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What is the difference between the PGDip and PDBA

The PGDip in Management Practices with the various specialisation options is a new offering at the GSB which is aimed at junior to middle managers and specialised individuals who would like to advance their careers.

One of the main difference between the new PGDip design and the PDBA is the integrative approach of different and new management theories, frameworks and subject matters with the participants work context. The new PGDip programme is seen as more practice-orientated with action learning components in the work field in which theory is tested. Through the unique pedagogy a transfer of the learning takes place inherently. 

The learning on the PDBA took part almost entirely inside the business school and participants were exposed to Case Studies rather than the immersion into their own work context.

The new PGDip exposes students to novel management theories which are highly relevant for current requirements of managers who in particular operate in an emerging market environment for instance in South Africa. Topics such as Values Based Leadership, Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship take a more center stage and prepare managers and leaders for positive new ways of thinking and acting in business to achieve sustainable success. This is aligned with the Vision and Mission of the school.

The PGDip equips students with an applicable systems toolkit to identify, analyse and describe managerial problems in order to develop conceptual models that suit the context for which a sustainable solution needs to be designed. Compared to the PDBA, it is less focused on 'teaching' functional skills and more on applying relevant theories.

The learning outcomes of the PGDip specialising in Business Administration are most comparable to the outcomes of the previously offered PDBA.

What is the difference between the GSB PGDip specialisation Leadership in Health Care and the UCT FHS PGDip in Health Management?

The GSB PGDip in Management Practices with the specialisation option in Leadership in Health Care

Is a new offering at the GSB which is aimed at junior to middle managers and specialised individuals who would like to advance their careers in the public or private Health Sector. The PGDip in Management is seen as a practice-orientated programme with action learning components in the work field in which theory is tested. Through the unique pedagogy a transfer of the learning takes place inherently.  This qualification provides a learning opportunity grounded in systems thinking for students to enhance their own Management Practices with a focus on: Leadership, Emerging Markets and Business Administration which is then applied to the Health Care industry. The specialisation course (8 days) offers an engagement into specific complexities such as health care economics, health reform challenges and changes, Governance in public/private Health institutions and Innovations in Public-Private Healthcare partnerships.

The FHS PGDip in Health Management

Is a long-established and dedicated health leadership and management course. It is targeted at current and aspiring health managers, working inside, or with, the public sector, in generalist or clinical management roles. It aims to support participants’ personal and professional development as health leaders committed to improving the health system for the benefit of all people. Its four integrated modules provide insight into the complexity of health system environments and introduce practical approaches to problem solving and leading change for health system improvement. They also pay particular attention to the importance of personal reflective practice and team leadership, and the programme is structured to support the immediate application of new skills in the workplace. On completion, graduates will have renewed commitment to their role as health leaders, be equipped to work more effectively and be inspired to innovate in pursuit of health system improvement.

In summary: the key differentiator between the two programmes is the scope of knowledge on which they are based. The GSB PGDip is founded on the broader field of Management Practice for emerging markets, equipping students to work in a broad range of business environments, including the health care industry, whereas the FHS PGDip is a dedicated Health Leadership and Management programme, providing students with a deeper knowledge and practice base of specific relevance to the health sector.

How often is the GMAT written?

The GMAT is written on a regular basis. When making your booking you will be asked to nominate five preferred dates, and you will be given a test date on, or nearest to your chosen date(s).

What is the cost of writing the GMAT?

The cost is US$250.00.

How do I prepare for the GMAT?

The GSB offers a number of GMAT Preparation Courses during the year. Details are available from our website, under Admissions Tests - GMAT.

If you are not able to attend, you can purchase a GMAT text book from most major book stores. You could also download the free software from the GMAT website,, and work your way through the tests.

Can I write the GMAT more than once?

Yes. However, you are not permitted to rewrite in the same month.

What are the costs of writing the NBT?

The testing fee is R85 for the Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy. The testing fee is not refundable. 

Which NBTs should I register for and write?

EMBA must write: Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy (3 hours).

Can I submit my application before writing GMAT?

Yes, we encourage this as it enables the Admissions Department to begin the application process in the interim.

How soon will I get a decision on my application?

Once all criteria of your application have been met, i.e., we have the GMAT, MCPA and/or NBT results, as well as all the necessary documentation, the application will be submitted for review to the Admissions Board at the next scheduled board meeting. Suitable candidates will then be contacted for an interview. Once the interview is complete, candidates would ordinarily receive an answer within three weeks.

Will I need to travel to Cape Town for interviews?

No. Interviews are conducted in major city centres locally as well as internationally. In the event that we do not have an interviewer in your area, the interview will be conducted telephonically or via video call.

Does the GSB offer funding?

Funding is limited, and we urge all applicants to seek funding from other sources such as employer sponsorship or a student loan. We will, however, do our utmost to assist a student in need.

How do I apply for funding at the GSB?

Please refer to the following link for information on Funding Opportunities.

Can I pay my fees off in monthly installments?

No. South African and African permanent residents and citizens pay a minimum of 50% of the fees before registration. The balance of fees must be paid by the end of June of that year. International students are required to pay their full fees before registration. Please refer to the Fees Handbook at the following link

What is the purpose of the IELTS or TOEFL tests?

The IELTS and TOEFL are English language proficiency tests. GSB uses English as a medium of instruction and examination. An international applicant whose first language is not English has to write either the IELTS or the TOEFL test. (This also refers to applicants who may have completed their education in English but are not first language speakers of English). GSB requires an applicant to submit a recent score (obtained within 3-5 years before application for admission). The TOEFL score should be at least 570 (paper-based TOEFL) or 230 (computer-based TOEFL). On the IELTS, one is required to obtain an overall band score of 7.0 with no individual element of the testing scoring below 6.0.

You do not have to wait for the results of your TOEFL or IELTS test, to apply to GSB. If the English proficiency test results have not arrived before you wish to send in your application, put a note in with your application package, stating that you will be sending the proficiency test results separately. Try to give a predicted date on which this will be done. Your application cannot be completely processed before the TOEFL/IELTS results have been received; however, some preliminary assessments can be made.

What is the difference between MBA and EMBA?

Different levels of management have different needs. The Executive MBA is targeted at older, more experienced individuals who consciously want to enhance their ability to conceptualise, rather than their proficiency in functional management. The MBA is aimed at the younger manager who wants to hone his/her management skills. As such, the MBA is strong on content in respect of the core disciplines of management whereas the Executive MBA assumes a basic competence in the fundamentals of business and emphasises on process, insight and the application of new learning.

  • Developing new theories: While an MBA introduces participants to the leading management theories of the day, the Executive MBA encourages participants to develop their own contextual theories. Building on their own experience and on the learning and debate in each module, they are helped to form their own perspectives on, and solutions to, the challenges of the workplace.
  • Facilitators not teachers: In the regular MBA, members of the faculty are typically seen as experts and teachers. In the Executive MBA, they are seen more as facilitators of the learning process.
  • Action learning: Learning on the MBA takes place almost entirely inside the School, while learning on the Executive MBA happens mostly in the workplace where participants apply and craft their own learning as the programme progresses. It is estimated that fully two thirds of learning on the Executive MBA happens in the workplace.