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Master of Surveying (MSurv)

This course is available


Level of Study

Master's Degree


1 year

Next start date

Expected Feb 2024


University of Otago


The Master of Surveying (MSurv) is a one- or two-year postgraduate programme that has, as its prerequisite for possible, an undergraduate degree in surveying. Applicants with a strong academic record, possibly evidenced by an Honours degree, may be permitted to complete the degree in one year by thesis only. Other applicants will generally be required to undertake a year of coursework followed by a thesis year, although the course work requirements may be reduced in certain cases.

It is expected that the thesis incorporate a substantial research project that either contributes to existing fields of research, or begins to develop a new area.

Structure of the Programme

The programme of study shall consist of

  • appropriate papers, normally as prescribed for the Postgraduate Diploma in Science in Surveying or as separately prescribed, and taken in the first year of the programme, and
  • a thesis embodying the results of supervised research.

A candidate whose qualification for possible to the programme is the degree of Bachelor of Surveying or the Postgraduate Diploma in Science in Surveying may achieve the degree by completing a thesis alone.

A candidate may be exempted from some of the required papers as prescribed in regulation 2(a)(i) on the basis of previous study.

A candidate shall, before commencing the investigation to be described in the thesis, secure the approval of the Dean of Surveying for the topic, the supervisor(s), and the proposed course of investigation.

A candidate may not present a thesis which has previously been accepted for another degree.

A candidate taking the degree by papers and thesis must pass both the papers and the thesis components.

For the thesis, the research should be of a kind that a diligent and competent student should complete within one year of full-time study.

Intake Semester: Anytime for thesis-only

Entry criteria

Admission to the programme shall be subject to the approval of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences).

Every applicant must either:

  • be a graduate, or
  • have alternative qualifications or experience acceptable to the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Sciences).
  • In considering an applicant's qualifications, regard will be had to the detail of the course of study followed to gain the qualification, as well as the applicant's performance in the programme.

English language requirements

  • IELTS (Academic module) (including IELTS Online) - Overall score of 6.5, no individual band below 6.0.
  • TOEFL iBT - Overall score of 90 and a writing score of 21.
  • C1 Advanced (previously Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)) & (previously Cambridge English Proficiency (CPE)) - Overall score of 176 (with no individual band below 169).
  • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic - Overall score of 58 with no communicative skills score below 50.
  • Language Cert - International ESOL: C1 Expert (LRWS) with a high pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill OR C2 Mastery (LRWS) with a pass overall and no less than a pass in each skill.
  • NZCEL - NZCEL 5 Academic endorsement
  • English New Zealand's Accredited Pathway Assessment - Assessment Level 3 (with no skill lower than Level 2).
  • APIEL Advanced Placement International English Language Examination - Grade 4 or higher.

Intake: Anytime for thesis-only option

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