The Graduate Certificate in Business (GCBU) is an entry-level program that provides pathways into the Masters and MBA programs. With Australian universities, the Graduate Certificate represents 4 courses over 8 months, the Graduate Diploma is 8 courses over 16 months and the MBA/Masters is typically 12 courses over 24 months.
Applicants with 4 year degrees and more than 2 years of professional experience can gain direct entry into the MBA/Masters. However, some applicants do not want to do the full MBA/Masters; some do not have a 4-year Bachelor or higher degree and some may have limited experience. This is where the Graduate Certificate comes into play. Here are some situations where the Graduate Certificate route is the best option:
1- Recognized Degree but Limited Experience
Here you may have a valid, recognized degree that is 3-4 years of duration but you have limited experience. USQ Australia will allow you entry into the Graduate Certificate program (4 courses) so that you can start your postgraduate study while you complete your 2 years of experience in parallel. When you complete the 4 courses, the university will evaluate your work experience at that time and if you have completed 2 years of experience, you can then continue with the remaining 8 courses to complete the MBA/Masters.
2- BA/BSc/B.Com Type Degree and Substantial Experience
This is almost the opposite of the first situation. Here you only have a 2-year Bachelor degree say from Punjab University or University of Karachi but you have more than 5 years of experience. Since Australian universities do not recognize the 2-year Bachelor, they accept you on the basis of your substantial experience but via the Graduate Certificate. You have to complete 4 courses first and if you complete these satisfactorily, you are then automatically allowed to proceed straight away into the remaining 8 courses for the MBA/Masters. Quite a few of our senior students who are experienced managers with 10 years or more of experience have joined via this route because when they were in university, 2-year Bachelor degrees were the norm.
3- Interested in Graduate Certificate Not MBA/Masters
Some of our students have the right degrees and experience but do not want to do the full MBA/Masters at this time for various reasons. These reasons can include a) to get credits for another degree program in Australia, UK, USA b) budget or timescale reasons and c) need for a specialization that is different from the original degree you have. So for example you may already have an MBA or a Masters degree and are now looking for some HR qualification or Marketing specialization or perhaps Finance so you can choose to do the Graduate Certificate (HR Specialization), Graduate Certificate (Marketing Specialization), Graduate Certificate (Finance Specialization), etc. This way, you get an additional international qualification with just 4 courses over a period of 8 months at a reasonable cost.
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