Taught course

Indigenous Studies

University of Otago · Division of Humanities

Entry requirements

Every applicant must normally either

  • have completed the requirements for an Honours degree or other bachelor's degree requiring at least four years of full-time study, or equivalent, or
  • have completed the requirements for a bachelor's degree requiring three years of full-time study, have had at least three years' experience relevant to the programme, and provide evidence of ability to undertake advanced academic study.

In exceptional circumstances, an applicant who is not a graduate may be considered on the basis of alternative qualifications or satisfactory training and experience in management, administration, or leadership in indigenous communities. Such preparation must be equivalent to a degree, and the applicant must provide evidence of ability to undertake advanced level academic study. The Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Humanities) may require such an applicant to pass one or more prescribed papers either before admission to or concurrently with the programme.

If your first language is not English you need to meet our English language requirements as follows: IELTS score of 6.5 in the academic module (with no individual band below 6.0); we also accept a number of other English language tests. Due to COVID-19, we currently accept Duolingo English Test (DET), IELTS Indicator Test, and TOEFL iBT Special home Edition.

Don’t meet the English language requirements? The University of Otago Language Centre "English for Otago" programme offers a pathway for Undergraduate and Postgraduate students to meet the English language requirements for undergraduate and postgraduate study.

Months of entry

February, July

Course content

The Master of Indigenous Studies (MIndS) degree is founded in the proposition that Māori, Pacific Island and other Indigenous peoples have unique bodies of knowledge about customary, environmental and cultural practices. This degree requires at least twelve months of full-time, or the equivalent in part-time, study to complete. The normal admission requirement is a four-year degree, but applications will be received from alternatively qualified individuals who have at least three year's relevant experience.

Degree candidates enrol in one core and two elective papers, and submit a supervised research report at the end of the course. Graduates will have advanced communication and team work skills, know about current issues, have a multi-disciplinary and international perspective, be able to independently assess topical issues, and appreciate the key ethical considerations.

This degree prepares graduates for administrative and leadership roles with indigenous communities in New Zealand and abroad. It is also an entry qualification for the Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).

Research Report option

  • INGS 501 Indigenous Theory and Method
  • INGS 590 Research Report

Two approved elective papers from:

EDUC 444, ENGL 478, INGS 510, MAOR 402, MAOR 404, MAOR 407, MAOR 410, MAOR 417, MAOR 431, PACI 401, PACI 402 , PACI 410, POLS 403, POLS 419, SPAN 441

Thesis option

  • INGS 501 Indigenous Theory and Method
  • INGS 5 Thesis

Information for international students

Otago offers students an unrivalled campus experience and a vibrant, social student culture. The majority of Otago’s 21,000 students live, work and play in Dunedin - New Zealand’s only true university city. Otago is home to over 3,000 students, from over 100 countries.

Fees and funding

International students
NZ $22,712

New Zealand is a relatively affordable country to live in. Dunedin, being a student-focused city, has living and entertainment options for all budgets.

Students are eligible for the Otago International Excellence Scholarship.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • MIndS
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    • Online learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details