Two studio practice/thesis – 90‑120 credits

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.

Course planning key

Prerequisites
Courses that need to be completed before moving onto a course at the next level. For example, a lot of 200-level courses have 100-level prerequisite courses.
Corequisites
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
Restrictions
Some courses are restricted against each other because their content is similar. This means you can only choose one of the offered courses to study and credit to your qualification.

Part One

Choose no more than 60 credits from
Course code: 150701 Tino Rangatiratanga: Strategic Māori Development 30 credits

Strategies for Māori advancement are examined within a Māori development framework. Barriers to development and the facilitation of positive development are explored using criteria relevant to indigenous self-determination. There is a focus on land, fisheries, social policy, health, Treaty settlements and opportunities for positive development.

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Course code: 150711 Te Tau-Ihu o te Reo: Advanced Māori Literature 30 credits

Tuatahi he ako i te taumata momo reo, te kawa o tātau marae pēnei i te tangihanga, whakataukī, pepeha, kōrero pūrākau, waiata tawhito. Tuarua he kaupapa mai i te rēanga poropiti Māori o ērā atu rau tau. Ka tātaritia hoki ngā kōrero mo tērā poropiti a Te Kooti Ārikirangi Te Tūruki i ahu mai ai ngā kaupapa maha e pā ana ki te mana motuhake. Tuatoru kā tātaritia ngā kōrero e pā ana ki tēnei kaupapa hohonu, e taukapo ai ōnā kaupapa ko te poroporoaki tēnā. This course explores language forms used in marae procedure, and language associated with tangihanga, whakataukī, pepeha, kōrero pūrākau, waiata tawhito. In addition the prophecies and aspirations of Te Kooti Ārikirangi Te Tūruki are explored. There is also an examination of the oral narrative and written literature associated with poroporoaki.

Prerequisites: Appraisal Required

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Course code: 150714 Ta Te Māori Rangahau Korero: Māori Research Methodologies 30 credits

An examination of methodologies appropriate for research within Māori communities, iwi, hapu and whanau. Emphasis will be placed on accessing relevant information held in public repositories, on the internet and on computerised databases. The identification of frameworks for research in Māori contexts, ethical issues, and research design form important aspects of the course.

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Course code: 150715 Taonga Tuku Iho: Heritage Aotearoa 30 credits

An examination of the dynamics of Māori culture and custom as part of the Aotearoa/New Zealand heritage. Particular emphasis is placed on the significance of land, language, oral tradition, the marae, art, and the Treaty of Waitangi, as well as an examination of the role of government in heritage through a study of legislation, policy and programmes. Case studies will focus on conservation, maintenance, sustainability and revitalisation.

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Course code: 167742 Collection Management 30 credits

An examination of the following areas of museological theory and practice: material culture; recent research into private collecting; preventive conservation; collection management policy and practice; contemporary collection management issues including collection rationalisation, contemporary collecting, and the changing roles of curators and collection managers.

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Course code: 167743 Museum Management 30 credits

An examination of museum organisation, governance, policy development, strategic planning, marketing, financial management, project management and personnel management. Practical skills in budgeting, grant writing, reports and presentations will be taught.

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Course code: 167744 Museums and the Public 30 credits

An examination of the philosophy, strategies and practical processes of effectively interpreting and communicating museum programmes for a variety of audiences.

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Choose at least 90 credits from
Course code: 150707 Te Tataitanga Matatau: Advanced Studio Practice 90 credits

An individually designed programme of advanced studio practice in Māori or indigenous visual culture development, with content related to personal strengths and interests.

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Course code: 150720 Rangahau Whakairo: Pre-thesis Practicum 120 credits

An individually supervised and approved study involving Māori or indigenous visual culture to realise an individually conceived body of work. The constitution of the pre-thesis studio will consist of a catalogue of works presented for exhibition together with a presentation of ideas both in situ and through a formal public presentation.

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Course code: 150725 Rangahau Whakairo: Pre-Thesis Practicum (Part I) 60 credits
Course code: 150726 Rangahau Whakairo: Pre-Thesis Practicum (Part II) 60 credits

Part Two (Choose at least 90 credits from)

Choose at least 90 credits from
Course code: 150809 Te Wahapu Matatau (Matau): Advanced Studio Practice 90 credits

An individually designed programme of advanced studio practice in Māori or indigenous visual culture development, with content related to personal strengths and interests.

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Course code: 150821 Nga Miro Whakaaturanga: Thesis Practicum 120 credits

An individually supervised and approved study involving research into Māori or indigenous visual culture to realise an individually conceived body of work that allows for the design and/or coordination of an exhibition, together with an exhibition report that resolves research and practice, or a database that contextualises the body of work within the student's personal oeuvre.

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Course code: 150825 Nga Miro Whakaaturanga Thesis Practicum 120 Cr Pt1 60 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

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Course code: 150826 Nga Miro Whakaaturanga Thesis Practicum 120 Cr Pt2 60 credits

A supervised and guided independent study resulting in a published work.

Corequisites: 150825

View full course details

Fees and scholarships

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?

You can view fees for the courses that make up your qualification on the course details pages.

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 can find their National Student Number in the student portal.

Fees disclaimer

This information is for estimation purposes only. Actual fees payable will be finalised on confirmation of enrolment. Unless otherwise stated, all fees shown are quoted in New Zealand dollars and include Goods and Services Tax, if any. Before relying on any information on these pages you should also read the University's Disclaimer Notice.

Careers and job opportunities

Most graduates of the Master of Māori Visual Arts have a full-time or part-time art practice.

The following are just some of the artists who have completed postgraduate study through Toioho ki Āpiti:

  • Dr Huhana Smith (Ngāti Takorehe)
  • Rangi Kipa (Taranaki, Te Atiawa Nui Tonu, Ngāti Maniapoto)
  • Kura Te Waru-Rewiri (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahu, Ngāti Rangi, Ngāti Raukawa ki Kauwhata)
  • Sandy Adsett (Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāti Pahauwera)
  • Wi Taepa (Te Arawa, Te Āti Awa)
  • Tina Wirihana (Ngāti Maniapoto - Raukawa, Ngāti Pikiao)
  • Kohai Grace (Ngāti Toa Rangatira, Ngāti Porou, Te Āti Awa, Ngāti Raukawa)
  • Steve Gibbs (Ngāi Tamanuhiri)
  • Dr Areta Wilkinson (Kai Tahu)
  • Saffronn Te Ratana (Ngāi Tuhoe)
  • Israel Tangaroa Birch (Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Kahungunu)
  • Reweti Arapere (Ngāti Raukawa, Ngāti Parou, Ngāti Tuwharetoa)
  • Bridget Reweti (Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāi te Rangi)
  • Nicholas Galanin (Tlingit, Aleut)
  • Natalie Ball (Klamath)
  • Ngahina Hohaia (Parihaka, Ngāti Moeahu, Ngāti Haupoto, Taranaki iwi)
  • Ngataiharuru Taepa (Te Arawa, Te Āti Awa)
  • Hemi McGregor (Ngāti Rakaipaaka, Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngāi Tuhoe)
  • Kura Puke (Te Āti Awa)
  • Regan Balzer (Te Arawa, Ngāti Ranginui)
  • Chris Bryant (Ngāti Porou)
  • Chanz Mikaere (Te Arawa, Mataatua)
  • Gina Matchitt (Ngāti Rangitihi, Te Arawa, Ngāti Ngahere, Whakatōhea).

Accreditations and rankings

QS Ranking - Art & Design

College of Creative Arts – Toi Rauwhārangi ranks in the global top 150 for art and design by QS World University Rankings.

Learn more

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