Master of Physiotherapy Practice (MPhysioPrac)

The new Master of Physiotherapy Practice offers students and graduates an alternative path to practising as a physiotherapist in New Zealand and Australia – and opens the door for stimulating research opportunities.

As New Zealand’s first graduate-entry masters programme in physiotherapy, the MPhysioPrac is an exciting and unique vocation-focussed masters which draws on highly successful international graduate teaching and research models offered at respected institutions in Australia and the United Kingdom.

The programme concentrates on the New Zealand context. Physiotherapy practice is viewed through Māori and Pacific health models. It explores health equity, health systems and the social determinants of health. This equips graduates with the skills and competencies to be healthcare leaders in New Zealand.

Unique positioning, access to state-of-the-art technology, and well-established connections set this programme apart.

The MPhysioPrac is anchored within the Faculty of Science’s Department of Exercise Sciences and has strong connection to the Faculty of Medical Health Sciences. This unique positioning offers prospective students a comprehensive and unrivalled multidisciplinary approach to theory, practice and research, and broad scope for specialisation. Students learn alongside students from other disciplines which is more aligned to real-world experience.

Through the programme’s research component, students will work with internationally-recognised academics to contribute to world-leading research.

State-of-the-art equipment and technologies including laboratory-based and wearable devices open vast opportunities for research in human movement including physiology, biomechanics, and movement neuroscience research.

Through the programme’s research component, students will work with internationally-recognised academics to contribute to world-leading research.

Well-established formal partnerships for clinical experience, research and employment opportunities provide ongoing student benefit. The programme maintains extensive and exciting connections with Auckland, Waitematā, Counties Manukau and Waikato DHBs. Institutes including Auckland Bioengineering Institute, Liggins Institute and Healthy Hearts for Aotearoa New Zealand are situated on campus.

A comprehensive suite of courses from exercise prescription, muscular skeletal, acute, cardiac, neurological physiotherapy to legal and ethics, and more, will prepare students for a wide array of careers as community-based primary healthcare and private practitioners. The MPhysioPrac also allows academic progression to doctoral studies.

By the end of the programme, students will have completed 900-1000 hours of clinical practice and have a sound understanding of indigenous and ethnic models of health with cultural competency. They will have the skills to plan, design, develop and implement evidence-based interventions for their communities. On completion, graduates will be eligible to apply for registration from the Physiotherapy Board of New Zealand with reciprocal agreement from the Physiotherapy Board of Australia.

An undergraduate degree in Exercise Science will provide an ideal entry point into the programme. Equally, the programme is open to people with a relevant undergraduate degree with pre-requisites in functional and structural anatomy, exercise physiology, and neuroanatomy. The ability to communicate effectively and appropriately, and excellent interpersonal skills, will be critical to success.

The MPhysioPrac is not recommended for people who hold an undergraduate degree in Physiotherapy that enables them to apply to the Physiotherapy Board of New Zealand for registration in the Scope of Practice – Physiotherapist (General Scope).

Programme director: Associate Professor John Parsons

Associate Professor John Parsons

Associate professor John Parsons is a New Zealand registered physiotherapist with over 25 years of clinical, research and leadership experience. He is passionate about the design and delivery of models of physiotherapy that meet the needs of communities across Aotearoa New Zealand and is recognised internationally for research relating to supporting older people with complex needs.