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Master of Specialist Teaching

  • Masters (Coursework)

The Specialist Teaching programme is relevant for educators working with children and learners who have special educational needs in early childhood, primary, and secondary sectors.

Key details

Degree Type
Masters (Coursework)
18 months full-time
Course Code
Domestic Fees
$11,427 per year / $17,141 total
International Fees
$46,050 per year / $69,075 total

About this course

The Specialist Teaching programme is relevant for educators working with children and learners who have special educational needs in early childhood, primary, and secondary sectors.

The programme is coursework-based, meaning it is ideal for educators who aim to provide professional leadership in their area of expertise but who do not wish to undertake a thesis. The Master of Specialist Teaching (MSpecTchg) employs a mix of distance and blended learning delivery options that provide flexibility for all students, regardless of location.

The degree can be awarded unendorsed, or endorsed in one of four areas. Graduates will gain a comprehensive understanding of their selected specialism, and will have the expertise, knowledge, interdisciplinary networks, and strategies to provide innovative approaches to meet children's and learners' special education needs in their workplace.

UC is ranked in the top 250 universities in the world for Education and Training (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2021).

Entry requirements

Students wishing to enrol in the Master of Specialist Teaching must have:

  • qualified for an Aotearoa New Zealand teacher education degree, or qualified for a recognised three-year diploma in early childhood, primary, or secondary teaching in Aotearoa, with at least a B Grade Point Average in their 300-level courses; and
  • hold current teacher registration in Aotearoa (not a requirement for the Early Intervention endorsement); and
  • normally acquired at least two years experience as a teacher or educator in a recognised educational, workplace, or community setting.

Students must be approved to enrol by the Dean of Education and Health Sciences. The relevance and standard of undergraduate studies and any subsequent professional work experience are the main criteria of approval.

Students who do not hold current Aotearoa New Zealand Professional Registration will be required to undergo police vetting prior to gaining entry into the programme. They must meet requirements equivalent to those set down by Matatu Aotearoa | Teaching Council of New Zealand for registration as a teacher in terms of character and fitness to be a teacher.

If English is your additional language, you are also required to meet UC's English language requirements and the requirements set out by Matatu Aotearoa | Teaching Council of New Zealand.

Note: In order to graduate with the degree endorsed in Deaf and Hard of Hearing, students must also be able to demonstrate proficiency in Aotearoa New Zealand Sign Language.

Students who have completed a Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching, or equivalent qualification demonstrating appropriate academic achievement, may be granted Recognition of Prior Learning, enabling them to gain entry directly to Part II of the programme.

For the full entry requirements, see the Regulations for the Master of Specialist Teaching or use the admission requirements checker.

How to apply

You can apply online at myUC. Find out more about how to apply for graduate and postgraduate qualifications.

Study locations

Main Campus

Career pathways

Postgraduate study can bring many career benefits, such as specialist skills and enhanced knowledge, entry into specific occupations, higher starting salary/progression rates, research capability/achievement, and evidence of high academic attainment/self-discipline.

Useful information:

  • Read what other UC postgraduate students have gone on to achieve in their studies and careers in our student and graduate profiles.
  • Te Ropu Rapuara | UC Careers can help you to achieve the career you want, connect with employers, or find a job.
  • For research into career destinations by qualification, visit Te Pokai Tara | Universities New Zealand website.
  • Find out more about what you can do with a degree from UC.
  • Come along to an upcoming information event for prospective postgraduate students.