Vocational Pathways

Vocational Pathways are a Ministry of Education initiative following joint planning among government agencies and education, industry and employer representatives, designed among other things to improve relevance of learning for students by indicating how their learning and achievement is valued by broad sectors of the workforce.

At Massey High School we refer to Vocational Pathways in terms of the Pathway Sectors that are defined within the logo. These Pathway Sectors are an important guide to assist our students in course selection and career decisions.

The six different Pathway Sectors, as shown in the Pathways logo, are: 


Nearly all occupations fit into one of these six “sectors”. These six Pathway sectors are colour coded for ease of recognition to help students, parents, whānau and teachers planning study programmes. 

Within each sector a wide range of Level 1 and 2 achievement and unit standards are identified as “recommended” for that sector. At Level 2 there are also “sector-related” standards, and there is a Pathways Award that can be gained along with NCEA at Level 2. (See the box on this page.) 

By considering your course selection for 2024 in the light of the number of credits that are “recommended” or “sector-related” for each Pathway sector (as displayed in each subject listing in this booklet), you can see how much coherency there is in your individual selection of subjects 

The intention is that a potential employer or tertiary provider can see that the student has made relevant, coherent option choices and is well prepared to be a valuable employee or successful tertiary student in their chosen vocational sector. 

While all university course pathways are included in the six sectors above, it is important that students also carefully check the sections of this booklet which include requirements for tertiary study and the university approved subject list. Students intending to enter a degree course at university are strongly advised to take approved subjects in order to generate a rank score sufficient for course entry. (See the later section on Rank Score.)

VOCATIONAL PATHWAYS AWARD (Note this award only applies at Level 2)

This will be gained if you

  • Achieve NCEA Level 2
  • Meet NCEA Numeracy and Literacy requirements (10 numeracy, 10 literacy L1 and above credits)
  • Gain 60 Level 2 credits from recommended standards for Vocational Pathways
  • Including
  • At least 20 Level 2 credits from sector-related standards e.g. Services Industries.