Master of Teaching and Learning (Primary)


Increased teacher vacancies as more baby-boomers retire

New Zealand's ageing population means that many teachers will soon be retiring, opening up thousands of vacancies for new teachers in the coming 10-15 years, a NZ Herald article has found.

If you're interested in a career in teaching, there's no better time than now. Make a difference. Explore a career in teaching at AUT.

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Do you already hold a bachelor's degree and want to become a teacher? Postgraduate study in initial teacher education is new to New Zealand, and AUT is one of the places where you can study this one year professional qualification to become a teacher.

The AUT Master of Teaching and Learning (Primary) has four themes:

  • Become a responsive and resilient teacher who understands their identity as teacher, the nature of their students, and the unique Aotearoa New Zealand socio-cultural and political context and its impact on education.
  • Integrated, holistical, hands-on learning: Spend half your week at AUT University and the other half in schools, where we work in partnership to give you an integrated and holistic learning experience.
  • Adaptive teaching: Become an 'adaptive' expert: a teacher who not only has the abilities, knowledge and skills to teach, but one who is able to use evidence-based teaching as inquiry to tune into the needs of individual students, particularly those who struggle in the current school system.
  • A future-oriented focus, equipped to teach and prepare children to live in a future world.
  • This programme is run in conjunction with a number of partner schools such as Balmoral School, Belmont Primary School, Birkdale North School, Epsom Normal Primary School, Hobsonville Point School, Murrays Bay Intermediate School, Papatoetoe West Primary School and Puhinui School.

Programme code: AK1047
Level: 9
Points: 180
Duration: 1 year full-time
Venue: North Campus
Start date: 14 January 2019

AUT encourages early application. This qualification will remain open until all places have been filled.

Entry requirements

  • Must have completed a bachelor's degree with an average grade of B+ or higher in papers at level 7
  • Completion of a personal declaration form. This includes permission for a New Zealand Police Vetting Service: Request and Consent Form. For information on how to fill the Police Vetting form, see this user guide.
  • The names of three people who will act as your referee. Note: One of your referees will be contacted by telephone and the others will be required to complete a written reference.
  • CV with five year work history and a list of memberships in professional organisations.
  • A school visit to one of our partnership schools prior to interview
  • Face to face interview
  • Demonstration of ICT skills and completion of literacy and numeracy tests to demonstrate high levels of comprehension, fluency and accuracy
  • Demonstration of group skills through a simulation activity at interview
  • All applicants must ensure they meet Education Council requirements for English Language Proficiency prior to admission to the programme. The requirements changed on 1 January 2015. View the new requirements. The IELTS test (academic version) scores required are: Overall 7.0, Reading 7.0, Writing 7.0, Speaking 7.0, Listening 7.0.
  • Students whose first language is not English are required to pass the Academic IELTS with a band score of 7 in each component OR have a Level 7 degree from a New Zealand or Australian University OR two years of college in New Zealand and UE literacy at Level 2 NCEA with 5 credits in reading and 5 credits in writing. No admission until IELTS scores are evidenced.
  • You also need to meet the Education Council requirements for conduct, which is assessed in the application below.
  • A safety check will be completed to ensure you meet all the requirements as set out in section 31 of the Vulnerable Children Act 2014. Here is a statement from the School of Education regarding the Vulnerable Children Act (1 July 2015 update).

*Please note: Applicants with overseas qualifications must have these assessed by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority (NZQA) as equivalent to a New Zealand Level 7 bachelor's degree or above. Please visit the NZQA website for further information.

Career opportunities

Graduates will be able to apply for provisional registration with the Education Council of Aotearoa New Zealand. You will be able to teach in a primary or intermediate classroom.

Holding a master's degree in teaching and learning should be an advantage in the current competitive employment market.

Graduates planning to continue with postgraduate study should note that this qualification does not automatically lead to doctoral study. You would be required to complete additional study in a research methodologies paper at master's level.

Structure and content

This is an intensive programme that involves two days each week (Monday and Tuesday) in a partnership school and two days (Thursday and Friday) at the university. On Wednesday there is a mix of university activities and visits to other school contexts. For 12 weeks of the year student teachers will be on a sustained period of practicum in a partnership school (5 weeks in semester 1 and 7 weeks in semester 2) working with a professional learning mentor in the classroom.

The programme covers:

  • Teacher identity and resilience
  • Human development
  • Learning theories
  • Knowledge
  • Working with Māori, Pasifika and students with special needs
  • Learning te Reo Māori and some basic Samoan language
  • The teaching as inquiry cycle
  • A research inquiry project focused on working with priority learners.

Such teachers will be well equipped to work with any learners in the New Zealand primary or intermediate classroom.


EDCR801 Ako: Teaching and Learning
EDCR802 The Responsive Teacher in Aotearoa New Zealand
EDCR803 Curriculum and Assessment
EDPT801 The Adaptive Teacher
EDUC901 Teaching as Inquiry
EDUC902 Critical Reflection on Practice

Contact us to find out more

Dr Patricia Stringer
+64 9 921 9999 ext 7414

More information about becoming a teacher

Read about studying to be a teacher on the Education Council website.

Last updated: 14-Feb-2018 2.49pm

The information on this page was correct at time of publication. For a comprehensive overview of AUT qualifications, please refer to the Academic Calendar.