Postgraduate study in Software Engineering

What can you study in Software Engineering?

A strong research focus is vital to the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and postgraduate study in Software Engineering is no exception. We boast expertise such as the Human Aspects in Software Engineering Lab (HASEL) and the Parallel Computing research group, giving you opportunities to tackle projects alongside world-class researchers using purpose-built facilities, with real-world applications.

Postgraduate study in Software Engineering is as broad as the field itself, so your focus may range from fundamental research that advances our understanding of the discipline, or applied knowledge, which can mean utilising the right principles in a number of domains. Some major topics may include:

  • Adaptive and multi-device user interfaces
  • Coping with semi-structured data
  • Domain-specific languages
  • Information transformation
  • Performance engineering
  • Signal processing
  • Software architecture
  • Software measurement
  • System evolution
  • Technology transfer

Entry requirements

Important requirements for international students

  • All international applicants should ensure that they meet all the programme’s entry requirements. You should only proceed with your application if your GPA matches or exceeds the requirements for your country listed in the engineering programme of your choice. Please do not apply if your GPA is below the minimum entry requirements, but consider the alternative study options that may be offered as a pathway into your preferred programme.
  • You are strongly advised to consider visa application times. Please be aware of the student visa processing times in your home country and submit the documentation needed well ahead of the Faculty of Engineering's programme application deadlines. For processing times, contact the New Zealand High Commission/Embassy or your education agent.
  • If you are applying for your second masters degree, you need to be aware that additional assessment requirements will take extra time. The Faculty of Engineering must assess your previous masters degree courses to ensure that they do not overlap with the courses in the University of Auckland programme that you have expressed interest in. You must therefore allow more time for your application to be processed, and be aware that further documentations may be required. Submit your application well in advance of the deadline if this is your situation, as you may also need to take visa application times into account.

Structuring your postgraduate programme in Software Engineering

Master of Engineering

120-point option

  • Completion of SOFTENG 796 ME Thesis (120 points)

180-point option

  • Completion of SOFTENG 796 ME Thesis (120 points)
  • At least 60 points from courses listed in the Master of Engineering Studies in Software Engineering schedule

Master of Engineering Studies (120 or 180 points, taught)

At least 45 points from the following:

no more than 45 points from SOFTENG 787–789 and 795

Semester One

  • COMPSYS 726 Robotics and Intelligent Systems (15 points)
  • SOFTENG 701 Advanced Software Engineering (15 points) enrolment opens 7 Dec 2023
  • SOFTENG 751 High Performance Computing (15 points) enrolment opens 7 Dec 2023
  • SOFTENG 754 Advanced Software Requirements Engineering (15 points) enrolment opens 7 Dec 2023
  • SOFTENG 787 Project X (15 points) 1 semester
  • SOFTENG 788 A&B Project Y (30 points) 2 semesters
  • SOFTENG 789 Project Z (30 points) 1 semester
  • SOFTENG 795 A&B Research Project (45 points) 2 semesters
  • SOFTENG 795 Research Project (45 points) 1 semester

Semester Two

  • COMPSYS 704 Advanced Embedded Systems (15 points)
  • COMPSYS 705 Formal Methods for Safety Critical Software (15 points)
  • SOFTENG 761 Advanced Agile and Lean Software Development (15 points) enrolment opens 7 Dec 2023


For a 120-point programme, up to 75 points from the following:

For a 180-point programme, up to 135 points from the following:

Semester One

  • SOFTENG 750 Software Development Methodologies (15 points)
  • COMPSCI 711 Parallel and Distributed Computing (15 points)
  • COMPSCI 734 Web, Mobile and Enterprise Computing (15 points) not offered in 2023

Semester Two

  • SOFTENG 702 Advanced Human Computer Interaction (15 points)
  • SOFTENG 752 Formal Specification and Design (15 points)
  • SOFTENG 762 Robotics Process Automation (15 points) enrolment opens 7 Dec 2023
  • COMPSCI 715 Advanced Computer Graphics (15 points)
  • COMPSCI 725 System Security (15 points)

For 120-point programme:
Or, up to 30 points from appropriate 600 and 700 level courses offered at this University, subject to approval by the Head of Department.

For a 180-point programme:
Or, up to 45 points from appropriate 600 and 700 level courses offered at this University, subject to approval by the Head of Department.

Help and advice

For general student enquiries, please contact the Student Hubs. 

If you would like further academic information, you can contact a Postgraduate Adviser.