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Diploma or Masters - how to choose?

The Cambridge Judge Launchpad offers two qualifications: the Diploma and the Masters. Each one teaches the knowledge, skills and mindset required for startup or scaleup success. Each one provides mentoring, networking and pitching opportunities in Cambridge and London that have helped many businesses reach essential supporters, both in terms of financial and other help, in the leading startup clusters in Europe.

However, each programme has some differences. Here is a comparison of the features of each programme:

Comparison table

 

Master of Studies

Postgraduate Diploma

Length 24 months 11 months
Student status Part-time Part-time
Delivery mode Blended online teaching with face-to-face teaching at residential sessions Blended online teaching with face-to-face teaching at residential sessions
Mentoring 24 months 11 months
Residentials Four one-week residentials at Cambridge Judge Business School: September 2018, March, July and December 2019 Three one-week residentials at Cambridge Judge Business School: September 2018, March and July 2019
Module choices Four core modules, six pathway specialisms or electives Four core modules, six pathway specialisms or electives
Specialist pathways (choose one, or choose an extra elective instead)
  • Fintech
  • Health care
  • Biotech
  • Retail & consumer
  • Cleantech
  • Agritech & food
  • Creative industries
  • Manufacturing technologies
  • Government services
  • Entrepreneurship education
  • Construction & property entrepreneurship
  • Fintech
  • Health care
  • Biotech
  • Retail & consumer
  • Cleantech
  • Agritech & food
  • Creative industries
  • Manufacturing technologies
  • Government services
  • Entrepreneurship education
  • Construction & property entrepreneurship
Major project Second-year project; all students are expected to apply their learning in the real world as part of the programme, typically to launch or grow a business No formal project, though students are expected to apply their learning in the real world as part of the programme, typically to launch or grow a business
Opportunity to study intrapreneurship? Intrapreneurship practice - can be studied by students who have their employer's agreement and support, and can be the focus of the second-year project. Intrapreneurship theory - can be studied by all students Intrapreneurship practice - can be studied by students who have their employer's agreement and support. Intrapreneurship theory - can be studied by all students.
Networking opportunities During the programme and ongoing as alumni, across Cambridge, the University and the Business School During the programme and ongoing as alumni, across Cambridge, the University and the Business School
Alumni status (after programme completion)
  • Cambridge Judge Launchpad
  • Cambridge Judge Business School
  • University of Cambridge
  • Cambridge Judge Launchpad
  • Cambridge Judge Business School
College status College fees included in tuition fees College fees not included; some Colleges allow a one-year membership for an additional sum
Cost £31,002 (£15,501 per year) £14,120

FAQs

Why are the Diploma and Masters different lengths?

The Diploma is aimed at those with significant work experience who will be able to hit the ground running or already have a business, so need a shorter, sharper programme.  The Masters is typically for those with less work experience, or intrapreneurs in large businesses, who need more time and support to get their ventures going.

Why should I care about "College status"?

Those seeking the fullest possible "Cambridge experience" might well prefer the Masters. The Masters tuition fees include College membership. However, Diploma students also benefit from both Cambridge networking opportunities and numerous memorable College lunches and dinners during the residential sessions, and, if they wish, are able to pay for a one year membership with certain Colleges who especially value their affiliation.

The first year content of the Masters and the content of the Diploma are very similar—are students taught in one group?

The core curriculum is taught to each group separately, the elective and specialist pathway modules bring the two programmes together. Cross-fertilisation between more and less experienced individuals has been widely understood for several decades as an important ingredient of successful innovation.

Can I apply for both programmes?

Yes. Each programme's admissions process is administered by a slightly different part of the University and therefore the time taken to reach a decision and make an offer of admission can also vary significantly.

Is there any advantage to applying early?

Yes. In 2017/18 the Diploma programme was heavily oversubscribed; we expect that both programmes will be oversubscribed for 2018/19, and offers of admission are made on a rolling basis.

Have a question?

If you are in need of further advice on applying to the Launchpad, feel free to email us at launchpad@jbs.cam.ac.uk.