1 May 2014

Calls for Govt to attract Maori students

8:02 am on 1 May 2014

The head of the Psychological Society says re-instatement of the student allowance and better recruitment strategies would help counter the shortage of Maori in the sector.

The society and the college of clinical psychologists said there was a growing shortage of practitioners in New Zealand.

Maori students studying psychology said the changes to student allowances put them off starting their postgraduate degree.

Maori students studying psychology said the changes to student allowances put them off starting their postgraduate degree. Photo: PHOTO NZ

From this year, postgraduate students were no longer eligible for a student allowance of $10,868 a year.

A college of clinical psychologists survey showed 80 percent of Maori students studying psychology said the changes to student allowances put them off starting their postgraduate degree.

The degree can take up to eight years.

The Psychological Society president Peter Coleman said the Government needed to do more to attract Maori students, and re-instatement of the allowance was one way to do that.

He said it was much more beneficial for the patient when psychological needs for Maori were met by someone of the same background.

Ministry of Education statistics in 2010 showed Maori made up 4 percent of the practising psychologists.