Level 2: Current Graduate Capability Themes

Note that while the themes are numbered, this is not intended to be a prioritised list.

1. Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice

"Graduates of the University are expected to understand the thinking, research, theory and practice in their field of study and appreciate the role of their discipline in its contexts.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 
Taumata Teitei is consistent with expectation that students understand the thinking, evidence and practices of their discipline.

Taumata Teitei emphasises the role of indigenous knowledge and knowledges of place, which should be reflected in this theme.

The notion of ‘practice’ in Taumata Teitei should include knowledge of working and cultural practices and to extend beyond the discipline of study. 

The feedback from staff emphasised the inherently multi-dimensional and complex nature of the world and the importance of transdisciplinary knowledge, which should be incorporated in this theme, without diminishing the importance of discipline expertise.

2. Critical Thinking

"Graduates of the University are expected to be able to contest knowledge and practice, critically consider ideas, texts and research and think reflectively and reflexively.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 

Taumata Teitei says little about
critical thinking specifically but is consistent with the notion that our
graduates are thoughtful people and skilful thinkers.

The mention of reflective and reflexive thinking aligns with Taumata Teitei’s statement that students will be able to relate their courses to their personal lives.

‘Critical thinking’ does not afford status to the breadth of types of thinking mentioned in Taumata Teitei, such as: creative thinking, adaptive thinking,
transdisciplinary thinking, integrative thinking, ethical reasoning, entrepreneurial thinking, ethical/principle-based thinking. These should be included in this theme.

That graduates ‘contest’ knowledge should be aligned with Taumata Teitei values of service and respect and with a commitment to collaborative knowledge creation. 

3. Solution Seeking

"Graduates of the University are expected to be able to apply theory, analysis, research and creative skills to solve problems and make reasoned decisions. They are expected to be able to consider historical, long-term and big picture perspectives, to systematically address complex problems and to be inventive in their solution seeking.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 

Taumata Teitei emphasises impact and contributing to the world by developing ‘solutions that shape and advance our

Taumata Teitei embraces a more situated and socially mediated understanding of our impact on the world, recognising partnerships and the knowledge and perspectives of others. It also mentions the need to develop ethical solutions under conditions of uncertainty and in the face of wicked problems, that might involve multiple pathways of action (transdisciplinarity). These ideas should be captured in this theme.

The emphasis in Taumata Teitei on looking wide in terms of perspectives to be considered should be incorporated, and consideration of impact on society.

Feedback from staff called for more emphasis on problem solving in this theme.

(The description of solution seeking includes several of the forms of thinking listed as important and omitted from critical thinking above)

4. Communication and Engagement

"Graduates of the University are expected to be able to receive and interpret information, express ideas and share knowledge with diverse audiences in a range of media and formats. They are expected to be able to establish a rapport and build collaborative relationships with individuals and groups.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 

Taumata Teitei calls for students to be “engaged in... their digital, social and physical contexts”. There are also repeated mentions of our students as leaders which implies high levels of ability in both communication and engagement, and an emphasis on digital impacts. There is reference to the university being an environment that privileges human connections and collaboration with students which is consistent with this theme in the graduate profile.

This theme should emphasise the capabilities required for community engagement with diverse peoples, including the immediate communities of the University of
Auckland, Aotearoa and the Pacific

The capabilities should reflect that Taumata Teitei calls for graduates who understand and can act in leadership service roles, going beyond engagement.

Emphasise that our students are engaged in digital, social and physical contexts.

Contextualise employability related capabilities and professional capabilities in this theme.

5. Independence and Integrity

"Graduates of the University are expected to be able to learn and work autonomously and ethically. They are expected to be lifelong learners, to show resilience, proactivity and an ability to make principled decisions in academic and professional spheres.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 

This theme resonates with Taumata Teitei in several ways. Taumata Teitei describes “Bold learners”, “empowered creativity and informed risk-taking”. Taumata Teitei emphasises ethics and values which are captured in this theme by “integrity” and the ability to make “principled decisions”. The mention of resilience is consistent with calls from staff for a greater focus on resilience.

In Taumata Teitei, ‘service, respect and excellence’ capture our ways of being more accurately than does ‘independence’ and this theme should be adjusted to reflect that.

Emphasise the development of each student’s identity, including their cultural identity and a professional identity.  

The reference to ‘academic and professional spheres’ should be expanded to include the civic and community spheres which Taumata Teitei refers to.

A greater focus on emotional health, wellbeing and on empowerment.

Capture the skills needed for students to learn continuously, over their lifetime, in response to changing professional and personal demands and preferences.

6. Social and Environmental Responsibilities

"Graduates of the University are expected to acknowledge Māori worldviews and the historic place of the Treaty of Waitangi. They are expected to be respectful of cultural and other forms of diversity and to embrace difference. Our graduates are expected to recognise a role for themselves in creating a sustainable future and be able to consider the social, cultural, environmental and economic consequences of national and international issues.”

Taumata Teitei Gaps and modifications 

Taumata Teitei highlights the importance of social justice and civic duty, the environment, societal needs, equity which are included at least in part by this theme.Taumata Teitei states that “we will be a place where te reo Māori and Te Tiriti can flourish and where Mātauranga Māori and Te Tiriti o Waitangi are valued, fostered, protected and used responsibly by us all.”Taumata Teitei has also adopted te ao Māori principles of Manaakitanga, Whanaungatanga, and Kaitiakitanga.

The description of this theme does not convey the importance this is given in Taumata Teitei, and it covers a very wide range of capabilities. This theme should be split into two themes.

One of the themes should reflect that Taumata Teitei builds on the te ao Māori principles and states that learners will be “conversant in Mātauranga Māori, kaupapa Māori and the Tiriti o Waitangi principles and accountabilities”, and that learners should be connected to rather than just acknowledging kaupapa Māori and Te Tiriti.

The other theme should expand on social and environmental responsibilities more expansively, reflecting the priority for our graduates to “make the world better tomorrow than it is today”.