Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching – PGCertSpecTchg

With Massey’s Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching you can create more equitable learning outcomes for all learners.

Type of qualification

Postgraduate certificate

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.

More about study levels

NZQF level 8

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

Find out more about NZQF levels

Time to complete

1 year part-time. Not available for full-time study
Up to 2 years part-time
Part-time available

Where you can study

Distance and online

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 Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching – PGCertSpecTchg

The Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching will give you the skills and networks to work in a principles-based, interprofessional way to transform outcomes for all learners. You will work collaboratively at universal, targeted and tailored levels to bring about barrier-free access to education.

The qualification uses inquiry and evidence-based approaches to support you in working with practitioners, kaiako and whānau in proactive and positive ways. Through developing strong and productive partnerships you will be able to support identity, language and culture across educational contexts.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching has two compulsory courses:

  • Professional Learning Pathway (interprofessional)
  • Specialist Theory and Foundations (specialist area)

The interprofessional approach allows you to learn with, from and about each other within a community of practice.

Further study

You can choose to continue your specialist teaching study by pursuing a Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching (two more courses) or a Master of Specialist Teaching (four more courses).

A PGCertSpecTchg is a good fit if you:

  • Have a passion for inclusive and culturally sustaining education
  • Want to work alongside practitioners, whānau and kaiako  
  • Enjoy hybrid learning opportunities

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.

To enter the Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching qualification you will have:

  • been awarded or qualified for a bachelor’s degree, (or equivalent) and
  • been awarded or qualified for a relevant professional qualification, and
  • have completed at least two years relevant professional experience.

You will need to provide copies of all official academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

You will also provide the following documents as part of the selection process:

  • a copy of your current curriculum vitae (including education and employment for at least the last five years)
  • a verified copy of your current practising certificate issued by the Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand (if a registered teacher with a current full practising certificate)
  • a copy of a police report from every overseas country you have lived in for more 12 months in the last 10 years – please do not supply originals as these will need to be supplied to the Education Council at a later date.

If you are not a registered teacher you will also need to supply a completed New Zealand Police Request and Consent form, along with two pieces of verified identification (one of which must be photographic) from the list of acceptable forms of identification.

Application closing date

Applications for this qualification close on 10 December, for study the following year.

English language requirements

If your first language is not English or Te Reo Māori and you have not gained a New Zealand university entrance qualification, or an overseas entrance qualification in a country where the main language is English, you will be required to provide evidence of proficiency in English. This will take the form of an academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of 7.0 with no band less than 7.0 (or the equivalent TOEFL score) or other evidence that is acceptable to Academic Board.

IELTS exemption: A teacher who has registered with the Teaching Council of Aotearoa New Zealand and holds a current Practising Certificate will be exempted from meeting this English language requirement.

Health and disability

If you have any short or long-term disabilities including a learning disability or health issue that may affect your study, please upload a summary in your application. If you disclose any disability, health or personal information as part of your application, this will be assessed during the selection process and is confidential to the university staff processing your application.

Curriculum vitae

Please provide a full curriculum vitae including details of your educational and professional qualifications, employment history with dates and descriptions of roles and responsibilities, membership of associations/organisations, and a list of professional publications and research reports.

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 some undergraduate and all 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.

More information

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 be 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 Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching

This qualification is only available for part-time study.

Courses and specialisations

Key terms

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).
Each course is worth a number of credits. You combine courses (credits) to meet the total number of credits needed for your qualification.
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

60 credits

  • Compulsory course – 30 credits
  • Elective from the Schedule – 30 credits

Course planning key

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.
Courses that must be completed at the same time as another course are known as corequisite courses.
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.

Compulsory course

Course code: 254766 Professional Learning Pathways 30 credits

Bespoke learning modules for professional educational practice

View full course details

Elective courses (Choose 30 credits from)

Choose 30 credits from
Course code: 249740 Theory and Practice of Deaf and Hard of Hearing 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of specialist teachers in the area of Deaf and Hard of Hearing.

View full course details
Course code: 249746 Theory and Practice of Blind and Low Vision Education 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of specialist teachers in the area of blind and low vision

View full course details
Course code: 249747 Theory and Practice of Early Intervention 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of specialist teachers in the area of Early Intervention.

View full course details
Course code: 249753 Theory and Practice of Learning and Behaviour Diversity 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of specialist teachers in the area of learning and behaviour diversity

View full course details
Course code: 249758 Theory and Practice of Te Kaupapa o Te Kōhanga Reo 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of Kaihāpai in the area of Te Kaupapa o Te Kōhanga Reo.

View full course details
Course code: 249760 Theory and Practice of Complex Educational Needs 30 credits

An advanced study of the theory and practice of specialist teachers in the area of complex educational needs

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

A Postgraduate Certificate in Specialist Teaching could contribute to the ongoing professional development of those in roles including:

  • Teachers in early childhood centres, schools and kura
  • Education Adviser or School Leaders
  • Special Education Needs Coordinators (SENCo)
  • Learning Support Coordinator (LSC)

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