What will I learn?

Massey’s Doctor of Philosophy is a prestigious research qualification essential for a rewarding academic career in any research institution or university. It’s the highest supervised degree Massey University offers. To do a PhD you need to have a passion for your subject, and pursue it to the limit.

The degree is awarded for a thesis that demonstrates the candidate's ability to carry out independent and original research that provides a significant contribution to the knowledge and understanding of a field of study.

Candidates can complete a thesis with publications or a monograph, depending on the supervisor’s advice. The programme is expected to be completed within three to four years full-time or six years part-time.

Opportunities for research and career development

Massey doctoral candidates can access the UK Vitae platform. Vitae is a world leader in supporting the professional development of researchers and Massey is the only New Zealand university that subscribes to Vitae. It includes a framework that enables researchers to articulate their research skills and identify and prioritise areas for further development. These areas are then supported through our Research Training Programme.

Our doctoral candidates are also supported to apply for the Higher Education Association Associate Fellow, an internationally recognised teaching qualification. Developing effective communication skills are prioritised at Massey and we support candidates with research communications events such as the 3MT (Three-Minute Thesis) competition.

Accessible lecturers and supervisors

Massey University academic staff provide quality and caring supervision and are easily accessible. We limit our PhD enrolments to high-achieving candidates, so you’ll receive close attention and regular interaction with staff. You’ll have at least two supervisors, allowing you to benefit from a range of expertise.

You’ll have access to excellent research facilities and equipment, and benefit from Massey’s connections with industry.

The School of Agriculture and Environment’s research is focused on taking our primary industries (pastoral agriculture, crops, horticulture and forestry) into a sustainable future, and ensuring the conservation of our indigenous biodiversity and landscapes.

Agriculture at Massey is about understanding and optimising the growth of plants and animals for food, fibre and other products and to sustain and enhance our resources and people’s lives.

We aim to find the right balance between production and sustainability. The innovations we bring to the primary industries come from our trans-disciplinary approach across the food value chain.

Some of the research expertise are:

  • Agribusiness
  • Agronomy
  • GIS and geoinformatics
  • Horticulture
  • Māori agriculture and horticulture
  • Plant science
  • Smart farm and farm systems
  • Soil and land management
  • Water management

Natural environment research: Our natural resources of land, water and air support our livelihoods, lifestyles and biodiversity. Massey University’s research around our natural environment is focused on understanding and creating a sustainable future for our unique flora, fauna and land.

  • Research expertise
  • Biodiversity and ecosystem health
  • Conservation
  • Earth sciences and volcanology
  • Ecology
  • Environmental management
  • Evolution
  • Geology
  • Physical geography
  • Planning
  • Soil and land management
  • Water management
  • Zoology

Which department am I in?

School of Agriculture and Environment

Study options

Full Time (3 - 4 years)

Tuition fees
NZ$7,241.00 (US$ 4,518) per year
NZ $6,480 - NZ $8,002/year. NZ Government has approved a policy for new international PhD applicants which offers international students the same level of fees as those paid by NZ domestic students

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Start date

13 July 2020, 22 February 2021

Venue

Massey University

Manawatu Campus,

Tennent Drive,

Palmerston North,

Turitea,

4474, New Zealand

Full Time (3 - 4 years)

Tuition fees
NZ$7,241.00 (US$ 4,518) per year
NZ $6,480 - NZ $8,002/year. NZ Government has approved a policy for new international PhD applicants which offers international students the same level of fees as those paid by NZ domestic students

*Price shown is for indicative purposes, please check with institution

Start date

13 July 2020, 22 February 2021

Venue

Auckland Campus

Massey University Auckland (East Precinct),

Albany Expressway (SH17),

AUCKLAND,

Albany,

0632, New Zealand

Entry requirements

For students from United States

Applicants must have equivalent or better of a relevant Bachelor's (Hons) or Master's Degree with First or Second Class Honours, Division 1 (B+ and above) with sufficient prior experience of independent research at postgraduate level. English Language Requirements: IELTS - 6.5 (no band less than 6.0); TOEFL iBT- 90 overall (min 20 in Writing); PTE Academic - 58 Overall (min 50 in communicative skills); Cambridge English - 176.

For international students

Enrolment for a PhD is available to candidates who have completed a postgraduate bachelor's (honours) or master's degree with First Class Honours or Second Class Honours (Division I), B+ equivalent, or those who hold comparable qualifications.

Students from a country where English is not the first language, must obtain a minimum English Language competency level.

  • IELTS score of 6.5 (no band less than 6.0)
  • TOEFL iBT score of 90 overall (min 20 in Writing)
  • PTE Academic score of 58 Overall (min 50 in communicative skills)
  • Cambridge English score of 176 overall and all bands 169 or better

Find your nearest IELTS test centre and test dates

There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.

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About this uni

Massey University conducts ground-breaking research and delivers outstanding learning opportunities.

  • Over 5,000 international students from around 100 countries
  • Innovative campuses in three cities
  • A wide range of programmes to choose from foundation to PhD