Topic: Te Reo Māori

Research shows Māori Television plays key role in te reo revitalisation

A research project exploring the impact of Māori Television on te reo Māori, shows the broadcaster is playing a key role in the revitalisation of the language.

The 2016 project Māori Broadcasting Language Impact Evaluation was a joint venture between Māori Television and Te Māngai Pāho and research was conducted by Kantar TNS and Colmar Brunton.

According to key findings in the research, 30% of the increase in understanding Māori culture and receptivity towards te reo among non-Māori can be attributed to Māori Television.

CEO Pāora Maxwell says the research also indicates that Māori Television has a positive impact on the inter-generational transmission of te reo in the home.

“The inter-generational transmission of language in the home and the community is at the heart of the revitalization of any language – which is why our linear and digital offerings which bring the language into the heart of the home, are crucial for the survival of indigenous languages and culture.”

The project engaged experts with experience in language revitalisation, policy implementation, broadcasting, iwi revitalisation and teaching in schools. It also interviewed over 1000 Māori and over 400 non-Māori viewers of the broadcaster.

Mr Maxwell says, “The research is an important part of our work in assessing our effectiveness in achieving our role of contributing to the revitalization of te reo Māori me ngā tikanga. We will continue to work collaboratively with Te Māngai Pāho and other language revitalization organisations to better understand how to overcome the barriers that prevent the uptake of the language.”

Further findings in the research show 11% of the increase in language ability among all Māori 15+ can be attributed to Māori Television and that the broadcaster provides encouragement and a desire to engage.

Key Findings:

  • 11% of the increase in language ability among all Māori 15+ can be attributed to Māori Television 
  • 30% of the increase in understanding Māori culture and receptivity towards te reo among non-Māori can be attributed to Māori Television 
  • Māori Television provides a sense of connection with and importance placed on Māori culture and language
  • Māori Television provides encouragement and a desire to engage;
  • Māori Television brings Māori language and culture into the home, supporting inter-generational transmission of te reo in the home;
  • Māori Television provides a sense of connection with and importance placed on Māori culture and language;
  • Māori Television unlocks the challenges and removes the barriers to participate in language learning - it provides an accesible, safe environment to hear, see and immerse in the language and culture for Māori and non -Māori culture;
  • Education and participation in cultural activities, are each unique drivers of language acquisition and a lack of confidence, relevance and time is a unique inhibitor.