New GSB course launched

23 August 2004

UCT's Graduate School of Business (GSB) has launched a new certificate programme that is set to plug a critical gap in skills development in South Africa.

The new programme, which will run for the first time in 2005, is specifically geared to accelerate the practical and cost-effective delivery of business skills to middle management in both the public and private sectors.

Speaking at the GSB recently, Linda Ronnie, director of the new programme, said that the qualification is a practical response to changing needs in the South African marketplace.

"The recent re-accreditation of MBAs in South Africa by the Council for Higher Education alone has also shown a huge demand for business education in the country. What is less clear is what form that education takes. Although the MBA was at the centre of the re-accreditation process, the feedback that we have been getting from the market is that an MBA is not always right for everybody," she said.

Ronnie said there were many young people who wanted to be equipped with the right skills and knowledge to manage and lead effectively but who don't have the time or resources to meet the high costs of an MBA.

She said they had identified a "whole strata" of people who were falling between the cracks.

The new programme, called the Postgraduate Diploma in Management Practice (PGDMP), is targeted at honours level and is nationally accredited at NQF level 7.

It has been modelled on the highly successful in-house company programmes that the GSB has developed for corporate clients, including Woolworths and AngloGold. It also draws its inspiration from the GSB's acclaimed Associate in Management (AIM) programme, which has had considerable success over the last ten years in developing junior and middle managers in South Africa.

Students will study part-time for a year - during which time they will cover most of the material usually delivered in the first half of an MBA programme. The programme costs about a third of what an average MBA does.

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