Education and Social Work student stories
Daniel Kelly, Teaching (Primary)
Ngāti Kahungunu, Togafuafua ki Hamoa, Arorangi ki Rarotonga
Daniel is studying for his Bachelor of Education (Teaching), Primary specialisation.
I’m confident that my degree will open a lot of doors for me in the future.
“I had some amazing teachers throughout my schooling and I too want to positively impact young people’s lives. The University of Auckland is world ranked, and number one in New Zealand for Education.* I’m confident that my degree will open a lot of doors for me in the future.”
“The programme brings the New Zealand curriculum to life and shows you how to teach particular subjects. This has grown my confidence significantly.”
A great learning community
“I’m surrounded by people who are here for the same reason: we all want to make a difference in the world of education and inspire students. Meeting new people has been a highlight of my journey – and has shown me the importance of relationships between teachers.”
The University has supported my move from Hawke’s bay to Auckland
“Moving up from Flaxmere in the Hawke’s Bay has been a challenge, but one that I’ve enjoyed. Auckland is always pumping. There are always things to do! It’s a super-diverse city and has opened my eyes to bigger possibilities and opportunities.
“I was lucky to receive the Māori High Achievers Scholarship, which allowed me to move here. It paid for my first year in accommodation and helped with textbooks and support. I was also grateful to receive the Start Smart Scholarship for Education and Social Work students.”
*QS World Rankings by Subject 2020
Songying Yu, Teaching (Early Childhood)
Songying is studying for her Bachelor of Education (Teaching), Early Childhood specialisation
After all my practicum experiences, I can now confidently handle different situations. I saw myself growing so much through every single practicum.
“I was very shy in high school, but I have grown so much in this university. I remember I was so lost when I first entered an ECE centre as a student teacher on practicum, and I faced difficulties when first working with infants. After all my practicum experiences, I can now confidently handle different situations. I saw myself growing so much through every single practicum.
“I’ve been exposed to such a wide range of courses and resources – and inspired by a lot of lecturers. I want to contribute to early childhood education, combining the knowledge I’ve learnt with my own ideas.”
English-language support and literacy
“The DELNA English-language testing was really well supported and helped to enrich my academic writing. I also attended some workshops for academic writing in the library this year, which were really useful.
“I especially enjoyed the Language and Literacy course this year. It was very inspiring – particularly the discussion about how to support bilingual children, and how to understand different cultures and languages in Aotearoa. I was even able to discuss the idea of ‘discourse’ by talking about KPop! Linking course content with my interests inspired me to think more about identity.”
“I love the coexistence of stability and vitality at the University of Auckland. It’s great that the uni promotes freedom of speech but safeguards the rights and interests of all students. No room for racism. And the lecturers and teachers care for everyone.”
Caitlyn Rarity, Sport, Health and Physical Education
Caitlyn is studying for her Bachelor of Sport, Health and Physical Education.
At University I've loved learning about the body and how it moves and then being able to test these theories in practical settings.
“I’ve always been involved in sports, and Physical Education was my favourite subject in school. At university I’ve loved learning about the body and how it moves and then being able to test these theories in practical settings. I am hoping to continue my studies after this degree so that I can become a teacher or sports psychologist.
“I chose the University of Auckland as they are one of the top universities in the world. Degrees from Auckland are well recognised internationally. I also picked Auckland because they redesigned the Sport, Health and Physical Education degree a few years ago, so the BSportHPE is a fresh new programme.”
The variety of courses
“So far this year we’ve had courses on muscles and bones, games, lifespan development, sociology, teaching and learning, physiology and food education. These courses give you a taste of all aspects of sport, whether you want to be in teaching, health education or another profession.”
“The skill analysis assessment was one of my favourite activities as we were able to analyse our own performance in a sport.”
“For me the best part about studying at the University of Auckland has been the support from the lecturers. They’re always there to help us with assessment or even if we are just feeling stressed. I also like the family feeling between the students. With a smaller cohort than other programmes, we’ve formed a whānau that we feel comfortable with. We’re always encouraging each other to reach our full potential.”
Jngwen Han, Teaching English as a Second Language
Jingwen is studying for her Bachelor of Education (TESOL).
I’ve now learnt a lot of far broader theories and techniques. And there is a lot of practical work combined with the theory.
“In my home country, language teaching is quite standardised – always the grammar-translation method. I’ve now learnt a lot of far broader theories and techniques. And there is a lot of practical work combined with the theory. That will help me later when I study to become a school teacher.
“The TESOL programme has helped me to cultivate an intercultural view of language and language speakers. So that’s great preparation for when I eventually enrol in a teacher certification programme.”
“But English is not just a tool, and language study is not just about grammar. The TESOL programme has helped me see the culture behind the learning. There are so many diverse cultures in New Zealand, and many people use English as their second language. This environment gives me a lot of chances to apply TESOL theory in daily life.”
Orientation and other support
“Before the first semester, the faculty held an orientation. They told us what to expect, and we got a programme handbook with lots of details. Also, they arranged mentors and study buddies for us. I’ve had a lot of academic support. Workshops such as Let’s Talk, Critical Thinking and Essay Writing have helped me broaden my outlook and skills.”
A great country for international students
“New Zealand is a very easy country for international students. People smile a lot and are friendly to strangers. And passengers say thank you to the bus driver. That’s so sweet!”