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master's degree without bachelor's degree

How to get a master’s degree without a bachelor’s degree?

Did you know that you don’t need a bachelor’s degree to qualify for a master’s degree?

Looking at career prospects, postgraduate qualifications have been known to lead to better employment rates and higher salaries.

2019 graduate outcomes survey

While it may be considered traditional to study a full undergraduate degree and then move to postgraduate study, it’s important to know that it’s not the only path available to you. You may already have completed an Advanced Diploma or an Associate Degree but now you really want to have that valuable master’s degree on your resume.

At Kaplan Business School (KBS), you can make this happen sooner with a Postgraduate Qualifying Program. Upon meeting certain entry requirements, this program can qualify you for admission into postgraduate study in just one trimester.

This is how it works in just three easy steps:

1. Apply for and complete the Postgraduate Qualifying Program

The first question you might ask is this: Is Kaplan Business School’s Postgraduate Qualifying Program right for you?

The program is designed for students who already hold an Advanced Diploma, Associate Degree or equivalent, and want to qualify for entry into postgraduate study.


key benefits of completing a postgraduate preparation program include:

>  You’ll save time and money by not having to complete your bachelor’s degree first. *

>  It will prepare you for success in postgraduate study by addressing any gaps in your language and academic abilities.

>  There’s a seamless transition from the Postgraduate Qualifying Program straight into postgraduate studies with the same provider.

Studying at a master’s level can be challenging and this change can take some getting used to. This is especially true if you haven’t studied in a while, are embarking on a career change, or are a new international student in Australia.

This is where a preparation program can really help.

It covers topics such as academic English, critical thinking and study and research skills, which can be really useful in developing key capabilities that you’ll need to study at a postgraduate level. For international students, subjects included in the Postgraduate Qualifying Program, such as Intercultural Studies, can be invaluable in helping to cope with any culture shock that you might experience when adapting to a new country and learning environment.

The program is taught over one trimester (12 teaching weeks). Once you successfully complete your Postgraduate Qualifying Program, you will progress to a Graduate Certificate.

2. Begin your postgraduate study with a Graduate Certificate

The Graduate Certificate serves as the first phase of your master’s degree and ensures you gain the skills and knowledge to help you succeed.

There are three different Graduate Certificates to choose from at KBS:

A Graduate Certificate is a more specialised qualification than a bachelor’s degree and will help you develop high-level skills in your area of interest.

Equipped with this knowledge, you will be able to take on more responsibility in your job. It also shows future employers that you are dedicated to continuing your education and honing your skills.

careers central

A Graduate Certificate at KBS can be completed in two trimesters (eight months). After successfully completing this course, you are guaranteed entry into the corresponding master’s degree at KBS.

3. Complete your master’s degree with confidence

This is it. In just three trimesters, you’ve reached your goal of commencing a master’s degree!

The master’s programs available at KBS include:

Whether your aim is to gain management experience through an MBA, advanced accounting principles through a Master of Accounting, or data analytics and business expertise with a Master of Business Analytics – a master’s degree will set you apart in your chosen field. If you would like to focus on a particular field you can also choose up to two specialisations in the MBA such as Entrepreneurship, Digital Management or Women in Leadership. If you’re interested in learning more, you might benefit from reading our ultimate guide to studying an MBA.

During your study, you’ll learn from highly-trained and industry-experienced lecturers. You’ll also hear regularly from industry guests and have many opportunities to access various networking events through the Careers Central service.

Melbourne graduation

At KBS, our postgraduate starting salaries are approximately 20% higher than the sector average**, meaning graduating with a master’s degree will place you in an excellent position to kick-start or advance your career.

So now you know the steps, let’s take a closer look at the potential value of a postgraduate preparation program.

Here are two pathways available from an Advanced Diploma, Associate Degree or equivalent, to your postgraduate studies:

1. Complete a bachelor’s degree – Depending on your current progress, this may require a minimum of 12 more subjects over 5 trimesters (1 year, 8 months) at a tuition fee of $2,250 per subject.


2. Postgraduate Qualifying Program – 5 more subjects over 1 trimester (4 months) at a tuition fee of $1,500 per subject.

Note: The tuition fees listed above are in Australian dollars and are based on the tuition fees for international students commencing in 2020.

As you can see, taking the opportunity to bridge the gap with a Postgraduate Qualifying Program can save you time and money, and may just be the stepping stone you were looking for to a master’s degree.

Ready to take your career to the next level? Learn more about our Postgraduate Qualifying Program at KBS. 

* If you hold an Advanced Diploma, Associate Degree or equivalent, you may be eligible for subject exemptions, thereby reducing your course duration and tuition fee. The information above is based on the typical study duration, maximum number of subject exemptions and 2020 international student tuition fee of a Bachelor of Business at Kaplan Business School. For more information, please refer to our Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) policy.

** QILT 2018 Student Experience Survey National Report. Published April 2019.

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