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Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration

This innovative course is designed to develop a wide range of interdisciplinary skills that you can apply in your own workplace as you develop. You will gain a solid foundation in core management disciplines, including human resource management, organisational behaviour, accounting and finance, marketing and operations – learning to apply your knowledge to analyse, synthesise and evaluate a wide range of situations. You will explore 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. 

Key features of the course

  • A valuable qualification for practising managers who aspire to higher positions 
  • Flexible curriculum to suit your professional interests
  • Takes you two thirds of the way to our triple-accredited MBA.

Diploma

Course code
E80
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
120
How long it takes
12 months – 2 years
Read more about how long it takes
Study method
Distance learning
Find out more in Why the OU?
Course cost
See Fees and funding
Entry requirements

Find out more about entry requirements.

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Explore our subjects and courses.

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Course details

Modules

There are three routes to gaining this qualification and each require 120 credits as follows: 

Route 1 - Starting November 2019 onwards

105 credits from the following: 

Compulsory modules Credits Next start
Managing in a changing world  (B870)

This module will encourage you to develop, as well as challenge, your current knowledge and skills in order to deal with contemporary and rapidly changing areas of management and marketing.

See full description

Register
30 01 May 2021
Creating and sustaining value  (B872)

Critically explore the ways organisations create, sustain and expand value in an increasingly complex and dynamic business environment.

See full description

Register
30 01 May 2021
Effective strategic management in business and the public sector (B873)

This module provides you with the necessary tools to become an effective strategic decision-maker.

See full description

Register
30 01 May 2021
Finance for strategic decision making (B874) NEW

You will learn a range of accounting and data analysis techniques to enable you to use financial information and other data for making management decisions.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021

plus 15 credits from one of the following:

Optional modules Credits Next start
Contemporary issues in organisations (BB853) PLANNED
15 November 2021
Entrepreneurship in context  (BB851) NEW

This module will equip you with an entrepreneurial mindset and help you learn about entrepreneurship as well as different forms of entrepreneurial practice.

See full description

Register
15 06 Nov 2021
Leadership and management of public services (BB852) NEW

In this elective module you’ll study the many dimensions of managing public services, which may be public, private for-profit or not-for profit.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Supply chain management (BB849)

This module provides analysis of important concepts and practices in supply chain management, taking into account issues such as globalisation, sustainability and risk management.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Sustainable creative management (BB842)

This module explores creative, innovative and sustainable ways of developing and managing organisations and offers practical approaches for developing yourself, your team and your organisation.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules BB844, BB848.


Route 2 - Final study in May 2020

If you started your final module(s) in May 2020, including BB831 and/or any final electives, you'll need:

60 credits from the following:

The discontinued module B716 or BXFT716.

Stage 2 - 30 credits from the following: 

Compulsory module Credits Next start
Effective strategic management in business and the public sector  (B873)

This module provides you with the necessary tools to become an effective strategic decision-maker.

See full description

Register
30 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued module BB835.

plus 15 credits from the following: 

The discontinued module BB831.

plus 15 credits from the following:

Optional modules Credits Next start
Contemporary issues in organisations (BB853) PLANNED
15 November 2021
Entrepreneurship in context  (BB851) NEW

This module will equip you with an entrepreneurial mindset and help you learn about entrepreneurship as well as different forms of entrepreneurial practice.

See full description

Register
15 06 Nov 2021
Leadership and management of public services  (BB852) NEW

In this elective module you’ll study the many dimensions of managing public services, which may be public, private for-profit or not-for profit.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Supply chain management (BB849)

This module provides analysis of important concepts and practices in supply chain management, taking into account issues such as globalisation, sustainability and risk management.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Sustainable creative management (BB842)

This module explores creative, innovative and sustainable ways of developing and managing organisations and offers practical approaches for developing yourself, your team and your organisation.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules BB844, BB848, BXM871.


Route 3 - Hybrid route

If you have completed, or are currently studying either B716 or BXFT716, you'll need:

60 credits from the following:

The discontinued module B716 or BXFT716.

plus 30 credits from the following: 

Compulsory module Credits Next start
Effective strategic management in business and the public sector  (B873)

This module provides you with the necessary tools to become an effective strategic decision-maker.

See full description

Register
30 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued module BB835.

plus 15 credits from the following: 

Compulsory module  Credits Next start
Finance for strategic decision making (B874) NEW

You will learn a range of accounting and data analysis techniques to enable you to use financial information and other data for making management decisions.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued module BB831.

plus 15 credits from the following:

Optional modules Credits Next start
Contemporary issues in organisations (BB853) PLANNED
15 May 2021
Entrepreneurship in context  (BB851) NEW

This module will equip you with an entrepreneurial mindset and help you learn about entrepreneurship as well as different forms of entrepreneurial practice.

See full description

Register
15 06 Nov 2021
Leadership and management of public services (BB852) NEW

In this elective module you’ll study the many dimensions of managing public services, which may be public, private for-profit or not-for profit.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Supply chain management (BB849)

This module provides analysis of important concepts and practices in supply chain management, taking into account issues such as globalisation, sustainability and risk management.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021
Sustainable creative management (BB842)

This module explores creative, innovative and sustainable ways of developing and managing organisations and offers practical approaches for developing yourself, your team and your organisation.

See full description

Register
15 01 May 2021

Or, subject to the rules about excluded combinations, the discontinued modules BB841, BB844, BB845, BB846, BB847, BB848 and BXM871.

You should note that the University’s unique study rule applies to this qualification. This means that you must include at least 40 credits from OU modules that have not been counted in any other OU qualification that has previously been awarded to you.


We regularly review our curriculum; therefore, the qualification described on this page – including its availability, its structure, and available modules – may change over time. If we make changes to this qualification, we’ll update this page as soon as possible. Once you’ve registered or are studying this qualification, where practicable, we’ll inform you in good time of any upcoming changes. If you’d like to know more about the circumstances in which the University might make changes to the curriculum, see our Academic Regulations or contact us. This description was last updated on 17 March 2020.

Learning outcomes, teaching and assessment

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.

Credit transfer

If you’ve successfully completed some relevant postgraduate study elsewhere, you might be able to count it towards this qualification, reducing the number of modules you need to study. You should apply for credit transfer as soon as possible, before you register for your first module. For more details and an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website.


On completion

On successful completion of 120 credits' worth of required modules you will be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Business Administration entitling you to use the letters PG Dip Bus Admin (Open) after your name.

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the qualification-specific regulations below and the academic regulations that are available on our Student Policies and Regulations website. 

Entry requirements

You will need a minimum of three years’ experience in a managerial, professional or technical role, so that you have a practical business base on which to build your learning. 

There are two main routes into the postgraduate diploma:

1. If you already hold an honours degree awarded by a UK university, or equivalent. Various higher education and professional qualifications are considered equivalent to an honours degree. Please contact us if you hold a qualification that you believe is an equivalent level to a UK degree, to ensure that it meets the requirements for admission.

2. If you are experienced in managerial work and hold our Professional Certificate in Management (S01) (previously coded C31).

If you have the equivalent of a UK bachelors degree without honours you may be permitted to progress on to the postgraduate diploma if you have successfully completed Managing 1: organisations and people (B628). Alternatively if you have an official Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) score of 640 or above, and the equivalent of a UK bachelors degree, you will be allowed to progress directly on to the postgraduate diploma.

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.

Please contact us if you need any advice about entry to the programme. The Open University Business School Masters Programme Committee is responsible for judging whether applicants’ qualifications meet the requirements for admission.

How long it takes

The minimum time to complete this qualification is 12 months. Please note, however, that if your goal is the MBA, (which must be completed within seven years) if you extend your diploma studies to five years you will need to complete the further 60 credits required for the MBA over a two year period.
 
 

Career relevance

The Open University Business School is one of an elite group of schools worldwide accredited by the three leading international accrediting bodies - AACSB, AMBA, EQUIS - hallmarks of quality of teaching, learning materials and qualification impact. It is home to more than 26,000 successful MBA graduates in almost 100 countries.

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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.

Careers and Employability Services have more information on how OU study can improve your employability.