Programme types

We offer a variety programmes, each with their own requirements. Some also have specific entry requirements. The following information provides you with an overview of the differences between the different types of programmes. 

If you are looking for information on a particular programme that we offer, see our list of programmes.

Short courses

Our short courses are presented by an expert in the field. Either staff from the University or an expert local practitioner. There is a strong emphasis on practical application of theory, small class sizes and interactive learning.

Courses offered by the Centre of Professional and Continuing Education

The Centre for Professional and Continuing Education provides a variety of short courses. Areas include professional development, continuing education, university preparation and English language as well as international short courses. For more information see Centre for Professional and Continuing Education.

Undergraduate programmes


A qualification at undergraduate or sub-degree level that requires 60-120 credits of study. 


A qualification at the undergraduate or non-degree level with a total value of not less than 120 credits that can build on defined prior qualifications or experience and which includes as part of the programme a sequential series of courses.


A qualification awarded on the completion of a programme of study that meets requirements set down by the University and as approved by CUAP. For example, undergraduate degrees normally comprise a minimum of at least three years' full-time study and will specify required coursework and any relevant practical component requirements.

Postgraduate programmes

Graduate diplomas

A qualification open to graduates or to those who have been able to demonstrate equivalent practical, professional or scholarly experience of an appropriate kind, comprising a coherent programme with a total value of not less than 120 credits, which includes the requirement that one-half or more of the courses or other work prescribed shall be at the 300-level or higher.

Honours degrees

Honours degrees are postgraduate qualifications comprising an additional year of study beyond the bachelor's degree in the discipline. Entry to an Honours degree requires prior high academic performance in undergraduate degree study, and students selected for an Honours degree may enrol in the postgraduate degree after completing the undergraduate degree. Completion of the Honours degree may qualify the graduate for doctoral study if achieved at the appropriate level.

Postgraduate certificates

With a postgraduate certificate you can build on the knowledge and skills you have already achieved - whether through a degree or your equivalent practical or professional experience. You can also use it as a bridging programme for postgraduate study or research in an area that is different from your prior training, experience or qualifications. Certificates at the postgraduate level usually require 60 credits of study.

Postgraduate diplomas

A qualification that builds on attainment in the prior degree, open to graduates or those granted admission equivalent to a graduate on the basis of completed academic work, comprising a coherent programme with a total value of not less than 120 credits, which includes the requirement that the courses or other work prescribed shall be in advance of the 300-level.

Master's degrees

A postgraduate degree awarded for advanced study that normally builds on the principal subject(s) of a qualifying undergraduate degree. Masters degrees normally comprise 240 credits beyond the Bachelors degree and involve a research report and/or thesis.


This is the most advanced postgraduate qualification, including the Doctor of Philosophy degree (PhD) offered with specialisations in the disciplines; it requires the completion of a research thesis that makes an original contribution to new knowledge. Named doctorates (e.g. Doctor of Business and Administration or DBA, the Doctor of Education or EdD and the Doctor of Clinical Psychology or DClin Psych) also require completion of a research thesis as well as specified course work. Normally a minimum of three years of full-time study is required for a doctoral degree.

Pathways to postgraduate study

Most of our postgraduate students enter programmes with Bachelor degrees. However, if you are looking to change the direction or focus of your study, you may need to start with a Graduate Diploma.

Master’s degrees can be one- or two-year programmes, depending on your entry route. They can also be mainly coursework; a combination of coursework and a research project or thesis; or a thesis only (reporting on substantive research work).

Doctoral degrees are awarded entirely for research reported in your thesis (PhDs) or for a combination of coursework and a thesis (Named Doctorates).

Typical postgraduate study pathways

Diagram representing the typical pathways to postgraduate study