What is a Top-up Degree?

If you are student looking for options to continue with higher education, then this blog will serve as a guide for you to understand the various levels of UK qualifications and how you can complete an MBA top up degree.

The UK education system consists of various levels. A Bachelor's degree, for example consists of levels 4, 5 and 6. Once a student has successfully completed level 6 they are eligible to receive a Bachelor's degree award. Subsequently, the Master's degree covers level 7. For a student to complete a Master's degree, they need to complete 180 credits at level 7.


mba An MBA programme can also be completed once a student has gained 120 credits at level 7.This qualification is referred to as a Postgraduate Diploma. These PG Diplomas are offered by a number of different Universities and Education Institutes and are awarded by bodies like ATHE, Eduqual, Edexcel and Pearson. Upon completion, the student can apply for an MBA top-up, the last 60 credits that make up the 180 credits Master's award.

Who are qualified to enrol in a top-up programme?

There are only a handful of UK universities which accept credit transfers from different institutions. The University of Northampton is one such university which is open to credit transfers and allows students to apply for exemptions on the basis of their previous qualification (also known as Accredited Prior Learning). If a student has completed a level 7 diploma in the field of business and management, then they can successfully shift credits to the University of Northampton MBA top-up programme.

Apart from level 7 diploma holders, students who have not completed a PG Diploma but have level 7 credits are also encouraged to apply with the University of Northampton to complete the rest of the modules and successfully graduate with an MBA degree. The university's admissions panel maps the modules awarded from a previous qualification to confirm credit transfers and hence, allows students to continue studies accordingly.

The University of Northampton MBA top up degree

The University of Northampton MBA top-up programme is offered online and part-time to students who hold a related postgraduate diploma in business or management. The standard duration of the top up degree is nine months and covers two modules, Critical Issues in Business and the MBA Research Project. The programme fee varies as per the mode of learning and workshops are organised either in Dubai or KSA, depending upon cohort numbers being met.

As part of its academic policy, the University of Northampton MBA is open to applicants with a prior Master's level qualification (a postgraduate certificate or a postgraduate diploma) and allows students to join the MBA programme with credit exemptions, thereby allowing you to complete the rest of the modules of MBA.

Upon successful completion of the MBA top-up degree, students can also apply for a Doctor of Business Administration or PHD qualification to progress academically. In order to make a successful application for MBA top-up or via APL, we advise you to contact our specialist consultants who will assist you with application requirements and eligibility.