Types of master's programmes

Thinking of studying a master’s but unsure what qualification to choose? To help with your decision we’ve explained what a master’s programme is and what postgraduate taught qualifications we offer at Loughborough.

What is a master's degree?

A master's is one of the most popular postgraduate qualifications available and demonstrates a high level of expertise in a specific field of study. It’s a level 7 on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) which sits above an undergraduate bachelor's degree but below a doctoral programme.

A master’s degree is more academically challenging and intense than a bachelor’s, requiring a higher level of independent study. You will build on your existing qualifications and experience but will focus on a particular subject area in more detail.

A full-time master's will see you take 180 credits over a 12-month period. Part-time programmes vary in duration and you may take a different number of credits each year.

There are lots of different types of master’s available and at Loughborough, we offer MA, MSc and MBA:

Master of Arts (MA): usually awarded in the arts, humanities or social sciences.

Master of Science (MSc): awarded in subjects with a science, engineering, technology or maths (STEM) focus.

Master of Business Administration (MBA): designed to give you the skills and knowledge you need for career progression in business and management roles. Prospective MBA students are required to have at least three to five years' professional work experience.

Alternative postgraduate degrees

In addition to these, we also offer a number of other postgraduate qualifications, including postgraduate diplomas (PGDip), postgraduate certificates (PGCert) and postgraduate certificates in education (PGCE).

Postgraduate Diplomas (PGDip) and Certificates (PGCert): these are shorter taught postgraduate courses comprised of 120 (PGDip) and 60 credits (PGCert). They include master's-level content but take less time to complete and may be designed to further your skills in a certain area or train you for a specific career path.

Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE): this teacher training qualification combines education theory with practical placements in schools. Upon successful competition of a PGCE with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), you will be able to teach your subject in the UK.