Social and cultural outcomes for wānanga students

Publication Details

This report provides descriptive breakdowns of the relationships between having studied at a wānanga and language, culture and socio-economic wellbeing. The appendix to the report provides further analysis controlling for background characteristics of wānanga students, which confirms the descriptive analysis in the main part of this report.

Author(s): Chris Lane and David Earle [Tertiary Sector Performance Analysis - Graduate Achievement, Vocations and Careers: Ministry of Education]

Date Published: December 2015


Key Findings

This report uses data from Te Kupenga 2013 to explore the relationship between attending wānanga and Māori language revitalisation and culture, identity and wellbeing.

Wānanga students, past and present, are drawn from two somewhat different population groups. One is those with a Māori language background – that is having Māori as a first language and/or having attended kōhanga, kura kaupapa Māori or wharekura. The other group consists of Māori living in neighbourhoods with high socio-economic deprivation, with or without a Māori language background.

Wānanga attendance is associated with stronger language and cultural outcomes. Wānanga students were more likely to have higher levels of current proficiency in te reo Māori and speak Māori at home. They also had stronger knowledge of Māori culture than other adult Māori. These relationships were still strong even after controlling for education and other background characteristics.

Wānanga attendance is associated with levels of social and economic wellbeing similar to those of other education choices for Māori. Wānanga students were on a par with other Māori adults in terms of economic and social wellbeing measures, having taken account of their background characteristics – including their highest qualification level.

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