Graduate Certificate of Business Management (Fleet Management) FAQ

Who can I speak to about the course?

You can speak with the Program Manager – KATHY THOMAS on (03) 9214 6887 or at kthomas@swin.edu.au.

What is postgraduate study?

Postgraduate study refers to the range of courses (often referred to as 'programs' at postgraduate level) that are available to students who have significant work experience and/or a TAFE or undergraduate qualification.

Programs that come under the postgraduate label include:
• Graduate certificate
• Graduate diploma
• Master (by coursework or research)
• Master (honours)
• PhD
• Professional doctorate

There are two ways to undertake postgraduate study; by coursework and/or research.

Why undertake postgraduate study?

There are many reasons why students choose to undertake postgraduate study.

Postgraduate study offers the chance to pursue extended research (requisite for a career in academia), enter the world of work at a higher salary level, or acquire vocational training and skills.

With an increase in the number of students pursuing university study each year, competition for graduate employment is becoming progressively more difficult. For those students who have a specific career path in mind, evidence of postgraduate education could make all the difference to a prospective employer.

What are the benefits to my employer?

Many students undertake postgraduate study in an effort to increase their likelihood of securing course-related employment. Not only does postgraduate study refine course-specific knowledge and skills but it has also been shown to greatly improve the transferable skills and qualities sought by employers.

Other qualities that postgraduate students are recognised for include professionalism, resilience, resourcefulness and patience.

What are the semester dates for 2015

Semester 1 commences Monday 2 March 2015 and concludes 31 May

Semester 2 commences Monday 3 August 2015 and concludes 1 November

What are the entry requirements?

You are required to have a Diploma (or above) qualification and at least 12 months of relevant work experience. Applicants without a previous qualification are required to have significant relevant business experience, normally at least 4 years. You will have to provide evidence (in the form of a CV) of your work experience to support your application.

Can I get Exemptions?

Students may gain an exemption on the basis of previous study at a comparable level which is still deemed to be current.

Can I get an RPL?

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) is difficult to achieve in postgraduate study. The entry requirements deem you must have relevant work experience and the course is designed for students working full time in the Fleet Management industry.

In vocational education demonstrating skills achieved on the job can become evidence used in RPL. However in postgraduate education, to achieve RPL you would need to demonstrate your achievement of the learning outcomes of the unit. This would involve evidence of critical analysis, research, synthesis of information and academic writing. These are all quite difficult to demonstrate from tasks in the workplace.

Please speak with the Program Manager if you feel you are eligible for either an exemption or RPL.

What is the closing date?

Applications close at the end of January for first semester. Late applications are considered if the course has not been filled.

Applications close mid July, for classes commencing in August. Late applications are considered if the course has not been filled.

What is the application and enrolment process?

All students must submit an application for the course which includes all the required supporting documentation.

Once your application is received it is reviewed by a Program Manager who will determine whether the applicant is eligible for a place in the course. If the applicant is eligible then they will receive an initial offer via email. This process – application to offer – takes about 10 days.

After receiving the email offer, the applicant will receive enrolment information. Enrolment is completed online. There is information about the course included in an e-pack at this time. This includes information about orientation, information about the online timetabling system (Allocate+) and Fee Help.

Do I have to pay for my entire course upfront?

No. You just pay for each semester’s subjects

How does online study work?

You’ll study online using a platform called Blackboard Learn which works across Apple and Microsoft operating systems – all you need is an internet connection.

Blackboard Learn allows you to manage tasks, keep up with the latest announcements, access course information, communicate with your lecturer and fellow students, submit assignments and participate in group work.

What are the benefits of studying online?

Flexibility: pick when you study

Location: choose where you study

Fast-track: pick up the pace and increase your study load

How will I interact with lecturers and students?

Blackboard Learn allows you to communicate with your lecturers and classmates through email and discussion boards.

The content of an online subject is designed to be interactive. You’ll be required to comment and write blogs, journals and discussion posts to share with your classmates.

You’ll also listen to podcasts and watch videos– generating plenty of discussion online.

How do group assignments work?

Learning to work and communicate online is a key skill for the workplace – particularly when dealing with external clients.

You’ll need to communicate regularly and effectively with your team to complete group assignments.

Blackboard Learn gives you access to collaborative tools in order to work effectively with your group.

How much time do I need to set aside?

Online study lets you work at your own pace.

Throughout a semester you should spend an average of 12.5 hours (formal contact plus independent study) per week for a 12.5 credit point unit of study.

Is online study for me?

Studying online requires self-motivation and discipline.

You’ll need to find a system which suits your lifestyle – such as setting aside a regular day each week to go online and complete the unit requirements.

You may feel isolated studying online, which is not uncommon. That's why it's important to use the engagement facilities available, such as forums and discussions and become involved as much as you can.

How many subjects do I have to take?

Most students who are working full-time elect to take a part-time study load (two subjects each semester), however you can take one subject if you like and it will take you two years to complete your Graduate Certificate.

If I start the program enrolled in 2 subjects, can I drop back to 1?

Yes you can, but you need to do this before census date.

Census date for Semester 1 - 31st March 2015

Census date for Semester 2 - 31st August 2015

How can I get a Swinburne student ID card?

You will receive ID card paperwork once you are enrolled and your fees are paid.

For students studying this course from a distant, interstate or overseas location, you will be issued with an ID number after enrolment. You can apply to receive a Swinburne ID card, however it will not have a photographic identifier.

Can I use the Swinburne libraries?

Yes, you can use your Swinburne student ID card to borrow books and use the facilities of the Swinburne libraries on each campus.

For students studying remotely and unable to access the Swinburne library, there is a reciprocal borrowing program available at most other institutes and universities.

There is also a growing collection of e-books you can access online with your Swinburne ID.

Can I attend the Swinburne graduation ceremonies?

Yes. Graduation takes place approximately 6 months after you have completed your studies. Graduation is not automatic.

You must apply to graduate, and pay the required fee, by completing an "application for award" form.

Graduation ceremonies are held twice yearly in Melbourne in May and October. Invitations to attend are forwarded once award applications are processed.

Once I have finished the course, where will it lead?

That is up to you! You will have an academic qualification and you can use it however you want. Some students may decide to go onto further study. What you get out of the course depends on what you wanted to achieve in completing it.

By achieving a credit average, or above, you are eligible for entry to Swinburne’s Master of Business Management (MBM) and your Graduate Certificate counts as the first year of this course.

What is FEE-HELP?

FEE-HELP is a component of the Federal Government's Higher Education Loan Programme (HELP). Through it, students can borrow the money required to pay part or all of their tuition fees.

Students can choose to defer all or part of the cost of the course and can then pay the debt back through the taxation system once their income reaches the minimum threshold for compulsory repayment.

Am I eligible for FEE-HELP?

Postgrad students are eligible for FEE-HELP assistance if they:
• Are enrolled in a fee-paying postgraduate non-research course.
• Are not a Commonwealth supported student.
• Are an Australian citizen or a holder of an Australian permanent humanitarian visa (who meets eligibility requirements).
• Meet the Tax File Number (TFN) requirements.
• Have not exceeded the FEE-HELP limit.

How much can I borrow?

The Commonwealth Government has set a FEE-HELP limit of $85,062 for most students.

These amounts are indexed each year.

FEE-HELP does not cover any administrative fees. Accommodation and living expenses are also not included.

Students who are eligible for FEE-HELP will have three options for payment:
• Pay the full tuition fee up-front (in which case a loan will not be required).
• Pay some of the tuition fee up-front and request a FEE-HELP loan for the remainder of the tuition fee.
• Request a FEE-HELP loan for the full tuition fee.

When do I start repaying my FEE-HELP loan?

You'll begin repaying your loan from census date through the taxation system once your income reaches the minimum threshold for compulsory repayment.

For further information visit the Government’s Going to Uni website or call the student funding measures enquiry line on 1800 020 108.