The University of Newcastle, Australia
Fast facts



Start dates
  • Trimester 1 - 28 Jan 2020
  • Trimester 2 - 11 May 2020
  • Trimester 3 - 24 Aug 2020
  • Trimester 1 - 28 Jan 2020
  • Trimester 2 - 11 May 2020
  • Trimester 3 - 24 Aug 2020
Mode of delivery



1 year part-time up to 3 years maximum.

Program code: 40032


The world is characterised by accelerating rates of change that place pressure on individuals and organisations to adapt to new conditions quickly and effectively.

This environment is suited to professionals who are talented generalists – individuals with a strong capacity for critical analysis, the ability to engage with complexity, be creative and communicate effectively.

The Graduate Certificate in Studies engages candidates with a program of coursework specifically designed to foster capacity in these areas, which are essential to professional success in a diverse range of businesses and organisations.

Why study with us?

  • Fast-track your career - this degree will increase your professional capacity making you highly employable through an advanced grounding in skills that employers across all industries consistently rate as essential – now and in the future – including critical thinking, creative thinking, engaging with complexity, and communicating effectively.  With enhanced capabilities you will stand out at the forefront of the professional industry.
  • Continue to the Masters level program - gain access to UON’s broad suite of approximately 250 postgraduate courses across all disciplines and 35 specialisations.
  • Study anywhere, anytime - our advanced online learning system provides you with the flexibility and support to study anytime, anywhere to balance work, life and study.

#5 in Australia ? for overall postgraduate education experience
#6 in Australia ? for overall postgraduate teaching quality
#7 in Australia ? for overall postgraduate student satisfaction

What you will study

This program is designed to expand your capacity in core areas by stimulating creativity and critical thinking, and success in engaging with complexity. The program also increases your expertise in communicating with diverse audiences in varied professional settings.

Core courses

The Graduate Certificate in Studies is a four course program. The courses aim to teach you to see the world through new eyes and be strategic in your thinking. This program actively encourages appreciation of holistic approaches to understanding and to problem-solving, preparing you to generate new solutions to existing problems – and the challenges of the future.

Complex problems are characterised by interconnectedness, unpredictability and uncertainty and have the potential to continually evolve and change. In this course, you will gain an understanding of complex problems such as climate change, population, health, global financial system stability and maintaining robust democracies.

Become an independent and autonomous critical thinker. Critical thinking is more than a set of skills, it involves the cultivation of a critical dialogue between one's life experiences and the diverse theoretical traditions that have sought to give answers to the questions of what it is to know and think critically, and how we situate the thinking-subject.

Learn strategies to foster creative thinking. Understand the strategies and practices in creative thinking and how creative processes are employed.

Become an ethnographer of your own learning and develop your academic and communication practices across discipline

Should you elect to, you may continue to the Masters level program, and gain access to UON’s broad suite of approximately 250 postgraduate courses and 35 specialisations.

Here, you will have the opportunity to design a unique curriculum, one versatile enough to combine access to knowledge and skills for highly varied career paths and job types, including those that don’t yet exist.

Related postgraduate degrees

Career opportunities

All sectors are in some way affected by change and future uncertainty, which is why our Graduate Certificate in Studies has a broad ranging application and is designed for career success in uncertain futures.

The Graduate Certificate in Studies has clear application for professionals across sectors, and in particular, those working in the following areas:

  • professional service
  • tourism
  • education and training
  • information technology
  • health services
  • defence
  • retail

If you elect to go on to the Masters program, you will also have the opportunity to follow a PhD pathway by specializing in Transdisciplinary Research (40 units), where you will create practical solutions to complex contemporary problems, and build a research skillset that permits entry into the doctoral level qualification.