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Politics & Government×

Masters Degrees in Public Policy, New Zealand

We have 6 Masters Degrees in Public Policy, New Zealand

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Fast-track your career in policy. Policy-makers create strategic and operational policies that make life better—locally, nationally and internationally. Read more

Fast-track your career in policy

Policy-makers create strategic and operational policies that make life better—locally, nationally and internationally.

Give yourself the opportunity to get a high-level overview of the latest public sector developments and insights. You'll develop your abilities, broaden your perspective, deepen your understanding, challenge your thinking—and increase your employability.

You'll study at the School of Government, learning to help decision makers get the best outcomes in environmental, economic and social areas. Find out about the machinery of government and get the skills to design, evaluate and put in place strategic and operational policies that improve our lives.

Well connected

Victoria is the only New Zealand university that is connected to the Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG)—so you know your qualification is of the highest standard.

Our lecturers are actively involved in the public sector, exchanging ideas on key policy and management issues. They're connected to decision makers from local, regional and national government, giving you the opportunity to meet and learn from those in the know.

We're also associated with important public and volunteer sector organisations like the Society of Local Government Managers (SOLGM), Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ), the NZ Council of Social Services (NZCOSS) and Hui E! Community Aotearoa.

International students, global insights

Be part of a school that attracts not only local professionals but a talented group of international students—many highly experienced employees of government organisations in their own countries. Take advantage of the diverse experience in public policy and public management these students take to the classroom—providing valuable insights and bringing the comparative perspective alive.

Qualification family structure

  • Master of Public Policy
  • Postgraduate Diploma in Public Policy
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Public Policy

Choose the qualification that suits your career goals, time constraints and financial situation.If you are initially accepted for a certificate or diploma, you can apply to transfer to the Master’s degree at a later stage. Both your performance in the programme and your professional work experience will be taken into account when looking at your application.

If you're working towards a Master of Public Policy and illness, promotion or other reasons for leaving your studies come up, you may still be able to graduate with a certificate or diploma.

What you'll study

You'll take a mixture of foundation and core courses that will give you the skills and capability to design, implement and evaluate policy for a range of different outcomes.

Learn about the theory and practice of policy making and examine the role of government and others in policy creation and implementation. Understand the issues at play in different policy areas like local government, health or development. If you're working while you study, you can apply what you learn to your own workplace policy challenges immediately.

MPP students should also take a research paper as part of their qualification. This could be a research topic that is relevant to your workplace. If you want to complete your Master's by coursework only, you need to get approval from the Master's Programme Director.

How you'll learn

Most classes are delivered on-campus in a block format. That means you'll need to attend day-long classes on three different days each semester, each of these separated by about six weeks. You'll also need to complete an additional six hours of structured class work, which may be face-to-face or online.

Some classes are delivered in a weekly or intensive format. Intensive courses are structured as one-off blocks of four days, or two blocks of two days separated by six weeks. Classes for weekly courses usually take place in the evening during the standard university trimesters.

Whatever format your course is delivered in, you'll need to attend all of the classes to pass and to get the most out of your study.

Study while you work

Because of the block format of the classes, you can fit your study commitments around your work and home life. And if you're struggling at any time, just let us know—we want your study to be a success.

Workload

If you are studying full-time you can expect a workload of 40–45 hours a week for much of the year. Part-time students doing two courses per trimester will need to do around 20–23 hours of work a week. Make sure you take this into account if you are working full-time.

You can estimate your workload by adding up the number of points you'll be doing. One point is roughly equal to 10–12 hours work.

Duration

The MPP can be completed in three years part-time, or in two years of full-time study.

Top locations

Surrounded by Parliament Buildings, government offices and corporate headquarters, you'll benefit from the strong links the School of Government maintains with the industry.

Community

Postgraduate study at Victoria will help you build valuable relationships and networks with peers, university staff and future colleagues.

There will be opportunities to attend events, workshops, social functions and seminars such as the Student Learning Postgraduate Research skills sessions. You'll also have access to the postgraduate student workspace on the 2nd floor of Rutherford House—make use of the spacious computer lab, meeting rooms, printer and kitchen.

The Postgraduate Students' Association can give you information and provides a voice for you on campus.

Careers

Skilled-policy makers are in demand both in and outside of government, due to their technical and creative skills and commitment to solving society's challenges.

You might find work in central, local or regional government, a Crown entity or a not-for-profit organisation, or a private consultancy or corporation active in policy-making and implementation processes.



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Effective leadership, better management, positive change. Enhance your career prospects and learn to make organisations work better with postgraduate studies in Public Management at Victoria's . Read more

Effective leadership, better management, positive change

Enhance your career prospects and learn to make organisations work better with postgraduate studies in Public Management at Victoria's School of Government. Find out how to lead people and make change happen.

Become an effective public manager and build your ability to influence the strategic and operational direction of public sector organisations. Learn about governance and public sector reform, and how to manage budgets, finances and organisational capital.

Gain the knowledge and skills to design and implement innovative and effective programmes and services, including planning, service delivery and monitoring and evaluation.

Diploma and Certificate programmes

As well as the Master of Public Management we have some shorter postgraduate Public Management qualifications. Depending on your goals you can opt for the Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma and use them as stepping stones towards the Master's degree or build your capability by upskilling with these valuable courses.

Well-connected

Victoria is the only New Zealand university that is connected to the Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZOG)—so you know your qualification is of the highest standard.

Your lecturers are actively involved in public and non-profit service, exchanging ideas on key policy and management issues. They're connected to decision makers from local, regional and national government, giving you the opportunity to meet and learn from those in the know.

International students, global insights

Be part of a school that attracts not only local professionals but a talented group of international students—many highly experienced employees of government organisations in their own countries. Take advantage of the diverse experience in public policy and public management these students take to the classroom—providing valuable insights and bringing the comparative perspective alive.

What you'll study

The MPM will give you the skills and capability to understand the theory and practice of public management and boost your performance as a manager.

Your studies will include:

  1. Three foundation courses that examine government and governing in modern societies, government and the economy, and policy and management practice.
  2. Four core courses–you'll study governance and public sector reform, and strategic and financial management. You'll also learn about planning and service delivery, human resources and monitoring and evaluation.
  3. A research project that leads to a report on a specific topic in public management.
  4. Three other courses–choose from a variety of courses according to your interests and career goals—like public sector law, economics, policy analysis or politics and philosophy.

The Diploma programme requires you do seven foundation and core courses and one more course of your choice, and Certificate students do four foundation and core courses.

How you'll learn

Courses are delivered in a Block, Intensive or Weekly format.

Block format

These courses have 24 hours of structured class time, which are broken up into three separate days of six hours each. There are also six hours of structured class work, which may be delivered face-to-face or online.

Intensive format

These courses have a minimum of 24 hours' class time. They are delivered over four consecutive days, or two blocks of two consecutive days with about six weeks in between. Attendance is required on all course days.

Weekly format

Weekly courses take place during the standard university trimester periods. These courses are held weekly in the evening.

You can check the course schedules in the School of Government Postgraduate Prospectus. Whatever format your course is delivered in, you need to attend all of the classes to pass and to get the most out of your study.

Study while you work

The block format of the classes means you can fit your study commitments around your work and home life. If you're struggling at any time, just let us know—we want your study to be a success.

Workload

If you are studying fulltime you can expect a workload of 40–45 hours a week for much of the year. Part-time students doing two courses per trimester will need to do around 20–25 hours of work a week. Make sure you take this into account if you are working full-time.

You can estimate your workload by adding up the number of points you'll be doing. One point is roughly equal to 10–12 hours work.

Duration

You can usually complete the Master of Public Management in three or four trimesters over two years, when studying full time. If you're studying part time, the MPM can usually be completed in six trimesters over three years.

The Postgraduate Diploma in Public Management can usually be completed in four trimesters over two years.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Public Management is usually completed in two trimesters over one year.

Top locations

Surrounded by Parliament Buildings, government offices and corporate headquarters, you'll benefit from the strong links the School of Government maintains with the industry.

Community

Postgraduate study at Victoria will help you build valuable relationships and networks with peers, university staff and future colleagues.

There will be opportunities to attend events, workshops, social functions and seminars such as the Student Learning Postgraduate Research skills sessions. You'll also have access to the the postgraduate student workspace on the 2nd floor of Rutherford House—make use of the spacious computer lab, meeting rooms, printer and small kitchen.

The Postgraduate Students' Association can give you information on study at Victoria and provides a voice for you on campus.

Careers

If you're wanting a career or are already working in the government and non-government sectors, a Public Management qualification is a good choice.

You could find management work in central, local or regional government, in business, not-for-profits, consultancies and for iwi. You might also work as a researcher, advocate, campaign coordinator, lobbyist, strategist or planner.



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Take your social policy study to the next level. Prepare for a meaningful career with Massey’s MA in social policy. What Is It Like?. Read more

Take your social policy study to the next level

Prepare for a meaningful career with Massey’s MA in social policy.

What Is It Like?

If you are fascinated by how and why power, resources and opportunities are distributed within society, then Massey’s MA Social Policy (MA(SocPol)) 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.

Careers

Your MA (SocPol) will give you the knowledge and competencies you need in your 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 (e.g healthy housing, youth development, Maori wellbeing, health promotion, gender analysis of policy), not only from a Government-down position, but also from an individual-, community- and society-up perspective.

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:

  • Research
  • Communications
  • Project management
  • Governance
  • Charitable trusts
  • Social marketing
  • Journalism (critical analysis of social issues)
  • Advocacy
  • Teaching and lecturing
  • Policy analysis - public, private and third sector (NGOs, PPPs, not-for-profit, voluntary and charity organisations)
  • Youth development
  • Community development
  • Politics
  • Government agencies - local, regional and central
  • NGOs - trusts etc (housing, Maori land trusts, health service providers, disability advocacy and support, youth development).


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Take your Honours degree or Postgraduate Diploma to the next level with a Master of Commerce (MCom). You'll take an in-depth look at an issue through completing a research thesis, gaining advanced knowledge of your subject area and thorough training in independent research. Read more

Take your Honours degree or Postgraduate Diploma to the next level with a Master of Commerce (MCom). You'll take an in-depth look at an issue through completing a research thesis, gaining advanced knowledge of your subject area and thorough training in independent research.

Once complete, you'll have the tools and capabilities you need for a career in business or public policy. You'll also be able to apply for PhD study in New Zealand or overseas.

This 120-point programme will take you 12 months to complete full time, or one and a half to two years part time. You must take at least 90 points of research. This means you'll complete a research thesis made up of a literature review, data collection and analysis, and your findings. A thesis is usually 30,000–40,000 words.

Available subjects

Workload

If you are studying full time, you can expect a workload of 40–45 hours a week for much of the year. Part-time students will need to do around 20–24 hours of work a week so make sure you take this into account if you are working.

Further study

At the end of your Master's you can choose to continue your research and apply to do a PhD.



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The MPols is a one-year (full-time) degree, which encompasses both coursework and research. The coursework component is spread across two semesters. Read more
The MPols is a one-year (full-time) degree, which encompasses both coursework and research. The coursework component is spread across two semesters. It consists of four papers including the core paper, 'The Political': Theory and Practice, which introduces students to the contested notion of politics and key methodological issues in theory and practice. Students also undertake a research dissertation of 20,000 words under the supervision of a politics staff member over a 12 month period and are expected to attend workshops designed to assist with the process of writing a dissertation. The degree is also available to part-time students.

Students may enrol in the MPols either for first semester (February) or second semester (July).

Graduates will be prepared for careers in the private and public sectors as researchers, policy makers, advisors and analysts. The degree also provides a pathway to doctoral-level study in Politics.

Programme Requirements

POLS 501 “The Political”: Theory and Practice (30 Points)
Three further 500-level POLS papers (60 Points)
POLS 590 Research Dissertation (90 Points)

Structure of the Programme

The programme of study shall consist of:
-Four 30-point 500-level papers, which must include POLS 501 and three further POLS 500-level papers;
-A 60-point research dissertation (POLS 590).
The research dissertation shall be completed over the course of one calendar year. It should be started at the beginning of the programme and submitted no later than twelve months following first enrolment. The limit is 20,000 words of text, exclusive of appendices, footnotes, tabular material, bibliography or equivalent. Before commencing the investigation to be described in the research dissertation, a candidate shall obtain the approval of the Programme Co-ordinator and the supervisor(s) of the proposed topic. A candidate may not present a dissertation which has previously been accepted for another degree.

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A Master of Social Sciences (MSocSc) builds on the Bachelors or Honours qualification you've already gained. When studying for your MSocSc, you'll focus on your preferred Social Science subject area and you'll immerse yourself in a high-level programme of study. Read more

A Master of Social Sciences (MSocSc) builds on the Bachelors or Honours qualification you've already gained. When studying for your MSocSc, you'll focus on your preferred Social Science subject area and you'll immerse yourself in a high-level programme of study. You'll learn the latest research techniques and be updated on recent developments in knowledge relating to your chosen field.

You'll be preparing for a dissertation or thesis, so will be conducting a substantial amount of your own independent research. If you think you may want to complete a doctorate level qualification later on, completing a MSocSc prepares you for that next level of academic study.

As you grow your knowledge of your chosen subject area, you'll be refining your intellectual skills, particularly your ability to think critically, problem solve and analyse. This will enable you to prepare for leadership roles in fields related to your subject area.

Industry Connections

During your studies, you'll be supervised by well-connected Faculty members who have networks with people working in a wide range of sectors, from business to government.

These people, including representatives from local and central government and tribal authorities, provide input into the different subject areas. Members of community groups, business organisations and industrial and professional groups do the same – they provide valuable support and input. The subject area experts themselves provide consultancy services that the community in general needs, so there are broader links and connections made through this sharing of knowledge.

Career opportunities

  • Clinical or Community Psychologist
  • Coastal Resource Officer
  • Communications Coordinator
  • Community Health Administrator
  • Counsellor
  • Demographer
  • Economist
  • Educator (Primary, Secondary or Tertiary Sector)
  • Environmental Planner
  • Hazards and Emergency Management Officer
  • Human Resources Advisor
  • Industrial Relations Advocate
  • Journalist
  • Policy Analyst
  • PR Consultant
  • Research Executive
  • Social Services Manager
  • Tourism Consultant
  • Union Organiser

Subjects

Please visit http://www.waikato.ac.nz/study/qualifications/master-of-social-sciences to see what subjects are available for the Master of Social Sciences.



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