Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration
The Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration is a valuable qualification in its own right as well as taking you two thirds of the way to gain our internationally recognised and triple accredited MBA. The postgraduate diploma is designed for practising managers who aspire to higher positions. The emphasis in your learning is directly rooted management practice enabling you to apply this in your workplace as you develop interdisciplinary skills. You will also gain a solid foundation in core disciplines, including human resource management, organisational behaviour, accounting and finance, marketing and operations.
Within the broad framework of organisations, their external context and management, you will learn to apply the knowledge gained through your studies to analyse, synthesise and evaluate a wide range of situations. Among these will be economic, environmental, social and technological change issues; corporate governance; markets and customers; managing resources and operations; financing organisations; management and development of people; developing information technologies for application in business and management within a global knowledge-based economy, and development of appropriate business policies and strategies within a changing context to meet stakeholder interests.
The postgraduate diploma is designed as an integrated programme and enables you include one elective module, so you can adjust the curriculum to suit your professional interests. The elective modules are challenging but always directed towards improving your management capabilities.
The Open University Business School is accredited by three leading international management education bodies: the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the EFMD Quality Improvement System (EQUIS) and the Association of MBAs (AMBA). Only a select group of less than 60 business schools worldwide have this triple-accredited status.
The Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration is a generalist management programme for those who have post-graduation and relevant work experience on which the learning process should build. The main emphasis of the programme is to provide strong foundations in functional areas of management, leading to leadership through strategic management and financial strategy. While the academic level is masters, the practice-based teaching learning methodology offers a learning that aims to extend your professional practice of management.
As a postgraduate diplomat you should be able to ground your new knowledge within the base of your professional experience. The learning journey integrates your current and past experience with the knowledge of management theories, concepts and techniques to enable you to apply these in the management situations you encounter in practice. You will be able to challenge preconceptions and remove subject and functional boundaries so as to handle complex situations holistically. You should also have particular strengths in analysing, synthesising and solving complex, unstructured business problems. In addition to being able to communicate your findings, you should have developed the skills to implement agreed solutions effectively and efficiently. You should therefore have strongly developed interpersonal skills and be able to interact effectively with a range of specialists.
Teaching, learning and assessment methods
You learn through two inter-related methods. First, using a range of specially-written study materials, case studies, original texts, study guides and assignments and through a range of multi-media material. Secondly, you are allocated a tutor who contacts you individually and arranges group sessions for all their students. This tutor is your first and main point of contact. The tutor answers queries on the materials, grades and comments on your work and arranges and runs tutorials, face to face or online.
Samples of tutors’ comments are monitored by members of the central module team who generate comments intended to support and develop tutors’ assessment and grading of assignments.
Your assignments are usually summative. Modules may also include an end-of-module assignments or three-hour examination.
Evidence of key skills will be apparent in all TMAs and tutors will comment on the evidence of skills as well as on demonstrated levels of knowledge and understanding.
You are also encouraged to participate in electronic conferences at both national and local levels. This gives you a chance to share and resolve issues with fellow students as well as tutors and the course team.
Formative assessment in the form of informal self-assessed questions allow you progressively to assess your own progress and understanding. Formal assessment of knowledge and understanding components of the programme is achieved by a series of tutor-marked assignments (TMAs) typically three for each 30-credit module. These assignments are marked and assessed by the module tutor. They are central to the teaching of the module since they allow you an opportunity to display your knowledge and understanding – and in consequence any issues concerning either – and so enable tutors to identify and comment on your knowledge and understanding. Tutors receive detailed marking guidance from the module team.
Cognitive skills in the programme are developed through a range of activities within the programme’s courses. Case studies and residential school activities allow students to engage with the issues around management and develop appropriate analysis, evaluation and problem-solving skills.
Skills associated with working with others in a group are developed at the residential schools, which are compulsory components of the compulsory modules within the diploma.
Students entering the programme are expected to have work experience in management. As such, you should already have gained some of these skills. The programme will however allow you to demonstrate and develop them further.
Evidence of practical and professional skills will be apparent in all TMAs and tutors will comment on the evidence of skills as well as on demonstrated levels of knowledge and understanding.
Employers value postgraduate business qualifications as an indication of high level business and management skills. These skills are in demand, increasingly so in times of economic uncertainty, and employers want practical experience, a thorough grasp of business, and the ability to lead at a strategic level. Careers surveys shows that students studying postgraduate business qualifications can expect their salary to increase, and have a positive impact on their career progression, as well as bring improvements to their organisation or business.
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Last updated October 23, 2017