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Study Māori Health at Otago

Connecting with whānau aspirations for hauora.

Learn how to weave together te ao Māori and health practice to make a difference for hauora across the life course.

Kia matomato te tipu o te pā harakeke.

Learn from inspirational hauora Māori teachers, how to connect with and work alongside Māori individuals, whānau, and communities.

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Why study Māori Health?

Career opportunities

As a graduate majoring in Māori Health, you may take up roles within the Māori health, public health, healthcare, disability and social services sectors that work directly with communities and their organisations.

You will have the knowledge and skills to address the determinants of health and their impacts, ensure organisations foster equity and positive outcomes for Māori, and be culturally and clinically responsive.

You will develop a positive attitude to make a difference for Māori health across diverse roles and support the growth of the Māori health and disability workforce.

Student profile – Alisa Te Ao

BHealSc student Alisa Te AoStudying Māori Health has made Alisa Te Ao aware that meaningful change can take place at all levels of the healthcare system.

“I had always put dentistry and medicine on a pedestal and was sure they were the only pathways I could take to influence change for Māori and Pacific people. However, after some research, I found the Māori Health major and my outlook completely changed.

“Through this major, I've been taught how to think, not what to think, and I attribute this to the teaching staff. They nurture your curiosity and foster an overwhelming passion for wanting to create change within the healthcare system, so it's equitable for everyone in Aotearoa.

“Meaningful change can be made through all positions in all sectors of the healthcare system and I would love to work on a community level with those who are in need.

“For the first time in my life, my culture has not been treated as a hindrance to my learning but an asset. I used to view failing HSFY (Health Sciences First Year) as my greatest failure but now, after studying Māori Health, I've realised it was one of the best things to have happened to me.”

Māori Health at Otago

Understanding Māori health for the benefit of our communities

Māori Health focuses on making a difference for Māori health outcomes. You will learn about providing culturally responsive health practice when working with Māori individuals, whānau, communities, organisations and populations.

Our immersive learning environment empowers our students to impact on health care for Māori by:

  • Developing tools to work with Māori individuals, whānau, and communities
  • Applying te ao Māori values within the New Zealand health system
  • Becoming an agent of change for hauora Māori

Specifically, you will learn:

  • Historical, social, and cultural contexts to Māori health and strategies for understanding and addressing health inequities and key health issues, including Māori health research
  • How to apply and integrate indigenous knowledge and practices in your chosen health and social services-related career
  • Life course stages and health promotion, and how to grow your health knowledge base
  • How to work within Māori communities in a way that reflects te ao Māori and integrates your learning into positive or strengths-based health practice

Make a difference in a rewarding career

New approaches to health care are required as we face important health challenges.

These include:

  • An increase in the number of older adults and people living with multiple long-term conditions and disability
  • Limited health resources
  • Environmental change and its effects on health

With these challenges comes an increasing need to develop new healthcare approaches.

Māori Health is available as a major subject for the Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHealSc) and as an endorsement for the Postgraduate Certificate in Public Health (PGCertPH).

These career-focused qualifications address the skills required to work with patients, populations, and communities to promote health and ensure patients are accessing and receiving the most appropriate care.


Māori Health as a minor subject for a BA, MusB, BPA, BTheol, BSc, BCom, BEntr, BHealSc, BACom, BASc or BComSc degree

Available as a minor subject for a Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Music (MusB), Bachelor of Performing Arts (BPA), Bachelor of Theology (BTheol), Bachelor of Science (BSc), Bachelor of Commerce (BCom), Bachelor of Entrepreneurship (BEntr), Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHealSc), Bachelor of Arts and Commerce (BACom), Bachelor of Arts and Science (BASc) or Bachelor of Commerce and Science (BComSc) degree


MAOR 102 Māori Society



MAOH 201 Hauora Māori in Practice: Working with Individuals and Whānau*

PUBH 204 Hauora Māori: Challenges and Opportunities

*Prerequisites for MAOH 201 also include HUBS 191, 192 and POPH 192 or PUBH 192



300-levelMAOH 301 Hauora Māori in Practice: Working with Organisations and Communities

PUBH 304 Rangahau Hauora Māori - Māori Health Research



Total 90

Note: This minor subject is not available to students majoring in Community Health Care.

MAOH papers

Paper Code Year Title Points Teaching period
MAOH201 2024 Hauora Māori in Practice: Working with Individuals and Whānau 18 Semester 1
MAOH301 2024 Hauora Māori in Practice: Working with Organisations and Communities 18 Semester 2
MAOH401 2024 Hauora Māori Advanced Practice 30 Semester 2

More information

Contact us

Contact your local schools' liaison officer if you're currently at secondary school.

Or contact the Bachelor of Health Sciences (BHealSc) team:

Waea / Tel +64 3 479 7202
Īmēra / Email

Māori Health is delivered by Kōhatu – Centre for Hauora Māori:

Waea / Tel +64 3 479 4878
Īmēra / Email
Wāhitau tukutuku / Web

Studying at Otago

This information must be read subject to the statement on our Copyright & Disclaimer page.

Regulations on this page are taken from the 2024 Calendar and supplementary material.

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