Kaupapa Māori research – guest talk from Dr Anne. A Hiha

On August 11th Wellpark College was lucky to have Dr Anne. A Hiha talk to our students and staff about Kaupapa Māori research. Dr Hiha has a vast range of experience and expertise which includes pedagogy and research, in particular Kaupapa Māori research.

Research methods and critical thinking are weaved through the curriculum at Wellpark College, and the students learn about different research approaches including quantitative, qualitative and Kaupapa Māori methodologies. Having Dr Hiha present was a wonderful way to deepen the students and staffs understanding of the taonga that is Kaupapa Māori research.  The first year naturopathy students compiled a list of questions for Dr Hiha in their class Introduction to Research and Critical Thinking. Topics the students were particularly interested in were sent to Dr Hiha in preparation for her presentation; Dr Hiha’s presentation was tailored to the areas of interest for the students.

During the kōrero, Dr Hiha covered some of the history of Kaupapa Māori research and influential researchers such as Russell Bishop, Linda Tuhiwai Smith and Graham Smith. The students were able to get a sense of the diversity amongst Kaupapa Maori researchers. Dr Hiha shared what was exciting to her in the field of Kaupapa Māori research at the moment, these included community and hapū based projects.  Many facets of Kaupapa Māori research were covered, the students and staff were able to get an insight into Dr Hiha’s PhD research and the important tikanga that it was underpinned by, Whanaungatanga, Manaakitanga, Tino Rangatiratanga and Taonga Tuku Iho.

It is fantastic to get these insights from experts in their field. The feedback overall from the students was that the talk was interesting and informative. Hopefully, this kōrero sparked some interest for the students and links were made between the synergies of natural therapies and Kaupapa Māori research. It was apparent that the Kaupapa Māori research is a complex, diverse, exciting and ever-evolving field.