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Professional Diploma in Management


The Professional Diploma in Management will be of particular interest to those aspiring to middle level managerial roles in large organisations and those who have a leadership role in smaller organisations.

The key to effective management and leadership lies in developing a critical understanding of your organisation and the practices of those who work in it, including your own. To respond quickly and flexibly to rapidly changing markets and environments managers need a broad integrated picture of how their organisations work; they need to consider compromises, tensions and interdependencies between operational, accounting, marketing, information, financial and ‘people’ issues. The professional diploma will help you meet this challenge, focusing on the management of teams, departments and projects; the skills of the reflective practitioner are an important theme throughout.

The study programme affords the opportunity to stand back from your current situation in order to concentrate on themes of understanding and improving performance, managing projects and change. The emphasis is on your own professional development. Everything you study is related to the management roles and responsibilities you exercise. The elements of the programme – study texts, activities and assignments, online resources, and personal and group support – ensure that you can apply newly learned skills and techniques in very practical ways immediately. You can build on your experience and make direct links to your management development needs wherever you are in the world, whatever the size of your organisation and whether it is in the commercial, non governmental or public sector.

The professional diploma is not only a recognised qualification in its own right but also Stage 1 of our MBA (F61). Once you have gained the professional diploma you can go on to study Stage 2 of our MBA.

Planning your studies

To study for the professional diploma you must already hold the Professional Certificate in Management (S01) (previously coded C31) or a qualification accepted by the University as equivalent.

You will already have some first-hand experiential knowledge of managing some part of an organisation.

You must complete this qualification within four years.

You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 20 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.

Your spoken and written English must be of an adequate standard for postgraduate study. If English is not your first language, we recommend that you will need a minimum score of 6.5 under the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Please see their website for details.

Career relevance and employability

The Professional Diploma in Management is a generalist qualification in the core aspects of management: marketing, accounting, operations, human resource management etc. It is appropriate for all sectors: private, public or voluntary/third sector; the models and ideas are sufficiently general to be useful for people in all sizes of organisation, from multi-national to individual entrepreneur. As a stand-alone qualification it is intended mainly for first-line or middle management and as the first one-third of our MBA is appropriate for all levels of manager.

There is more information about how OU study can improve your employability in the OU’s Employability Statement from our Careers Advisory Service. You can also read or download our publication OU study and your career and look at our subject pages to find out about career opportunities.


For this 60-credit professional diploma you require:

Postgraduate compulsory module Credits Next start
MBA stage 1: management: perspectives and practice (B716)

This MBA module will enable you make a real difference within your management practice and provide a good grounding in the core disciplines of management.

See full description

60 Nov 2015

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules B700, BZX700

Learning outcomes

The learning outcomes of this qualification are described in four areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills
Read more detailed information about the learning outcomes, and how they are acquired through teaching, learning and assessment methods.

Credit for previous study elsewhere

For this qualification, we do not allow you to count credit for study you have already done elsewhere.

On completion

On successful completion of the required module you can be awarded a Professional Diploma in Management entitling you to use the letters Dip Mgmt (Open) after your name.


As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the following regulations:

These regulations are also available on our Essential Documents website.

How to register

If you want to study for this qualification, read the description and check you meet any specific requirements (for example, some of our qualifications, require you to be working in a particular environment, or be sponsored by your employer). Then select the module you wish to study first and ensure it is suitable for you before following the registration procedure for that module. During the registration procedure you will be asked to declare which qualification you are studying towards.

See a full list of modules available for this qualification

About this Certificate
Code D64
Level Postgraduate
Made up of 60 credits

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