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SEED projects 2018 – He vaka moana: Navigating Māori and Pasifika student success

Akongia Kia Ako: promoting learning to learn for Māori and Pasifika students

Dr Marcia Leenen-YoungDr Marcia Leenen-Young (Faculty of Arts)

The objectives of my SEED project shifted during the year due to changes in the Faculty, so the SEED grant was reallocated towards research logistics, with the objectives of providing funding for a research assistant, funding for koha (gifts/payment) and catering for interviews and focus groups; and funding to present research findings at the International Indigenous Research Conference, November 2018.

Although these changes were unexpected, the transition was relatively smooth. The project will contribute to reflections on Vaka Moana and the initiation of new learning initiatives that reflect student feedback on the way they learn and on the programme. I learnt a lot from this project in terms of project design, managing a research assistant (sometimes fraught), how to engage with different people working on research projects and the importance of modelling.

Because of the delay in beginning this project, initiatives from the study will be implemented in 2019 and 2020, after analysis of the data is complete. We have significant data on Pacific Arts students and their concepts of ‘learning to learn.’ and on Vaka Moana as a successful Pacific learning environment. Once analysed, the data will inform practice and provide evidence and impetus for learning initiatives going forward.