MSc Cross-Cultural Psychology

Find out about the MSc in Cross-cultural Psychology—the only programme of its kind in Australasia.

Alicia Bethel - MastersThe staff in the cross-cultural psychology programme are world-class scholars and learning from their expertise is priceless. The programme is unique as it offers opportunities to engage with the material both academically and experientially—creating a perfect blend of theory and practice.
Alicia Bethel, MSc Student between 2013 and 2015

Current students

Read about our current MSc Cross-cultural students.


This Masters programme is suitable for those who plan to work with culturally diverse groups in New Zealand and to undertake research and policy analysis on related issues.

The MSc in Cross-Cultural Psychology is the only such programme in Australasia. Our students benefit from:

  • an exchange programme with the University of Hawai’i
  • research based in a home country
  • the support and involvement of the Centre for Applied Cross-Cultural Research.

Degree structure

The MSc Cross-Cultural is in two parts.

Admission to Part 1 is via application and an interview. Refer here for details.
In Part 1, students take a combination of courses on topics relating to cross cultural psychology including the CPSY 580 research preparation course. Students must complete the compulsory courses and choose appropriate core courses to complete the requirements of the MSc.

Part 2 is the completion of a thesis.

Part 1

Compulsory courses

  • CPSY 580 Research Preparation
  • PSYC 433 Current Issues in Cross-cultural Psychology or PSYC 461 Advanced Statistics
  • PSYC 434 Conducting Research Across Cultures

Core courses

Choose two of the following:

  • PSYC 423 Culture and Social Behaviour
  • PSYC 431 Culture and Human Development
  • PSYC 432 Applied Cross Cultural Psychology
  • PSYC 462 Cultures in Contact
  • PSYC 463 Indigenous Psychology

Optional courses

  • Up to 60 points may be replaced by courses including those from the University of Hawai’i, with the approval of the Course Coordinator. When applying, optional courses should be ranked in order of preference for each trimester.

Part 2

Once students have completed the requirements of PART 1, they are then eligible to apply for entry into Part 2 of the Masters. This will take approximately one year full time. The Masters Part 2 thesis is worth 120 points.

Students must apply for entry into Part 2 by completing the Masters application process. There are three application dates per year:

  • 1 March (to enrol by 1 May)
  • 1 July (to enrol by 1 September)
  • 1 November (to enrol by 1 February)

Refer to the Masters application process for further information.

Sara MorganI feel I have gained a wide perspective of the field of Cross-cultural Psychology, especially how it contributes to the field of Psychology as a whole. I think the Masters does a great job balancing theoretical and applied aspects of the field, with many opportunities to use what I have learned in real life.
Sara Morgan Watters, MSc Student between 2014 and 2015

Entry requirements

Students applying for the MSc Cross-Cultural should have:

  • an undergraduate degree in Psychology or a related discipline at least a B+ grade average (note that from 2011 the average will be taken from the four best 300 level Psychology courses)
  • completed a research methods and statistics course at an advanced level such as PSYC 325

Students who have English as a second language must pass admission requirements for language proficiency.

Admission to the programme is by application and interview. Read the application requirements and submission dates here.


Our offerings may vary from year-to-year, so if you are interested in studying towards a MSc in Cross-cultural Psychology, please contact the Programme Director.

Students applying for entry into Part 1 of the MSc Cross Cultural Psychology should enroll via the online enrolment system. Students applying for entry into Part 2 of the MSc should refer to the Masters application process.

International students will need to contact Wellington University International to begin their admission and enrolment into the Masters programme. When submitting your application form to Wellington University International be sure to consult the postgraduate prospectus and include the courses you are planning to take.


For more information about the programme, please refer to the Postgraduate Prospectus or alternatively contact:

  • Rita McNamara, Programme Director
  • Lynley Kadesi, Thesis Administrator (Part 2)

Senior Lecturer in Cross Cultural Psychology
School of Psychology

Lynley profile picture

Lynley Kadesi

Administrator, Graduate Programmes
School of Psychology