New Zealand Education - Think New Logo


Massey University
Massey University logo

Postgraduate Diploma in Science and Technology (Plant Breeding)

This course is available


Level of Study

Postgraduate Certificate or Diploma


1 year

Next start date

Expected Feb 2023


Manawatu Campus


There is a shortage of applied plant breeders in New Zealand and overseas - you will be in demand in the industry. Many graduates have employment before they graduate.

When you study the Postgraduate Diploma in Science (Plant Breeding) at Massey University you will become a member of a significant international scientific community responsible for global food security.

This plant breeding major is unique in New Zealand. You will gain expertise in:

  • quantitative genetics & applied plant breeding methods
  • multisite experimental design
  • data analysis & interpretation
  • application of new molecular marker technologies in plant breeding
  • understand disciplines such as agronomy, plant protection, plant physiology.

Take advantage of our globally renowned expertise

This programme takes a multi-disciplinary and team approach to plant breeding.

You will be taught by highly skilled, internationally recognised and active researchers with expertise in areas like plant genetic resources, quantitative genetics, applied plant breeding, taxonomy and plant physiology. You’ll take part in applied field programs and learn from practicing scientists and experienced field breeders.

World-class equipment and facilities

As a plant breeding student you will have access to Massey’s world-leading equipment and facilities such as our extensive glasshouses and farms, molecule labs, the Dame Ella Campbell Herbarium, the Palynology Laboratory, Plant Growth Unit, Seed Testing Services, Massey Genome Service and the Manawatu Microscopy and Imaging Centre.

Relevant and topical

You’ll gain real-world experience by working and researching with organisations working on plant breeding. Physically located near Massey’s Manawatu campus, organisations such as AgResearch Grasslands Research Centre, Plant & Food and SCION often co-supervise our master’s and PhD students.

You’ll emerge with a relevant qualification valued by potential employers.

You will gain the skills to work as

  • a commercial applied plant breeder
  • a research scientist
  • an agronomist
  • an agricultural advisor, or
  • continue into a PhD programme.

Highly sought after
Globally there is a shortage of plant breeders, so you will be in demand.

Further study

This qualification shares many aspects of the Master of Science (Plant Breeding) qualification. However, this is a shorter qualification (can be completed in a year) and you will not undertake a research project.

If you successfully complete this PGDipSc you can conduct a 120 credit thesis to achieve your MSc qualification. To progress to a PhD, you need to successfully complete a Bachelor of Honours or a MSc qualification.

Entry criteria

To enter the Postgraduate Diploma in Science and Technology (Plant Breeding) you will have been awarded or qualified for:

  • a Bachelor’s degree, or equivalent, with a major in the intended postgraduate subject, or equivalent, with a minimum B- average in the majoring 300-level courses, or
  • a postgraduate certificate that includes 30 credits of courses from the schedule to the Postgraduate Diploma in Science and Technology, or equivalent.

You will need to provide verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

Students from a country where English is not the first language, must obtain a minimum English Language competency level.

  • IELTS score of 6.5 (no band less than 6.0)
  • TOEFL iBT score of 90 overall (min 20 in Writing)
  • PTE Academic score of 58 Overall (min 50 in communicative skills)
  • Cambridge English score of 176 overall and all bands 169 or better

Studying in NZ

Border reopeningPlan your study experience

Share this course

Share this course