This Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga project incorporates most of the secondary schools and wharekura within the Rotorua school zone. From the literature, data gathered, and the matching and discussion of this information; the research team’s aim is that educators, parents and whānau will better understand the nature of teaching, learning and home socialisation patterns that support Māori student success.

Interviews, focus group discussions and surveys involving successful Māori students, their whānau, teachers and principals will enable examination of the multiplicity of factors that support Māori student achievement. The findings will be disseminated widely to offer examples of student, whānau, teaching and school practices that support Māori educational success.

This project builds on a pilot project with a Rotorua secondary school already successfully undertaken by the research team.


Professor Angus Hikairo Macfarlane (University of Canterbury)

Dr Melinda Webber (University of Auckland)

Hīria McRae  (Victoria University of Wellington)

Dr Candy Cookson Cox (Ua-Cox Consulting Ltd, Rotorua)


Book chapters

Macfarlane, A. (2012). Kia hiwa rā! Listen to culture: A counter narrative to standard assessment practices in psychology. In R. Nairn, P. Pehi, R. Black & W. Waitoki, Ka tū, ka oho: Visions of a bicultural partnership in psychology (pp. 275–288). Wellington, New Zealand: New Zealand Psychological Society.

Macfarlane, A., Macfarlane, S., Savage, C. & Glynn, T. (2012). Inclusive education and Māori communities in Aotearoa New Zealand: Introducing a paradigm of cultural affirmation. In S. Carrington & J. MacArthur (Eds.), Teaching in inclusive school communities (pp. 163–186). Brisbane, Australia: John Wiley & Sons.   

Macfarlane, A., & Macfarlane, S. (2012). Weaving the dimensions of culture and learning: Implications for educators. In B. Kaur (Ed.), Understanding teaching and learning: Classroom research revisited (pp. 213–224). Rotterdam, The Netherlands: Sense Publishers.    

Macfarlane, S., & Macfarlane, A. (2012). Diversity and inclusion in early childhood education: A bicultural approach to engaging Māori potential. In D. Gordon-Burns, A. Gunn, K. Purdue & N. Surtees (Eds.), Te aotūroa tātaki: Inclusive early childhood education. Perspectives on inclusion, social justice and equity from Aotearoa New Zealand (pp. 21–38). Wellington, New Zealand: NZCER Press.

Peer Reviewed Journal Papers

Macfarlane, S. and Macfarlane, A. (2014) Culturally responsive evidence based special education practice: Whaia ki te ara tika. Waikato Journal of Education (Special Edition):pp.10-18

Cavanagh, T., Macfarlane, A., Glynn, T., & Macfarlane, S. (2012). Creating peaceful and effective schools through a culture of care. Discourse: Cultural Politics of Education, 33(3), 1–13.

Macfarlane, A. (2012). ‘Other’ education down-under: Indigenising the discipline for psychologists and specialist educators. Other Education: The Journal of Educational Alternatives, 1(1), 205–225.

Conference Presentations

Macfarlane, A. (2014). Engaging and motivating diverse learners. Keynote address presented at the Western Institute of Technology at Taranaki, New Plymouth, 4 February. Macfarlane, A. (2014). Culturally Inclusive Pedagogies: Motivating diverse learners. Keynote address presented at Whakatū School’s Learning Community Launch, Whakatū Marae, Nelson. 30 January Macfarlane, A. (2013). He aka mātauranga: Linking the vines of research and practice. Keynote address presented at the National Association of Research in Education Conference, University of Otago, Dunedin, 28 November. Macfarlane, A., Webber, M. & Herbert, A. (2013). Ka Awatea: An iwi examination of Māori students’ success. Plenary address presented at the Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga Annual Research Symposium, Trinity Wharf, Tauranga, 26 November. Macfarlane, A., Webber, M. & Herbert, A. (2013). Discourses for community innovation. Designated presentation for the International Research Advisory Panel, Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, Langham Hotel, Auckland, 12 November. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Culturally responsive pedagogy: A nexus of research and teaching for nursing educators. Keynote address presented at the Australasian Nurse Educators Conference, Te Papa Museum, Wellington, 11 October. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Kia pai ake: Better is best in alternative education programmes. Keynote address presented at the National Alternative Education Conference, Quality Hotel, Parnell, 10 October. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Me whakawhiti: crossing cultural borders. Keynote address presented at the Cutting Edge Addiction Practitioners Association Aotearoa – New Zealand conference, Rotorua Convention Centre, Rotorua, 13 September. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Aka rangahau: Linking the vines of kaupapa Māori research. Invited speaker at Kingitanga Day, University of Waikato, Hamilton, 12 September. Macfarlane, A. & Macfarlane, S. (2013) Diversity and Democracy in Inclusive Education: Indigenising Research and Practice. Keynote address presented at the Inclusive Education Colloquium, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, 28-30 July. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Discourses for Diversity: Introducing a sociocultural view of teacher education Keynote address presented at the National TEFANZ Forum, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, 25 July. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Cultural markers in midwifery and nursing studies. Invited speaker at the Ngā Manukura o Apopo Conference, Rehua Marae, Christchurch, 13 June. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Cultural markers for disability studies in education. Keynote address presented at the International Disability studies in Education Conference, University of Canterbury, Christchurch, 8 June. Macfarlane, A. (2013). Diversity and the Academy: More reasons for hope. Invited speaker address presented at the national Tuia Te Ako Conference at Te Wānanga o Raukawa, Otaki, 9 April Macfarlane, A. (2012, December). Cultural foundations in the academy. Keynote address at the Inaugural Conference for Foundation and Bridging Educators New Zealand. Auckland, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, June). Culturally responsive practices. Keynote address at the Canterbury Primary Principals’ Association Conference. Christchurch, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, November). Discipline, democracy and diversity. Keynote address at the Indigenous Psychologies Conference. Auckland, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, July). Keynote address: Diversity’s challenge to tertiary educators. National Teaching and Learning Conference. Timaru & Auckland, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, October). Do you read me? Māori students’ plea to educators. Keynote address at the International Reading Comprehension Symposium. Christchurch, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, October). Getting it right for Māori. Keynote address at the Nelson Principals’ Association Conference. Nelson, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, October). He aka mātauranga: Leading between the vines. Keynote address  at the International Reading Association Conference. Hastings, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, August). The heart, the head and the hand. Keynote address at the Hawkes Bay Principals’ Association Conference. Napier, New Zealand.

Macfarlane, A. (2012, June). Whānau aspirations for special education services. International Indigenous Development Research Conference 2012. Ngā Pae o te Māramatanga, Auckland, New Zealand.



Project commenced:

Research Lead(s) and Team

Angus Macfarlane is Professor of Māori Research at the University of Canterbury. He is an experienced educator and practitioner and has been an advisor and professional development provider for Special Education Services and the Ministry of Education on a number of national projects. His interest is the exploration of cultural concepts and strategies that affect positively on professional practice, on which he published widely.

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