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Awanuiārangi research recognised with national awards

05 December 2017

Dr Agnes McFarland, inaugural recipient of the NZARE Ranginui Walker Te Reo Māori Doctoral Award

Research achievements by Māori academics at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi have been recognised with national awards.
Dr Agnes McFarland was named the inaugural recipient of the New Zealand Association for Research in Education (NZARE) Ranginui Walker Te Reo Māori Doctoral Award in late November. This new award for doctoral research in Education written in te reo Māori is awarded to a member of NZARE who has completed a high-quality doctoral thesis in te reo. Announced at the NZARE annual conference at the University of Waikato, the honour acknowledged Dr McFarland’s doctoral research and her other high-quality research produced in te reo Māori. Dr McFarland was a keynote speaker at the Māori Caucus pre-conference hui on November 19, at which the award was presented.

Earlier in November, Dr McFarland and Awanuiārangi colleague Professor Taiarahia Black won the Te Reo Māori section of the 2017 Ngā Kupu Ora Māori Book Awards. Run by Massey University, the awards celebrate Māori writing, publishing and journalism. Dr McFarland and Professor Black won the award for Te Mauri o Te Whare, a collection of essays written by Awanuiārangi staff and postgraduate students pertaining to Māori teaching, learning, place, history and literature, published by NZCER Press. The Awanuiārangi research partnership has received nominations for Ngā Kupu Ora awards for two previous books in their series of academic publications in te reo Māori, which focus on mātauranga Māori.

Another Awanuiārangi research collaboration has just been published. The new book by Dr McFarland and Professor Nathan Matthews, Head of the School of Indigenous Graduate Studies, focuses on Māori research methodologies and is written in te reo Māori. Published on Friday, December 1, it is the first publication of its kind. It includes contributions from experienced Māori research academics from universities and wānanga across the country, including Dr McFarland, Professor Matthews, Professor Black and Awanuiārangi CEO Professor Wiremu Doherty. It aims to provide a new resource for students writing their masters and doctoral theses in te reo Māori.

Professor Matthews said Awanuiārangi has a growing number of students writing doctoral and masters theses in te reo Māori and there is also an increasing need across the tertiary sector as more Māori students seek to write their higher degrees in their own language.

“This phenomenon reflects the decades of work to validate mātauranga Māori by Māori academics such as Sir Hirini Moko Mead, Mason Durie, Hugh Kawharu and Ranginui Walker, and of the likes of Wharehuia Milroy, Pou Temara and Timoti Karetu, who pushed te reo Māori as a vehicle for the transmission of that knowledge. Now our current students are combining the two approaches.”