Welcome to the Faculty

Professor Stephen Dobson, Dean, welcomes you to the Wellington Faculty of Education, Te Whānau o Ako Pai.

Stephen Dobson

Kia ora, welcome, Talofa lava, Kia orana, Mālō e lelei, Ni sa bula vinaka, Faka'alofa lahi atu, Fakatalofa atu, Kam na mauri, Gud de tru, Kaselehlie, Halo olgeta, Ia orana, Aloha mai e, 欢迎, اهلا و سهلا, Selamat datang.

It is said that the experts in education accompany the learners on their journey. Some wish to be teachers in early childhood, primary or secondary education, while for others it is the science of learning and critical understanding of society that attracts, rather than being the teacher in a classroom or a traditional place of learning. You may wish to use your knowledge to work with youth, in industry, business or in caring professions. For me, it has always been a mix of all these things as I seek to understand with others how and why we learn and teach at different periods in our lives.

The questions are multiple and the answers are just as numerous, generating new questions: what is motivation; why do some learn easier than others; what makes a great teacher; what is science and how can it be taught; why do we play; what is brain development; what is IQ; how do we read, write and add; how do we address equity and disparity; and how do we plan and undertake problem-based learning? In a phrase, ‘lifelong learning and teaching from cradle to grave’ is a shared endeavour.

All who are students in the Wellington Faculty of Education at Victoria University of Wellington are invited to join us in this shared project. It does not matter whether you arrive straight from school or from abroad, if you are a postgraduate student or are already qualified in a career and wish to reskill or upskill, or if you want to take one or more courses as electives, minors or majors. We have much to offer.

A faculty such as ours has a long tradition of high-quality teaching, learning, research and engagement with society. Central skills are learnt by our students. They can be hard skills about knowledge and they can be soft skills about leadership, working in teams, learning to learn, communication and planning. For those who wish to qualify as teachers, our initial teacher education programmes are accredited by the New Zealand Education Council. For those interested in our Educational Psychology programme, we offer an accredited professional pathway, recognised nationally and internationally.

The cultural dimension is central in all learning and teaching, as a science and a profession. In some cultures it happens in threes: the student, the teacher and a third person who is the checker as it happens. In some cultures, learning is by doing in the outdoors, under natural conditions or through arts such as dance and music. The variations are numerous and, in our faculty, students will learn about the art of teaching, learning and research in many settings. They will be equipped and highly sought after to meet the challenges faced by many cultures present in New Zealand or throughout the world, near and far.

Underpinning all our work is esteemed and cutting-edge research into education in all its complexity: the understanding of learning and of learners; the development of education policy and practice in government and schooling sectors; the design and evaluation of teaching and learning practice; how individuals of different cultural or linguistic background or of different abilities are, or can be, catered for and celebrated; the nature of transitions in life; how people learn together in professional communities; the prevention of bullying and victimisation; understanding the communication needs of people with autism; and the way in which education must honour the Treaty of Waitangi. This research is part of international scholarship that is contributed to by scholars in many countries. Our postgraduate research students work with us to contribute to this and we support them as they publish internationally and develop global networks.

Details of all our qualifications are available on the website and our staff are always ready to answer any further queries you might have. We look forward to welcoming you into our community.