What is Tuākana?

Mā te tuakana te teina e tōtika, Mā te teina te tuakana e tōtika. | From the older sibling the younger one learns the right way to do things, and from the younger sibling the older one learns to be tolerant.

Tuākana is an indigenous Māori and Pacific philosophy of care that is grounded and informed by Māori kaupapa and Pacific ways of being and knowing. The ideology of Tuākana is founded on the  whakatauki ‘mā te tuakana e tōtika te teina, mā te teina e tōtika te tuakana’. The concept is also shared in the Pacific region such as Tahiti, Fiji and Niue. 

The concept of tuākana-tēina, demonstrates the importance of the relationship fostered between the older sibling as tuakana and the younger sibling as teina. The tuakana has the responsibility to provide guidance to the teina; as the senior person in the relationship their knowledge, skills and expertise are shared and imparted to the teina.

The knowledge transfer that takes place in this relationship is reciprocal, with the tuakana also learning from their teina. Tuākana programmes are across all Faculties and Te Tumu Herenga | Library and Learning Services and is where Māori and Pacific thrive on campus. You will find whakawhanaungatanga, tutorials, wānanga, fonotaga, workshops and dedicated spaces focused on indigenous success.

The community is jointly overseen by the following offices

There are currently 15 programmes that are part of the wider Tuākana Learning Community, known by a variety of names.

Hear from the community on what Tuākana is to them.

Tuākana Learning Communities

Contact us

If you have any questions in relation to Tuākana, please reach out to us at tuakana@auckland.ac.nz.